Wednesday, June 30, 2010

2010 Goals: Second Quarter Update

Goal: Complete the relaxation protocol.
Progress: I did the relaxation protocol, oh, maybe once or twice. Which is something, I guess, even if it isn’t much.
Looking Forward: I know the relaxation protocol is worth the work… it’s just so boring! I’m still hoping to work on it once or twice a week.

Goal: Increase Maisy’s physical exercise.
Progress: Last quarter, Maisy and I walked 52% of the days. This quarter, we walked 58 out of 91 days, which is 64%. That’s not too bad, especially considering the fact that I was gone on vacation for the first two weeks of April. She did get to go for walks while we were gone, but I’m only counting the times I took her.
Looking Forward: It’s been a bit trickier to get walks in as it has gotten hotter- I hate the heat. We’ve been doing late evening walks, but I really need to consider early morning walks, too.

Goal: Develop novice obedience stays.
Progress: Tons of progress! Maisy is up to about 40 seconds of sit-stay while out on walks and in class.
Looking Forward: Continue building duration. Slowly add in distraction for shorter stays. Start working on down-stays.

Goal: Improve heeling so that we can complete a novice-level heeling pattern.
Progress: I don’t know that we’ve made a ton of progress, but there has been some. I’m pleased with her heeling right now. She’s much more attentive, and while the position needs tightening up, I’m happy with what we’ve got right now. We’ve also added in about turns, and gotten the fast pace much more consistent.
Looking Forward: Continue to refine position. She does tend to forge just a bit, especially during the first step. I also noticed in my last video that she goes a bit wide, so I’d like to fix that, too.

Goal: From heel position, hit the proper front position on the first try.
Progress: Much progress here! She can go from a seated heel position to a front position every time I ask… although it isn’t always a perfect front. It’s not bad, though- not enough to get points off in rally. And, she can correct her position if I tell her to try again. She does tend to over-correct, but at least she knows which direction to move in order to correct.
Looking Forward: I’m hopeful that, by the end of the year, she will have perfect fronts 75% of the time.

Goal: Develop jumping skills for a recall over high and directed jumping.
Progress: We haven’t worked much on jumps, and I’d say she’s about the same as she was three months ago.
Looking Forward: I watched a Susan Salo jumping DVD, and learned some new jumping exercises I can do. I’d like to try doing these once a week or so.

Goal: Reduce ring nerves.
Progress: I was much more relaxed at the last trial I attended. I did get hypnotized in April or May to help learn some relaxation techniques, and while it didn’t do as much as I’d hoped, it did help quite a bit. It was the most relaxed I’ve ever been while at a trial.
Looking Forward: I really need to work on my relaxation/visualization techniques on a regular basis to get the most out of them.

Goal: Complete ARCH.
Progress: Maisy got her Level 2 title in February, and we tried for QQs in June… we could have had them, but I chose to NQ those runs so that Maisy would have a good experience. On the bright side, she’s completely capable of Level 2, so it’s just a matter of getting anxiety under control for both of us.
Looking Forward: We won’t achieve this goal this year, which is okay with me. We’ve made some progress towards it, and I’m happy with that.

Goal: Get one leg towards a CD (any venue).
Progress: None officially, but we are working on the skills necessary (heeling, etc.). Other than the stays, we are ready for Novice.
Looking Forward: I’ve said before that I’ll probably try CDSP first because they allow treats in the ring. I need to have the ability to turn a bad run into a cookie run. The next trial in my area is at the end of July… however, it’s held in conjunction with APDT rally, and I can’t decide which to work on. (Doing both would be too long of a day for Maisy, so I really have to pick just one.)


Laura, Lance, and Vito said...

Sounds like you have been doing well! Good luck on fixing the forging, we still struggle with it but I'm always so happy I have a confident forger rather then a lagger!

Crystal said...

It actually kind of works for us- Maisy tends to lag slightly when stressed.

elegy said...

I had a great experience with CDSP. Being able to talk to my dog through the whole routine is huge for me. And she doesn't say no to the cookies part, either ;)

Congratulations on all your hard work! Luce and I are mostly taking the summer off, but we both need it.

katie said...

its awesome how organized and focused you are! I love that your goals are so widespread. Sometimes w/ my reactive Maizey I can get a little tunnel visioned into just helping her with that, but I know the real solution lies in what you are doing-managing her stress while building confidence and skill in many areas.

Thank you also for being honest about managing your own nerves as this is something I to face. If you have time or interest I would love to here your opinion on my last two posts as it is the first time I really posted about Maizey's reactive journey.

Crystal said...

I am looking forward to trying CDSP, too. I just found out there are some run throughs in a few weeks, so I guess I will go try that out. If Maisy and I do well, we'll enter the CDSP trial, and if not, we'll do rally instead. I'm glad a local club is doing run throughs!

As for being organized and focused... I guess I am. I do love to make lists and charts and stuff, but sometimes I don't follow through as well. Part of the problem is certainly that I much prefer having fun with my dog, and some things aren't as fun as others (Relaxation Protocol, I'm looking at you!)...