Tag - puppy training - Dog Handling

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Thursday, January 9 2014

Good Dog Training Schedule for 2014

Training with Raewyn Saville

By appointment at your place:

Puppies up to 15 weeks

Difficult dogs

Dog Management Programs

By appointment at my place:

Complete Control

Stock Aversion

Poultry Aversion




4 – 5.30pm Weaves Clinic.

5.30 - 6.30pm Play to Learn - everyone welcome.


4.30 - 5.30pm Obedience for beginners.

5 - 6.30pm Obedience Advanced Class.


5.30 – 7.30pm - Senior Agility from beginning of September - 31 March 2014.


5.30 – 7.30 Fly games & dinner.


10am Control Class – all welcome

11am Agility Equipment Class

12noon Agility Beginners Class

1pm Free Puppy Class – puppies 4-6 months old

2pm Beginners Flyball

3pm Free Run Class – puppies from 6 months and older dogs who require more exercise (NEW class)

All one hour sessions are $5 each for each dog. Puppy Class is free. Thursday night is Club Night $6 includes dinner.

Friday, March 1 2013

Fae the Fat Fairy learns Agility Episode 15

Tomorrow is Saturday and I have been practicing my weaves all week and tomorrow I will have to do them at the new Club grounds at Paradise Valley in Rotorua.

Every night my boss and I go out onto the lawn in front of our house and she throws the ball through the weave poles and I run and get it and sometimes she asks me to bring the ball back through the weave poles and sometimes she runs with me and sometimes she is on the other side and far away and sometimes she makes me sit and wait and then she calls me through and when we have done all that we play hard tug. It is great. I am having a bit of trouble doing more than three things in a row but the boss says all dogs go through this stage. Whew thats a relief. I like tunnels but I don't like having to do three hurdles in a row. I can do a hurdle and a tunnel and a hurdle and a tunnel and turn and come back but just three hurdles and I have to miss one of them, even if my ball or tug is at the other end. I am really good at contacts and I especially like the crossover. The boss says it will be a while before I get crossover in competition as I will be in elementary a long time. I am only 15 months yet and can't start to compete for another three months anyway.

Last Wednesday was Agility course work and my sister Bree was there. She is better than me, especially if her boss Amy takes her toy out on the course to Play. But my sister Nala the Pappillon is much better than all us small dogs except Bootz and she does courses properly and really fast. I got really fast on Wednesday when I thought I saw something to chase far away and took off. The boss didn't have a proper hold on me. When I got a long way away I turned around and I couldn't see the boss or the truck, that was a bit scary, and then the boss called me and waved her hand in the air and I could see where she was and I ran back as fast as I could. The boss was really pleased with me. She says it is one thing to run away but it is the coming back that counts. I love it when the boss is pleased with me I go all waggy and silly it is such a nice feeling inside.

Tyson, my boyfriend, ran well on Wednesday. He is just starting to like Agility and play and do things his boss Katie wants him to do. My boss says I am like Tyson and take ages to learn stuff, but that's okay cause Tyson is cool, I like being like Tyson.

There were only 9 dogs in Agility on Wednesday so we had lots of turns and some dogs were really good. The course was an old NALA one from 2001. My boss looked at some of the names of dogs in the book and said that most of them were dead now, except my oldest sister Midge who is 14 and was running in her first courses in those days.

Anyway I had better get some sleep so that I can do really well tomorrow. There are new bunnies at the new dog training park at Paradise Valley and they don't come out and play like the bunnies at the Ngongotaha Rail Park, but I know they are there. I am pretending they aren't but I know they are, if you know what I mean, 'sigh' zzzzzzz

Fae the Fat Fairy.

Saturday, February 23 2013

Good Dog Training Newsletter February 2013


One of the most evasive skills in dog training is to get your dog to come to you under all circumstances. Not many people achieve it really. I have seen even very good Obedience Competition Dogs look the other way when their handlers call them from a nice sniffy place. Recently, I met the Aunt of one of my students in the supermarket and said I had not seen niece and dog for a couple of months and hoped that they were okay. Niece had badly wanted to do Agility with her pup and as far as I could see was achieving very well at the puppy end of the scale. But apparently niece was particularly worried that her dog did not always return to her as quickly as she had hoped and therefore felt that they were not achieving Good Dog Behavior. What a shame. The dogs breed was Beagle. Now everyone who owns a Beagle or any of those lovely earth dogs - the Basset Hounds, the Dachshunds, the Fox Terriers, Welsh Terriers, Irish Terriers, Scots Terriers, West Highlands, Kerrys, Cairns, Wheatens, Norfolks, Borders, Aussies and Silkies will tell you that they take extra training to come when called. They have a huge distraction factor called 'a good nose'. This means they will hunt themselves to a standstill, but their ears are largely overpowered by their nose. This does not mean they will not come when called, it just means that the training method needs to be continuous and clever to get the response required. The above Beagle concerned was the most responsive beagle I have seen in an age and I am sure that it could well have achieved the lady's dream of Agility so that is a shame.

A lot of people bring their pup to puppy class and even to the classes for older dogs and do not understand the daily training regime that gets the result they want. On the other hand, I have 20 continuous class people who have now been training just good behavior for over twelve months and their achievements are inspirational.

Anyway let's get back to 'Come'.

When puppy is little and wandering around behind you simply because you are now the only moving thing in his life, say 'good boy Charlie Come'. 'good girl Fae Come'.

Sometimes make a reward of it with a little bit of food, but it isn't actually necessary as you move along and pup follows just keep saying come... well congratulations, your pup comes every time you say it now. As you stand up from sitting and pup isn't far away, you say 'Come pup' and guess what he comes. 'Good boy Charlie'. Now he is twelve weeks and he is growing and able to go further away from you. You are still doing Come when he is close to you so that it does not fail. You must not set pup up to fail as you will be disappointed and he will know something is amiss. Every time you feed him, and you are feeding him by hand three times a day. You go to his food bowl and you rattle it and you produce the food and if he is not right there with you he soon will be, as you see him coming you say 'Come' Good boy Charlie. Go on building this using his toys. Soon you will be able to check how well your system is working by proofing it against other distractions and this is when the real training starts. Coming to class gives you a full range of distractions to train around. There is no point in your dog being picture perfect at coming to you at home. He needs to come to you everywhere, so you need to get out there and proof your training. At 16 weeks puppy class is all about teaching your dog to choose to stay with you. How hard is it? Very hard for most people to achieve, Impossible - definitely not.

Ah you say now if I had had this dog since it was a pup I would not have the problem, but I got this dog at 6 months, 12 months , 4 years, 8 years. He had already fixed that he did not come when called. Sorry won't work. When you adopt a dog, no matter what age you have to treat that dog the same as you would a pup. The facts for the dog are the same.


1. It has left a known environment and come to a (another) strange place, with people and animals it does not know. 2. You should be hand feeding your new pet no matter what age it is when you receive it. 3. You need to make sure that you will spend a bunch of time with your new pet so that you can practice keeping it alongside you. 4. You should not be dashing out with your new dog and doing a fifty km hike or even a 3 km hike. He needs to get used to his immediate environment and then increase his circles of knowledge about his greater environment. Think of the first 8 weeks you have your new pet as an investment in the future of your team work together. Do not growl at him - ever - treat him kindly, use his lead as an umbilical not as a weapon of restraint. 5. Get to quality dog training once a week.

There are little tricks about calling your dog quite apart from the above. Example? don't call your dog when it wants to find a place to toilet, he will not come. If you call your dog twice and it doesn't come, stop calling and walk away briskly. When he catches up 'What a good boy Charlie'. Formal Obedience Recall in the ring. Sit dog on left side close to your leg. Give dog signal and say 'Wait' - walk forward using your right leg first - the number of steps - about five to start. Turn and face your dog standing with your legs just a little apart, wait for your instructor or judge to tell you to call the dog. 'Charlie come'. Charlie comes at a good pace and sits right in front of you up nice and close facing you and looking up into your eyes. The Instructor or Judge says 'Finish' and you instruct Charlie to pass around the back of your body from right to left to bring himself to a close sit on your left side. Magic.

Now just to make him come when he has his head down a rabbit hole or up the tail of a pretty little bitch....... keep working on it, don't give up, you will be rewarded if you keep consistently at it. Think of every slip up as a chance to proof your training. Wow moment, when you go home from a walk and say to your partner 'Guess what darling, Charlie came straight away today when I called him as we passed the sheep paddock on the corner, isn't that wonderful'.

HappyTraining. Raewyn Saville…..Trainer

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