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FE275: Proof Positive: Adding Distractions

Instructor: Mariah Hinds

Course Details

You’ve spent lots of time building some fantastic skills and now you need to make sure that those skills will hold up when you enter the ring or go out in the real world. Our goal is always to build our dog's confidence when we are adding real-life distractions. Our dogs need to learn what they should ignore in a trial setting and what cues they should pay attention to. We are going to play fun games that add in common ring distractions. We will practice with sound distractions, visual distractions, movement, smells, spacial pressure, distractions in motion, and judges talking, moving and walking toward you and your dog. Our dogs will learn to persist with the cued behavior even when distractions occur. The dog's confidence will soar when they that distractions bring them one step closer to earning reinforcement. 

You'll learn how to break apart a distraction to enable your dog to be successful, how you can use different reinforcement strategies to help your dog be really accurate and remain eager to work with you, and how to build a positive conditioned emotional response to judges walking toward you and your dog.

Gold students can choose to work on one to two exercises in this class. We will break that exercise into 4 to 6 components, practice each component with distractions, and practice the entire exercise with distractions. We can work on stopped contacts, start-line stays, one jump exercises, fronts and finishes, signals, gloves, stand for exam, retrieving, go outs/ send aways with directed jumping, retrieve over a jump, broad jump, out of motion down, out of motion stand, figure 8s, turns within heeling (set up in heel position, turn left, turn right, about turn, 10 steps of heeling), change of pace in heeling (set up in heel position, transition to slow, transition to normal, transition to fast, full patterns with change of pace), straight line heeling following a turn (left turn followed by straight, right turn followed by straight heeling, about turn followed by straight heeling, full patterns with turns) and so much more! It’ll be beneficial but not mandatory to go to a new park, store or shopping plaza once a week during this class to practice. It'll also be beneficial but not mandatory to have a helper act as a judge for one exercise per week.

Join us and build your dog's confidence to do the behaviors no matter what the distraction!