Running Dearlove Advanced Course of 16 Aug 2004

24 Aug 2004Steve Schwarz

This post updates my original thoughts about this course:

Course With Obstacle Numbers

Because the course was so similar to the intermediate course please see my comments on that course for the similar sections.

I ran this course with Milo and some of the other Dearlove instructors. It turned out to be challenging both where I expected and in a couple places I didn’t expect.

Deciding on the lead out distance and getting the right timing for the Front Cross Front CrossLearning the Front Cross at jump 2 was an issue for some of us. Milo and I had just been working on this on one of Dana Pike’s courses. So he read the early cross well, as long as I executed correctly. I was mentioning to some of the handlers in the next group who hadn’t tried early front crosses that the handler has to practice the timing of the cue. Ideally the cue happens just as the dog commits to taking the jump; or even earlier, once the dog understands what is expected. Obviously, if the dog turns before taking the jump you’ve cued him before he committed. If the dog comes down on the bar it is likely the handler is too late or took a “chop” at the front cross while the dog was over the bar.

From jump 3 to the tunnel was no problem for any of the teams as they all setup the dog’s line nicely. As for the intermediate handlers, jumps 6-10 were handled with a front cross and pulling through the Pin Wheel. But I forgot the “evil” part of my course design, the 9-10 sequence looked (purposely) like the 3-4 sequence. So to a number of the dog’s the tunnel had to be the next obstacle. The dog’s had a lot of speed and unless the handler could get the dog’s attention they would go right into the tunnel. Which is exactly what Milo and I did three times:

Failed Handling

Anthony handled this with Chaz using a front cross over jump 10 which was very successful. But it also required that he not baby-sit the turn through the 9 jump:

Anthony's Handling

Just like the intermediate course, the 13-14-15 jumps brought up discussion on whether to turn the dogs left or right. Turning the dog to the left keeps the dog on their left lead. Turning them to the right requires changing their lead. The faster dogs were approaching jump 14 at a very shallow angle so the lead change wasn’t much of an issue. However, the dogs turning right tended to turn wider than those turning left into a front cross. See both approaches below:

Left TurnRight Turn

Milo and I had a different problem at jump 12, back jumping after the front cross. I had to post turn to get him to look away from the jump - but then the spacing to jump 10 was drawing him to take the off course. Looks like we need to work on this drill…

For another course using the same setup please see article

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