I thought it would be interesting to compile the dogwalk and A-frame results from this past year's trials to see how we did. Also I can easily look up trials where we did well then check my training the few weeks before and likewise for trials where we didn't do so well. Sometimes the atmosphere of the trial itself as well as Strum's mood on the day had more bearing on contact performances for sure but it's still nice to be able to look back at training patterns to see what had the best effects. All dates are for 2010.
Jan 3 USDAA - 0/1 DW = 0%
1/1 AF = 100%
Feb. 2010 DOCNA - No Stats
April 3-4 USDAA - 1/2 DW?
1 missed AF (Snooker)
May 8 USDAA - 1/2 DW - 50%
1/1 AF? - 100%?
May 22-23 DOCNA - No Stats
May 29-30 DOCNA - 6/10 DW (rubber, no slats) - 60%
10/10 AF (rubber, no slats, 5' high) - 100%
June 26 USDAA - 2/2 DW (or 1/1?) - 100%
2/2 AF (or 3/3?) - 100%
July 31-Aug. 1 DOCNA - 10/11 DW - 91%
8/8 AF - 100%
Aug. 9 UKI - 2/2 DW - 100%
2/3 AF - 67%
Aug. 14-15 DOCNA - No stats, just a note that DW success rate is improving slightly and some
fantastic 180 degree flips off the DW and AF into tunnels on a verbal cue.
Sept. 22-25 DOCNA Champs - No stats just a note that we missed 2 DW to tunnel flips
Oct. DOCNA - 8/10 DW - 80%
10/11 AF - 91%
Dec. DOCNA - 4/11 DW - 36%
6/8 AF - 75%
Some of my stats were from memory in that the trial report said only '100% on AF's' so I counted up the number of AF's I thought we did. This is more for noticing general trends rather than getting too nit picky.
Final end of year stats counting only reps. that I was sure of:
Dogwalk: 32/48 = 67%
A-frame: 39/43 = 91%
The worst trial was the very last one in December and if you remove that trial the stats go up to:
Dogwalk: 28/37 = 76%
A-frame: 33/35 = 94%
And in fact it was mostly Sunday that brought down the numbers for that December trial (5 of the 7 misses were on Sunday). Strum had a bad day in general on Sunday as far as his behavior and mental state so it makes sense that his contact performance suffered. Interesting how one bad day can bring down the numbers so significantly for the whole year and why it's important to look at general trends.
The second set of numbers matches my own perception of his contact performance in trials so it's good that I have a realistic idea in my mind of what's going on in the ring.
A week after the trial I took him out to the training field to run a full course (the Standard Finals run from the AKC Invitational) and he flew off the dogwalk right off the bat. I tried a few more times and same result. So I tried to backchain it by having him start at the top of the down ramp and he still couldn't get it. SO frustrating. I finally had to stand right in front of the dogwalk ramp. I eventually got a few hits and called it a day for the dogwalk because once he gets in one of those loops of constantly doing it wrong it's hard to get him out and best to give it a rest for the day. I was using his much beloved squeaky chicken for reward and this didn't help as he was so excited to get it that it was all he could think about.
Yesterday I decided some remedial work was in order so I broke out the remote control treat dispensing gizmo and put the toys away for the session. I was determined to reward only those hits that were obvious so there was one hit that I didn't reward. There was also one that was a hit but too close and I shouldn't have rewarded it but I did. These were my only mistakes with rewards.
I'm of 2 minds about rewarding those hits that are back feet only. Technically they're clean if the judge can see them properly. Silvia accepts these for her dogs. Strum was doing them at the Daisy Peel seminar and she said they were acceptable. In watching the video it's true that he's not leaping but it seems to speak to a lack of understanding of the behavior. And I think it's harder for the judge to see. A judge that's hostile to running contacts might call it. And there are times where he just misses with his back feet (this is what happened in the 'close call' rep that I rewarded). On the other hand I think there's a danger in being too picky. For now I think I'll reward the very obvious ones and see where that leads us.
Results for the training session were 11/15 or 73%, right in line with his typical performance.
Yet more video. I know, some of you are sick to death of the video but this is helpful to me when I go back to check training progress. I know, 'Will she never be done training the wretched dogwalk?' is what you're thinking. Believe me, I'm thinking the same thing.