Fair doesn’t always mean equal!

Yesterday I attended the Kennel Club International Agility Festival which is being held at Rutland Showground. It is a very busy show with thousands of dogs at the venue. You may be surprised to read that I only took two out of my three dogs! Yes I left one at home!! 😳 (obviously in the care of a family member)

You see fair doesn’t always mean equal, when we do anything with our dogs it is really important to ask ourselves if our dogs would actually enjoy the experience too?!

Dogs often don’t get a choice when it comes to us taking them out for the day and it can often be hard to spot the signs if our dog is feeling uncomfortable.

Yesterday I left Milo at home and took Quest and Flash out for the day. As you can see from the pictures below, both Quest and Flash were more than happy being in that environment. I couldn’t be sure that Milo would have the same experience so I left him at home, it is a simple as that.

You might be wondering if I felt bad for leaving Milo at home and the honest answer is yes, for a brief second because that’s human nature but I knew that he would be having a lovely time at home being spoilt and having all the attention to himself for the day.

I’d never been to the KCIAF before but I knew it was a very large event and until I had visited and knew what to expect I didn’t want to take Milo as this wouldn’t be fair on him.

If you’ve read my book then you know Milo has different needs to my other two dogs. He can be anxious in certain situations and it really wouldn’t be fair for me to take him and just hope he would be OK, especially if I then expected him to play agility.

Not every situation is right for every dog and we can often put our own needs and wants before those of our four-legged friend! We then sometimes get frustrated if we are in these situations and the dog isn’t behaving how we would like, rather than looking at why the dog is acting that way.

In dogs, behaviour is driven by emotion and it is important to look beyond the behaviour  and ask why the dog is behaving in that way.

Our own emotions also effect the dogs behaviour, take my agility runs yesterday for example. Flash had two agility runs yesterday, he is a dog who is very consistent in his agility but in his first run yesterday, if you were watching you would wonder if he had ever been trained! 😆 This is because MY nerves got to me. It is a very big event, I had never competed there before and I didn’t handle the course to the best of my ability and it resulted in an elimination.

Flash didn’t know any different though, we still had fun and kept smiling and he still got a big reward at the end with me laughing at how awful that particular run had been 🤦‍♀️.

Now if that had happened with Milo it would have massively effected his confidence. Milo picks up on my emotions and these can change how he behaves. Flash isn’t like that in the way Milo is, and aslong as I keep the experience fun then Flash doesn’t know any different. If Milo gets something wrong in agility his confidence takes a dive, and in those split seconds our human behaviour can alert the dog to this despite all our efforts to not let on!

Flash’s second run was much better, I had less nerves and it resulted in a clear round. He came in at 11th in a class of 48ish dogs, mostly collies, so I’m really pleased with his result.

I didn’t go to the event with any big goals in mind at all, I never do when it comes to competition. You never know what is going to happen. Yes, you can train and prepare but your working with an animal who has their own brain and the ability to make their own choices. A clear round is, I suppose, my main goal but if it doesn’t happen then it is no big deal.

We play agility for us, for FUN, to give the dog an outlet to work their brain but ultimately we do it for ourselves. It is so important to consider the emotional needs of the dogs who let us enjoy this sport.

Milo loves his agility but he wouldn’t of necessarily enjoyed the environment it was being held in yesterday and for me his enjoyment of it means more than the actual results themselves.

Agility is built on relationship, nurture that relationship and you will both enjoy the experience far more. A byproduct of that will be the results that follow anyway.

I train my dogs in agility for me, to allow us to enjoy something together that inhances our relationship and gives my dogs a chance to work their brains as well as their bodies.

I’ve been criticised in the past for not attending certain shows which are larger or not doing things the way others think I should, but these people need to remember I don’t do agility for you, I do it for me! I don’t need to prove anything to anyone other than that my dogs are happy 🙂.

Agility is a competitive sport but the competition shouldn’t be with others, it should be with yourself. Are your dogs getting better or are they regressing, if the latter look at WHY.

Comparison is the theif of joy, never compare with other people, dogs etc. Everyone is on their own journey, just enjoy that journey as much as you possibly can.

Play…Train…Enjoy…Succeed!

Katrina 🐾

July Success

This weekend I took my dogs to the Agility Vision show.

We came home with the following:

Milo only needed one more win for Grade 6 and actually got 2! He also gained enough points to claim his Agility Warrant Silver which now gives him new letters after his kennel club name 🙂.

Flash won into Grade 5 in June and is in his 25 day period (this is a period of 25 days from winning into a new grade that any further wins do not count for progression) Flash is unaware of this rule and brought home 3 clear wins and a 2nd place.

Having 5 clear wins at one show is quite an achievement, I am not one to blow my own trumpet but when I see places popping up which encourage you to try agility with the full kit and no regard for the dogs safety and welfare it does make me a little bit sad.

I spend lots of time researching, learning and updating my skills and the dogs safety and welfare is at the heart of everything I do. The reason my dogs get results is because I understand them! I have numerous qualifications in dog training and behaviour and I am constantly updating my knowledge. I also train with some of the best agility coaches and instructors in the UK and I do various online learning from agility trainers all over the world. This filters down into my own teaching.

The dog training and walking industry isn’t regulated, this means anyone without ANY qualifications or knowledge can walk or train your dog. To me that is scary, just because you love animals and once had a dog doesn’t qualify you to throw packs of dogs together and take them on a group walk!! And it equally doesn’t enable you to train them. There are also agility trainers out there who haven’t even got a clear round rosette nevermind any wins!!

Dog behaviour is complex, it is up to us as owners to do the best for our dogs by only allowing them the best care and training and entrusting them with people that understand and know their stuff! Would you go to the dentist if the dentist didn’t know the first thing about teeth?! Or would you put your child in the care of someone who hadn’t had all the relevant checks?!

If we are a nation of dog lovers then we owe it to our dogs to understand them and give them the best care possible!

My dogs get results because I start with solid foundations. Yes these aren’t the kit and can seem a bit boring if your wanting to do all the sexy stuff, however I see it time and time again when the foundations are rushed as the handlers desires outweigh what the dog needs at the time.

To train and teach successfully you need an understanding of dog behaviour and reinforcement from the dogs point of view. What we think, and what is actually happening can be two very different things.

My logo is made up of jigsaw pieces for a reason, all the little bits slot together to make the bigger game of agility.

My training won’t suit you if your wanting to treat it like it is a trip to the play park. If your wanting to have fun learning how to truly understand your dog and build an amazing team together then that is what I do!

I don’t train your dog, I train YOU;

  • To understand agility as a sport
  • I help you to train solid foundations
  • I guide you on your journey to understanding your individual dogs needs as you become that perfect team.

These 3 things will get you results even if those results are just a better relationship with your dog and a calmer dog in the home!

Do you need to compete to train with me? Absolutely not, but you will be more than equipped if you ever decide to take it to the ring as my training is exactly the same for competing dogs as it is for ones that just do it for fun. It isn’t focused on competition, it is focused on solid foundations, understanding and teamwork skills … these just happen to be exactly what you need before taking it into a ring 😉.

Play…Train…Enjoy…SUCCEED!

Our Agility Show Routine

Even though we haven’t got any shows to go to at the moment, I thought I would revisit this old blog from my previous website and update it with any changes, the content may be useful for some of you so I didn’t want it to disappear with my old website.

Our Agility Show Routine:

I thought I’d write a little blog about what we do before and after a show as I am a massive believer about our dogs not only being physically ready to compete but more importantly mentally ready!

Mental preperation for your dog is so important, I see lots of dogs that in my opinion are far from ready to be put into the ring which can lead to all kinds of problems for the dog which then lead to the dog making mistakes which then leads to a wrongly frustrated handler!!

So what do I do on the lead up, at the show and afterwards? Here is a little run down for you :

The following routine works really well for us. I’m not suggesting that you copy it exactly, but that you find a routine that suits you and your dog to make sure they are calm and happy when competing or even in a class environment.

You all know I bang on about calmness a lot and the reason for that is because it is SO important! For anyone wanting to know more we run a very informative workshop on calmness, I’d recommend booking on that as a fantastic starting point.

On the lead up to a show my dogs will be ’emptying their buckets’ for at least the 2 days before, they won’t go on a walk – they will be practicing lots of calming activities and calm games at home and we will do a lot of scent work to keep their minds busy in a calm manner.

At the show when we arrive we take each dog individually for a little walk round (on lead) to stretch their legs and go to the toilet.

If the dogs aren’t running (having a go at the competition) they will be relaxing in their crates in the van, you will never see my dogs ringside unless they are either queuing, or we are doing a bit of training, and even then it is max 10 mins but we don’t usually train skills at a show we are competing at.

Flash did a lot of visiting the show environment right from being a puppy and growing up as we were there with Milo. We walked him round, played games, practiced recalls, sit and waits etc just to get him happy being around the show.

Milo didn’t have as much of this preperation and I do belive this is what contributed to his previous lack of confidence in a show environment. The games are so powerful as they are what have transformed Milo’s confidence and just seeing how happy he is at a show now is everything to me!

We have trained / rehearsed the dogs being calm in crates since they were puppies and we have then transferred this over into the van – it’s important to mention our van is kitted out especially for the dogs in all weathers. NEVER leave a dog in a car that is too hot / cold or if the dog isn’t happy in it! If you planning on competing with your dog it is something to consider that your car is adequately kitted out for the dogs in hot weather with adequate cooling methods etc and also for the cold months too as there is a lot of hanging around at competitions.

Once they have been to the loo, depending on the timings of their runs they are back in their crates right until they are due to have their turn.

When it’s our go, we get them out of the van, walk them round calmly and ask them to go to the toilet, they have opportunity to sniff and take in their environment while we are on the way to the queue. We also make sure they are warmed up and physically ready to run.

When we get into the queue it is all about focus and calmness while we wait. My dogs are given space from others, they don’t interact with other dogs or people but there is a constant interaction with me – it is a pet hate of mine when dogs are in the queue interacting with other dogs, as often the dogs don’t like it or they are more interested in the other dogs than the owner which then doesn’t transfer well to the ring! Both my dogs have a different routine to what I do with them in the queue as they both have a different personality and I match the games to suit this.

I guard my dogs very much from interacting with other dogs and people while we are in that environment as its not fair on them if I give them mixed signals on what is allowed sometimes and what isn’t. Imagine how confusing it is for them if we allowed them to say hello to dogs sometimes but then a few mins later, a few yards away they suddenly had to forget about that dog and run agility!

After the run they are rewarded whatever the outcome and I get my dog out of the arena as fast but as calmly as possible – their adrenaline is pumping, they have just concentrated, ran and worked hard for me, this is when their ‘bucket’ would be filling quite fast! When outside I allow them to sniff if they want to, we slowly walk back to the van allowing them to cool down, I guard them from any passing dogs by playing focus games, scatter feeding or simply moving them out of the way.

They are in the arena / environment for maximum 5 minutes, their actual agility run lasts anywhere between 22 and 40 SECONDS. But please don’t underestimate how mentally tough this is for them!

In the van they get a big fuss, another reward and and calming activity to do, I make sure their water bowl is full and I cover their crate to allow them to switch off. This process is repeated throughout the day depending on how many runs the dogs have and the timing of those runs.

The day(s) after a show the dogs spend time ’emptying their buckets’ in the same way they did previous to the show, they won’t be walked, they will have lots of rest time to allow both their bodies and their minds to recover, they will play calm scent games, have Likimats and enjoy time relaxing with lots of cuddles too!

Lots of people don’t train their dogs to switch off and this is so so important for not only agility training but for everyday life !! I work with lots of dogs that spend their time in high arousal where they just can’t think straight – owners often make the mistake of branding the dog ‘naughty or stubborn’

As trainer I’ve never met a naughty or stubborn dog yet – I’ve met lots of dogs who are ‘highly aroused’ either through being worried or excited and I’ve also met lots of dogs who just simply don’t understand the tasks the owners are setting them.

Mental wellbeing in dogs is something I’m hugely passionate about, lots of owners could eradicate problematic behaviours and get a better agility performance if they only knew how to spot the signs and help their dogs out in all situations.

I will never know everything as a trainer and I find that really exciting – the dog world is rapidly growing and this is why it is so important that we grow with it, learning is key!

We will never stop learning, we are always on training courses, workshops and camps to expand our knowledge and training is always ongoing with my dogs. This knowledge then gets passed down to you with workshops, classes and events.

Keep your dogs happy and everyone’s a winner despite the results!

Play… Train… Enjoy… Succeed!

Katrina 

Why I Don’t (Always) Walk My Dog!

As some of you know, before concentrating on agility training I ran Tails and Peaks Dog Training. I am currently in the process of tidying up the old website and I noticed there are a few good blogs on there that I have written some time ago.

Instead of loosing these blogs forever I have decided to post them on here! Some of them wont be specifically about agility training but they will all be relevant to dog training and care. Enjoy!

This Blog was originally written in November 2019

Now the title of this has probably grabbed your attention as we live in a society where we are told we HAVE to walk our dogs..

Well what if those walks did more harm than good??!

So today I decided to take Milo out on a walk round our ‘quiet little village’

Milo and I don’t go out on regular walks (you will realise why as you read this blog) so I thought as my agility training got cancelled and we haven’t been out round the village for a while that we would take a stroll.

**before I go on let me just firstly point out that he gets his physical exercise regularly in other forms**

Anyway, Milo is a dog who can get worried and anxious, I have done lots of training work with him and I know his personality very well. One of his choice behaviours when both anxious and exited is to bark. Although he is friendly with dogs he knows, he gets worried by strange dogs and certainly doesn’t like ones in his face or personal space as he can get worried by them. He can be noise sensitive and he sometimes finds things scary if he’s not expecting them to be there. Children can sometimes worry him. He absolutely LOVES food, this includes the stuff he shouldn’t eat too!

Today it is raining and Milo isn’t a huge fan of the rain. The rain can also amplify sound for dogs.

So with all this in mind we set off for our walk. When I walk my dogs my whole attention goes on them. I don’t just walk them I walk WITH them, we share the experience together. I am very mindful of their personality and needs.

Let me give you a run down of all the things that happened on the hour we were out:

  • Loud bangs while I am locking the door from workmen down the road.
  • Birds flying in and out of bushes right past Milo’s Nose.
  • Wall walking – one of Milo’s favourite things to do!
  • Off lead dog being walked along narrow pavement, ignores owner who asks dog to sit, owner lets dog come over and pester us despite the fact we keep walking!
  • Lots of sniffs – some good and one that was a bit scary!
  • Man in a wheelchair getting in a taxi via a ramp in the boot.
  • Children going to school, all various ages.
  • Dogs being walked of all ages and sizes but all lunging and pulling owners towards us to try and get to us.
  • Off lead spaniel being walked through field, owner doesn’t put dog on lead at roadside, they continue to march past with dog off lead and don’t even consider to put it on the lead despite carrying one in their hand.
  • 2 dogs on lead in field , one off lead (same owner) As we enter the field the off lead dog runs over to us at full speed barking constantly at us ( I was near the gate and left the field and waited politely next to a car – using the car to shield Milo from said off lead dog as it still hadn’t been put on a lead) Owner then rudely decided to tell me I could have waited in the field, when I explained Milo wouldn’t like the dog running up to him yapping at him, she then told me that “she’s only noisy” (I will leave the fact that this lady is also a dog trainer and keep my opinions to myself on that one!!)
  • 2 dogs being walked on lead through field.
  • Sheep in the field (further down but still in the same field – there is no fence separating them from the path)
  • 3 separate dogs fence running and barking at us as we walk past their house.
  • Loud bin wagon emptying an industrial bin.
  • Jogger running past us.
  • Car mechanic’s working on a couple of cars.
  • Dropped sweets on the pavement.
  • Neighbours going out with their crying grandchild just as we arrive back home.

So, the list above …quite a list isn’t it when we drill everything down to step by step moments?! It is fine, it’s real life .. all the above happens but it is the reason I don’t do it regularly with Milo!!

I KNOW my dog, it is MY job as a responsible dog owner to be his advocate, to protect him, to ensure he can trust me not to put him any scary situations at all!! Would you like to do something everyday that worries you? Probably not!

Was he worried today?

NO!

He didn’t bark or react once! – and I am not saying that to brag, I am saying it to let you know it is ok to do what is right for YOUR DOG!

Yes there were times on today’s walk that people looked at me gone out – like there was something wrong with what I was doing . .

  • I didn’t allow Milo to say hello to any of the dogs I came across. I actively avoided them! I took a wide birth, I crossed over, I used cars to shield him. I ignored the comments of owners who thought they knew best! (just smile and keep walking!)
  • We practiced disengagement from anything and everything (including dropped sweets)
  • We had fun with loose lead walking games.
  • We (well Milo) had sniffing time while we were in the field (on lead)
  • We played on lead games in the field.
  • He got to walk on walls which he loves!
  • We paired anything that could be deemed as scary with lots of reinforcement.
  • We trained on our walk.
  • We had fun experiences together.

Could I have done things differently, yes I could. I could of had the walk others wanted me to have – to let him meet every dog there was to meet, I could have ignored anything that made a loud bang or that was a bit unusual, I could have let him off lead.

But I didn’t and because I didn’t we had a really successful walk – LOTS of fun, no dramas, no barking – just a good time!

What did I do when I got back? I made sure he had a comfortable place to relax (without our other dog pestering him ) In Milo’s case this is his crate as he loves his crate, it is his little safe den. I gave him a pizzle chew and I’ve let him empty his brain bucket, chill out and relax, I have given him time to truly switch off.

Just because he didn’t have a reaction, doesn’t mean it hasn’t had an effect on his arousal levels.

What did I take with me in terms of food rewards for training, well I have put a picture below:

So quite a lot!

Did I use it all, No!!

The picture above is what I brought home, I realised I wanted to write this blog and I quickly emptied my pockets to show you what I took and what I didn’t use. I often hear from owners that they don’t like using food as a reward – well let me tell you something your boss at work probably doesn’t like paying you each day, they would much rather keep the money in their pocket, but if they didn’t pay you then you wouldn’t work! Simple! It is the same with dog training – dog’s need paying for the good choices that they make! I have varying values of food which I can use depending on the training or what I want to reward at the time! His normal kibble is the brown round pieces – we mainly used that today, yes the food he will be getting today anyway!

We used his normal food for the majority of training on today’s walk. I used some chicken as a jackpot reward, a bit of the dried liver for training games in the field as it is larger so he could see it easily in the long grass. The rest I didn’t even use.

The moral of this blog is :

Please don’t be a D**K with your dog – yes your dog may like to say hello to others, but they might not want to say hello back! Put them on a lead around other dogs always unless the other owner has said it is ok.

Look after them – don’t put them in situations they may not be ready for if your not prepared to implement some training while your there.

Today on our short walk, even though it was fine, we had a good time, nothing bad happened, it reminded me why we don’t do it every day! Milo would hate being put through that daily and if he was I for sure would soon have a reactive dog instead of the one I have got.

Not every dog suits every situation. What is right for one dog may not be right for the next.

Your dog sees you as their protector – please don’t put them in situations where they may have to question that!

If you need any help with training for real life situations then please get in touch.

Play…Train…Enjoy…Succeed !

A Coach or a Trainer?!

One thing that often gets people confused is the difference between a coach and a trainer. Whilst these are similar titles I refer to myself as a coach and I will tell you why below.

My background is in helping people, before coming into dog training I actually had my career set out as helping humans! I have qualifications in psychology and counselling and this is what I thought I would do until my dog Milo came into my life, but I’m sure you will hear all about that story soon 😉📕.

Dog training is as much about the handler as it is about the dog. Our dogs are super clever things and they not only pick up on our behaviour and see that as clues to what is happening next, they also pick up on our emotions and how we are feeling!

So with this in mind I work on both ends of the dog lead!

As a coach I help people to understand their individual dog. No two dogs are the same and by understanding your individual dog you will learn how to train them more successfully and therefore get the results you require.

Agility is made of up of all manner of things with the majority of them being nothing to do with the jumps! There is a reason my logo is made up of lots of jigsaw pieces, because that’s exactly what you need for any kind of training success, you need each piece to fit together to achieve the bigger picture 🧩🧩🧩🧩.

Each piece of my logo represents a different element of training and when this all comes together you achieve fantastic results! This isn’t just limited to agility, what I teach you will transfer to everyday life! Win, win! 🏆🏆

A lot of agility trainers focus on the actual agility and yes this is important but what if I told you what you did before you left the house, what you feed your dog in the session, whether you use food or toys to reward or even what their journey is like to training could actually be hindering any success you have in that session?!

This is what makes me different as a coach.

Yes I could train your dog to do a certain trick or behaviour but my role is to coach owners to understand their dog inside out. This is what will give you success regardless of if you want to go to an agility competition or to just get a clear round in my training arena.

This is why I specialise in agility foundations, it is where the magic happens! 🎩🔮

Watching owners have those light bulb moments and seeing their relationship with their dog go from strength to strength is the best thing ever!💡

Understanding your dog is key!

With lockdown upon us there is no better time to become your dogs geek with my range of online training options.

Click here to see my range of Online Coaching.

Dogs really are man’s best friend, we owe it to them to understand them and train them in a way they not only enjoy but that builds their confidence and relationship with us.

Happy Training

Katrina 🐾

2020 Round Up 📰

So what a weird year 2020 was! Despite all the madness there were plenty of positives that have come out of this year!

Yes there were a lot of negatives and a lot of people will be glad to see the back of this year but for the purpose of keeping sane it is important to count our blessings!

There were no KC shows after Feb! So my boys did pretty well considering this.

Flash – Started the year in Grade 3 needing 1 win to move up to Grade 4 he got that at the first show he did in January along with a 2nd and 3rd place! At the only other KC show we went to in February he gained 2 more clear wins and a clear 2nd place!

🌟 He also gained enough points to achieve his Agility Warrant Bronze with a high majority of his points collected in agility runs (we had to use Milo’s certificate for the pic as we are STILL waiting for his to arrive!) 🌟

Flash also finished 3rd in the agility gundog league 💪.

Milo – No grade changes for him. He managed to gain a few rosettes and some placings in the shows we went to and I’m really happy with how he has come on this year with his confidence, drive and speed.

We also enjoyed all the Covid shows at pure, it was so nice to have something to focus on in the strange times. Agility has definitely kept me sane in the madness of 2020!

We also enjoyed training at pures new indoor venue. It is a fantastic facility and I’m looking forward to going back there when restrictions allow.

Along with my dogs personal achievements we also found our fantastic new venue:

Having a sole use venue is the dream when your an agility trainer and to have a sand one is even better! No slipping around in mud and no cancelled lessons at the slight hint of rain!

It used to be the thing to have an indoor venue to use however Covid has massively changed things meaning that an outdoor arena is THE thing to keep a business going at the moment!

On the subject of keeping things going I have also developed my online offerings with online courses, resources, zoom consultations, seminars, webinars and my favourite service to date Geek Club!

I really love my geek club students! Their desire to learn as much as they can for their dog will only lead to great things for them and lots of success!

2020 has also made me reflect on the business as a whole. I’ve realised as much as I love teaching, helping people and seeing people have fun with their dogs I must remember it is a business not a charity and I’ve made some changes going into 2021 to enable me to separate the business from home life and from my own agility with my own dogs.

It is hard to get the balance right when running a business that you love especially when it is also your hobby but going forward I’m happy with the way the business will be in 2021. 2020 has taught us all to look after ourselves and our families that little bit more!

So signing off 2020 with part of me glad to see it leave, the other part of me is thankful for the changes it has forced me to make and the new opportunities it has given me too!

However your ending the year be thankful for the lessons in 2020 as they will only make you stronger as a person.

Take care of yourself and your families, stay safe and keep having fun with your dog.

2021 we are coming for you!

Katrina 🐾

Why do I need online training?

In this strange time that we are in a lot of people are making connections with family and friends online. There has also been a big increase in people learning new skills or gaining more knowledge by studying online.

In my business I love to utilise the online aspects of teaching as it can open up a level of learning that clients can’t get in the in person sessions.

Last year in our group sessions the theory side of dog training was presented at the start of our classes. This isn’t practical in our 30 minute one to one sessions so we have gone online!

I have online courses, resources, webinars and seminars but the area which gets the most light bulb moments for the client is the zoom consultations 💡.

The zoom consultations are tailored to the dog and client! I look at the dog as a whole rather than just the specific struggle the client is facing.

Dog training is sometimes considered to be an in person thing and it is, however this is only a small piece of the whole training picture. The real success comes from understanding your dog and all their individual needs and quirks!

For example I have 2 dogs who live in the same house but they both have very different needs and training plans. To treat them exactly the same wouldn’t be fair on them and if I did one of them would loose out as their needs wouldn’t be being met as they wouldn’t be unique to them.

Dog training especially agility training in some ways is a lifestyle, yes it is a hobby but it is the lifestyle that your dog has day in day out which will help them get the best results when it comes to training.

What we feed them, how much rest they get, how much exercise and mental stimulation they receive along with what they rehearse every day all has an effect on what your agility training will look like and your general dog training for that matter.

Although I primarily train agility I cover general dog training and behavioural work with agility clients through my zoom consultations and geek club. This is because behaviour transfers and the dog as a whole is so important when it comes to training of any kind.

It doesn’t matter if you do agility just for fun or to compete, if your paying for training it is cost effective to want to progress (otherwise your paying for sessions when your not achieving as much as you could) I help clients to understand why what they do in-between their training sessions is either helping or hindering their agility training.

If you know me personally you will know I’ve had lots of success with both my dogs when it comes to competitions. This isn’t a result of me just going to training, it is a small piece of the jigsaw. I also actually don’t train my dogs agility that often despite me having my own arena!

What gets me success is my behaviour knowledge and knowing how to apply that to the individual needs of both my dogs and I do the same with my clients dogs to. We look at all the little pieces of the jigsaw and slot them together.

Knowing your dog as a whole will supercharge any training that you do with them. Understanding why they sometimes ignore your recall cue, are suddenly not interested in food or why they don’t do a task when you think they know it and they do it perfectly well at home!

This knowledge is what will make you succeed!

I give my students this knowledge in my online training. I’ve studied for years (and still do) with numerous organisations and training providers to ensure I know what I’m talking about and that the advice I give out is the most up to date advice there is out there. I study to provide the best service possible.

I see it time and time again in training when people are too set in the task of doing agility, they get fixated with the ‘doing’ and if that doesn’t go like they were expecting then the dog gets the blame or they put pressure on the dog to perform the task.

Agility has got to be fun for both the dog and owner and pressure doesn’t equal fun! If pressure is part of the training sooner or later one member of the team is going to give up! Usually it is the dog!

People sometimes think my training is focused on competition, they make the mistake of thinking because they don’t want to compete that the dog somehow doesn’t need to learn properly. They do! Not only for safety but also because the training will transfer into everyday life.

If you can’t get your dog to wait on a startline chances are they won’t be able to wait as you lift the boot of the car or they won’t be able to wait nicely in the kitchen while you prepare dinner.

If you can’t recall your dog around agility equipment in a secure area chances are you will struggle in the park when your up against bigger distractions!

Along with those two examples training agility changes the relationship you have with your dog for the better and relationship is at the heart of everything you will ever train your dog to do ❤.

So why do you need to train online? Well if you are hungry for more knowledge on how to get the best our of your dog then online learning will give you all the tools for this knowledge in the comfort of your own home.

Click here to find out more information on how my zoom consultations could help you!

Happy Training

Katrina 🐾