As someone who has trained on my own for several years now, I am always on the lookout for new things to do with the dogs. Clean Run has always been invaluable (which reminds me, perhaps I should actually reactivate my subscription that just lapsed.... -- I have less motivation to do so in the winter when I can't set any of the drills). The other wonderful source in my life is YouTube.
I believe it was on Rosanne DeMascio's channel ( http://www.youtube.com/user/DKSAgility ) quite a while back that I got the idea for this exercise. She claimed it was good for working on core strength and bending -- I'll throw in that it's super great for collection and basic jump skills as well.
There is no special spacing, at least not in how I set it up. I figured I'd make adjustments as needed, but Secret was a rock star and worked it out. I started her at 10", moved up to 16" and finished at 22". We didn't overdo it as I recall Rosanne saying this was pretty hard work for the dog. I'm super impressed with how much effort Secret put into the exercise -- and she kept her bars up! I was going to use food for this drill, but once again she chose her tuggy. Cool beans.
In addition to the jump drill, we also did more table work, building on the auto-down behavior. Secret can be a goober sometimes. She seems to have it down pat that we get on the table and lay down, but the ways in which she actually goes about getting on the table at times can be interesting. If I just sat and waited for her to offer the behavior (vs. sending her), she would alternate between getting on like a normal dog, backing on with her rear feet first, and going up SIDEWAYS (ie: lifting both legs on the right side of her body and crawling up sideways). Oddball.
I upped the ante on the teeter work, too. I moved the end of the plank over to the concrete so that it would bang louder during our slam session. This did seem to startle Secret at first, but she quickly got over it and continued on with our game. I really hope all of this confidence-building game play crosses over to new teeters. I more or less feel I have to at least give it a try in Gamblers in a couple of weeks -- Speaking of which, I got our initial confirmations e-mailed to me this morning! Yay!!
And it's official! My new foster will be arriving tomorrow. I had the option of the red & white puppy or the black & white puppy (different locations, so they aren't siblings). I chose the red girl for a few reasons -- She looked a little smaller (though pictures are hard to judge!), it looks like her ears are going up (swoon!), and she doesn't fit my color pallet so we don't have to worry about her staying. lol
I learned this morning that her name is Missy. Blargh. I can't call her Missy. I think she looks like a Nell. We shall see. :o)