Saturday, August 05, 2006

Hand to Forehead -- With Vigor

Well, today was another Schutzhund workshop day, and we were out at the training field for about 8 hours. (The club is meeting again tonight, but I have a birthday celebration to attend.) Laev is getting dirty in the blind, and attempts to fix it today were not totally successful; she has a very strong opposition reflex and collar pressure sends her forward, so collar pops produced a messy solution at best.

And then on the way home, I had the classic forehead-slap moment.

Laev's entire training has been based on, "get it right and be marked/reinforced for correct behavior; get it wrong and try again." The very fact that she was allowed to continue the behavior (the hold and bark) after the dirty attempts indicated to her that she was correct -- and indeed, the bite at the end of the hold and bark reinforced the entire CHAIN of dirty snap and then clean hold and bark.

I'm so stupid. This is what comes of trying to make decisions on the fly rather than planning in advance. I of course can't see from across the field that she's being dirty in the blind, so when others did and offered to take the line to keep her clean, I went with it. I didn't take time to think through a training plan.

I do need to teach her that she can work forward while wearing the prong; that confused her during the blind search today. But I'll also be trying to interrupt and restart dirty holds, and we'll see how that goes. I'll bet it's a significant improvement.

1 comment:

judi said...

Hi Laura-

Laev looks awesome. I've been scanning your blog since you started it. Glad your having so much fun too.