Thursday, August 5, 2010

chute issues

Oreo has chute issues. He wouldn't go in at camp, and last night at class he wouldn't go in either. Stops at the entrance, turns his head to the side. Stress signals. Red light.

This is a new thing. Started at the teacup trial. At that trial, he went thru the chute on our first run, but never again.

Last night's class, felt like we were back in beginners! My teacher rolled the chute way back, and then we unrolled it a bit for each pass. We are now at the point where it is unrolled about 1/4th.

Of course, Oreo does the chute perfectly fine at home.

If there happens to be a chute in our CPE trial in a couple weeks, we will go around it. I won't add stress upon stress at this point. Haven't had a chute in CPE yet, but wouldn't it be our luck?

Other than the chute, Oreo had a great class. He was very willing to do lots of tricks for me, both before and after his runs. I am trying to get him to focus more on me before and after we go in the ring. Less time to stress about surroundings. Plus, he's still running that dogwalk. Don't know why, but I'll take it!

Unfortunately, it was very hot and humid. Seems like every Wednesday night the weather is the same. I called it quits before everyone else. I ran out of energy, and as a result, Oreo started running slower, because he sensed my lack of enthusiasm. That's the last thing I want.

Hoping next week it isn't quite so hot.

I emailed the trial secretary for our next CPE trial, and requested a move down for Oreo. Now, we will be doing all level 2 runs. He emailed me back, and said he did the same thing with his dog, and it helped them a lot. He kept his dog at level 1, until they earned the level 1 thousand point title. That way he wouldn't be enticed to move his dog up, just because they had one good day. I'm going to toss that idea around in my head today. Sounds like a good plan.


Ricky the Sheltie said...

We are, of course, extremely familiar with chute issues! Sorry Oreo is having similar problems and we just don't have the answer!

Sounds like a great idea you have for going back to level 2 in CPE - Oreo should love those slightly easier courses and should feel very confident out there! Fingers/paws crossed that there continues to be no chute in your CPE experiences!

Priscilla said...

Hope Oreo's chute issues will go away one day.
We're praying for a cooler day for you and hoping that your lvl 2 runs go perfectly well!

Jules said...

hmmm...that is so strange. Hopefully you won't see any chutes at your next trial. I know I have only seen a chute in one CPE trial ever. Just doesn't seem to be used that often.

I think the thousand point title is a great idea!

Dawn said...

Another sheltie with chute issues! Geeze...I wonder why at school the chute is so much scarier then the one at home?

Yesterday I set up a course in the back yard for Katie, chute, tunnel, 3 jumps and her tiny teeter. We went out and she ran right for the teeter, stood on it and expected to get something! And she ran through the chute on her own too. Would never do that at class.

We're headed out to do something outside of our comfort zone for the Sunday challenge....

Hope it gets cooler for you soon, I think we'll be cooler tomorrow, so you should have a cooler weekend!

Sam said...

Oh, no, Oreo! I wonder what happened that made him suddenly decide that the chute is not a good obstacle. Hoping that there's no chute during your upcoming trials.

I like the idea of the thousand point title, too.

Helen said...

Does Misty do the chute? Both Beckett and Ceilidh had chute issues, maybe it's a bi-black thing. What I did was have them follow Tucker through; at first really close, then further and further apart until I could send them one at a time. They seemed to think it was great game this way. I also played the same game with chutes at our club and at an agility arena near my place so it wasn't just my chute. Then I also did fun trials with Ceilidh so I could work on problem areas, the chute being one.

Hope Oreo gets over his chute issues soon.


Sara said...

Funny, I taught Misty the chute, by having her follow OREO! Maybe we could reverse it now, and have him follow Misty.

Thanks! I bet if I get her involved, that probably would help. Oreo can get quite competitive.

Kathy said...

What about doing what they say to do with puppies and putting like the sheet across some chairs, or where he goes under something drapped in a blanket and you are on the floor playing with him, where he is pushing through something you could do in the back yard or living room and playing all sorts of games, just being really silly, nothing like training (what I am learning from the susan garrett stuff, hope I do not get kicked out for making suggestions from what I am learning, LOL) I wonder if maybe even putting the food bowl in the morning or his favorite toy behind something like that and just racing to the food bowl, then having a really fun happy game with him, I would just be really creative making up a game that you and Oreo just have a heck of a lot of fun playing and might just make stuff that feels like the chute more exciting or even give you a game that he learns that you could transfer to the class chute after he really knows and loves the game. I remember the video of him playing under the sheets in the bed so it must not be that the feeling of material going over his head could be that upsetting to him....he must have just got some weird thing happen and he is attaching that to the chute?
OR ANOTHER idea since he likes the chute at home, what about experimenting with the crate games, if you have that video SUsan Garrett talks about adding value to any object by using the crate I had forgot about that part of the video until I started working them again and now it intrigues me to think about using the crate games or something similar to build up value and speed in some agility obstacle, seems like the chute would be perfect.

Sara said...

Kathy, thanks for all the great ideas. The chute has always been a favorite for Oreo at home, because it was a game. I'd have it set up in the house and he'd run thru it with his ball. In fact he would do it all the time, even when I didn't tell him too...not sure what happened. Maybe I should set it back up in the house again and see what happens.

I honestly don't think it is the chute itself, but the fear of what might happen when he comes out the other end. So, I have to work on proving to him I will be there and it will be worth his while.

AC said...

Hmmm...I was thinking along those lines--that maybe Oreo's nervous about losing sight of the scary things when he's at class or at a trial?

Kona sometimes has fears pop up "out of nowhere." She once got so afraid of her crate that she started trembling when I asked her to go to bed. Still can't figure out what caused it, but it went away after a couple nights. ???

I like your plan of going down a level with Oreo. I need to remember that when I return to class with Kona. Fun is the way to go! Cool that the trial secretary understood what you were doing. I'm always prepared for someone to not get what I'm doing with my special pup =)

Nicki said...

For Lyric I have only trained on our chute at home. So to prepare her different chutes I have altered mine in various ways such as laying heavier sheets or blankets on it to darken or weight it down or the other day I made her do it when it was wet, just to give her different exposure. Hopefully this works at a trial with the chute will not be ours.

LauraK said...

It's always kind of funny when they all of a sudden choose an obstacle that they're not going to do. Riley does that occasionally too. I think what you're doing with the trial is a smart idea though- listening to what Oreo is telling you and planning accordingly :)

You and Sam keep talking about all this heat- I'm a little nervous to come visit next week, hopefully I can survive the humidity! I NEED a vacation though, so I'm excited!