Friday, February 26, 2010

Agility Here We Come!

Last night (Thursday) marked Ghilley's foray into agility with our first beginner's agility class.

We train with Dee Lulik ( and her All Fours agility group.

Dee is a truly remarkable trainer.  She has a natural affinity for dogs and her understanding of dog behavior is second to none.

She owns Airedales, a breed she loves.  She participates in everything with her bearded girls from conformation to obedience to hunting to agility.

Dee is also cutting edge with her agility training.  Her training techniques and methods are completely in line with the world class agility competitors.  I honestly think she is the best available agility trainer in the Chicagoland area and would expand that beyond the Chicago area too.

Ghilley will be my first dog that I train with Dee from the very beginning.  Duff was already in the excellent classes.  Honestly, we would may have gotten our MACH without Dee's training but seriously doubt it.

Robbie was an open-level dog but already showing ring stress when we started training with Dee.  Robbie has his MACH as well and we're closing in on MACH2 (slowly due a slow trial schedule).  He would not have even been excellent B level without Dee.

But Ghilley is my first step from the get-go with "The Master".  We train with Dee, privately, on Wednesday nights too, to help with foundation work.

The class work, however, is going to be great for us.  Currently Ghilley's training consists of Tuesday night conformation class, Wednesday night private lessons and Thursday night agility class.

The agility class finally allows for something that I have not done with Ghilley yet.  That is getting her attention on me with the distraction of other dogs in class.  I have not been in general obedience classes with the little gal so she is a little excited to see all dogs in class.  She is like a little furry pogo-stick wanting to jump on her hind legs to say "hi".

I patiently wait for her to stop and turn her attention back to me, big praise and cookies each time.  It will take some time but one thing Ghilley and I have is plenty of that.  She is also smart as a whip, like all my terriers have been, and it is a joy to train a smart dog.

Looking forward to working on homework and get to class next week.


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