The Rip Van Wrinkler, XXII, Issue 1, February 2018

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Training Conversation

1. Rally Braces.

2. TEAM.

3. Interactive toys.

So, we CAN do things in tandem.

Just for fun, Fiddle and her daughter, Gilda, at our Rally Class Christmas Party.

Click HERE:

Brenda Phillips - Rally Pairs.

There is an actual non-regular Rally class offered at some trials for one handler & two dogs to work together; it can be a lot of fun to watch and participate in! Because it is a “non-regular” class there is no minimum score required to “pass” and there are no titles to be earned, but 1st-4th placements are awarded. The dogs do not need to be owned by the same person, or even be the same breed! Classes are offered for either Novice, Advanced, or Excellent levels, but there are no jumps. Non-Regular classes are not offered very often perhaps because people do not enter them? If you are interested ask your local Obedience club to offer it at their next trial, then be sure to enter! Challenge your friends to join you, or offer a special prize!

The Evergreen Basenji Club in the Seattle area offers this class each year.
2017’s winner was the team of Andrea Stone, Regan and Turkish.

Some tips: You do not need to use a special coupler, but if you want to, practice with it first.
Experiment with which dog does better on the inside vs outside, or do they change positions throughout the course comfortably? That’s fine, too. On the day of the competition, remember that there is no minimum passing score, so smile and have fun! Consider that if one dog doesn’t “sit” for example, it might be better to go on to the next sign than badger her, losing the interest of the “good dog” – if that makes sense.

Scarlet and Fern, 2009, Rally together.

Click Here:

by Brenda Phillips

Here'a a little about what TEAM is and why I'm interested in it.

I was first exposed to Denise Fenzi several years ago when she was teaching a local seminar on Play.
My #1 take away from that seminar is that I would like to have my dog see Obedience competitions as time to Play with me. A lofty goal for a serious dog in a serious sport, but I could picture it.

Fast forward many years to my discovery of a training / titling program that Denise designed called TEAM.
She talks about why she wanted to create this program in a podcast you can listen to here:

In short, she sees AKC Obedience suffering for a number of reasons. She talks about encouraging people to train differently, focusing on small bits of precision foundation in a way that is fun for the dog (a lot of movement, variety, and set up for success in the early stages), and reinforcing for the human (titles to earn, supportive community, visible progress). To me it feels like Trick Training. Whether anyone then goes on to AKC (or other) competition is not necessarily the point.

The training program is all free, on line, video based, self-paced. There are sample videos on the website, and more fun happens is in the facebook group for Fenzi TEAM Players. People submit videos for peer review, and judges usually chime in to give tips. It is the kindest, most encouraging group of strangers I’ve ever encountered on the internet!

If you wish to earn titles you register your dog ($20) and submit videos for scoring ($29). Just for fun I videoed a Level 1 run with each of my basenjis – my oh my we are not ready to title, but I think we had fun together? I look forward to improving many aspects of my techniques and training.

How about some interactive toys?

You can find these easily online - Amazon. Not expenise. Good fun!

This is Gilda. She loves this.

Oakley Meriaux studying the trick dog list.

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