Last night was agility training and I was really excited to get going. It seems like a long time from Sunday to Thursday and thankfully not so long between Thursday and Sunday. I knew Trooper was excited to get going too. Besides the fact that he was starving!
My mother in law thinks it’s doggy abuse. I feed the other two pups but Trooper is denied his dinner on Agility evenings. And his breakfast on Agility mornings.
It’s for his own good. A hungry dog is a motivated dog. Even with a meal in his belly Trooper is highly food motivated and always will take a treat from our hands. However when trying to get him to learn new things and focus on working, if he’s not hungry he is much less likely to obey.
Trust me when I tell you that he gets a LOT of goodies during agility training classes. I used to take one chicken breast (boiled) with kibble but discovered that he LOVES hot dogs. SO now I bring three hot dogs cut up, one boiled chicken breast (also cut up) and kibble.
So yesterday he was a highly motivated (aka hungry) dog and on his very first run he did it flawlessly!!! And it wasn’t a straight run either. It was 5 jumps set up in a square. I was so proud of him, but even more proud on our third run when the instructor announced that she was going to raise the jump height to 20 inches!!! I looked at her, my eyes wide and my mouth opened. He’s never done 20 inches before I stuttered.
She smiled. They know what a wimp I am in class.
And what do you know? He sailed over them, hardly even blinking!!! I started jumping up and down like a crazy person. I was so happy and proud of him. It’s such a simple and small thing but you could tell that he was proud of himself too. And he got a big piece of chicken as a reward. Woohoo! *happy dance*
I’m really looking forward to Sunday’s class.