Lhude sing cuccu!

Sequence 1 of 4


Instructor’s Notes:

The opening of this sequence might be solved in several ways. For example, the handler could actually use a V-set after jump #1 in order to line up jumps #2 and #3, taking the pipe tunnel out of the picture. Or, the handler could take a lead-out from the dog, and use a Front Cross (sometimes called a Lead-Out Pivot) to convince the dog into the turn.

We could also use this opening as an advanced proofing exercise for a “Get Out” a directional command to get the dog to increase lateral distance. Of all the openings this will probably be the least effective; but for that very reason maybe the one we should spend a bit of time practicing. Train to your weaknesses; show to your strengths.

In the turn from jump #4 to the pipe tunnel at #5 the handler should have a powerful instinct to put the dog on left for the presentation of the tunnel. A Back Cross here will be sloppy handling as it may cause the dog to turn the wrong direction out of the tunnel if he doesn’t feel the cross, and may cause him to refuse the tunnel if he does. The turn from jump #4 to the pipe tunnel is a great opportunity for a rolling Front Cross.

The closing bit will be quite interesting. After the tire at #8 the handler will probably want to maintain a constant presence on the dog’s left side to continue to influence the dog to the left for the finish.

The transition between tunnels (#8 to #9) would be a good place to put a combination movement, like an RFP or a Flip.

Sequence 2 of 4


Instructor’s Notes:

Aside from the opening this really shouldn’t be a very difficult sequence. The handler should remember a couple of things about tunnels: 1) a tunnel is a cannon, the dog is inclined to fire out like a projectile in the direction that it points; 2) The dog comes out with no reference for the direction of the course, so the handler should demonstrate the direction of the course at the precise instant that the dog makes his exit.

Again, this might be solved with a Front Cross; or we can continue advanced proofing of a “Get Out”. Note that the handler may want to make the approach to the #2 pipe tunnel with the dog on his left side as on the return trip, the handler will want to be on that side of the tunnel.

The bar most likely to be dropped in a sequence like this is at jump #5. Along with jump #6 these two jumps form the illusion of a straight line, when in fact the dog’s true path is more of a “vee” given the dog’s approach from the pipe tunnel. A handler flummoxed by the illusion of the straight line will often cheat the turn at the jump (treating the jump like a corner), causing the dog to drop the bar. It’s worth remembering that most dropped bars are caused by the handler and are usually timing errors.

While the handler might simply keep the dog on a Post Turn from jump #6 to the pipe tunnel at #7 it wouldn’t be a bad thing to do this again as a rolling Front Cross. The Post Turn is a bit deadening if the dog needs any kind of speed or energy cue out of the handler (and frankly, nearly all dogs are inspired by an energetic handler).

It wouldn’t be a bad alternative to make a bit of a send to jump #6 (and on to the tunnel). The handler working at a distance might also inspire extra speed out of the dog; and some handlers could use the advantage in real estate.

Sequence 3 of 4


Instructor’s Notes:

This sequence might allow multiple objectives. It could be for a simple introduction to the Tandem Turn. Note that the Tandem is a Cross on the landing side of the jump. When introducing the movement the handler endeavors to arrive at the jump at the same instant as the dog, and crosses neatly behind on the landing side.

For more advanced dogs and handlers, this would be a good practice exercise for the layered Tandem. When using a layered Tandem the handler should incorporate a bit of distance lateral to the dog while making the approach to the moment of the turn. As the dog jumps the handler shows the turn, steps and rotates, but does not actually cross to the landing side of the jump. Instead, the handler will stay on the opposite (layered) side while the dog works the sequence away.

This sequence would also be good practice for a Back Cross. We’ve found that for Novice dogs and handlers the success rate in a Back Cross is greatly increased when it is approached as a Post & Tandem. In the Post & Tandem form of the Back Cross the handler will draw subtly on a Post Turn (to the left in this case), before flipping the dog back in Tandem. Essentially the handler resolves the change of sides and cues the correct turning direction before the dog ever arrives at the tire.

Sequence 4 of 4


Instructor’s Notes:

The objectives for this exercise are precisely the same as for the previous exercise. This sequence allows the handler to work the turn in the opposite direction and serves to condition the skill ambidextrously.


If I can’t be clear I’ll be Lhude.


Questions comments & impassioned speeches to Bud Houston: BudHouston@hughes.net. And Check out my new publication the Idea BookAgility Training for a Small Universe available at www.dogagility.org/store.


One Response to “Lhude sing cuccu!”

  1. Erica Says:

    So apparently the tunnel is actually a medieval English canon?

Comments are closed.

%d bloggers like this: