Game for the Week ~ Call Direct and Send


In Jumpers CDS a dog runs a numbered course during which the handler must call, direct, and send his dog to perform three distance challenges.

Containment lines are drawn to indicate an area into which the handler may not advance while the dog performs obstacles at a distance. If the handler steps on or over any containment line while the dog is performing the indicated obstacles, or if the dog commits a performance fault in the performance of the obstacles in that challenge, the chance of a bonus will be negated.

Call – The Call is a lead-off at the start line. To earn the bonus the handler must call the dog over the opening obstacles (#1 and #2). During this portion of the course, the dog is placed on a wait at the beginning of the course while the handler leads out past jump #2. If the dog starts before the handler gets to his containment, or if the handler is required to reset the dog, the bonus will be lost. The Call bonus is worth 5 points.

Direct – The Direct is a mid-course gamble sequence (#6 through #8) that the dog must perform at a distance. The handler must direct the dog over the sequence of obstacles without crossing a containment line. The Direct bonus is worth 5 points.

Send – The final two obstacles on this course (#19 and #20) is the Send. In this challenge, the handler must not cross the containment line until he dog is through the collapsed tunnel. The Send bonus is worth 5 points. A special bonus of 10 points can be earned in the send if the handler stays behind the double containment line at jump #15 for the final three obstacles on this course.

Scoring and Qualifying

Jumpers CDS is scored Time, Plus Faults, Less Bonuses earned. The team must earn a score equal to or less than the QCT/SCT for the respective jump height and division in order to qualify.

The Teacup Rendition

With my young 22″ Border Collie pup, Kory, I find myself looking at any course with the litmus of performance and actually seeing my dog in motion. So I look at the TDAA course I design and can’t help but shudder and flinch at the short transitions and tightly turning sequences.

Then, I must stand out on the course and judge several dozens of dogs on this sequence of my own design. I’m reminded that the TDAA concept was for them and not for the fast long-striding agility dog. Indeed for the quick little agility dog the performance is certainly on the edge; and the handler must be keen and timely. But that was exactly the point of the TDAA… to give the small dog handler the same thrill of playing “on the edge” that the big dog handler has in nearly every other venue.

The Subtle Option

Maybe I’m just too subtle sometimes… The opening sequence shown here is from a TDAA Superior course that I designed, judged last Saturday morning. As it turns out the most likely place for a fault in the course is in the straight-forward transition between the collapsed tunnel and the weave poles. And the fault was a wrong course to the table.

The problem, as I saw it, was that too many handlers insisted that they have dog on right through the collapsed tunnel. This will dispose the dog to come out of the chute looking to the side the handler was on going in.  And any directing the handler does while the dog is in the chute is pretty wasted, don’t you know, because the dog doesn’t actually see it.

Bud’s Google-proof Trivia Contest

Just what is so unusual? Nothing that I can find!

A curious and unusual paragraph stumps my mind! What’s wrong with it? I just can’t spot a thing! Again and again I look at it but nothing occurs to my poor brain. I thought it through without any assist; but who would work as my coach anyhow (, possibly)? Now I’m thinking that this complaint that I craft is just as unusual and just as curious.

The first correct answer, posted as a reply to this blog post, wins a free copy of the April Jokers Notebook.


Questions comments & impassioned speeches to Bud Houston: Check out my latest publication the Jokers Notebook ~ Dog Agility Distance Training Plan – April 2010 available on the Country Dream Web Store: . Readers of my web log get a discount: Enter “special04” in the box for the discount code. And that will take $5.00 off the price of the order.


6 Responses to “Game for the Week ~ Call Direct and Send”

  1. Ronni Says:

    Eeeeegads! What happened to the e’s?

  2. Lianne Says:

    Bud I think the bigger problem w/the chute->WP scenario is that because of the 180 turn from DW to chute, and the fact that most are going to be managing the DW contact, most handlers are going to be placing their FC somewhere between the 20 and 25 ft horizontal lines, so they are approaching the chute at an angle, which yes the dog probably exits the chute mimicking this angle plus the handler is now behind the dog, so when the dog looks back, bam there’s the table. I think if this were a different sequence, where you were coming from somewhere else, you could probably manage to run w/dog on right if handler could approach the chute more straight on or be more ahead.

    • budhouston Says:

      Hey Lianne,

      I think that’s the first argument I’ve ever heard that the trajectory of the dog’s approach to the collapsed tunnel has a compelling outcome in the angle of the dismount. But you look at the drawing… the collapsed tunnel is perfectly square for a dog with a 7′ turning radius. And I reckon it can’t be made any more square than that.

      It’s true that many handlers have to manage the dog’s down contacts [a strong argument can be made that the dog doesn’t understand the performance without the handler hovering over his head]. But what I saw in this course was handlers also “managing” the approach and performance of the jump; and handlers “managing” the approach and performance of the collapsed tunnel.

      So the question is… does the dog know how to do *anything* without management and supervision? This is a persistent problem with small dog handlers (and plenty enough big dog handlers). They train the dog to do agility… and then never actually trust the dog to do anything on his own.

      Imagine, if you will a handler who releases the dog from the tip of the dogwalk to the jump… while the handler fades back to the exit end of the collapsed chute. So as the dog makes his turn off the jump and the approach to the collapsed tunnel the handler is actually on the opposite side of the chute fabric calling the dog to. To the dog’s point of view the handler is on the right and so should indicate to the right on his exit. But the handler side steps to have dog on right on the exit… and they’ll make a clean square approach to the weave poles.

      I think I saw only a single handler take this approach. And her dog didn’t so much as look at the table.

      Thanks for the analaysis. But you clearly pushed my buttons. lol


      • Lianne Says:

        Haha, I see that I did!

        No, I agree that it’s not so much the dog’s approach to the chute as it is the handlers. What I envision (and know that my dog Panic does) – is that if I as a handler am sending my dog to the chute while moving on a plan that hits the chute barrel at say 45 degrees – Panic will make an attempt to “shorten” her path by pulling the chute fabric to her left where she thinks my path will be continuing.

        I agree with your assessment of the best way to handle this situation. – it’s certainly easy enough to RC the poles or FC at the end while the dog is still in them.


  3. Adrienne Says:

    Huh. I like subtle challenges. Since it’s been dinned into our heads to walk the dog’s path on the run through, I haven’t been burned by any.

    If it were me I guess I wouldn’t have bothered crossing till after the weaves. Then I probably would’ve done a rear-cross up the A-Frame. Depending on where the course went next I could cross over to either side of the A-Frame.
    If I was fast enough, that is, if she didn’t need much help anywhere then I would FC up the A-frame. If Emma headed to the table I could then call her over “here!”

    At our last Teacup trial it was pretty funny. Now that we are up to working 10 ft away from each other on average in ASCA, when I was faced with those itty-bitty distances I didn’t know what to do! So I stayed close to her, which completely threw her off. lol I guess we need to practice Teacup courses and incorporate our distance in.

  4. Deb Auer Says:

    Not sure if we can get into the WABAC machine for this one…Bud, there are no “e’s” in your paragraph.

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