Friday, February 10, 2017

Rally . . . Oh?

We're a month into our dog training classes. Our trainer has us doing rally turns and circles. She says that they keep our dogs on their toes, naturally forcing them to pay attention. It helps, because Jedi likes to forge ahead. (BTW, "forge" is a euphemism for "Pull like a freakin' sled dog.") So far we've worked on:
  • Left and Right Turns -- These are exactly what you think. 90° and should be crisp. My boot camp training is kicking in!
  • About Turns -- These are 180°, always turning to the right. When walking on a straight line the handler should turn around and walk back on the same line. (We practice these in parking lots.)
  • U-Turns -- These are wider turns, and always to the left. We turn into the dog. When walking the straight line above, the dog should walk back on the line.
  • 270° Turns -- These can go to the left or to the right and they are confusing! 270 degrees is 3/4 of a circle. It's best to imagine you're on a traffic circle. If you want to go right, you have to turn left three times.
Fortunately, I don't have to remember everything. There are signs along the course. I've looked online and I can buy signs and holders, but they are more than I want to pay right now. Apparently, I'm not the only cheap frugal dog person out there. I found a place where I can download signs for free here. And Marie over at K-9 Dog Training Solutions has DIY rally sign holder instructions here.

We're having a great time walking in circles. I'll share more later. -- K