the sheltiechick blog

Natural Jumping Method – Week 10

Week 10 is the beginning of the Problem Solving stage of the jumping program. This stage introduces one stride lengths, bounce distances, long and short strides, and higher verticals and bigger oxers throughout the different weeks. This is where a dog really starts to learn to look ahead and THINK about what is ahead of him rather than just rely on muscle memory to jump the same way every time. During the problem solving weeks, the setup changes each lesson whereas previously all three lessons in a week were the same. However, Clothier doesn’t want you to move on until a dog has basically mastered each lesson. Some dogs might need additional practice rather than just one day/series of six jumps to master a lesson. Auggie needed more practice on lesson 3 in this series… unfortunately, I forgot and moved on to week 11 without really allowing him to master that lesson.

This video shows lesson one, lesson two, and lesson three of week 10. The patterns are different every day and can be found in the book. Week 10 is about teaching one stride lengths, which for Auggie is 45 inches. You’ll see there are still oxers and verticals mixed in, and that jump distances change between two stride lengths and one stride lengths.

As you can see, day three (I should have changed my terminology to lesson three – sorry) is a hot mess more than once. The good news is that Auggie seems to be getting a real kick out of the jumping program anyway, even though the distances between jumps keep changing! And having fun is what it’s all about.

Natural Jumping Method – Week 9

So week 9 is five oxers. No more single bar jumps… every jump in the chute is an oxer.

He does really well navigating smoothly over all five oxers, getting a nice arc over them. Unfortunately he also keeps up with that pattern of stutter-stepping the last jump a majority of the time. Still not sure why he does that. I experimented some with putting a target after the last jump, hoping it might drive him over the jump and remove that stutter-step… didn’t work. So I’m still not sure on the “why” of how he reacts with that final jump.