The last day at the farm 😦 We were able to squeeze our TEAM work in before the 7 hour drive back.
The most intimidating part of TEAM for me is not the individual exercises. I am fairly confident I can teach those behaviours eventually. It is stringing all of the exercises together, perfectly (both dog and human), handling the transitions, AND managing to get all of the camera angles right for each exercise. Knowing this, I decided to start working on putting two exercises together, even if they aren’t quite ready yet. This way I should get a feel for transitioning between exercises, the dogs will get used to only doing two reps of an exercise and then moving on, and I should get lots of information on what camera orientations work for which exercises. Hopefully that splitting of behaviour works for me! I plugged the exercise pairs into a randomizer to get the ones I would work today. I need to get myself some popsicle sticks! Depending on the exercise pair, I am also hoping to use this as a method for starting to reduce my reinforcement frequency.
I anticipate Perrin having a harder time putting all of the exercises together, because he likes to (is used to?) doing many repetitions of the same thing in a row. I think he likes the predictability: do A –> get cookie. I also have a hard time keeping Perrin’s energy up during transitions, so I will have to experiment on ways of keeping his enthusiasm up. I think Sei will have an easier time putting it all together. He has a higher natural energy level, and hates repetition. “If I was right, lets move on damn it!”.
- Exercises 4-5 (Position Changes and Back Up)
I ended up adding the Find Front here too, because I plant to use the platform for all three exercises (and the pivot platform for find front) and wanted to experiment with platform position relative to the camera such that I can keep the platform in place for all three exercises.
Sei – Sei struggled a bit, but we eventually got it worked out! He just needed to work some ya-ya’s out and get into a thinking place. He was really anticipating the ‘down’ –> ‘sit’ transition, so we worked on all three position changes together and he nailed those. Then he was able to do the two we needed.
Perrin – Absolutely nailed these! I didn’t even do more than one rep. He was just perfect!
- Exercises 7-8 (Jump and Go Around)
Sei – the jump is pretty solid for Sei, and the go arounds still need a bit of work. He did really well on the first couple, then in the subsequent reps he got more confused. HUMAN: If he does it right, move on!
Perrin: Nailed it! We just need to work on bar knocking on the jump, in general.