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Your Jack Russell Puppy Care Checklist - Jack Russell Crazy Issue #21
July 17, 2011
Training tips! Contests!.
In this issue, we are going to cover taking your dog's obedience and skill to the next level with agility training and tips for getting your JRT to stop "jumping up," a very common problem. The details of the July, Jack Russell lover photo contest will be discussed.
Many people are looking for an activity where they can bond with their JRT and also give it the mental stimulation and physical exertion that they need to keep them calm. Look no further than agility training. Many JRT traits, such as being good at jumping and running, make for an excellent agility competitor. Dog agility is a team sport in which you guide your dog through a timed obstacle course of jumps,tunnels,weave poles and other obstacles using hand signals,voice- control and body language. Because JRTs were bred as hunting dogs, they typically approach obstacles with enthusiasm, bravery, strength, and determination. JRTs are high energy dogs and agility training can provide them with the physical exertion that they crave. Your JRT must be at least a year of age to begin entering competitions. If you are just starting out with agility training your JRT would be in:
Novice: There are 13-15 obstacles on a predetermined course.The focus of the class is in performing the obstacles with a minimum amount of errors and in a timely manner.
Open: for dogs and handlers who have competed in Novice and have now qualified to advance to this next step. There are 16-18 obstacles.The course and the degree of difficulty increases.The Open class also requires significantly more handling skills than in Novice.
Excellent: For the dog and handler who have completed Open level. There are 18-20 obstacles. The focus is to provide the opportunity for dogs and handlers to demonstrate their superior skills in moving quickly and efficiently with close communication and teamwork through a challenging agility course.
One potential road-block is that a lively dog such as a Jack Russell might be challenging to command at times. In agility competitions, dogs run off lead, with the exception being competitions through the Jack Russell Terrier Club of America. Also, handlers are not allowed to touch their dog or use food or toys as incentives, so a dog must be well-trained. Your JRT should do obedience training before you consider doing agility training with them. You want your JRT to be able to "Sit,"Heel,""Down," and "Come" when called. Only after that will you be ready to consider doing agility.
For beginners out there, who still need help with basic obedience, before they can begin agility training, here is a suggestion to get you started: Over 217,481 dog owners have used 'Secrets to Dog Training' to turn even the most difficult dogs into well behaved members of society. They cover over 25 behavioral problems in step by step detail including photos. If you want to have your dog become the well behaved family member that you'd always dreamed they'd be. Click Here!
Some agility organizations to check out are the AKC(American Kennel Club), DOCNA(Dogs on Course in North America), NADAC(North American Dog Agility Council, and the USDAA:(United States Dog Agility Association
JUMPING UP This is a very common problem behavior in Jack Russells. Because they’re so excitable and they’re little dogs, their natural reaction when they want to get close to someone is to jump – and they really can jump. It can be very annoying and even intimidating to some people. You’ll deal with this by teaching your dog the “Off” command. To prevent jumping in the first place, it’s a good idea to always come down to your dog’s level to greet her. Jack Russells jump because they want to get close to your face. By kneeling or crouching down, you eliminate a lot of the reason for jumping. Also, make sure you never reward your dog for jumping by giving her attention. Don’t praise and pat her unless she has all four legs on the ground. Likewise, don’t make a fuss, wave your arms around and shout at her to get down. This will only excite her more and make the problem worse. Even if you do all these things right, you will likely still find that your dog puts her paws all over you. This can cause painful scratches and can also cause a mess when your dog has dirty paws, so let’s get into how to eliminate this behavior altogether.
“OFF” If you want to focus on eliminating this behavior, I suggest you carry a bag of treats around in your pocket so that you can catch your dog in the act and then reward the correct behavior. Remember also that you may have already used the word “Down” for another command, so you want to always use the distinct “Off” word for this command. Don’t mix up the words or your dog will get confused. When you come to greet your dog in a situation where you expect jumping up, kneel down and have a treat ready. Hold a flat hand in front of the pup in a “Stop” gesture (don’t say the word Stop, just make the gesture). When she tries to paw at you, say “Off.” When all four paws naturally hit the ground (your dog can’t stand on two legs forever), say “Good” and give her a treat. You can speed this up by holding the treat down by the floor when you kneel down. This will shift her attention onto the treat. It’s as simple as that. This technique will work for most dogs if you keep repeating it every time you greet them.
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We absolutely love receiving photos of your JRTs. That's why we are holding our first ever, July cute JRT contest. Send us your most adorable JRT photos with a brief explanation of who your JRT is and what your JRT is doing/thinking/scheming about in the picture. The winner will be announced on July 20th, will be featured on our homepage, and will receive a free JRT tote bag from our new JRT Amazon Store. Submit your photos here!
'Til Next Time...
Take care - and take care of your JRT!
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