Obedience and Agility
Many of the traits attributed to Samoyeds make them ideal candidates for obedience training. Their willingness to please (rewarded of course by a treat) and their ability to learn quickly make them great obedience prospects.
So why isn't the word "Samoyed" synonymous with the word "obedience"? The same traits that make them an ideal candidate also make them at times a challenge to train. Many Samoyeds become bored repeating the same actions over and over. They seem to look at us and say " stupid human, I already did that, how many more times do you expect me to do the same thing?" At times this leads to them adding their own variations to the routine. Many Samoyeds have been presented the "class clown" award at graduation from training classes.
Another important difference between Samoyeds and many of the "obedience breeds" is their reaction to corrections. Many potential obedience prospects have been ruined because they were expected to perform in an untypical Samoyed fashion and corrected unfairly for not.
Overall, Samoyeds can be trained to compete with the best of obedience dogs. Patience, generous praise (after all, they are doing this to please YOU) and understanding of subtle differences in training techniques will bring out their best. A sense of humor on your part is also very important. This is one breed that will eventually pull some antics in the obedience ring, which will keep you humble!
ALL YOU HAVE TO LOSE IS A FEW HOURS A WEEK IN EXCHANGE FOR A LIFE LONG STRONGER BOND WITH YOUR FOUR LEGGED FRIEND!
By Genevieve Deltieure, SCA Obedience Coordinator
Agility & Samoyeds are as compatible as peanut butter and jelly. Because of their intelligence, alertness and naturally agile bodies, Samoyeds can learn quickly this fascinating sport. Not only are our dogs intelligent but because of this they can become quite easily bored. Agility is fast moving and ever changing. The dogs accept this challenge, leaving boredom for the jumping, turning & twisting of the agility course!
Up close, all the agility equipment can look forbidding. Heights seem higher when you picture your dog up there, and a jump looks much more impossible when you look around the course and see ten other's just as high, some broader, and some downright strange looking! There isn't much room for error on those planks, and how on earth can a dog be taught to weave so fast through those silly poles?
In getting you and you dog ready for the sport of Dog Agility there are some basic factors that apply:
KEY WORDS- Jump, Tire, Teeter, Tunnel, Get In, And Weave!
BASIC OBEDIENCE- Come, Sit, Stay, Down!
LOTS OF PRAISE-Good Boy (Girl), That's the way, Alright, Yahoo!
BONDING WITH YOUR DOG- This is a good and positive way of showing teamwork!
What is most important is your attitude. Like it or not, you are shaping your dog's attitude with guidance, corrections or rewards, and with the feelings you project through your dog and agility. Begin your dog's training with challenges easier than you think your dog needs, and progress only when your dog needs more of a challenge, not when you do! A positive attitude towards the first agility obstacles comes from a quick early success. When you hit a snag later on, leave that lesson alone for a week or so while you go back to the delightful basics. Choose your training times, enticements, and challenges according to what will best strengthen your dog's educational foundation. Don't let someone else's timetable for progress dictate your own. Every dog learns unevenly and needs your help differently!
Every dog can benefit. There are many people today, both kids and adults, who have a close, active relationship with their dogs. These people and their pets have much of the physical and mental tuning characteristics of a first-rate agility team. Whether they ever join dog agility classes or enter competitions, agility is a part of their way of life. And a rich life it is, whether their dogs are purebred or mixed, large or small. The sport of agility offers many new twists, even if you think there's nothing you and your dog don't already know about camaraderie.
So think positive! It will make you a better handler and your dog a better partner. Take your time, and remember your positive attitude comes first in agility!
So for now if you go out and over the next jump, get out to the weave poles and into the tunnel, we too shall meet on the dogwalk!
by Jason Loper, Cosmic Samoyeds