United Spaniel Association hosted a Kennel Club Rally Training Day and invited Kim Hunt cert psych., cert. AAB, Pg. Dip. CABC to run the training. There were 7 dogs participating in the morning and 5 in the afternoon. This was formed by 4 WSS, 4 Fields, 1 clumber, 1 Cocker, 1 Lagotto and 1 IWS and lunch was once again a wonderful affair cooked by Gina Bowers.
Each workshop started with a talk, explaining the basics of Rally, how it is judged and why points can be lost. We then had a practical session where we started with the basics, including changes of pace, turns, sits and transitions (sits to stands and sits to downs etc).
For the most part these were done on lead, however all the dogs did do some part off lead and surprised more than one owner with being able to heel and stay with their owner off lead. The training was all treat rewarded and Kim ensured that we rewarded at the right time and when the dogs were doing the activity perfectly. This ensured that from the start, positioning of sits, downs etc were correct. Beside food treats, verbal encouragement was actively promoted.
At the end of each session each owner noticed an improvement of focus of their dogs on them and all wanted to do more.