I have really bad timing. Or maybe it's just lousy coordination. I swear I really can walk and chew gum at the same time - but you'd never believe it watching me trying to learn a new skill in agility.
Yesterday was Dax's and my first lesson in our new space (DogsInTheRing.com) with our instructor Dee - possibly the most patient teacher and best agility coach on the face of the earth. (She also has the #1 and #3 Airedale in the country! ) Our objective is to build a better working relationship between Dax and me - so that Dax knows what's expected of her, how to do it, and to do it at "squirrel-chasing speed."
One of the exercises we worked on was simple. I sit in a chair about 10 feet back from one set of 2x2 weave poles. As Dax goes through them, I click my clicker and toss a treat so the reward (cheese) is in line with where the rest of the weave poles will be when we add them.
Darned if I could click and throw simultaneously. Or throw straight. Or click when Dax was actually moving. Dee very gently pointed out that I was rewarding my dog for stopping instead of moving.
So today - I sat in the chair and practised throwing and clicking. Without Dax. Some days I practise agility with my dog. And some days, without her. Because practise makes perfect. And to mix many metaphors - someday I'm hoping to get to Carnegie Hall.