My active website

This blog has been inactive for so long now, I guess it's safe to say that the place to go for info about our training is my norwegian website:
It's in norwegian, but it has a google translate button, that might help you out :-)

Kuling so far

My border collie puppy "Kuling" is eight months old now. Here are some of the videos that we have made together so far:

Socializing in the city

Palying with new friends

Training with his brother, Vips

Coming back with toys

Shaping new tricks, loose leash walking, etc

Stimulus control

Crate games

New trick: bounce

Puppy handling

Nose touch instruction video (from the start, to ready for real obstacles)

First start at running contacts

Running contacts, one jump stuff, etc

Shadow handling, circle work, abcd (anti blind cross drills), and stimulus control

As you may have noticed by now: we have fun!



Notes form Greg Derrett seminar

These are my reminders form the seminar in Tromsø, june 2010:

Orkan needs lots and lots and lots of first arm rewards, both on threadles and serpentines. I keep rewarding the right behaviour with the wrong arm. Also reward them too rarely in general.

Another thing I keep doing is rewarding crap, just because not rewarding will have Orkan lose focus and go off sniffing. Greg had to keep reminding me that I need to get a new (correct) behaviour, preferrably a nose touch etc, before the screwup cookie. I find it extremely annoying that I need that reminder! I know I don't do as much of that in normal training as I did at the seminar, just beacuse of the limited time and my stress level. Altough it's sort of good that the seminar situation pulls out my worst sides (so they can get pointed out and I get my ass kicked for them) but anyway... I feel a bit stupid when I see myself rewarding c.r.a.p. over and over again...

Circlework: Orkan doesn't have much value for my reinforcement zone. Greg pointed out that food doesn't create that drive as much as tugging does, and that pretty much explaines why I need to work a lot at this. Finally our game is getting good enough to use for almost anything (yippee!) and we have lots of new opportunities for training. We need to focus on inside circles especially, and a bit of anti-bc drills.

serpentine should have a clear return (second arm change). My footwork tends to be too straight forward, and my arm change too late. I've been trying to fade those signals a bit from having been too strong, but obviously over-done it.

Refusal planes (active lines) should have as much value as the obstacle itself. A very important skill when courses keep getting more technically intricate. That way you can rear cross a refusal plane (!) to "flick" the dog around and over a jump etc. New to me, very handy manouver! 270 skills vs threadling will always be subject for debate, I need to decide what I want, and I definately want to focus more on the refusal plane and less on the backside of the obstacle.

Orkan is now sometimes turning quite wide. Probably linked to more speed, leading to need of more immediate understanding to keep the lines looking good. I need to have that in mind when coursewalking.

I want our startlines to become completely unproblematic. Orkan never gets up to run for it, but he occasionally gets up to shake (especially if it's raining) and I think his stress level drops if I walk away slowly (not running). Sitting there is obviously not the funniest thing he knows, he isn't at all charged up the way I want. That's going to be a separate blog post one day when I have the energy to make a plan and some good criteria.

Reaction times (for the handler) can be trained. Maybe something I shold look into (computer games etc)? As it was pointed out, good dog training is very much about deciding if this was a good response or not, and why, leading to if it should be rewarded. You need to make those desiscions in a split second, and as you can see from the video, I'm not good at that at all (especially not when I'm a bit stressed and want to make as much as possible out of my limited seminar time). I seem to always go by plan A, no matter what my dog does...

Transitions, transitions, transitions. I actually thought I was quite ok at that. Apparently not. Part of the problem is getting Orkan to hang on to the toy while we move (and while I focus on other stuff, like someone telling me what went wrong and what to do). Our game is actually mostly good enough for that now, I don't need to get threats out for him to chew on while I think, walk or talk. But I need to get in his face (and that's a quote!) and stop letting him get away with halfway commitment. Lots of thoughts on that, will have to come back to it later.

Be paranoid about maintaining perfect front cross pisition. Self-explaining but very important.


    Not much posting here lately. Mainly because no exiting training is happening. Orkan has got gastric ulcer, is in and out of hospital, and we don't even know if he will make it. If you want more details you can pop the Norwegian version of my blog into
    I update that almost daily.

    The journey

    It makes sense to watch this one again, every once in a while :-) It's a good one!

    Hippo birdie two ewes!

    Orkan is two years old today. Wow! Seems like yesterday, I was watching the little furrballs on webcam, waiting impatiently for him to turn eight weeks old. Even though it feels like yesterday - he has had the time to grow into a fantastic dog that I really enjoy living with and working with. I am so happy he is my little fuzz!

    Today's center of attention, mr. birthday himself, seems to think that "birthday" equals "standing permission to steal socks and tug on them", and is taking his old age with impressive calmness.
    He wanted me to share with you how to make a doggy birthday cake (so that you can make him many!):

    New header

    Figured it was time for a bit of winter in the blog too - to match Norway this time of year. Check out the new header :-)

    What would life be like without me?

    Tried to imagine how to catch photographically how it would affect Storm if I died before him...

    About time for an update!

    It is definately about time for an update here... I see in my statistics that quite a lot of readers visit the english version of my blog, even though I don't really take the time to update it. Shame on me!
    My goals for january are set on the competition next weekend: I want two clear runs. The major problem lately has been Orkan finding no value for the weave poles in competition settings (he runs straight past it like it doesn't exist) - a problem that never occurs in training situations. Frustrating!
    He has not been well this last week, but looks better today (no more puking and the fever is gone), so I hope we can do a bit of training tonight.
    I've also gotten myself a new camera since the last time I wrote here: a canon EOS 7D. Dreams coming true! Promise to post some pics shortly :-)