Teaching Dog Agility Weaves With A Weave Chute

Teaching Dog Agility Weaves With A Weave Chute

There are many methods to​ teach dogs how to​ weave. Having attended a​ variety of​ agility camps and agility seminars,​ I've seen quite a​ few of​ the​ top handlers present their preferred method of​ weave training. Their training techniques vary,​but the​ one thing they do have in​ common,​ the​ end result,​ their dogs all weave fast and efficiently.

The Weave Chute is​ one method of​ training weaves. the​ Weave Chute is​ a​ structure where the​ weave poles pull apart and the​ dog runs down the​ middle channel. the​ weave poles are setup on​ a​ base either PVC or​ metal,​ the​ even number poles pull back to​ the​ same side and the​ odd numbered poles pull apart to​ the​ same side. the​ poles are brought closer together,​ training a​ chain of​ sessions,​ until the​ weave poles are in​ a​ straight line.

To start,​ the​ weave poles are about 3 feet apart. Set your dog on​ a​ Stay (Sit,​ Down,​ or​ Stand). Leave your dog and go to​ the​ other end of​ the​ chute or​ channel. Call your dog,​ allow them to​ run as​ fast as​ they can through the​ chute,​ when they get near you​ through a​ toy straight ahead or​ between your legs. you​ want them to​ keep moving past you​ and not slow up as​ they get near you.

Move the​ weaves closer together,​ try 2 feet for a​ few sessions,​ then 1 foot apart for a​ few sessions. When the​ weaves are about 1 foot apart your dog will begin to​ actually begin the​ weaving behavior,​ depending on​ the​ size of​ your dog of​ course. This is​ the​ stage to​ add guide wires. the​ guide wires help the​ dog stay on​ path through the​ weaves. Your dogs speed will most likely slow a​ little in​ this stage. This is​ all right,​ he is​ thinking more and feeling the​ weaves against him for the​ first time.

You are still using your Stay at​ one end of​ the​ weaves,​ leaving your dog and going to​ the​ other end of​ the​ weaves and calling him through. Make sure your dog is​ successfully coming to​ you​ through the​ weave path,​ not jumping over the​ guide wires and running to​ you. if​ this happens replace him. if​ it​ happens again,​ go back and open the​ weave chute a​ little more. Practice until he can come to​ you​ down the​ weave chute with 70% to​ 80% accuracy,​ not many of​ us are 100% right in​ everything we try. Begin moving the​ weave poles closer together in​ inches now. Most dogs do well even if​ the​ weaves are off set by one inch ,​ but somehow when they are setup in​ a​ line,​ they must look different and training sessions may seem stalled for awhile. Be patient,​ practice with your weaves offset by one inch then in​ a​ straight line,​ if​ you​ encounter problems,​ go back to​ the​ one inch offset. Your dog will soon realize he can weave when the​ poles are in​ a​ straight line.

The next transition is​ taking off the​ guide wires. With 12 poles,​ you​ use 10 guide wires. the​ first guide wires I remove are from the​ middle. the​ last ones to​ be removed are the​ entry and exit guide wires. Weaving is​ mentally challenging to​ you​ and your dog,​ so be patient with your dog and yourself. Be prepared to​ put in​ a​ few long months of​ training to​ get those fast and efficient weaves.

Teaching Dog Agility Weaves With A Weave Chute

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