Day 3: Sunday, Oct. 6

Sunday Oct 6

9:00 AM

Hall D

Experience Level: Novice & Above

Heelwork-to-Music combines all that you love about heeling, with your enjoyment of music!

It showcases the precision, connection and teamwork you strive for with transition freestyle behaviors and sequences that help maintain position, increase flow and ease of movement for your dog while having fun and moving to music! Come learn about this fun sport!

Sunday Oct 6

9:00 AM

Hamilton Room

Experience Level: Novice & Above

Have more than one dog that wants to work? Or a dog that doesn’t want to wait its turn at class?

This lab will cover how to manage working multiple dogs at the same time by using perch stays. Not only will your dogs learn to wait for their turn, but they’ll learn impulse control, patience and commitment to their stay!

Sunday Oct 6

9:00 AM

Franklin Room

Experience Level: Lecture Only

It’s a fact of life that things happen suddenly, and for your dog, even the more experienced and well socialized, those sudden events can sometimes be distressing!

Whether your dog is often pulled off center by events around them or it’s only occasional, when it happens to your dog, they need your help to recover.

It’s a great idea to have a plan in place before that happens, so you and your dog both have something to rely on! The startle to recovery framework involves simple, non-scary practice events, and parties that’ll convince your dog she won the lottery! Come see how to turn surprises into surprise parties!

Sunday Oct 6

9:00 AM

Agility Hall

Experience Level: Novice & Above

Are you always behind? Do you need to work on trusting your dog to do their job so you can move onto the next obstacle? In this session, we will work on plans to not get behind so we can direct our dogs around the course efficiently.

Are there skills that you need to teach your dog that will help you not be so far behind? We will identify those things that keep you from staying ahead of your dog.

Sunday Oct 6

9:00 AM

Hall B

Experience Level: All

In competition obedience our dogs need to work at a distance from us while under pressure from the judge, the environment and the ring gates. We have no connection with them when we leave, they are completely on their own. No wonder they don’t like it out there! We want to teach our dogs that being away from us is safe and fun. In this workshop we will look at a variety of games to keep our dogs actively engaged as we walk away. I will show you how to teach them a specific focal point to anchor their focus on you. You will learn techniques to keep them on the edge of their seat and ready to respond to your cue when you turn around. A combination of these techniques creates a dog that is confident and fully engaged.

Sunday Oct 6

9:00 AM

Hall C

Experience Level: Intermediate/Advanced

Have you ever wanted to have your dog find your lost items? Or been curious how Match to Sample works for scenting? It’s pretty straightforward for our dogs to learn to find OUR scent. What about searching for a STRANGER scent? Search and Rescue dogs do this – and so do our tracking dogs! There is also a new sport called Lost Item Recovery through The North American Sport Dog Association (NASDA) where you search for handler and stranger scent.

The focus of this lab will be to teach the process of Scent Match to Sample. Starting with our scent first we will then transfer that process to a stranger scent. This is an excellent skill to split out for tracking dogs too! Teaching our dogs how to re-scent an article will help your dog if they lose scent on a track. This is truly one of the most amazing dog skill abilities and a fun game for sport and real life!

Prerequisite for this lab is having some experience with finding your scent (handler scent).

Equipment: Bring some of your personal items (wallet, keys, cell phone, small articles of clothing (socks/gloves)).

Sunday Oct 6

11:00 AM

Hall C

Experience Level: All

Having a problem with an obedience exercise or part of an obedience exercise? Want to improve a known skill for obedience?

In this session, Denise will address any obedience handling or training issues that you might have.

Sunday Oct 6

11:00 AM

Hall D

Experience Level: All

In this session, I’ll guide you through diagnosing and addressing any play-related challenges you’re facing. Through one-on-one interaction, we’ll work together to identify the root causes of these issues and develop personalized solutions. Whether it’s a lack of engagement, inappropriate behaviors, or communication barriers, I’ll provide tailored guidance to help you overcome these obstacles and foster a healthy, enjoyable play dynamic with your dog. Let the games begin!

Sunday Oct 6

11:00 AM

Hall B

Experience Level: All

Do you dream of doing fancy obedience work someday? Go outs are one of the most exciting exercises to train! The dog gets to run and jump, and there aren’t as many precision details to obsess over for the human.

These skills can be started with even very young dogs!

This session is for dogs at all levels. No idea what a go out is? Join us! Struggling with a certain aspect of your go out? Join us too!

The 3 main areas we will discuss in this session are:

1. Marking a line (useful for go outs, gloves, retriever work, and even agility!)

2. Sends to a target (Primarily discuss teaching a send to a stanchion, but any “target” works!)

3. Directed Sends (return to you by taking an obstacle- jump or cone- on the way back after a send!)

Sunday Oct 6

11:00 AM

Franklin Room

Experience Level: Novice & Above

How successful your search is, is often a direct function of your start line. In order to get a dog to leave the start line in focus and searching immediately and effectively, you need to have the right combination of arousal, timing, and engagement. What you do leading up to and on the start line can affect all three of these things. In this session, we will talk about how we can optimize these components and then we will modify and craft the start lines of the working teams in this session. We will also talk about staging strategies. This session will be helpful for teams at all levels and for all drive levels.

Sunday Oct 6

11:00 AM

Hamilton Room

Experience Level: Novice & Above

This session will be geared to setting clear expectations and communication with your dog in various situations. We will learn how to change, continue, or create a tendency (the 3 C’s) for our dogs to assist in addressing common non-sport behaviors. By applying the concept of clarity to our interactions and the reinforcement process we can reduce their frustration or anxiety and create a more cooperative partnership. We know that many sport dogs have benefited from their use, so applying a multiple marker system to the concept of stimulus control, impulse control, and even common or severe behavior cases can not only be fun, but beneficial. Just like in sports, using multiple marker cues for behavior cases creates greater clarity and communication between dog and handler. The effectiveness of behavior modification techniques and protocols are enhanced.

Sometimes, applying a more errorless learning concept during training will be helpful but how the reinforcement is delivered can be as important as the reinforcement itself!

By focusing on your mechanical skills and decisions about how to use reinforcement, this session will emphasize how strategic placement, physical presentation, speed of delivery, and even your personal energy can influence your dog’s behavior!

Sunday Oct 6

11:00 AM

Agility Hall

Experience Level: Intermediate/Advanced

This seminar will take your contact training to a new level.

Does your dog understand the stopped contact behavior you trained? Revisit the following for your dog’s stopped contact skill:
Teaching and reinforcement
Cues, including releases
Handling

We will present them with exciting challenges to test your dog’s understanding in various situations.

Note this seminar won’t teach stopped contacts from the ground up. It is meant for dogs that already have stopped contact training.

Sunday Oct 6

1:40 PM

Hall C

Experience Level: All

Yep. You’ve got the heeling basics AND… you need help! Maybe removing pocket hand or simply fixing a pesky little heeling issue. Need some attention to your heeling challenge? This is your lab!

Note: If you’re brand new to heeling, the Pocket Hand Heeling Lab is the place for you!

Sunday Oct 6

1:40 PM

Hall B

Experience Level: Novice & Above

Reducing reinforcers without losing focus and attitude is a challenge for all trainers. When dogs are not getting reinforced in the ring, they get confused, which leads to stress. We need to mindfully teach them that no reinforcer means “you are correct!”. In this workshop you will learn how to use tricks as a bridge and as a reward. How to teach your dog to give you more work for fewer reinforcers by creating behaviors that are inherently self-reinforcing. I will show you how to use forward chaining and backchaining to create energy and excitement as the chain progresses. Whether your dog is just starting out or your dog is trialing, this workshop will give you the tools to reduce reinforcement without losing attitude and confidence.

Sunday Oct 6

1:40 PM

Hall D

Experience Level: Novice & Above

We all want to find that elusive high hide! Getting those high hides takes good hide placement, a dog who knows to search high and handler observations! High hides can create more threads of odor in the air. Odor will loft out and then fall down – making it easier for dogs to work it back closer to source. Other high hides will just drop leaving a very small trail of odor. Often it’s pure luck that a dog gets in just the right spot to solve a challenging high hide, but the handler can help the team by reading the room and the dog’s behavior.

The downside to working elevated hides is working them too often! We can inadvertently pattern them to CHECK high and then when we see that behavior we make a wrong call. Dogs will also naturally search high when they can’t find odor so we need to make sure we don’t call high hides too quickly. Instead look for other signs – bracketing, nose in air, slowing down, and insisting that odor is UP.

This lecture and lab will show how hide placement, airflow and setup will enable your dog’s understanding and success for solving high hides, as well as improve your observing eye!

Prerequisite: Dogs should be proficient on all 3 odors (Birch, Anise, and Clove).

Sunday Oct 6

1:40 PM

Franklin Room

Experience Level: Lecture Only

This presentation will focus on basic concepts and approaches for cooperative care (CC) work with our canine companions. Hint: it works for all species in very similar ways! Deb will show you how to get started on the right path to a successful shared CC journey with your dog.

Topics covered will include:

A clear definition of CC (what it is and what it isn’t)

Overall CC goals & a holistic approach

Recognizing common signs of discomfort & responding appropriately

The importance of classical conditioning & the use of operant conditioning

Foundation steps to set up for success (place, zen feeding, stillness, touch)

Opportunities vs. cues

General training/conditioning plans with examples of specific procedures

Dealing with difficulties along the way (when your dog says “no” or when something must be done now)

The purpose of this presentation is to help you see the bigger picture and get a good overall view of how CC training can be most effective and useful. This lecture will be useful to you for your own personal training as well as for helping clients achieve their CC goals.

Sunday Oct 6

1:40 PM

Hamilton Room

Experience Level: See Description

A creative hands on workshop developed by Barbara Lloyd, the creator of “The Nimue Box Challenge” to test your dog’s ability to problem solve!

This workshop will consist of a series of Cognitive Challenges that range from easy to varying degrees of complexity. The main goal of the lab will be helping you understand how your dog reasons through how to solve a challenge and access a reward.

We will also discuss your dog’s learning style in contrast to your learning style and how that impacts your training sessions with your dog, as well as how to improve your training sessions with your dog via a better understanding of how your dog processes information and problems solves.

Decoding what your dog is telling you as they work through the challenges will be discussed in depth in order to give you a better understanding of how to harness your dog’s skills to train more efficiently.

This workshop is suitable for puppies and dogs all the way up to adulthood.

For young dogs and sensitive dogs this workshop will help build resiliency, grit, and confidence. Adult dogs will gain more sustained focus and thoughtfulness.

Participants will be instructed on how to set up the challenges and then allow their dog time to solve the challenge.

Each participant can choose how much assistance to give their dog, and part of the class will be outlining and discussing why you may or may not choose to simplify the task for your dog.

As the instructor I will give you feedback on what I see your dog doing, how to play to your dog’s strengths, how to improve a particular problem solving skill and how to make this relevant in other areas of training.

Sunday Oct 6

1:40 PM

Agility Hall

Experience Level: Novice & Above

Does your dog get easily distracted during agility? Are you not exactly sure how to train distractions without overwhelming your dog? This session is for you!

We will work on layering challenges, how to work on thresholds, and what to do in different scenarios.

Sunday Oct 6

3:50 PM

Hall C

Experience Level: Novice & Above

Each dog sport has a foundation skill framework that builds reliable performance. But what about the glue that holds that sport-specific framework in place?

In this session, you will learn glue skills that can help accelerate learning opportunities (training, classes, seminars, and trials) for your dog. These skills are essential for your dog if competition is the ultimate goal. But they are also beneficial as general life skills for your dog. Without glue skills, dogs can develop unwanted habits, which interferes with their learning. Furthermore, once habits are established, they can be more challenging to change. Once you train glue skills with your dog, you will never return to training without them in your future dogs!

Sunday Oct 6

3:50 PM

Hamilton Room

Experience Level: Novice & Above

One of the hardest things to do in searching is to handle in a way that doesn’t negatively impact our dog’s searching when we are holding the leash. It’s so much harder to do this in tight spaces or in areas where we may accidentally block the dog. In this session we will cover the impact of pressure from both the environment and the handler and what we can do to release that pressure. We will cover handling mechanics, body position, and line handling and then apply that to tight spaces. Working teams need to be on odor and confident in sourcing at least single hide searches.

Sunday Oct 6

3:50 PM

Hall B

Experience Level: All

You’ve trained hard, have your heeling all set, your dog is engaged … uh oh. Where’d that judge come from? Why is she following us? Lots of dogs are proximity sensitive and aren’t comfortable with being directly approached, followed or crowded by strangers (especially strangers with clipboards and hats!). Some dogs want to rush to greet anyone within a 10 foot radius!

In this lab, we’ll go over things you can do to help your dog be comfortable with these “strange” judge behaviors and not feel the need to keep an eye on them, and help those greeters learn that judges are boring, and you are best!

Sunday Oct 6

3:50 PM

Agility Hall

Experience Level: Novice & Above

Does your dog love toys? Let’s turn that toy drive into disc drive!

This lab will focus on the foundation skills needed to compete in a disc dog competition. You will learn how to properly throw a disc, how to teach your dog to bring the disc back, as well as flat work for strategy games and freestyle. Come get your disc dog on and see what one of the fastest growing dog sports is all about!

Sunday Oct 6

3:50 PM

Franklin Room

Experience Level: All

Do you want to know the most useful heeling move you can teach your dog? Sidesteps! Got a dog that heels wide? Do a sidestep! Does your dog sit crooked? A sidestep can fix that! Forging, wrapping, and more can all be improved by doing a sidestep. Teaching your dog lateral movement helps with rear-end awareness, too, which can help strengthen other behaviors.

In this session, you will learn how to teach lovely lateral movement! Working dogs who understand left pivots will have an advantage. Before starting lateral training, we’ll briefly cover the steps to get dogs off the pivot bowl.

You’ll also learn how to get lateral movement in front! This comes in handy for strengthening the front behavior. It’s also a required move in the Master level of rally.

Come join Nicole and learn how to teach your dog sensational sidesteps in heel and in front!

Sunday Oct 6

3:50 PM

Hall D

Experience Level: All

We’ve all heard the term and many of us strive to apply it. So why is it so hard? And is it really all that important? When you see the lightbulb go on for your dog and it suddenly makes sense to them, you start to realize just how important a skill it is.

Clean handling is more than just separating your marker from your reward or making sure you have enough treats. It is a communication system that can reduce confusion, alleviate frustration and lead to a more enjoyable and productive training experience. In this session you will learn how to create changes in your training that will increase trust and overall success in your sessions. It’s up to us to make sure it all makes sense to our dogs!

Sunday Oct 6

5:40 PM

Main Hall

Experience Level: Lecture Only

Join our FDSA team of presenters and staff for one final conference-wise session reviewing camp, announcing the details for next year, and bringing the conference full circle!