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Descriptions

SATURday Sessions

Day 2 – Morning Working Session Descriptions

All working teams will register for one morning lab – maximum of 10 working dogs per lab.

Individual session registration not required for auditors.

9:00AM – 10:40AM

Hall A

Mind Your Beeswax Lab with Sarah Stremming

Experience level – All 


Hyper-social dog? Maybe a little worried about people or other dogs? Teach your dog the vital skill of default handler-attention in the face of social pressure.

9:00AM – 10:40AM

Hall B

Bombproof Behaviors Lab with Sara Brueske

Experience level – All

Ready to conquer the real-world distractions with your dog? This lab will go over a step by step process for determining when a behavior is ready to be subjected to distraction, how to properly introduce different distractions, as well as what to do when your plan fails. The world is a crazy place; let’s make sure those trial behaviors are ready for it!

9:00AM – 10:40AM

Hall C

Are You Ready for Obedience Competition? Lab with Denise Fenzi

Experience level – See Description

Ring readiness isn’t just about the exercises. It includes getting into the ring, setting up and waiting for the judge, moving between exercises, handling the loss of food and toys in competition, and a plan for leaving the ring. In this lab, each team will complete a formal “run through” for the individual Novice or Open exercises. However, the focus of Denise’s feedback will not be the actual exercises; instead she will focus on the unjudged elements that can make or break a team’s run. For example, Denise might comment on the need for more connection entering the ring, along with some simple ways to get it, rather than providing advice on improving the team’s heeling skills. This lab is appropriate for teams that are close to being ready to compete at either the Novice or Open Level.

9:00AM – 10:40AM

Hall D

Heelwork to Music Lab with Julie Flanery

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 you’re having fun and moving to music! Come learn about this fun sport! Teams should have an understanding of heel position.

9:00AM – 10:40AM

Hall E

Handler Choice Lab with Deb Jones

Experience level – All

Each team will have 10 minutes of one-on-one time to work on whichever skills they choose.

9:00AM – 10:40AM

Hall F

Nosework – Reading Your Dog Lab with Stacy Barnett

Experience level – See Description

Before you can call Alert, you need to know how to read your dog. Did you know that 95% of your dog’s communication happens BEFORE the final response? Do you struggle to read your dog or is your dog subtle? In this lab you will learn how to decipher the Change of Behavior so that you can confidently call Alert. We will cover the Change of Behavior, In Odor Behavior and At Source Behavior. Dogs in working spots should already be introduced to odor.

11:00AM – 12:40PM

Hall A

GO on Verbal Cue Lab with Julie Daniels

Experience level – All

Start lines, Sends, and Recalls! They all benefit from clean cues and a clear understanding of when to GO. This 4-step cookie game is all about building that cornerstone of stimulus control.

11:00AM – 12:40PM

Hall B

Heeling Handler Choice Lab with Nancy Gagliardi Little

Experience level – All

Working spots will work one-on-one with the instructor for ten minutes.

11:00AM – 12:40PM

Hall C

Recalls Lab with Julie Symons

Experience level – All

A reliable recall is one of the most coveted behaviors to have! We all want one, heck, NEED one! Recall training starts long before you think! It all starts with building a strong relationship where we are ALL.THE.THINGS. to our dog. In this lab we will cover how to start forming this fantastic bond. We will play some relationship building and recall games, cover what cues to use and how not to use them, discuss common mistakes we might make when training, and troubleshoot recalls gone wrong. Get ready to build that bond and see your recall fall into place!

11:00AM – 12:40PM

Hall D

Moving Impulse Control Lab with Shade Whitesel

Experience level – All

Have a dog that pulls so hard to get from the car to the training facility that they are rearing up on their hind legs? Barking and screaming? Highly motivated dogs have “big feelings” about getting to the THING that they want to do, whether this is the diving dock, the tracking flag, the agility arena, the protection field, etc. The problem is in all that wasted energy, the fighting between the handler and the dog to hold them back. Is that really the mindset we want them in when we reach the destination? Join Shade as she teaches you how to get “moving impulse control”, the elusive loose-leash walking, the non-sexy part of sports training. Bonus? This works for teaching pet people loose- leash walking as well, which is one of the most common issues for which correction tools are used.

11:00AM – 12:40PM

Hall E

Progressing Your Dog’s Fitness and Conditioning Lab with Lori Stevens

Experience level – Intermediate/Advanced

You will learn how to progress fitness exercises safely and effectively. Topics and activities will include reinforcement strategy, position resets, getting and keeping proper alignment, and how to empower your dog during fitness training. Lori will coach working teams through hands-on exercises that will include assessing and improving your dog’s alignment and how and when to progress the exercises. Join Lori as she teaches you how to get your dog fit. Lori will also cover conditioning which takes us beyond fitness exercises.

Day 2 – Afternoon Working Session Descriptions

All working teams will register for one afternoon lab – maximum of 10 working dogs per lab.

Individual session registration not required for auditors.

1:40PM – 3:40PM

Hall A

End-of-Run Routines Lab with Sarah Stremming

Experience level – All

What we do outside of the ring matters just as much as what we do inside. Build an end-of-run routine that will help your dog to understand what to do and where to get reinforced when the run is over. Applicable for all sports! 

1:40PM – 3:40PM

Hall B

Pattern Games Lab with Leslie McDevitt

Experience level – All

These popular games from Control Unleashed allow dogs to initiate a predictable, reliable behavior chain that helps _ ‘normalize’ challenging environments so they can focus confidently on their work. The patterns are easy and quickly effective. Once you get the idea, you and your dog can create your own!

1:40PM – 3:40PM

Hall C

Engagement: Shifting the Power Dynamic Lab with Denise Fenzi

Experience level – All

Most sport training for competition dogs is focused on getting behaviors and preparing to trial.  By using food, toys, and personal play, we can convince our dogs that working with us is a lot of fun!  And this is perfect…. until it’s not. It’s time for you to stand back and let your dog push you!  Push you to train.  Push you to work.  Push you to bring out the food and toys.  Engagement training is the process of moving responsibility for work from the human to the dog.  No more begging.  No more bribing.  A simple and respectful way to engage your dog. A dog that understands engagement will take opportunities to work when they arise and will remain focused and engaged throughout the session.

1:40PM – 3:40PM

Hall D

Use it and Lose It! Successful Application of Training Aids Lab with Julie Flanery

Experience level – All

Training aids and props such as platforms, targets, and training gates are highly effective tools in communicating criteria to our dogs quickly, which allows for fewer errors and a high rate of reward.  Props are used in training to build heelwork, backing, and many other behaviors and can speed the learning process, but only if we can remove the prop before it becomes an integral part of the behavior. Understanding how to apply this critical process while maintaining the strength of the behavior makes the difference between a useful tool and just another fad.

1:40PM – 3:40PM

Hall F

Nosework – Scent Puzzles Lab with Stacy Barnett

Experience level – See Description

Our dogs come out of the womb as Harvard graduates in olfaction. Through scent puzzles, we help to hone them into Olfactory Rocket Scientists. Scent puzzles help your dog learn to problem solve. In this lab you will learn how to set scent puzzles and how to best utilize them based on your dog’s strengths and areas of challenge. Dogs in working spots should be adept at single hides in novel places.

4:00PM – 6:00PM

Hall A

Stationing for Agility and Obedience Lab with Julie Daniels

Experience level – All

Use stations to help your dog learn where to be, when to go, and what to do. Clean up your reinforcement loop by letting your dog report to his station for the next rep. We’ll use different types of stations to improve training clarity and bring the dog’s arousal state both up and down.

4:00PM – 6:00PM

Hall B

Utility Problem Solving Lab with Nancy Gagliardi Little

Experience level – Intermediate / Advanced

Having a problem with a Utility exercise or part of a Utility exercise? Do you need help with handling for Utility? In this session, Nancy will address any Utility Obedience handling or training issues that you might have.

4:00PM – 6:00PM

Hall C

Obedience Games Lab with Julie Symons

Experience level – All

This lab will showcase the popular “daily” games covered in Obedience Games for retrieves, recalls, fronts, setups, resets, and more! A key concept will be how to maintain your dog’s willingness to learn and play even when there are errors. Lose the formality and build enthusiasm by mixing things up and keeping everybody on their toes and paws! By adding “game training” and less predictability, you can build relationship and transfer reinforcement to the act of playing!

4:00PM – 6:00PM

Hall D

Handler Choice Lab with Shade Whitesel

Experience level – All
Each team will have 10 minutes of one-on-one time to work on whichever skills they choose.

4:00PM – 6:00PM

Hall E

The Play Way: Playing without Toys Lab with Amy Cook

Experience level – All

Play is your best stress reliever! Have you ever thought about what play would look like if you didn’t have a toy to play with? Have you ever thought about playing with your food instead of handing it over? Play, especially play that doesn’t involve toys, is often something we don’t explore with our dogs, but it’s really a useful skill for making your dog feel better! Developing a good personal play relationship with your dog will allow you to play anywhere and reduce your dog’s stress levels. Playing with food raises its value and introduces dogs unfamiliar with play to the idea. Come play with us!