I've got a little Agility For Fun class running on Thursday nights which only has two students. One couldn't come last night, so I brought Albee to give him some stimulation and to have him practice chilling in his crate in a classroom setting.
He's not quite ready for that, really: he's okay when I'm sitting next to the crate intermittently giving him bites of banana, but he does his whiny bark if I walk away and he hears another dog moving around, even with a sheet over his crate and a stuffed Kong and a bully stick to work on. Still, it was good practice for him.
Halfway through the class, I had the handlers give the student dog a break. They leashed her up and sat at their station. I opened Albee's crate and let him out. He focused nicely on me, with just a few seconds of staring at the other dog with his brain frozen before he pulled himself together.
I then took him through the agility equipment we were working on: channel weaves, long tunnel, chute, and tippy board with its leg in. As soon as we started working, BAM! He was super-focused on me and didn't give a hoot about the other dog, even though she was whining and wriggling quite nearby (it's a very small classroom). He did the obstacles fluently and followed my direction nicely, despite my unpracticed agility handling skills. The two handlers of the other dog were really impressed!
Afterwards, Albee settled down and licked his Kong for about a minute before starting to bark, but his barks were fewer and farther between for the second half of class.
Still lots of work to do, but I was mega-impressed that my dog-reactive guy was so focused and into his work, even with an unknown dog nearby! Way to go Albee!
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