Zirka is a typical young „ride or die“ border collie, with little regard for her personal safety. It’s all about doing it all and doing it fast!
Hitting a target mat was never an issue, but as soon as we moved to a plank, oh boy was it clear that we will have some problems! Her focus was totally on hitting the target, the rest of the plank was just something on her way to get there.
When we moved to low dogwalk, she would often step off with one or more paws and no amount of falling off would „teach her“ – as this was one of the advices I got, that she would just eventually learn from these mistakes.
I was afraid of moving to higher dogwalk levels, afraid of having speedy approaches, having visions of her one day not managing these falls from misplaced feet.
Luckily we have Mari in our lives! We had been doing her fitness classes, and one day I mentioned in passing this problem we are encountering in RC training.
She came up with exercises that specifically target feet placement on narrow surfaces and somehow something clicked in Zirka’s brain. Her foot placement got better, we started to get less misplaced feet and one day I realised it has been a long while since the last time she had a DW incident.