How To Train Your Dog For The High Jump

With your dog present in front of you, erect both jumps, configuring them at low height and setting them ten feet apart. Do it again. Then walk your dog to a point between the obstacles and a dozen feet behind them.

Aim the animal toward the High Jump, and command, “Stay.” Walk to an equidistant spot, relative to the obstacles and the dog. Emphatically point and step toward the High Jump and command, “Hup.” As your dog sails over the correct jump, praise, “Good dog,” and take him back to the starting point. Command, “Stay,” return to the location opposite the animal’s, and repeat the exercise. Do the routine twice more, then end the session. On the next day, repeat the preceding exercise once.

Then “Stay” your companion, having first aligned him toward the other obstacle, the Bar Jump. Return to your command location, and – adding pronounced body language – command him over this second jump. If he does as well with it as he did with the first hurdle – and he probably will – great! Now the work is gradually raising the jumps’ heights, repositioning them until they’re eighteen to twenty feet apart, phasing out aligning pooch toward either jump, and starting him from at least twenty feet.

During the teaching sequence, should your pet take any action other than the correct one, don’t chastise him. Perform some work at which he excels (to finish high), and call it a day. Initiate a more structured method tomorrow. Directed Jumping – Structured Method Begin by leaving your dog on a “Sit-Stay”, fifteen feet from and facing a Standard High Jump. Walk to the hurdle’s opposite side and command, “Hup.” Skip the finish. Repeat the exercise, but this time move leftward a few feet as your pet leaves the ground; turning to face him as he lands. Run through this routine three more times, then close the session.

Start the next period by leaving your dog on a Sit-Stay, fifteen feet from and facing a standard High Jump. Walk to the obstacle’s other side, and after standing there for a few seconds, move a few feet to your left. Adding an exaggerated hand signal, verbally command your dog over the jump. (Should he attempt to run to you, block him and repeat the “Hup” command while gesturing toward the obstacle. If need be, lift him over the hurdle.) Repeat this new procedure three times before ending the period.

Over the next few sessions, gradually position yourself farther left until you’re twenty feet removed from the centerline between the two jumps. Though less distance is required in competition, the extra-mile principle operates here by saying to your dog that he’s to clear the indicated obstacle regardless how far you are from it. The next stage is steadily moving your pet’s starting point to your left (his right). “Sit-Stay” your friend three feet left of the two jumps’ centerline, and walk to a point opposite his new starting position. Adding excessive body language (stepping and pointing toward the desired jump), command, “Hup.”