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So lately I have been training my dog to do agility. He's done pretty well, and he can already do hurdles.

The only thing, he has absolutely no motivation. He does the jumps, but he doesn't do them quickly.

I have tried everything from treats to verbal praise, but he still does not even attempt to go faster.

Any ideas? Please comment, this is my 4H project.
 

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Does he do any tugging?
 

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How are you rewarding? From hand? Tossed out ahead?
Are you running with him?

If willing, maybe share a vid of a training session. That will likely get you the best tips!:)
 

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Is there anything that he really loves to chase after? I see he is a greyhound, correct? Maybe invest in a tug that looks like a rabbit or is made out of rabbit skin? Something that will give him a little more drive.

Honestly, some dogs just don't always go fast. But speed is only 1 part of agility, being clean is also really important. Clean is how you get Q's.
 

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I've been reading this book about training non-biddable dogs; the author breeds and shows Bull Terriers (one the least biddable dogs you can find) in agility and I think also rally and conformation and specifically had problems with one Bull Terrier refusing to go at more than a slow rambling walk through courses. I don't agree with 100% of the things she says (namely she says at one point dog's are trying to get you to do what they want, which I don't think is really the case, I don't know if I think dogs have the foresight/planning abilities to do that even if it seems that way), but she has great training game suggestions and shaping exercises and really good tips pertaining to building a partnership and willingness and uses all positive methods (her thing is if you start with an unbiddable dog in whatever activity you're doing any kind of negative feedback- including lack or reward- will only serve to further de-motivate). It's called "When Pigs Fly: Training the Impossible Dog", I think the author is named Jane Killion. On the whole I think it's a worthwhile read, especially for people without a great grasp of what shaping is or how to go about undertaking shaping games and exercises.

Is he the sighthound (whippet? Greyhound?) in your profile pic? I know Whippets and Greys tend to need a sort of adjusted approach to agility- the rough and tumble or amping up methods can be offputting to a lot of them. Maybe try finding a forum dedicated to sighthounds and they'll have some tips?

What kinds of treats have you used and like the above poster asked, how are you giving them? Try something decadent and rich like steak or hamburger meat cooked rare and lightly spiced- real people food.

Is it a fearful sort of speed or just bored and not engaged?

Maybe try to find a toy that your dog LOVES (a new toy) and he only gets it during agility (although I have heard with sighthounds toys can often not be very motivating and food is the way to go).
 

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Discussion Starter #6
I've been reading this book about training non-biddable dogs; the author breeds and shows Bull Terriers (one the least biddable dogs you can find) in agility and I think also rally and conformation and specifically had problems with one Bull Terrier refusing to go at more than a slow rambling walk through courses. I don't agree with 100% of the things she says (namely she says at one point dog's are trying to get you to do what they want, which I don't think is really the case, I don't know if I think dogs have the foresight/planning abilities to do that even if it seems that way), but she has great training game suggestions and shaping exercises and really good tips pertaining to building a partnership and willingness and uses all positive methods (her thing is if you start with an unbiddable dog in whatever activity you're doing any kind of negative feedback- including lack or reward- will only serve to further de-motivate). It's called "When Pigs Fly: Training the Impossible Dog", I think the author is named Jane Killion. On the whole I think it's a worthwhile read, especially for people without a great grasp of what shaping is or how to go about undertaking shaping games and exercises.

Is he the sighthound (whippet? Greyhound?) in your profile pic? I know Whippets and Greys tend to need a sort of adjusted approach to agility- the rough and tumble or amping up methods can be offputting to a lot of them. Maybe try finding a forum dedicated to sighthounds and they'll have some tips?

What kinds of treats have you used and like the above poster asked, how are you giving them? Try something decadent and rich like steak or hamburger meat cooked rare and lightly spiced- real people food.

Is it a fearful sort of speed or just bored and not engaged?

Maybe try to find a toy that your dog LOVES (a new toy) and he only gets it during agility (although I have heard with sighthounds toys can often not be very motivating and food is the way to go).
Yes, he is a greyhound. He has a shy approach towards towards new things, but the pace that he does the jumps at is just bored. He is very difficult to train, he has a favorite toy, but he only plays with it when HE wants to. Thanks for the info!
 

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What about food? Have you tried using a high value treat? I use white cheese sticks. My dogs will work for cheese. And they ONLY get cheese when we do agility (or when I need them to really pay attention).
 
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