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Cash and I have been doing agility for over a year now, and I'd love to start going to trials for the fun of it. We've been taking weekly agility classes since June 2014, and we've both improved immensely.

However, Cash is greatly attached to my mother. I'm 17, so I still live with my parents. I have done all training with Cash, I'm the only agility handler. I'm the giver-of-treats and thrower-of-frisbee. My mother just loves to snuggle Cash and he sleeps in her room (my room gets way too hot during the night). Cash is a family dog and I love it, but I certainly don't love when Cash refuses to listen to me at agility, to go visit my mother instead.

We've tried different tactics. I have driven to agility class alone with Cash, and he's fairly good. When my mother drives to class and comes in to watch, he's usually paying attention to me. If my mother drives but doesn't come inside, Cash spends the entire time ignoring me and trying to look for her.

We went to a mock trial a few weeks ago, and Cash repeatedly blew me off to go visit my mother who was sitting near the fence. For my next run, I asked her to hide behind the crates so he couldn't see her. He nearly jumped the fence to go to her.

I'd really rather not have to go to trials alone, and my mother loves watching me run him. Is this separation anxiety? What are the best ways to encourage Cash to keep his attention on me while in the ring?

Please note that I will ask my instructor next weekend. She was busy after class yesterday and I was unable to speak to her.

I do use treats when I run him, since we're both still learning. When he's listening, Cash will do just about everything I ask- as long as there's a treat in it for him.
 
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