Reply To: Academy Video: The Outrun

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Hi Kat,
I’ll try to address your questions by each letter below!

Answers to A. and B. are the same in that, if you were to insist on depth (by pushing a dog out), or a time command by (insisting a dog rate/reduce speed), you would need to put pressure on your young dog. While there’s certainly a time when you’ll want both of these components, when you’re just starting to teach the outrun to your young dog is not it.

It’s not semantics to say, you can never recreate initial enthusiasm. Philosophically. we believe you’re far better off getting your young dog understanding and enjoying a task BEFORE you beginning shaping it.

As it relates specifically to the outrun most dogs will come with their natural genetics at the top with regard to depth without the need for your intervention as long as the handler doesn’t try to extend it too far too fast and uses the 4 steps in Developing the outrun (some dogs won’t even need your help developing, but many do).
For dogs that don’t develop on their own, we have tools on the Academy and in the course The Outrun to help, but not until they’ve come with own natural width and had sufficient exposure. If you push too soon you can make your dog too wide (it is exceptionally difficult to correct this) and risk putting too much pressure which can result in diminishing your dogs enthusiasm, (a risk that has far too great a consequence).

The same can be true of pace. Pushing for it too soon can diminish your dogs enthusiasm also if you correct your dog at the start of the fetch for pace and you get the correction wrong (timing or method), your dog can associate it with this new facet of work, the outrun. (a stop, (stand or lie down) is a black and white command and does not risk the inherent misunderstanding (teaching the lie down as seen on The Academy in 3 videos under Foundation),


You’re better off compartmentalizing and teaching the outrun and working on pace later and separately. Unless your dog has a lot of eye and rates naturally in which case pace when training is preferable over the stop.

C. Brie doesn’t have much eye or natural balance and certainly balance work helps with dogs like Brie. It’s also helpful/important to have good handler input (stops and flanks ) to help her achieve the balance. over time and with the addition of adding pace it will have a cumulative affect of “developing balance” to pick up the straight line. The more she does it correctly with handler help, the more likely she’ll develop skills to be able to do it on her own.

Under Foundation you’ll see how we develop the outrun with numerous young dogs, Moss, Scott, Ted, Jake, etc (as well as multiple dogs in Starting Dogs). Here is a video on teaching pace as well as 2 articles on young dogs. Hope this helps!

Teaching Pace

Be cautious of training too much too soon

Desire Before Discipline

  • This reply was modified 3 years ago by Patricia.