I started Kenzie's agility foundation training when I had had her for one month. The first 2 weeks was spent building the relationship/trust, before any real training could begin. Because had been a stray before she went to the shelter, then came to us, she was very distrustful of us while she was outside and "free" (not on leash, but in our fenced in yard). But she was very loving when inside. So she was put "on the leash" while outside, so that she would stay in her "pet dog" mindset, rather than the "stray dog" mindset she would default to if not on-lead outside. She stayed "on the leash" while outside (always supervised) for a good 2 months. She started getting better after around 2 weeks, but then she started fence fighting, so that was the main reason for keeping her on it for the remaining 6 weeks. Now if she looks like she is about to fence fight, I can call her off by redirecting her to a toy (four months later). I was also teaching her that there are rules to toy play: you bring it all the way to me for me to throw it again. You do not bark at me to get me to throw it, if you do, I walk away. We also introduced a rope/squeaker toy, and she learned how to tug lightly (it took her a good month to really start tugging, but only after I threw it a few times. It took her 3.5 months to go for the toy in my hand straight off the bat). I was also teaching her that being in the house was a good thing: when you come inside, I will always have a toy ready to throw for you! (this was also the first step in a really great recall). I also realized that she was too scared/timid to take treats out of my hand, and that she had no idea of the premise: "If I do what she wants, I get the treat." So I started hand feeding her her food (not looking at her), and this seemed to make a big difference in her willingness to take treats from me.

In the third week, since she already knew sit, that was what I started her on when it came to earning the treats. This worked in upping her confidence, so we also started working on shadow heeling: 
started Kenzie's agility foundation training when I had had her for 3wks. The 2 weeks was building the relationship/trust: she had been a stray before she went to the shelter, then came to us, so she was very distrustful of us while she was outside and "free" (not on leash, but in our fenced in yard). But she was very loving when inside. So she was put "on the leash" while outside, so that she would stay in her "pet dog" mindset, rather than the "stray dog" mindset she would default to if not on-lead outside. She stayed "on the leash" while outside (always supervised) for a good 2 months. She started getting better after around 2 weeks, but then she started fence fighting, so that was the main reason for keeping her on it for the remaining 6 weeks. Now if she looks like she is about to fence fight, I can call her off by redirecting her to a toy (four months later). I was also teaching her that there are rules to toy play: you bring it all the way to me for me to throw it again. You do not bark at me to get me to throw it, if you do, I walk away. We also introduced a rope/squeaker toy, and she learned how to tug lightly (it took her a good month to really start tugging, but only after I threw it a few times. It took her 3.5 months to go for the toy in my hand straight off the bat). I was also teaching her that being in the house was a good thing: when you come inside, I will always have a toy ready to throw for you! (this was also the first step in a really great recall). I also realized that she was too scared/timid to take treats out of my hand, and that she had no idea of the premise: "If I do what she wants, I get the treat." So I started hand feeding her her food (not looking at her), and this seemed to make a big difference in her willingess to take treats from me. She already knew sit, so that was what I started her on with the treats, upping her confidence. In the third week I started working on shadow heeling: 


She also learned down and standthis week. The following week we continued to work on shadow heeling, as well as how to put sit, down, stand together for one treat. She found this very fun, and it really helped increase her confidence. By the time we had had her a month, she was actually looking forward to training time, and was even able to perform in front of people. This was when I decided it was time to start the agility foundation training!

 

She also learned down and stand this week. The following week we continued to work on shadow heeling, as well as how to put sit, down, stand together for one treat. She found this very fun, and it really helped increase her confidence. By the time we had had her a month, she was actually looking forward to training time, and was even able to perform in front of people. This was when I decided it was time to start the agility foundation training!