Open & Utility Problem Solving Proofing FB group outline

Starts first Monday of July and runs through August – 9 weeks

Challenges, drills, and proofing

PDF’s to help with training

Proofing. Easy, mid range and hard – 1 open and 1 utility each week

Common problems open and utility


Monday post

Welcome! ☺🐶

I am looking forward to working with you all.  Take a few minutes and post something about you and your furry friend.
When posting videos in the class, limit them to 1-2 minutes and TAG me on all posts.  I don’t want to miss anything.  Also, limit to 1 dog in the class.
When a Zoom meeting is scheduled, the invite link will be posted under announcements/featured section of the Facebook group a few days before the zoom.   A recording of the meeting will be available to view while the FB group is open.
Starting on 7/3, Monday, we will begin Problem Solving for Open and Utility exercises and skills.  Proofing ideas on Open/Utility will be posted  randomly throughout this group.
For Heeling issues, please see the Self-Sever/DIY Classes.
Tuesday post


  • Energize out of crate
  • Keep a training/show log!
  • Make a HABIT of attention putting on/taking off leash
  • Play with your dog (tugging or the KrazyKookie game)
  • Video your training sessions on a regular basis.
  • Regularly train in NEW Locations.
  • Add Games to EVERY training session and to every exercise.  Games and random/often releases help build desire and enthusiasm.


Tuesday post


It’s time to get to work on problems.

To better understand HOW TO problem solve –

Pick 1 skill or exercise and name the exercise or skill and WHAT issue you are having.

Next: break down the exercise that is creating problems.

  • List the skills needed for the exercise.   Haha.  Yes write them down.
  • Circle the skill/s creating the issue.
  • Now that is done, lets’ review the foundations for the problem skill.
  • What is your criteria?
  • Please post list, problem skill/s, and video training the foundation of that skill/s.

Post PDF training files????  maybe a steps file with blank spots to put in information?




  • Before you begin, your dog must be able confidently and correctly execute the exercise, skill or game you intend to proof.
  • A leash can be a valuable training tool. Using a leash during proofing may help you reach the level of control needed to insure your dog is successful.
  • In addition to rewarding your dog’s correct responses, learn to recognize and reward honest effort.
  • Recognize “inadvertent” proofing. When any new element is introduced during training, proofing may unintentionally occur. For example, inadvertent proofing commonly takes place when training is done in a new location or in the face of unknown distractions.  HAHA.  That cat running past you.
  • Choose proofing ideas you feel will be most beneficial for your dog at his current level of training.
  • Challenge your dog by training in a variety of locations and in various weather conditions on a regular basis.
  • When you are training in an unfenced or unfamiliar area, be mindful of your surroundings.
  • Look at proofing as a game and learn to “read” your dog. Increase or decrease the intensity of a distraction when needed. Your intent is to challenge your dog, but, at the same time, make it possible for him to respond correctly and win the game!
  • Begin proofing by training in mildly distracting areas. Once your dog is confident on a skill, train in locations that will create more of a challenge.
  • When starting to proof a skill/exercise for the first time, always start simple so your dog can be successful if  your dog to respond correctly.
  • Your dog being wrong is not a bad thing!!!!!

Questions?   Video and post.



Sequencing  skills together (2 at a time).

When starting to sequence skills always remember Rule #1 is never move on to the second skill if first skill doesn’t meet your criteria.  Example: if I am sequencing Articles.  My do is not focused on me while I scent the article.  Since lack of focus is not my criteria, I will go back and add games and training to the focus while scenting skill.   Haha.  Yes that is a skill.

It is your turn.

Pick an exercise to test.

  • Video as you sequence the exercise.
  • As you do your sequence, stop the sequence anytime your dog does not meet your criteria.
  • Did it happen?  If so when?




DOR Proofing

  • Walk away from your dog.  After you turn and face him, drop an object such as a set of keys, empty soda can, or hardcover book next to you.  Call your dog.  OR Call your dog and right before you drop him, drop object next to you then drop your dog.
  • Automatic doors can be found at many shopping centers. Great for when you are training alone.  Practice calling and or dropping your dog as he goes past the doors as they open and close.

Signal Proofing

  • Test your dog to see if he is paying close attention.  Instead of giving your signals in the same manner as you normally do, give more subtle signals.  If your signals are not quite as obvious, will your dog still respond to them?
  • Take your dog to an area where there is a great deal of activity such as a child’s sports activity or a playground where children are running and playing. Practice signals with your dog facing and also facing away from the commotion.




review exercise and how to break and reward












ring run through — how to use matches …