Scooting is Contagious

the scoot, when the dog starts backing up and goes between the handler’s legs, is a flashy set up move that provides great punctuation – a sharp stop, glitch, or pop in sequences and routines

This skill is about 4 keys:

  1. stability at the finish
  2. pay at your butt crack
  3. dog goes to the side you look at
  4. flip out or leap in

Create a Stable Finish

Working the scoot into sequences can be quite challenging. This is largely a product of Reward Placement and pattern training. Having a predictable and consistent starting position is extremely important to creating sequences. Having flexibility on where that position is? That’s priceless.

The Scoot finishes behind the handler, and that’s where it should stay. But Reward Placement, pattern training, and opportunity say otherwise. Get some reinforcement at the finish of this skill.

Pay the Dog at Your Butt Crack

yup, looks as good in print as it sounds in conversation… so simple and memorable though… feeding cookies here reinforces a stable position.

If you have problems isolating the finish of the scoot, go ahead and back up a bit. Go back to cookies and pay the dog multiple cookies at your butt crack as they are finishing the skill. Make this the pattern. A couple of reps of this kind of preemptive reinforcement and you can finish the Scoot and turn around and your dog will be there.

If you need your dog to hit a finish position on any skill, just get a boatload cookies on the dog while hitting, and while in that position – do it several times and the dog will want to be there.

Got Stability? Just Look and Your Dog is There

once you have a stable position at the finish of your Scoot, all you have to do is look down at heel or side position and your dog will be there. it’s like magic!

If you have no defined position, your dog fires out where they believe their cookie or disc will happen. Having a stable and defined position allows your dog to look to the handler for their cue as to where to go. If you look down at heel or side, your shoulders tilt and cue movement in that direction.

The other awesome thing about creating a stable position at the finish of the Scoot is that you can take your time and turn around when building sequences and your dog will still be standing there. That, is awesome.

Flip Out or Leap In

the Scoot is like glitchy punctuation. a little rewind followed by a sharp stop and then fast forward. use that moment of flex to launch your next move.

The Scoot is a slow move that ends in a sharp stop. It creates drama. Make sure you capitalize on that dramatic moment and fire out of that sharply stopped finish by wrapping it right into your flip, set up move, or vault. This really makes the Scoot pop and showcase some explosive performance.

Missing this moment allows the drama of the situation to deflate a bit and the Scoot, or multiple scoots can make a sequence look kind of slow and sluggish or even broken.

Try flipping from heel or side position, step forward as the Scoot is going down for a Leg Vault, or work Scoot to Fakie. Like all set up moves, the Scoot is only really as cool as what it leads to.