The Object Guard is an exercise in all of the ring sports (Mondioring, French Ringsport, Belgian Ringsport) where the dog is required to guard an object from a decoy without the handler being present. The dog is expected to bite the decoy when they come within a specific distance of the object and then return to the object when the decoy begins to retreat. If the decoy happens to steal the object without being bit, the dog loses all the points for the exercise. Each of the sports have their own variations of the exercise. For instance, in Mondioring, the object can be a wide variety of things from a car tire to a bag of clothes; while in French Ring, the object is always a basket. In Belgian Ring, they have a second object guard exercise which is done in a muzzle on a decoy in street clothes.
In this video, Anneliese and Ryan are working with Anneliese's dog, Tanzi, on the foundation of the object guard. Anneliese is preparing to compete with Tanzi for her Mondioring 2 in the spring, and while the object guard is not an exercise at this level, we’ve started to introduce the exercise back into training to start preparing for her Level 3. Tanzi started the object guard exercise with about 6 sessions with Michael Ellis 2+ years ago. This is probably her 4th session since we’ve started to incorporate it back into our regular training sessions. We start the dog on our regular ’touch pads’ and will eventually begin to transition to various other ‘objects’. In competition, the decoy is is allowed 3 attempts to steal the object. In Mondioring, the decoy is permitted to use accessories in one of the attempts to block, trick or esquive (dodge) the dog. This video also shows Tanzi’s first time seeing accessories being used in this exercise.