TOP TIP: It’s not just dogs who can be reactive!



TOP TIP: It’s easy to end up handling reactively when we’re lacking confidence… we’re ‘not sure’ about what our dog will do… yet although that gives us useful training data sometimes, it also means we can end up communicating doubt to our dog, which in turn can dent what confidence they may possess, which you can see becomes a bit of a vicious circle.

DECIDE to handle pro-actively and with expectancy– does your dog know their job? Then let them show you. It doesn’t make them or you bad if it doesn’t go to plan, it’s training data. That’s all. SO WHAT you didn’t get the sparklingly clear round you wanted, you learned and nobody died.

The more that you can handle confidently and pro-actively, the more you free your dog up to do their job. You’ll be handling clearer, giving them better information and coming off a course with more enjoyment and anticipation for the next one.

How YOU are feeling impacts your handling and affects your dog- both directly (in how confidently you’re communicating and WHAT you’re communicating) and indirectly (because your dog can read you like a book and knows when you’re inwardly having a meltdown!)

Have you seen reactivity creeping into your handling? Where does it strike you?

Camp 2015

Mind to Win Camp 2015

Fri 31st July (NEW START TIME 2pm 9pm) — Sat 1st August (10- 4pm)

@ The Patch, Ballyrainey Rd, Comber, N. Ireland, BT23 5


‘I just want a clear round!!’

‘There’s always ONE THING’

‘I just need 1 more win…’

Presented with my own signed gremlin bashing mallet!

Are you running with a gremlin?! 

If you have ever said any of these things, you just might be! Your technical training could be great but you might be carrying a mindset gremlin on your shoulders as you compete with your dog!

Very common issue

Come to camp and learn how to crush your gremlin so it’s just you and your dog in the ring, having fun and achieving your potential!

Here’s what you’ll get:

*Learn the mental skills and strategies to be able to do your best

*How to increase focus, confidence and improve your results *without* fixating on clear rounds

*Lots of practical sessions, both with your dog and without so you can apply the mindset skills you’re learning

*Social time

*Individually tailored strategies to maximise your results

*Learn skills you can immediately put into practice

*Work on the crucial aspect of competition many competitors ignore

*Have fun with your dog!

Improving your mindset really doesn't have to be serious! Exhibit A... ;)
Improving your mindset really doesn’t have to be serious! Exhibit A… 😉


*Free camping all weekend

*Discounted show entries for our Unaffiliated show on Sunday 2nd August where you can put all you’ve learned into practice

*Great camaraderie with other handlers who ‘get’ the importance of the mental game in competing

*Learn from leading mindset coach, Dr. Kathrine McAleese

Spend a weekend in the gorgeous surroundings of the Patch
Spend a weekend in the gorgeous surroundings of the Patch

Mind to Win camp is open to any handler from any club, working at any level.

Price: ONLY £95 for both days!

Kathrine with world champion, Quill Rogers
Kathrine with world champion, Quill Rogers

“I thought my students needed Dr. McAleese’s teaching.  I did not expect to gain so much insight into myself as a competitor… Dr. McAleese’s teachings have had a huge positive impact and long lasting effects on our students who were smart enough to take her course! I hope we can have her back every year”

– Sandy Rogers, Ace Dog Sports (world champion and multiple USA national champion)

“Kathrine, you are an insightful and empathetic guide in how to deal with those voices and gremlins in my mind that want to give me excuses to not perform at my best mentally.Thank you for helping me to find the way through those challenges, so that I can achieve my dreams, one task and goal at a time.”

Ann Carrington (Team Canada, FCI, IFCS, WAO, EO)

I have been doing agility for most of my life. The older I get, the more opportunities for agility to be “un-fun” arise. Mind to Win gave me back the control over that fun. Kathrine reminded me that dreams never die and that I am in control of achieving those dreams. Not only does Mind to Win work (when the skills are applied consistently!), but working with Kathrine is like working with a childhood best friend. She’s kind, supportive, connected, and an all-around good time. I’ve known her less than a year, and feel like I’ve known her my whole life. I can’t express my gratitude to Kathrine in just a few sentences. Kathrine/Mind to Win made competing fun again, gave me permission to fail and to play to my strengths, and gave me back the control to have a good time in agility with fellow competitors, my students, and myself.
Thank you, Kathrine!
Megan Foster & Smack (Team USA)


PLEASE NOTE: Spaces are limited and as this is likely to be the last Mind to Win camp in NI for the foreseeable future, early booking is advisable. Don’t miss out!


Dr. KatIMG_3276hrine McAleese is a highly acclaimed mindset coach, an inspirational speaker, and cheerleader of excellence! Her unique talent is helping clients take simple, useable mindset principles to build their confidence and focus so they can compete as well as they train. Highly acclaimed by dog owners worldwide, Kathrine’s seminars, workshops and hugely successful online courses help average and elite competitors alike to get results they can be proud of. As seen in CLEAN RUN, AGILITY VOICE & YOUR DOG magazines.


A dog speaks…

Picture the scene from a dog’s perspective:

I have great fun playing with my human at training- they’re relaxed, sociable, they give me good rewards (though the odd bit of steak wouldn’t go amiss…), they are reasonably consistent (I’ve a bit more work to do with them on their criteria, but they’re only human)… generally, they have potential and should go far.

…then I take them to play at a different place- there’s loads of other dogs, lots of noise, the holy grail (rubbish bin by the burger ban) and some noisy speaker thing constantly wittering on about something. I thought we were here to have fun like we do in training… but

… holy moly what happened?!

I’m on the other end of the leash from a walking stress-ball!!

And this crazy character is really unpredictable…I mean, they’re throwing commands at me that I’ve never heard before (I don’t *think* that cuss word is an actual command?), they’re running funny (my handler runs like a constipated duck at the best of times, but SERIOUSLY, this is ridiculous) AND they’re really uptight about something… but what did I do, I’m working my butt off here?? And they get human-reactive too, so I get worried they’re going to snap at another person- they’ve done it before when someone looked at them funny, the merest look and in they went. Maybe I should muzzle them?

And then we get on course and Wow, my handler really freaks me out here… they seem like they’re on the edge and I’d really like to make sure they don’t go over it… I better stay closer to them…if I hold my wait, they could get away and goodness knows what they’d do, better break that and stick close… now what’s THAT hand signal? NEVER seen that before, maybe there was a bug in their face… oooh you meant me to take that jump?… well why didn’t you say so?…

I sense this isn’t going well- I’m doing my best here but bug-swatting-mime is not usually our handling style in training!

Yeesh, if they’d just do what we do in training, they’d be great, but every time I take them to a show, they behave differently. I just don’t know what I’m going to get from them, and I’m starting to get stressed before I even get out there. I have to admit, it’s spoiling my enjoyment but I’m pretty sure it doesn’t have to be this way…

ANYONE recognise this dog??

Connect both ends of the leash for a great weekend!


OH BOY! I can’t believe how fast I spoke when I was filming this!!! I work really hard to slow down, but clearly I completely forgot all that in this one!! Haha!

Just goes to prove I’m HUMAN, huh? 😉

Because I’m concerned that some of you may struggle to keep up with my speed and accent, I’ve included a transcript below, but I DARE you- watch the video first, and then come over to Facebook and tell me what % of it you understood WITHOUT the transcript! Ok?

Just post the % you managed on my page! Have fun with the video, and if you get stuck, check out the transcript below 😉

Have a GREAT day!








Transcript: Hi guys this is Kathrine McAleese from Mind to Win and here I am again outside, lucky girl, doing one of my so-called Caravan Chronicles but I’m not sure I can call it that when I’m not sitting in the caravan but whatever! I’m calling them it!

I’ve just got a little quick handy hint for you today.

I want you to think about what your best round was.

Every time I ask this question on Facebook, or on my website or in classes, I ask them, “Hey what was the round that sticks in your memory the most, what stands out for you?”

What people say is never the wins, or even if they mention ‘well we won Olympia or we won Crufts or we won Regionals or we won Nationals, we medalled at WAO’, whatever… what they actually go on to talk about is how it felt to work that closely, that connectedly, in such a strong sense of partnership with their dog. And I’m willing to bet that it’s the same for you. What’s interesting about that is that often the most successful runs we have are also the ones we have when we’re most connected.

So my challenge to you for this weekend is to focus on that connection of being your dog’s best partner, of really connecting like you’re a team. Don’t just obsess with your end of the lead, that’s not a machine down there, that’s a living creature that might actually be having a bad day or might just need a little encouragement from you or a little calmness from you. So this weekend I challenge you to focus on your connection and see if the results don’t follow.

Have a great weekend and I’ll speak to you soon. Bye!