Sunday, April 10, 2011

I love my dogs

I just have to say how much I love my dogs.  They rock!  They did great this weekend at our agility trial.  Max had his best run since November in the standard class.  He refused the teeter so we didn't Q but everything else was spot on and we were connected through the whole run.

Next we did snookers for the first time ever.  Again he was awesome.  I miscalculated what he would see and he ended up taking an off course jump so we got whistled off but I was happy with what we did accomplish.  He did awesome in his jumpers run and did get a Q (and first)

Rylie only had a jumpers run today and I just have to say how much Rylie rocks my world.  Our starters run was the most fun I've had since I don't know when.  My trainer said the "right" thing to do was lead out three jumps.  I asked her if she thought Rylie  could handle that because we hadn't really preacticed long lead outs?  Her response was "Do you want your Q's in starters or in masters?"  I decided to trust Rylie and our training and led out to obstacle four which was a tunnel.  When I release Max from that distance he is often tentative because (I imagine) he's not sure he heard me and doesn't want to break his start line.  Rylie on the other hand is all "I saw her lips move so she must want me to go".  I had two small (but not serious) bobbles at the beginning of the run when I wasn't prepared for his speed and then we both ran like hell!  I didn't mess up his Q this time.  He was the only dog running at his height but I'm pretty sure he ran faster than most of the border collies (nobody has ever told him he isn't a border collie!).

Saturday, April 9, 2011

Agility Trial This Weekend

This weekend the dogs and I are at an agility trial close to home.  Today I had Max entered in three runs and Rylie in two.  Can you say exhausted?  Max ran in the advanced standard class first.  He did really well and ran fast.  We didn't Q due to two jump refusals - most likely due to my handling - I'll have to watch the video but I was really happy.

Next I had both Max and Rylie entered in Starters Gamblers.  There were only four dogs at their height so they were nice enough to move us into the #1 and #4 spot.  Rylie ran first.  It was a bit of an experiment and I honestly had no idea what to expect.  I started him with the weaves because they are his favourite thing but he popped out almost right away.  My trainers voice saying "when young dogs are stressed the first thing to go is the weaves" echoed in my ears.  Regardless we carried on and ended up with enough points.  Rylie didn't get the gamble which was a tunnel and two jumps working 10 feet away from me.  That surprised me because usually when he locks on to a line he has it.  I'll have to watch the video and see if I pulled him off unintentionally.  He thought it was all great fun though and it was a good learning experience for me.  I didn't think my brain was capable of remembering two courses so I planned to run Max the same course.  Since starting with the weaves didn't work for Rylie I got brave and changed my plan.  Max hopped on the teeter and decided he wasn't moving even though he'd done it without issue in the standard run.  It wasn't a fault as it was starters so I called him off and carried on.  He didn't initially get the gamble but we had enough time that I was able to send him over the jumps and he got a Q.

Next came Rylie's starters jumpers course.  He ran really really well and did exactly what I asked of him.  Unfortunately what I asked was to go over an off course jump.   Oooops.  So he didn't get a Q but he didn't care he had fun anyway.   He'll get to try again tomorrow.  Max's advanced jumpers run was next.  I managed to keep my wits about me and direct him around the right course so he got a Q.  He's just that bit slower than Rylie that gives me a bit of time to think during the run.