Monday, July 30, 2012

Weekend Fun

Max and I did something different this weekend.  A friend told me about a CKC fun rally and agility match near us so we signed up.  Now I've never done rally before but this same friend told me it wasn't too difficult and that we could do it.  CKC's idea of a fun meet wasn't quite what I was expecting as there was no training in the ring.  Also - there is far more to rally than just sits downs and heeling.  I really had no clue what we were doing and had to get a quick lesson on the commands but Max was an awesome team mate and just went with the flow.  He listened to very unconventional commands such as "oh oh Max - now you have to blind cross me and get in close" - pretty sure that's not an official obedience command!  Regardless we managed to get a qualifying score under a very generous judge.  It was fun.  We might take some rally classes this winter during our agility hiatus.

In the afternoon was the agility.  Since we have never competed in CKC both dogs were in novice.  I had some very specific goals for both dogs in the standard.  With Max my goal was to have him blast off the start line.  He was a bit distracted walking into the ring but started well in both runs.  The rest of the runs went fine too - a couple of handling errors caused faults but I was happy.

With Rylie my goal was to be consistent with contact criteria.  His aframe contact was lovely but he didn't stop on the dog walk and I let him keep going :-(.  In our defence though the dog walk was a lot lower than what we are used to.  The rest of the run was lovely and he actually beat Max (although I'm not telling Max).

I let Engineering Dad run Rylie in the jumpers course.  It was far harder than any starters jumpers course I have ever run and now I think Engineering Dad has a lot more respect for the fact that there really is some skill involved in handling!

It was a good day and fun was had by all though.

We are still woefully behind on the contact course but I do have some nice shiny new equipment compliments of Engineering Dad and we are making progress.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

Catching Up

I've been AWOL for awhile.  Since I last posted life has been hectic.  We had a family trip to Peru where we hiked the Inca Trail, Both Computer Dude and Engineering Guy graduated university.  My parents came from B.C. to attend both graduations which was really nice.  We've moved both boys out of their places and into new ones - they both have jobs - YAY!

Max and I attended our very first regional event.  We didn't qualify but that wasn't my goal and wouldn't have really been a realistic goal for us.  Max had only barely got into Masters (and we are still in Advanced Gamblers) which means I have only barely gotten into Masters.  We didn't throw up, I didn't get lost, and Max ran fast and happy (except for the one jumpers run where he decided that he'd rather sniff the barn floor - so we still have work to do).  We actually placed third in the second standard run which was the last run of the weekend so I was pretty thrilled.

Rylie got his Starters Game Dog title at the last trial.  Probably long overdue but I had been terrified to put him in Snooker.  I had told my trainer I wouldn't do it until he was 6!  He's pretty confident on course and often thinks his decision making skills are better than mine (sometimes he's right)!

Max's running contacts have been getting more consistent but Rylie and I are struggling with his stopped contacts.  We are taking Susan Garret's contact course and although we are well behind - see all the other non dog related stuff above I am confident that we will reap the benefits in both the stopped and running contacts.

I have been working  on directionals with both dogs but forgetting to test them.  This week my trainer challenged me to test them in class and be darned if Max didn't do both the "left tunnel" and the "right tunnel" - today at the beach he was swimming for a stick and he couldn't find it.  I thought I was going to have to go in after him but instead I called out "left" - he turned left and located the stick.  Very cool.

We went camping this weekend and we got in a lot of swimming, biking and the dogs had their very first canoe ride.   They are both flaked out on the couch right now.