Tuesday, May 20, 2008
I wish I would keep better notes during trials. Or at least notes period. By the end of the thing it's all a blur and I'm lucky if I can remember what we Q'ed in.
We've been having such a nice, unseasonably cool spring but of course as soon as it's an agility weekend the temps. climb freakishly high. Saturday was windy again, not as bad as the weekend before but it was hotter, into the 80's then 90's for Sunday. Poor dogs, they always seem to melt down during at least one standard run at this trial and true to form both of them did on Sunday. Both standard runs ended when they refused to lie down on the table, not even for a second or two so I could leave the ring with something to reward. They'd been doing so well with their tables up until last weekend. The heat and being outside makes such a difference. Cody had a nice standard run going on Saturday until the table, then got a refusal when he ran around it. I finally got him on and into a down, again fooling him into thinking I had treats then ran out of the ring to reward when he finally did it. Lola did manage a decent table on Saturday and picked up her very first masters standard Q. How we're going to get 4 more good tables with nothing else wrong is anyone's guess.
We managed to get a bunch of Q's we didn't need and none of the ones we did. Cody popped his weaves during Snooker so no Super Q for him. Lola did get a Snooker Q but already has her title. She was just got shut out of the Super Q's too and since I'd had the same plan for Cody he wouldn't have gotten it even if he'd done his weaves. Unfortunately the 7 was the weaves and there was no way I was going to ask him to do 4 sets of weaves in that heat on the very last run of the trial. I picked a fun flowing course and hoped for the best but it didn't pan out this time. Why are weaves so often the 7? We'll just have to hope for a better course next time, this one just wasn't strategic enough (only 3 reds).
Cody picked up 2 more gamblers legs that he doesn't need (both first places, go Cody man) and Lo who has only 1 got shut out. Both gambles were easy, the test was whether your dog could hit the A-frame contact at a distance. Lola missed both times plus she melted down so badly that she didn't even get enough opening points.
Cody again got a 5 fault Grand Prix Q and 4th place, Lola who still doesn't have her Q for Regionals got nothing. She was running nicely but had a refusal at the weaves due to a handling error on my part then missed her dogwalk down contact. After that I lost my concentration and I think we had an off course somewhere. She was running much better in general this weekend, heat aside, once I realized that I needed to keep moving and give her an excited 'let's go' every once in a while to keep her moving. We've been down this road before with me running her while not being able to move properly and it never goes well. At least she didn't get totally shut out this weekend, that standard run was really nice. She had a beautiful pairs run too, her partner went off course so no Q but so what, it felt good for her to have a nice run if only for half a course. I think once we get practicing and maybe some lessons with Joy things will be fine again.
Cody's dogwalks were terrible this weekend but I think he hit all his A-frames. Lola missed some dogwalks too, unusual for her I think. I think she got most of her A-frames except the ones in the gamble. I've got a month to sort out what to do about Cody and I've not got a plan. He's so old I don't want to do anything that requires a lot of reps. Maybe I'll sign up for one day of the ASCA trial since they allow training. Do the dogwalk over & over until he gets it right then run out of the ring to reward, that's all I can think of for now. Taking him out of the ring of a USDAA trial or otherwise marking it when he blows it is not an option with him.
My foot still hurts but I think I was moving better this weekend, at least by the end of the trial. The start of the trial is always worse for some reason. I don't have another trial for a month and I'm hoping by that time I'll be moving a bit better.
Stacy Peardot announced one of her rare workshops on Monday and I just happened to be checking the Colorado list at just the right time so I snagged a spot. It's just a half day masters handling workshop next month so hopefully that will be a nice tune-up before Regionals.
It was a fun trial despite the weather, a nice venue and well run. Was fun to meet fellow blogger 'Wishy' who had come up all the way from AZ for the trial. She gave me some good info. about Susan Garrett and I've decided to sign up for the dog training seminar as opposed to the agility handling. We'll see if I can pay attention for 2 whole days.
Now I get to spend the week playing catch up. Two weekends of no house or yard work, seriously, you don't even want to know what I found tonight but it involved bugs. Inside the house. There are some advantages to having a small house & yard though. I managed to mow the lawn and vacuum the house tonight in just under an hour or so. Let's hear it for compact living. Or maybe it's because my motto when it comes to cleaning is 'close enough'.