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My name is Penny & I'm an agility addict

Saturday, February 21, 2009

Bizzie's New House

I bought Bizzie a little cat house since she likes to go under the blankets all the time. She's really funny -she just jumps right in, spins around & lies down. Boo just doesn't get it..

Monday, February 16, 2009

Thoughts on the weekend ...

We did the CAA trial this weekend - I was unsure if I should enter Blast since his track record is not great - he comes unglued so easily & disconnects & starts to zoom... but..
I've been watching the Control Unleashed DVD & started to do the Relaxation Protocol, which I really think is the answer for him...

So here are my thoughts after the weekend...

Boo - we need to practice starting with a chute -apparently tough for little dogs when they can't really see you (he bypassed it & surprised me!)
- we need to practice straight tunnels... took a dummy jump at the end of the tunnel (my fault)
- he Q'd 1 out of 4, which is not great for him, but he was running...

Bizzie - can you say NAUGHTY..
- her start lines were much better
- once she is distracted, she's hard to get back
- did awesome weaves!
- had a teeter fly off (that's a first, but I didn't wait for her - training issue!)
- still needs work on contacts, which I knew
- she Q'd in snooker doing 2 sets of weave poles! Good Girl!

Blast - do I dare say I think he's starting to get it?
- had 1 little run off in Gamblers, would have Q'd but was 2 points short in opening
- had a few off courses in Standard, but stayed with me
- HE Q'D in SNOOKER! Amazing - that's his first AAC Q and in a class that requires control!
- Jumpers 1 - ANOTHER Q! We had a great run - 27 sec!
- Jumpers 2 - oops - he ran pretty well, took an off course tunnel & managed to trip me, so I'm now a member of the Kiss the Dirt Club!

Cactus - had an awesome Snooker - 59 points & fastest dog - it was a thing of beauty!
- still blew most of her contacts, but had no bars, so that was good
- Q'd 3 out of 6 I think, better than usual!

Monday, February 9, 2009

Monday Morning Blues

We had two practice sessions this weekend.
The first was Sat nite at Wet Ck... just 4 handlers there with our dogs. I was a little disappointed with Blast, he was really high, & had a lot of trouble working & concentrating when other dogs were out working at the same time - especially really fast border collies. Maybe I'm asking too much of him to work in that atmosphere? I played a bunch with him with his frisbee to see if that would "take the edge off" but it didn't seem to help too much.

Bizzie was pretty good - we set a course at the end & she did quite well, actually got her weave pole entry at speed! Yeah! We were working on her running contacts - she's good if she has a visual reminder like a pole after the contact, or a PVC box, we just need lots of practice & then to fade the reminder... I have a couple of DVD's I'm watching right now that explain different methods of teaching this skill.

Our Sunday practice was much like the Saturday one... Blast was really high again. But, there were more dogs there & some were new to him. He did some good work, but the weiner is losing it's allure! Bizzie did well, but is starting to blow her start lines again. More work there...

I did some gamble work with Boo, he did pretty well, need to reinforce his weave poles a little more, they don't seem as reliable as they used to be...

The premium for Regionals is out now, just makes me realize there's not that much time to get things together! At this point, I don't think either of my young ones will be entered... Blast just isn't focused enough yet & Bizzie will probably be bred, so she'll either be pregnant or have puppies - which is really unfortunate timing since she's just starting to get it together.

Monday, February 2, 2009

Weekend Highlights

On Saturday, we did a seminar with Shannen at Wet Creek. The courses were Masters level, but we broke them down, did the first half, then the second half, then the entire course.
The first run I took Blast out, but he was his usual distracted self, so we did a few obstacles & after he ran off a few times, I ran out of patience & put him away. I brought him back out after all the other dogs ran & did a bit & rewarded lots & he was improved. After that he got much better & did some great things. His contacts still need work, & if he has a long run to the weaves, he just bypasses them, so that's something to work on this week for sure.
The second course I let Bizzie have a turn. She did really well, some it is is beyond her, but we worked through it & she did very well. She's actually learning to wait at the start line! (well, most of the time)
The final course was Blast's turn again & he did much better. Had some advice from Anneli (who has a similar dog that she's worked really hard with) & she suggested using a really visible treat, like a weiner, so I'm going to try to wag my weiner around at our next practice!

Sunday was our CAA practice. We had some gamble stations set up at one end of the arena, & a short standard type sequence at the other end & we all rotated through the stations. This can be quite tricky when you have 3 dogs all at different heights!
Boo had some trouble with the gambles, so we need to practice more gambles I guess, although I've been trying hard not to practice too much with him since he's running very enthusiastically right now.
For Blast, I got my weiner out & it worked really well, although, note to self here, weiners & fingers look a lot alike! (There wasn't too much blood!)
Anyhow, Blast ran the best he's ever ran... payed attention, ignored another dog when it ran up to him (which was huge!) got his weave entry at speed... I couldn't have asked for more - he was a really good boy.
Bizzie surprised me & did really well too - I did some pretty tricky rear crosses in tight places & she read them well (which is something we've really just started working on a little more).
We need to get a plan to work her running contacts, since she's vaulting off the dogwalk. Her weavepoles were really good, got her entrances at speed as well, so she was a very good girl too...
She did have one run off to the corner to smell something really good, but her start lines were better. All in all it was a great practice!