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My name is Penny & I'm an agility addict

Monday, March 29, 2010

Seminar Weekend

We just did our Kathy Keats seminar this past weekend, and, as usual, it was great!
Kathy has a great eye for detail, as well as that wonderful video tool, Dartfish...
On Saturday, we did some short jump sequences - we did each of them 2 different ways, either using a front cross or a rear cross in some places, or went around a jump to the left or to the right.
Then we were able to view our run on the computer & compare times. As Kathy pointed out, just because one way was faster in the short term, that doesn't mean it will be the best choice when running an entire course... if the "slower" way enabled the dog to really open up & drive for the next portion of the run, that way may be the better choice. I used Bizzie for Saturday & she really did a good job (other than that dash for the tunnel that wasn't even part of the sequence!) I was happy that she kept up her speed in the tight turns.

On Sunday, we did a couple of compete courses with contact equipment & some difficult handling choices (also, no numbers on the course!). This was Blast's turn. I was happy with his contacts, which have been a problem in the past, and he did quite well. His problem is me! I find with him I have to be very confident & decisive in my handling.. he is so much different to handle than my little papillons, not just because he is bigger & has a huge stride, but he will disconnect if I hesitate at all. He really tries hard, & he is teaching me a ton!

Boo had a great weekend, he was a rent-a-dog for 12 year old Lorelei, who is a student of a friend of mine (Lynda C). They were just the cutest team! Lorelei did an awesome handling job & Boo ran really well for her. I don't think he's ever eaten so many wieners in one day!

Kathy has a unique way of challenging the handlers to really "go for it" and she really makes you think about the mental aspect of the game.
All in all it was a great weekend!

Friday, March 26, 2010

Weekend Fun!

This weekend we're looking forward to a seminar with Kathy Keats. Kathy is more of a coach than a "seminar presenter" & focuses a lot on the mental aspect of the game.
We always enjoy our time spent with her - she pushes us to move faster, think faster, & be faster!
I've always done her seminars with Blast, but this time I may switch between Blast & Bizzie.
Boo is going to be a rent-a-dog & run with Lorelei, who is a junior handler who works with Lynda, a local trainer & friend of mine. He's run with her before, so hope he works well with her. (This is a dog that is a real mommy's boy & used to be very velcro!)

On another note, Critter, Wayne's little papillon, had a trip to the vet's last week as she had a small ulceration on each eyeball. We've done a week of eyedrops & will give it another few days to see if everything is healed. The ulcers appear to have disappeared, but her one eye is still squinty on occasion.

Monday, March 15, 2010

The Good, the Bad, & the Ugly

Well, the trial had a little of everything:

The Good - Bizzie got her first Masters Q on a Standard course
The Bad - Bizzie had an awful Steeplechase where she was very naughty & zoomed around
The Ugly - my handling of the Adv jumpers course for Bizzie & Blast

Biz was a little hot & cold this weekend, she had some really nice moments & some odd ones - like stopping at the 11th pole in gamblers & just looking at me. She also had to run over to check out the judge & the number stuck in the ground for Snooker! On the plus side, her start lines were pretty good.

After looking at the tapes, I realized that if I stop on course with Bizzie to call her or change her direction, she will stop & look at me, then just take off & do something.. anything... so I must remember to always keep moving

Boo was having a nice Challenge run until he stopped at the table & spun around before getting on it - guess it's been awhile since he's done a table.
He Q'd 3 out of 5, so he had a much better day on Sunday.

I only had Blast in 2 runs - his steeplechase was pretty good, but I lost him at one point & he went the wrong way & took an off course jump. The jumpers was a bit of a mess, he ran pretty well, but took a wrong end of the tunnel - my fault.

Wayne & Cactus finally got a masters' standard Q - the first one in a year! She actually got most of her contacts on Sunday!

Friday, March 12, 2010


In my former life I was a registered nurse, so I was not such a believer in chiropractors & "natural healing". My training was all about mainstream medical care. Since then I've seen the light! I'm a huge believer in such things for myself & my dogs.

Did you know that regular chiropractic adjustments can really improve your immune system? It's for real!

Anyhow, I digress. Bizzie seemed a little off the past little while so she went to see Katharine today & sure enough, she had a pinched nerve between her shoulder blades. We'll see how she runs at the trial this weekend. Boo goes regularly & always has a little adjustment. He's still got quite a bruise from his altercation with his big brother, but he seems fine now, not sore.

We'll see how the crew does at the trial & hopefully everyone is feeling well. Unfortunately, I didn't get to my own chiro this month yet, so will have to go next week!

Thursday, March 11, 2010

Getting Ready...

This weekend is another AAC trial for us. I have been working on some different things for the past little while.

With Bizzie, I have been playing a lot more with her & I can now get her to tug in the arena with other dogs around - this is HUGE for us. I don't think it will happen yet in a trial atmosphere, but baby steps.... She seemed to lose a little confidence at the last Wee Wednesday trial - she was at the warm up jumps, and the big dogs coming off course ran right by her & gave her a scare I think. I really wish there was a barrier there, for safety reasons mainly.

With Blast, I've been working still on control & focus. I have to really pay attention to him in the corners or I can lose him really quickly. He is running faster & his contacts are getting better. I only have him entered in Jumpers & Steeplechase this weekend.

I wasn't sure if Boo was going to be able to run at all this weekend; he & Blast got into a scrap on Tues & he has quite a bruise under his left leg. He does seem OK now & we are going to the chiropractor tomorrow, so hopefully all will be good!