Sunday, April 27, 2008

All work and no play...

leaves little time for training. I did start Cassie's road work last night, and she did SO well. Passed several people and didn't react to the shinny game till we were right on top of it.. but I was able to walk and lure her out of it without real hysterics. Also had a nice long conversation with my neighbour, who didn't believe this was the same dog :)

Sophie is really starting to put things together, and once we work through the mugging habit, and get her weaves.. she'll be a superstar.

Hopefully we'll work through this in class...

Thursday, April 10, 2008

Cassie's turn for a personal best...

She and I've been going out every morning to play 'look at that' near the bus stop - she is getting cracker jack fast at reorienting to me once she spots a person... I'm now able to talk to people at a distance too. We're working up towards walking by strangers and having face to face convos, but there's no rush. Dogs, especially barking dogs, remain her most severe provocation - and we haven't really been working with that issue yet. Loads of time... She's good at jumping one hurdle in the backyard - I may rig up some 2 x 2's sometime and start her on that as well.

The cough or whatever seems to be all gone, thank heavens.

Monday, April 7, 2008

Further thoughts on competition and miscellany...

One thing I noticed on Saturday is that my ring nerves are really easing. Before the first class, I was a wreck, but as I took Soph out for a walk and sat with her, just stroking and massaging her as we waited on deck - all worries just faded. I need to work on my breathing and relaxation exercises, but I'm yards better than I used to be. T-touch seems to work for both the giver and the receiver....

Practice tonight went very well. Soph is really getting the motion of weaving now - she's one-striding through the poles and they're nearly in a straight line now - hoping by summer we'll have her up to 6 parallel poles and we'll be ready for AAC.. played around with pinwheels and tunneling - is there anything more exciting than blasting through tunnels at mach 10? well, besides jumping on judges. and ring crew. and spectators, especially the ones that laugh at her.

Scarlett is making leaps and bounds too - and A's timing and reading is as well! I love the look at that game - both scarlett and cass are really getting the quick glance down pat. Scarlett awas brave enough to try some little jumps - she seems to be a little easier in the gym space too. Hopefully we'll be able to get the gym to ourselves next month and I can bring cass up for some obstacle familiarization....

Sunday, April 6, 2008

Our first post, a wee bit of bragging about our CPE debut

I had entered Sophie in 3 classes - Colours, Standard and wildcard

first was colours: had chosen blue, the squared numbers on the map - the outside line on the left (tunnel tunnel) then down the middle. No trouble on the first tunnels but I called out "tire" instead of "jump" - shes never heard the cue tire, so refused there, but I was able to bring her back and over then over again, but there's the judge! woohoo- break off to say hello, but SHOCK I'm able to quickly call her back. I'm so surprised that she recalled to me that I forget my gameplan to front cross before jump 5 to block her from the tunnel.. and big surprise, the tunnel sucks her in. Managed to recall her again, and finished - with an NQ and 38 faults. BUT she's jumping clean at 16 inch and fast, and although she's still visiting, I'm able to call her off.

Next is Standard

start off on soph's left, to put us in the middle of the pin wheel - quick visit with the ringcrew but moved on and finished the pinwheel and on to the tunnel... then YEEK there's a dogwalk. We haven't done a dogwalk since last fall. And we're not doing today. get her a few steps on , but that's as far as she goes.. she bails and goes back to visit the judge, and she's off her game completely now - can't get her back and refocussed on me (the other obstacles are on the far side of the dogwalk, and she's freaked herself, so not even a tunnel can suck her in..., so I thank judge and scoop her up. NT. It's all good though.

Finally it's Wildcard.

There are some tricky bits, but I've decided to stay on the outside (avoiding the dogwalk) - giving us a nice flowing circle with possible traps at 5 and then a tricky line from tunnel to jump 9 and 10. But doesn't faze our sophie girl. She runs fast, attentive other than a quick stop at the ring crew (who has positioned herself facing into the corner, which strikes me as REALLY funny - but I can't giggle, Soph returns to me and we finish fault free and with a time of 34.5, way under SCT of 54. YAY! What a nice finish for a super super day

Colours has two blended courses, you choose which to run.. some of the obstacles are shared, others are different for each course...

Standard is same as AAC, but at level 1 there's no weaves or teeter

Wildcard is a standard run, but at level 1 you have to complete two one point obstacles (the a's) and one two point obstacle or combo of obstacles (the b's) - in the map, the tunnel -tire combo on the right was our first 1, then the two jumps at the back were our 2 pt'ers, then our second 1 pt was the jump between the two tunnels on the left. The line between the tunnel and 5 was a bit tricky, a bit of a trap - then the final two jumps were offset.. she nearly knocked a pole on the last jump but it held up... a friend taped the first two runs but not our clean performance.. boo.

Not that I'll forget it anyway... :)