Thursday, May 26, 2011

More Pictures

Here are some more pictures from last weekend I thought I'd throw up here for you all to see.

If he thinks happy thoughts maybe he can fly with those ears.

Is it just me? Or dose he look like he's about to slip in this photo.

He's flying here. It's nice to see a jumping picture where he's not a whisker away from taking down the bar.

Another strange ear picture. That's sort of the comb-over look.

The slowest weave poles in the West. A leisurely walk one might say.

Not a very flattering tunnel picture. He could caught bugs like that.

Well, we've got a three day trial this weekend and then Tracy is coming and then a trick demo. Busy busy busy. And I have an interview today at an emergency vet clinic to work as a vet assistant. Wish me luck.

Wednesday, May 25, 2011

Weekend Update

We had a two day trial at the GKC this weekend. I think it went really well actually. A lot of enthusiastic fast runs. Some were disastrous, some were quite pretty. Only one huge catastrophic run which was like 50% my fault.

The theme of this trial was trying to find a good pre-run routine for Gauis and I before stepping into the ring. Something that will make him excited and ready to run but at the same time keep him focused and concentrating on me. So he'll want to run hard but not be so over the top that he ignores me and goes nuts once we get out there. We used to do tricks before going into the ring followed by lots of treats. But I felt this made him concentrate on the food too much. He knew exactly when I didn't have anymore and it didn't get him excited enough to make him fast. So this trial we tugged using a tug it.

I really need to do a whole post on tug drive as it's been something we're working really hard on right now. But I'll save that till later. Basically the tug it has food on the inside. When Gauis really latched on and we got a good game of tug going I'd ask him to drop the toy and open it, then let him shove his head inside and get some food. I'm trying to transfer the value he has for food on to tug (more on transferring value, and how I'm puzzled by it, later). We tugged before every run this weekend and I do think it made him faster. With one disastrous exception.

So let's do our weekly run break down. But first here's the video tape!

JWW Sat: Beautiful run. By far the prettiest run all weekend, with the exception of that front cross right at the start. In Gauis' defense it was a pretty ambiguously poorly timed cross. In my defence that still didn't give him the right to blind cross me. But except for that little mishap gorgeous run. Look at how fast those weaves are. Much more like the ones we have in class. And I was the only one to see that serpentine when we walked the course. And he read it beautifully.

STD Sat: Was a mess. He ran off to star at the ring crew after the first jump but didn't bark and eventually came back. Then everything we relatively well until the weaves. There was a little kid stationed right by the entrance that he was obviously concerned about. It took us three tries to get it right be he eventually managed to do them and with no barking. Improvement defiantly. Then we ran into the wrong end of the tunnel (again my bad I wasn't 100% clear. I think he needed an arm there). All and all an enthusiastic and fast run.

I wet Gauis down with water a lot during the trial to keep him cool. It was very hot. I think this is our last outdoor trial until fall. Even if he can take the humidity down here in VA I certainly can't.

Sun STD: Was a disaster but I know exactly what went wrong. We were the first in the ring. I had just got Gauis tugging and we got called to go in. I wasn't ready and wrenched the toy out of his mouth and threw it a few feet away without him getting a treat. Now we do this at home all the time. Tug tug tug mom takes the toy and throws it. And it always means the same thing. Now it's time to race for the toy. When he gets to the toy we trow a big party play more tug and there are cookies. But now I was dragging him away from his tug toy into the ring. So basically he spent this whole run doing a few obstacles and then desperately trying to run out of the ring and find his toy. I can't be too angry at him. I've trained this behavior. (Though he should still run with me). Lesson learned. hand the toy to someone don't throw it onto the ground before heading into he ring. We're still figuring this whole trialing thing out. Anyway I left the course with him. No cookies for that run. Too naughty.

Sun JWW: Was a lovely run. Slower than his Sat runs but really pretty. Slower weaves then I would have liked but he came off the start line fast out of his stay which was really good when I look back at the footage from other trials. Read my body language, well seemed actually trained. He nicked the triple and I was sure he'd brought down the bar but some unforeseen force kept it up which was great. :P And it was a 1st place and our second leg in jumpers too so you can't complain about that :) One more leg and we enter the scary world that is excellent. I don't think we're ready for that.

Obligatory Ribbon Picture:

I may get more pics of this weekend. I'll post them if they come in. Three day trial this weekend.

All pictures from Club Creek Runs

Monday, May 16, 2011

We Take the Bad With The Good

Well we had an agility trail this weekend. We just did Sunday so that means two runs. This was our first trail after our three day extravaganza where we taught Gauis not to bark at judges... or ring crew... or helpless bystanders. And the verdict is, the lesson stuck! We had no barking this weekend. He did run off from me in Standard and sniffed the leash runner but then came right back and completed the course. So huge progress!

Now on the subject of our actual runs.... well they were sort of a disaster. But a fast happy enthusiastic disaster. Which is really sort of the best kind of disaster I guess. Here they are in all of their embarrassing glory.

Sorry it's really hard to see. Sean was far away for parts of it.

Sometimes I wonder if I should put my bad runs up here. But then I think, what would I learn if I only kept the good runs. The pretty runs. This blog is suppose to be all about record keeping. If I want to make progress I need an accurate account of where I am so I can know where I'm going. Besides Sean is a journalist and would never let me give you all biased reporting. So you get it all, the good the bad and the ugly.

Speaking of ugly look at this very unflattering picture of Gaius charging off the end of the teeter.

Gallery: OP Std 08 inch-B0511

So here's the breakdown.

Standard: Started off VERY enthusiastically. Gaius loves the teeter so having it early on is good for him. I was a little unclear about which jump to go to next which caused him to dart off (and sniff the leash runner as mentioned before). But no barking and he came right back. I think table after the A-Frame is hard for him because he's just going so fast and he slid right off of it but then hopped right back on. Next was the tunnel, which he refused to go through. But it had standing water in it so he was just being a prissy purse dog who didn't want to get his little footsie wootsie's wet, which I can tease him for but can't really get upset about. After that lovely weaves!

Gallery: OP Std 08 inch-B0511

Actually we had lovely weaves in both runs. Can you tell we've been working on that? Sometimes I feel like agility is a bucket with a bunch of holes in it. Once you plug one hole another shows up. But maybe that's what makes it fun. There is always something to work on. Well after pretty weaves he missed his dogwalk contact. Something he has NEVER done before, not even in class. I've known for a while that he needs work on his dogwalk contact so I'm not super surprised. I know how to fix that. His teeter was pretty too looking back at it, look how close to the end he got and let it drop out from under him. He dose love that teeter.

Gallery: OP Std 08 inch-B0511

All an all it was a disaster of a run, but a really fun disaster. I'd rather run him when he's having a blast and running his heart out, than get a Q with a run that had mediocre enuthsiasum where I have to cheer-lead the whole thing, and it's like I"m pulling teeth. He really liked that run.

Jumpers: Jumpers was less enthusiastic. It was a bit hotter, and it did start with weaves not his favorite. Then he refused a jump which confused me. Then my handling got wonky so I don't really blame him for that. I think he spent most of the run thinking "Mom, what the heck are you doing?" I count that one was my bad, being that every time I was being clear he sped up and looked like he was having a good time. My brain just wasn't in it. So we had I think one more refusal and were a bit over time. I sort of lost my place too somewhere in there. That's a bad mommy, no cookie for her!

His ears really do have a mind of their own during agility don't they?

Gallery: OP JWW 08 inch-B0511

Gallery: OP Std 08 inch-B0511

No Qs this weekend but a good time had by all. We have a two day trail next weekend in the same location and then the weekend after that it's a three day trail indoors. Then after that a Tracy Skelnar seminar. An agility filled month. I'll keep you all informed.