Monthly Archives: June 2010
It’s been a while since I’ve posted anything. Going for the invitational has been a long, grueling but also rewarding journey. I think posting after every weekend about every AKC trial I just did would have put me over the edge for agility burnout so I just didn’t post at all! We’re down to the last weekend and Enzo was in 3rd place though June 3 with a pretty good lead on 5th and 6th places. I don’t think it’s mathmatically possible for us to get knocked out of the top 5 now even if we don’t get any points this weekend. I’ll refrain from celebrating until I see the final results though! But now that we’re down to the end, I think it’s a good time to post about our journey.
I’ve learned a lot in the past year. I feel a lot more confident about my handling now, I have a pretty good idea of what things I have to worry about and the things that I don’t. Going through boxes has been a big problem for me and Enzo but we’re getting better. I learned that it works better to decelerate and turn my shoulders in the correct direction instead of trying to run ahead and pull him towards me that way. First choice is to do a front cross to straighten him out though. I’ve also gotten a lot better at adjusting my strategies for Tooney and Enzo. Not having done as much trialing as I did who knows if Tooney would have been a finalist at AKC Nationals!
Enzo started out in July and August really rocking it and was even in first place for a while but then lost our aframe contact completely in the middle of August. From then until Mid-December, Enzo and I only Q’d in standard twice! Quite amazing that we were able to come back from that. He was perfect in practice but horrible in competition. In December, I decided to treat practice like competition and stopped rewarding his contacts with food and also started practicing quick releases and early releases. He’s only missed 1 or 2 aframes since then and 2 or 3 dogwalks. It’s getting harder and harder to get him to come to a full stop in practice but so far this strategy is working. Pretty much as long as he puts in at least 3 strides on the downside of the aframe then that’s an acceptable performance.
So now just one more weekend and the wait for final results…
Jenn has given up on blogging and all social avenues for communication to the masses. It’s up to me to try making updates.
It was 5 days of crazy fun this weekend! Jenn competed Thursday, Friday and Monday with both dogs in agility. Sunday she competed just with Enzo. They got some Q’s. Enzo is still in top 5 for AKC invitationals. I can’t remember any other details.
Saturday we had the Skyhoundz southwest regional disc dog qualifier. They take the top 6 out of about 40 teams to the 2nd round. Enzo made the cut and finished 4th place overall after his 2nd round (was tied for 3rd, but lost tie breaker). I am a complete idiot, though. I threw 1 disc out of the end of the field for toss/fetch with Enzo. He made a beautiful leaping catch at something over 50 yards. Normally that would have been worth 5.5 points, but instead the score was 0 since it was out of bounds! That was the difference in 2nd place with a world championship qualifier and 4th place with no qualification. Tooney did great with only 2 drops, but had a very low score overall because the judges didn’t like her I guess.
Sunday was a lot of fun at the DiscDogathon. We had spot landing, distance/accuracy, bullseye and time trial competitions. Enzo was doing agility earlier in the day and was late to the event. We snuck him in and did his rounds. He didn’t do so great, partly because he was rushed in, partly because he was completely insane and was just missing discs for no real reason. He didn’t win any of the events. Tooney, though, was a little pimptress. I was horrible in the spot landing and she didn’t get many points. We had a drop in the time trial so we didn’t do good there. She won the distance / accuracy portion and she was tied for 1st place in the bullseye and got 2nd place after losing the tie-breaker. She also got 2nd place in the overall combined scores. I think there were 74 teams competing, so that was awesome!
Last year I was disappointed because Tooney got a bee sting in the 1st round at the DiscDogathon. I felt if she didn’t get stung, she would have had a chance to win the whole thing or at least do pretty well. Looks like I was spot on because she did great this year with no bee stings. She rocked it all day and had a lot of fun.
If I throw a disc over 20 yards, Tooney generally won’t miss. If she catches up to the disc and gets her mouth on it, she’s probably 99% catch rate. She didn’t miss a single disc that she came in contact with during this competition. She can miss short throws and I can outthrow her if I’m not careful, but that’s about it. Any other crap I throw she catches 🙂