Monday, 28 June 2010

Newton Heath

Thought I better write another post otherwise Dan will be moaning... ohhh wait, he already is :P

Here is the video of Thames and Newton Heath

Scandal seemed to have gone up a gear at this show - although by the end of it had gone down a gear - more on that later.

First day was great - she won the G3 jumping with a really flowing run, steadied nicely for a pull through, did weaves that were almost fast, and tried really hard. We also had a 3rd in G3 agility with a held seesaw. I screwed up the wing wrap before the dog walk hence she went up the dog walk really slowly as she wasn't sure if she was right or not. Ohhh I'm an idiot!

Then it all started to go downhill on the Sunday. Her 3-5 Olympia agility went 3 jumps, dog walk, jump, pull through. I was so impressed with her speedily running down her dog walk that I was a fraction late with her wing wrap command, and then bent down, rather than standing up straight with high stop arm, so she ignored me and went round. Then did a perfect seesaw, then went in to the tunnel after which they had to turn right. I said "Scan scan scan" shoulders facing right way etc, but nooo, she completely ignored me and took a jump that wasn't even near, at which point I got cross and said "SCANDAL, NO" pretty loudly. She was alright after that and did speed back up again, but I was cross with myself for getting cross with her.

Her C3-5 jumping I cued her for a turn after 2, which she went to do, then flicked off, now this annoyed me as Tia does this but I've made a real effort to do loads of work with Scan so she doesn't do this, anyway so we had an almighty wide turn where she nearly took the wrong jump, then did 3 more jumps and she knocked this damn jump that she'd wanted to take in the first place down... then her weaves.... arghh. She's been trying SO hard on her weaves and has been perfect in them barring her first ever run at Hinckely. So she skipped a weave pole... cue horrified Char... wtf do I do when she misses a weave pole? (I am rubbish if I don't have a backup plan).

So I sent her back in from where I was stood, which was a 90 degree angle for Scandal to get... she missed it. I sent her in again, and she missed it again. So I sent her in straight, and she paid me back for this by walking through them and then stopping at the 6th pole... excuse me while I just die of embarrassment.

After that I decided that I'd have to really grit my teeth and stop pratting around as I sooo want her to get confident and of course she isn't going to if I'm not positive.

Her final run was G3 agility and started jump-weave. She came out of the 10th weave pole, think her confidence was given a big dent in the above jumping class. Put her in again (happy Char) and she flew through them, and then did a lovely rest of the round, incl a perfect running dog walk so I was happy. So a really great run apart from the weaves. I am not worried about the weaves, I know it will come back, I just have to make sure I am not shocked or suprised when she does it, and handle it a lot better, grrrr I need a slap!!

Saturday, 26 June 2010


Ok I'm a bit behind, but never mind.

Thames, Scandals 2nd show, she was lovely, had some great runs, on the Sat in the G3 jumping she ran past the last jump, it was on an angle and I thought she'd pick it up and she didn't. Then got a clear and a 3rd in G3 agility, slowww seesaw due to me handling like an idiot!!

Then we had a lovely round in the 3-5 combined agility which was a CSJ qualifier, and won it by 0.6!!! So out of grade 3... hmmm a bit soon, I only went for it coz it was a qualifier and they are exciting!

The next day in the G3 agility she was having a gorgeous run, felt like she meant business :D did a rather scary aframe but I didn't correct her as could see she really didn't mean to do it (and this proved correct with her doing a perfect af in the next run), and then did a getting-faster set of weaves, and then went into the wrong end of the tunnel. I could have helped her into the right side, but she must have just decided the entrance she could see was the best. I then tested her seesaw and she flew off it, well didn't fly off, but came off a bit soon, so we re-did it and she did the same thing again, oops.

In the 3-5 Olympia, I messed up and she took a pole, did a lovely aframe, and then launched down the plank of the dog walk instead of putting a stride in. She got the contact but I don't want her doing a dog walk like that so we re-did the down plank and she did exactly the same thing, so we did it again and she was ok. And another slow seesaw to finish.

The 1-4 jumping was next and she was gr8, ran early and then we left, and found out when we got home she won it - yay for Scandal :D she felt really floaty in this run and not trying... but she must have been trying if she won - I struggle with her striding, it's soooooo long and effortless, that it's not mad scrabbly like Rickys which is what I'm used to, and so feels really slow. And I'm not pushing her at all, I'm just trying to get in the right place, say the right commands, and that's hard enough :D

Love the baby dog :) x

Monday, 7 June 2010


How exciting, what a lovely show, I've never been before but will definitely be back again, was such a friendly show, thought the tannoy woman was great :)

First Ant's run with Ruby in Leah's 6-7 agility - loved this course! Ant and Ruby made it look so easy, like a walk in the park.

Tia... 4 classes, I just ran her in 2, didn't even enter her in Champ as knew my mind wouldn't be on her this weekend. She ran ok, my handling was as usual dreadful, but Tia did nice contacts and... hmm thats about it.

Honey was entered on the Sunday and as Indy was at her grans I ran Honey... last time I ran Honey at Wye Valley she went like a slug so I can't say I was particularly looking forward to running her, however she was very good, she's still a lot faster for Indy, but at least she didn't insist on facing the back of the score tent this time!

Scandal baby beans... ohhhhh she's my princess!

She was sooooo good, I am so pleased with her. Very exasperated at myself for handling like such a dork so much of the time. Ok so a quick (long) run down of her runs... first run g3 jumping - not really focussed, neither of us were, I was still cross that she'd bitten me in the queue, not hard but enough to hurt, I didn't really know what to do with her as she wouldn't focus whilst I was walking her around and couldn't get her to calm down like I could the past few UKA shows. She ran round I think 3 or 4 jumps and couldn't find the lines for the jumps at all, also missed her weaves. Then the runs just got better, graded 3/4 agility she was fab... but again I was an idiot, we'd done the dog walk, and the weaves, and were clear up until no 14 which was the aframe. Straight line after the aframe = frame... go. What do I say? Frame. GO GO GO GO GO. And Scandal did. Straight over the apex and I think only got 1 paw on the aframe on the way down. Apart from wanting the floor to swallow me up we quickly re did the contact, and she then completed the course nicely, I am sooooo so cross with myself for saying this as it's precisely why I don't - she'll take her stride too deep. However looking back on the vid it's almost like she was expecting the next plank to be a dog walk type, as she didn't drop down over the aframe at all.

3rd run, CSJ 3-5 agility, I did a stop on her dogwalk which she did, with a nice nose touch at the end, then due to my crappy handling she ran past a jump, aframe a little cautious and high (altho she got the contact) but anything's better than the previous attempt. Nice weave entry which she straightened herself for, and nice seesaw. Went over the last jump and she went off SNIFFING!!! Someone had left a treat on the floor, which she was very pleased with herself for finding.

Dog Vegas 3-5 agility - loved Matt Goodliffe's course, did a lovely running dog walk and I was so impressed I forgot to tell her where to go afterwards so she did a wide turn after the jump, then seesaw, hmm well she almost got 1 paw on the floor before I released her :D then nice aframe, slightly wide snake but I was v pleased she didn't run out the ring to get her toy as I'd seen lots of dogs do, thinkin they'd finished! Nice weaves, wide wing wrap, and nice straight bits to finish. OMG was I excited when we did OUR FIRST CLEAR :D woop! She got a 2nd, wow, what a star, I am so pleased with her, and sooooooo relieved we didn't win, as I desperately don't want to be out of G3. We also qualified for the Dog Vegas 3-5 Final - yayyy clever Beans!

G3 jumping - Scandal was so much more focussed, came out wide after the tunnel so I just said 'poles' and she brought herself back in and wrapped round the first weave pole, you can't really see from the vid how wide she was but I was so pleased that she found them, I'm determined to let her find them herself and not help her too much. Did a wideish turn after a snake, then a nice go on to finish and another CLEAR!! She got a 3rd in this, what a great baby.

Novice Olympia 3-5 agility - loved Graeme's course, thought it was just right. I didn't help Scandal enough for directions when she came out the flat tunnel and she turned the wrong way, I haven't done this nearly enough and really ought to practice it a bit more as think I've set it up in training like... twice in the last 6 months. Seesaw I dorked about on and hesitated, so Scandal hesistated, and then realised I was hesitating and ran forward for the next bit, which was followed by a left turn, so I turned soooo late, and Scandal tried so so hard to get over the jump, but knocked it, again I am uber cross with myself for handling so badly as she hates knocking poles. Rest of it was nice, bit wide, but Scandal being good trying very hard to listen and understand what the hell I am doing. Nice running dogwalk-tyre to finish.

I can't believe how amazing she has been, after the 1st run, I got my ass in gear and had (more) control over her around the rings, so she went into the ring focussed on me rather than what was going on in the neighbouring rings. So, we walk around with food up until the dog on the line goes in, then I take her lead off and we play tug, or rather she goes bananas ragging the tug... but again seems to work - will try various things in the coming months and see what works best for her. She is so much fun to work and tries so hard, really pleased all her weaves were perfect apart from her 1st run, yes they are still not fast, but she's able to do the correct action for the most part, which considering she couldn't/wouldn't last month is a big improvement. Love that she listens so intently and doesn't do her own thing. I just need to be a lot more decisive and actually move into the correct position QUICKLY rather than gawping at her. Oh and maintain criteria for the seesaw, and practice running past it, rather than waiting for her to do it. Just didn't want her flying off it at her first show, as she is a woos and would spend the next 6 shows crawling up it, lol.

Wow, this has to be the worlds longest blog post. Can you tell I'm a bit happy? :D

Friday, 4 June 2010

Scaredy beans

We've done 1 training session in the last 8 days, I have been in very non-agility mode, Tia hasn't had any training for 12 days, we've been for some lovely long walks, had a BBQ, my guys have got to play with Todd, Be and Copper, and just had lots of general chill out time. We had a lesson with Dave on Weds, and that's it until her first show tomorrow... Hinckley... I nearly died when I got her running orders, I feel so nervous, I haven't run in 'novice' for over 5 years and am quite excited to be going back there, love the fast and flowing type course. Scandal is working so well and trying so hard, she can be a bit 'floaty' but I think gradually when she gets more ring-savvy the confidence will come through. She is so so biddable and I am looking forward to working a quiet girlie who tries her little socks off.

Scandal was great at Daves, her jumping has got tons better, she doesn't 'loop' so much now, isn't jumping so stupidly, and I don't have to rev her up as much, she genuinely looks like she has some interest in running! Weaves, once she's at about the 4th pole she'll swim them, she got all her entries and didn't bobble once, pleased she found her entries as they were next to the dog walk so she discriminated nicely. Her dog walks were bad, have lost her stop contacts, although I think it was partly coz Dave was stood behind with the toy, so she got to the middle plank of the dw and turned around to gawp to see where he was, grrrr, she then did a few ok-ish ones, then when we did a running one she leapt down the plank and was high, so downed her and then all the rest were perfect. Aframes were nice as were the seesaws apart from that she was sliding down and stopping at the bottom and then deciding when she deemed it fit to carry on herself :)

Oh and some have asked about her chase drive... well it's still improving all the time. I called her off a deer last week, she came, first call, did such a wheelspin that she kicked all the dust up :) so we are getting there. She hasn't run off on any of the walks we've gone on (touch wood) and she sticks close by rather than going off hunting. She's still obsessed with the farm animals, particularly cows, but again I can call her away from them and she will generally come first call.

I will leave you with a video of Imogen winning 1-4 jumping, they still managed to win by a couple of secs despite the blip at the end... from a dog who was sooo obsessed with the finish jump you couldn't pull her off it, to one who's choosing the weaves over the finish jump... hmm, I guess it's progress of some sort!