Back in Sept or Oct I'd mentioned to Garth about doing a couple of shows over the winter, to see if Ims could get any more of Honey's wins to grade 7 (she had 1 of the 4). By September Honey was a right porker and I think had had enough of doing agility every weekend and during the week too. She was spayed mid October and I think the first session of any sort that we did with her was in December, just running a flat plank on the floor. Tbh we didn't train again apart from 1 lesson with Dave over Christmas, and then down at Carol's in the middle of January. I didn't have anywhere to train and the equipment was in storage. All I had was the weaves and 4 jumps (not that I ever used more than 2 jumps... far too much effort to carry 4 jumps to the park). So the dogs had a pretty long break from agility. I have spent a long time building Scandal up again slowly - she is really fit now. Proprieception/balance stuff twice-three times a week, hill running twice a week, a really long 3-4 hour Mendip walk once sometimes twice a week, and then whatever else I can fit in. She's looking so much better now and is more muscly too.
Anyway going off on a tangent as usual. So, I suggested to Garth we did Hare n Hounds as they had loads of classes, plus it was a 2 day show. I really wanted Ims to get to grade 7 so we could do the same shows, I wanted to do the ones with qualifiers and a lot of them don't have great classes (i.e. lots of Small Grade 6's!). Plus with Ims not being able to do as many shows now, it would be nice for her to enjoy the bigger shows and the prestige of being up with the big'uns in champ/Olympia Q/Crufts Singles etc.
So, show entered, it came round pretty quickly, hardly any training apart from Garth working on Honey's running contacts with the manners minder.
The show was lovely, I entered Scandal in a BC Ag on Sat, and BC jumping on the Sun, Tia had 2x junior and 1 5-7 each day, and Ricky had a Veteran jumping each day. Saturday was a special day as it was Ricky's 12th birthday. Ricky's never been a clear round machine, but he did a beautiful clear on his birthday and ended up 3rd :) what made it even more sweet was when I went up for prizegiving (grinning like a cheshire cat - that moment of being in the ring with Ricky, who was running his little old socks off for me will stay with me forever) I said it was his birthday and they gave us a big bowl of dog treats/chews and a toy - which I thought was so kind of them. Rix thought this was great and practically took my hand off for the treats. The next day Ricky then had the honour of taking Garth round his first ever agility course... Garth did a bit of training with Rix last year but only in July/Aug so nothing for ages. Well Rix was Rix and did his naughty startline (I had instructed G he needed a 4 jump recall ;)) and then went off like a rocket and went clear :O awwww, I actually nearly cried. What's better (worse!) is that the pair of them bettered my Saturday result by coming 2nd, bless Mr Rix, still runs his heart out and just loves his agility.
Tia was a good girl for Imogen. She doesn't take the mick as much now, Imogen's in control much more and they are looking good together. They had a couple of top 3's and a nice clear in the 5-7 agility with a held dogwalk too, so that was good. Considering when Imogen first started running Tia, Tia would pretty much do her own thing and launch off contacts (despite Imogen saying in her dainty voice 'target') they have really improved. It will be nice for Tia to do some junior classes with Ims this year, can't believe Tia will be 9 in a couple of months, still acts like a puppy, don't think she will ever grow up.
Scandal, well she was really good, nothing much to say, I need lots of work on my handling, I was really pleased with her weaves so that pretty much made my weekend (small things), and she jumped nicely.
And HONEYBEAR. What a super sausage. I think a place on the Saturday in juniors, she ran well in every run. Ims went home for her last run as her grandparents were up, so she went back to see them. So I ran Honey. Woop woop. Run fast with the spaniel. Infact, being the twerp I am, I ran so fast, that I fell over on a turn. Actually fell over. In the sand. Idiot. Bless Honey came running over to check I was ok. I then proceeded to get us e'd later round in the course. I blame the shock of falling over. Best stick to a slower speed in the future :)
The next day was a lot better. Honey won 4 classes :O and so is now grade 7. She won 2 jumpings and 2 agility's. Several of them she won by 5+ secs, and in the graded class had a faster time than the 7. So well and truly into champ. Good spaniel. So it was worth the long journey up. AND I drove pretty much all the way home (only because I was happy with Ricky being wonderful, Scandal being yummy and Honey being brill (oh and I guess Tia trying hard :)) so the 4 hours flew past. Glad we made the long trip up. Think Honey will suit doing less shows and less training. Hopefully her hormones won't be as bad now she is spayed. Clever Spaniel and clever 12 year old Ims - they will look cute in champ together :) :)
Here's the vid of some of our runs from the show... doesn't Rix look great :)