Had a great agility practice today. Gracie too!
Went out to our trainers house for an hour private. I worked on a new start line stay, since I am sooooo blowing my standing wait at trials now.
We started doing a standing wait for the start back this past Spring when I was building my confidence back up from January's injury. It worked for that purpose, but it's overstayed it's welcome.
Mum started with putting me in a down, since some dogs start faster from a down, than a sit. Both Mum and Trainer liked how I looked coming off the start in a down. Mum thought I was speedier than the sit I was using last year. And I already have a nice stay...so we're going with that at the next trial this weekend in Terre Haute.
We also worked on some handling moves with three jumps coming off the frame. A triple after the frame with a turn around to a serpentine and then off to the teeter. Mum needed some work on tightening me up in situations like this. After some instruction, she's getting it with some pre-Q'ing. She just needs to move faster and get out of my way.
I also did a pretty darn good teeter today - something else we wanted to work on. And my weave speed looked pretty good. I bailed one dog walk and got another. Mum just has to say' get it' and still shorten her stride a little, still. But we are getting closer to a more independent DW. It's gonna take some time - and it would help if she would get that darn board painted and work with me on it in the backyard!!!!
Gracie started the day, but she was incredibly unfocused for her runs. Trainer suggested Mum leash her up and start with me instead. After I ran, Gracie was begging to get her turn. That worked!
She ran really well and focused. Some folks stopped by to ask some questions while Gracie was running. Trainer went over to talk with them at the fence line, so Mum decided it was a great time to work on focus with Gracie. She didn't do too bad. She ran off to visit them, but came back. It was great practice with distractions.
Mum worked on her DW, but she bailed it too the first time, got it the second. Her weaves are looking good. Mum noticed that Gracie is pretty independent on her weave entrance when she's on Mum's left, but still needs some help with the entrance when Mum's on her right. But she nailed all the weaves on the second try, both directions.
Mum is having trouble staying up with Gracie, they need more work on Gracie running ahead of Mum, especially in a line of jumps.
After practice Mum filled out some more trial entries to leave with Trainer. She entered Gracie in the upcoming USDAA trial. This one is going to be one ring (which we've never seen around here with USDAA). But Mum thought it would be great to get in some Gracie time, since there won't be any conflicts. We think what really gets Gracie running off, is Mum's stress level increase when she's running both of us. It will be a good test.
Mum also entered Gracie in the previous weekend's USDAA, just one run on Sunday, since I'm running five runs per day that weekend. She also entered Gracie in two runs per day at the December CPE trial; and then put me in for one STD run per day for practice.
So we have a lot of work still to do, but this work is too much fun to call work, right?
Trainer was playing around with me and thought I was pretty thin. I've always been thin, but this year, Mum just can't keep any weight on me. She's increased my food intake a lot too. Someone at the trial thought that maybe I should have my thyroid checked. With me loosing all my undercoat, and not putting on any weight; could be a sign. And it's really common, they said, in Shelties. Mum decided that she'd email my Auntie Bonnie (my best vet) and talk with her about it.
Well, better go, it's dinner time!