Tuesday, October 28, 2008

More agility and other stuff!

I ended up with a pretty good haul at the AKC trial this past weekend in Lewisburg. Went 5 for 6, and woulda had the six if Mum wouldn't have pulled me off a jump. I got a free toy for every Q, so Mum picked out some for me and some for my favorite cheerleader (aka, banshee) Gracie.

We had some really nice runs, and ended up with 46 MACH points for the weekend.

The drive over and back each day was pretty uneventful, which is always good. The trial was at the Circle G Ranch, my absolute favorite place to run agility. Dirty, dusty and sometimes muddy. Nothing better.

We saw some of the horses on the ranch, although not as many as we usually see. Here's one of the guys (gals?) we went to visit between runs. Gracie and I both love the horses.

Mum filled up the gas talk on the Disco a couple of times while we were in Ohio, because it was over 10 cents cheaper per gallon than here in Indiana. Very nice to have fuel prices go down just when we were making some long trips. We found gas for $2.29 at one time, unbelievable!

Mum really liked the courses this weekend. We had never run under either one of the judges, and wondered if they had experience in USDAA. The courses were very nice, open in spots, technical in spots, great spots for speed, and tricky stuff that we found challenging, yet fun. Most of the AKC courses we see are much more twisty turney, and can at times be slow for me. I love the wide open spaces.

We particularly loved the Standard course on the third day (the one Mum goofed me up on). Here are courses from Friday and Sunday. The first map is JWW on Friday, the one I promised to post. It has a great jumping sequence (7-14) we definitely want to practice again and try out several handling variations. On this run I was only two seconds off first place, getting fourth. And I have to tell you, there are some amazingly fast pups in Ohio. I have my moments, but those pups are so consistent and fast. A couple I wouldn't be surprised to see win some national titles.

But what we love about going there is that these fast pups are super nice, and Mum gets to talk handling strategies throughout her walkthroughs and before and after runs with their handlers. Makes it so much more fun.

The second map is my standard run on Friday. Both of these are in the vid posted Friday night. The third map is Standard on Sunday, a very fun, very open course, which presented challenges of it's own. My refusal was on jump 16 when Mum decelerated too early. You can click to enlarge.

So here's what we learned:
  • Mum is loving my dog walk more and more. And it's becoming more and more independent with each trial day. We plan to push it to the limit at practice this week and see what goes.
  • We definitely need jump work. Since Mum has been working with me on gaining confidence over these past months, we've neglected tight turns and jumping work at speed. So Mum and I will be working some of Linda Mecklenburg's jumping sequences from Clean Run and Stuart Mah's acceleration and deceleration in upcoming practices.
  • I really need work on driving through pinwheels. I don't like them. Mum is going to talk to some folks about ideas, using more rear crosses, etc. Then we'll be working those as well.
  • My speed is good, but could still improve.
  • I'm getting less and less confident on the table. Slow to go down, slow to come off and I've started looking around a bit too much. We're loosing a minimum of 1-2 seconds, working the table.
  • Found out this weekend, that I don't particularly like weaving into a wall. Bet most pups don't, but it's something to practice for next time. We've begun to see this situation more often than we used to.
  • Mum loves my running Frame, but we need to work on turning after, especially rear cross situations and push outs after the Frame. It worked when we ran, but was super sloppy.
Overall we were very pleased with the weekend. After we got home and started inputing the data in Agility Record Book, Mum realized just how close we got to qualifying for AKC Nationals for 2009. I got my 6 DQ's and was only about 80 points away from the 400 needed. Not bad for not competing one third of the year due to my injury.

So on to other stuff:

Tomorrow night is the big Howl-o-ween Party at the agility training center. We plan on going and working my dogwalk, some jumping skills, and turns off the Frame. Gracie's gonna go and work on focus in a stressful environment - her favorite thing :)

Both Gracie and I are going as prisoners and Mum is going as a cop. Should be interesting! We'll get some pics, hopefully.

Gracie is getting bored out of her ghord, not running this past weekend and having to be my cheerleader. She got into a roll of toilet paper, her toothpaste, a loaf of bread off the counter (no consumption, thank goodness), and some of my toys which didn't sit well with me. Hopefully she'll feel better after some runs tomorrow night.

Mum got another couple of pet business clients and has been doing more and more marketing consulting for them, helping them get ready for the holiday season.

And we've been working on getting our JohannTheDog.com store ready for the holidays as well. We've got some really cool new products we're adding. If you'd like to subscribe to my newsletter to keep up to date, click here! And we'll keep you up-to-date.

Last but not least, Mum got out my exercise ball today and worked with me for a few minutes for the first time. I did great - jumped right up on it with no fear. We're looking forward to working with the ball even more.

Hope you all are having a great week! Don't know about you, but I'm not ready for winter!!!!


  1. w00f's Johann and Gracie, congrats on ur trials and wins..heehee Gracie just let u all no she wuz bored and wants to run..

    b safe,

  2. Hey JoJo - the qualifying period is til the end of Merrillville - you could still do it! :)


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