OK – on to the agility stuff! Patches was out for this trial. She was/is recovering from a surgery to remove two lumps (fatty tumors) and according to her mother Betty, was NOT happy at being left home! It sure made things easier on me though to only have 3 dogs to run. Well, 4 really, but that story will come later. I had one goal for this trial: for Gale to pick up a regular leg and a gamble leg so she would have the basic qualifying requirements for the 2008 ASCA Agility Finals out of the way. I am still working on her running A-Frame. Of course, once I got it for USDAA (at 6’3”) they dropped the frame. We are slowly getting it together for the 5’9” frame and this trial had a 5’ even Frame. ACK!!!! Boy was I happy on Saturday when Gale Q’d in both her Regular runs, plus the Jumpers run! And then on Sunday, she picked up the Gamble Q plus another Jumpers leg (with a 2 nd place!) YAY GALE!!! Now we can just start racking up points! And training the lower A-Frame some more…
Chance was hysterical at this trial. But then again, Chance always is. He is SO pushy on his contacts, I keep trying to figure out what to do with him. Sigh… He did Q in Elite Regular so that was good – but he completely blew me off in Gamblers. Nancy (his mom) said I had to scream at him more. Well, I don’t really like screaming so we decided to have Nancy run him Open Gamblers on Sunday. After all, when she trains him at home, it is all distance work. The opening was HYSTERICAL to watch – Chance was all over the place, barking, leaping, spinning and Nancy was little bit flustered. Then the gamble whistle blew…Chance went over the correct jump, but instead of going out to the tunnel, he turned to look at Nancy (just like he does to me.) She started screaming (at the top of her lungs) “OUT TUNNEL, GO TUNNEL, GET OUT, GET OUT” and the little monster did! Nancy picked up an Open Gamble leg and I think she may be running him in Gamblers from now on! Chancie also had some lovely jumpers runs – fast and furious and on Sunday managed to pick up another Elite Jumpers leg with a 4 th place! Good boy Chance!
Cinder was AMAZING at this trial. I know, I know, I say that every time, but I cannot stress how totally awesome this little blue dog is. Let me say she qualified in 9 out of 10 runs. The one run she didn’t Q in was because I made the choice to pet her on course. She had slipped before the tire and fell under and through it. In ASCA, this is a refusal and since there are no refusals in ASCA, I could have re-done the tire (correctly) gone on and finished the course for a Q. However, the look on Cinder’s face was heart-breaking…as she skidded to my feet, I called her to me, pet her, put her through the tire again and then the weaves (which were the next obstacle and her personal favorite) and then I picked her up and carried her off course to reassure her. As I was leaving, Judy (the judge) told me it COULD have still been a Q run but I didn’t care…much. I knew I was probably giving up High In Trial (Starlet and Chaps were giving Cin and I run for it) but I just couldn’t ask Cinder to continue on when she was so freaked out. The agility gods rewarded me for this…Cinder beat Quick (the 2006 AKC 20” National Champion) twice in Elite Gamblers on Saturday and then Q’d when I fell down on course (the park had over-watered and I slipped and ate mud) so Cinder still ended up going High In Trial Elite dog AND High In Trial Other Breed! Yay Binder!!!
So, the 4 th dog of the weekend was Katie, Sizzle’s sister. Katie belongs to John and Bobbi Miller, a LOVELY couple that live down south. Katie is quite a handful and John (at age 80) has a hard time keeping up with her. This was Katie’s first show EVER and she was only entered in Novice Jumpers. I told the Miller’s that if they were willing to drive all the way up here for 30 seconds in the ring (1 jumpers round on Sat, 2 on Sun) that I would run Katie. I have practiced with Katie once, for about 5 minutes, so I was a little nervous stepping to the line with her. She was PERFECT – we had an amazing jumpers run – clean and smooth. Too bad I forgot and left her collar on. But boy, she is one fast little dog! Our 1st Jumpers run on Sunday was just as much fun, but I sent her off course into a tunnel. The last run of the day (and pretty much the show) redeemed me: Despite a couple refusals (which ate up time) Katie got around clean, picked up her 1 st jumpers leg and took 3rd place! I sure hope John and Bobbi want me to show her more…she was a blast!
The trial was a BLAST and I am looking forward to the next one in December! Actually, I am really looking forward to the next ASCA trial in a couple weeks because I won’t be in charge!
Photos by Dynamic Dogs Photography