Monday, 24 October 2011

Go ape...!!!

Went 'Go Ape' this weekend - a birthday activity organised by a friend. It was a mix of emotions from 'nerve racking' to 'exhilarating' to 'why did I worry about doing that?'. My language did turn the air blue initially. Although I did try to say "flipping nora" instead. But I got calmer and more rational as I completed each course. My senses were heightened literally by the height, the tiny ropes, hoops, logs and barrels that you try and use to get from one tree to the next. I really had to talk myself through a couple of them.

But now looking back I have to look at the video as I can't believe I have done it. Especially knowing what I am like, I think Marc was surprised too.

What a great way to spend a few hours with friends, and then walk the dogs afterwards :-) what next???????

Thursday, 20 October 2011

Running Contacts with Rivi - getting started

Well, it was hard to be good at Chippenham, Rivi worked beautifully in the champ jumping. Oh the temptation to run her in the champ agility - but I was strong (methinks like being on a diet!) and did not subcumb.... I know it is really important that I remain focus on my goal to retrain - it is really critical if we are going to be even more competitive next year...

The outline retraining stages so far are:-
1] introduce to MM
2] run to MM running over a bit of carpet
3] to running the carpet to MM with me in differing positions
4] to angles on to the carpet and maintain criteria on carpet

And that is where the complexity creeps in there is the speed, the judgement, can you say well that one was a bit high or the paw pattern not quite right, can you try again please. Can I try and train the dog, watch the dog, run at the same time, click and reward spot on and not be in a tiz? ha ha could make you dizzy just thinking about it.

Once over her shock of meeting the MM - Rivi has 'cottoned' on to the fact it involves running and she loves to run. She is really enjoying the training, and that is always my overall goal. I signed up with a Daisy Peel - classroom and that is quite a nerve racking thing to do i.e costs/group mix/trainer approach. A bit of a leap of faith - but I like what I have seen on her blog etc.,. and took the plunge. So far it is really good, following the steps that I expected and can work with.
- Plus there is the sharing of the learning curve which is really cool even in a virtual world.
- Plus it made me buy a MM and it is a brilliant tool which had been on my to buy list since Zev was a puppy! I wish I had got it sooner now I just need two of them ;-)
- Plus Zev has just as much fun joining in although he already does running contacts

Sunday, 9 October 2011

Chippenham - the 2011 Agility Season finishes

DAMM, what a good way to finish the agility season. Final ticket show of the year and I had the good fortune with Zev to be awarded the Reserve Challenge Certificate. Sure I am totally human and would have preferred to have won it, but being corny but true I am just so chuffed to have the opportunity to share my life with such a fabulous sheltie. Sure at times I am a wee bit frazzled as previously mentioned he sure does know how to press my buttons. Which is a great thing or life would be a trifle dull ;-) So this year two RCCs and also I need to sort out claiming our Agility Warrant Gold, as Zev he achieved enough points at the beginning on the season.

This is the video of the final round:

I want to fine tune his contacts - this season with lurching from wood to rubber surfaces has been at times 'hair raising' and disconcerting. Whilst I like the rubber - I do feel it would have been safer and better for the dogs if it had been a overnight change to one type of surface. Hopefully next year all the agility shows will do rubber contacts.

I really don't think there should be another year of 'mix and match' it is a risky situation especially when its wet weather. How the heck to you tell your dog that is going like crazy, "watch out the contacts are wood this time!" On the plus side its been good as it made me convert Zev to full running contacts. It is such a buzz not to think about having to stop and go, it is just so exhilarating.