Tuesday, June 22, 2010

agility is not my life but my life involves agility

I was a little bit behind my schedule last week. I was busy cleaning and tidying the caravan for Axstane but decided to travel each day so Colin could stayed at home to watch the football and support England on Friday. I am not a great football fan but I agreed to support England provided Colin buy me a nice pizza! Hehehe ... while he was getting excited shouting and screaming for England, I concentrate eating my yummy pizza! Well, I didn't missed much of the game anyway, it turned out to be a very disappointed game! To make me stay to watch the second half of the game, Colin has to buy me a nice cake too! Can you imagine with all those pizza and cake, how am I going to run the next day? Anyway, I am not complaining as the pizza and cake are really yummy!

I didn't realise travelling to Axstane isn't that bad, we got there just slightly after an hour. I had two classes first thing in the morning, the DFS Crufts Agility Challenge and DFS Crufts Small/Mixi Pairs. Both classes are quite nice to run. The judging starts at 8:30. By the time I've got Sizzle to the Agility Challenge ring, I was amazed there were already 5 or 6 shelties there waiting to run! It was so funny that we have about 10 shelties in the queue with no other breed in between!

Sizzle was running ok in the Agility Challenge, he went clear but no speed. I do not know why. He hasn't show any sign of discomfort before. We weren't quite connect on Saturday. I wanted to turn him left the jump before the DW to give him more space and not losing any momentum but he decided to turn right. Luckily I was able to straighten him to go up the DW. Phew! I have been practicing the left and right with him a lot but I still cannot see why he still turn right when I said "left"!! 

Then, we have to run straight to the DFS Small/Mixi pairs. This is the first heat of the year. Sizzle is pairing with Smo and Saturn is pairing with Brax. This is the first time that I have to walk the Mixi and the Small courses. Saturn is the Mixi and Sizzle is the Small. I am sure I will get confuse one day. Luckily the Small/Mixi pairs course looks flowy so I managed to do the Mixi and the Small bit right! Both pairs ran well. I am rather please with Sizzle as this is the first time he ran in the pairs. There is a bit that I dare not do a pull through eventhough it was quite a good gap, I am worried I will send him over the wrong jump, so I decided to do a front cross, that slow him down as I was a little behind to do the front cross. Also, the snake, he nearly didn't take the jump but he was a good boy, he knew his job well. Saturn was very happy and ran well in the pairs too. 

Then, we have Sizzle in the G6,7 Jumping. It was a tricky challenging course. We ran clear but not fast enough for a placing!

After that, we have quite about three hours wait before I ran Saturn in his Jumping. He ran very well but I mishandled and sent him into the wrong end of the tunnel, absolutely my fault! 

I have entered Sizzle in the DFS Crufts Circular Knockout. I thought it was a good one to put a young dog in as it is a fast course. I realised I was wrong after talking to my guru, it could be harmful to the young one if there is an aggressive dog running together ... I was having two minds, to run or not to run. I didn't walk the course like I want to run my dog, I just briefly walk the course once for each side. When the class started, I was quite twitchy, I decided to have Sizzle out and watch who is us running against. If the other dog is the one I know, I will run or else I will pass. Our first K/O was against another sheltie, Poppy is very good, so I decided to run. Sizzle ran very well and we got through to the second round. I was a bit unlucky in the second round because I was sent to queue in the wrong queue. Normally if I have to run in the pairs or K/O, I always watch a couple of dogs in front of me to remind me the course, so I have been watching the dogs in front of me to remember which way I should go but as I step in, they told me I was in the wrong queue. Bummer! I don't even remember the course on the other side. We were against Fudge, a very fast and nice Cairn Terrier, so any wrong foot/paw, we will be out. You've got it! I lost where I was going after Sizzle came out from the tunnel, I wasn't sure to jump 2 jumps ahead then turn or 1 jump then turn so I sent him to take 2 jumps! Hahaha ... I was actually quite happy to be knocked out, at least I have got Sizzle experienced to run in a K/O with some nice dogs. That's enough for us for now. We might do it one day but not in the near future.

some of our runs from Axstane:

We didn't go back to Axstane on Sunday eventhough we have entered. I think I need a break and the dogs need a break from agility too. We have been doing a lot of agility for the last few weekends. We have a nice long lie-in, I didn't get out of bed until 9am! Then, we took the dogs out for a good long walk. After lunch, we spent the whole day in the garden doing the much needed gardening, well, at the same time playing with the dogs.

the boys enjoying the sun in the garden:

Sing loves his frisbee:

Sizzle is learning:

Saturn always have his beautiful "saturn" walk:

and yes, my life involves agility!

recalling the see-saw:
reaching for the ham:

Sizzle: I am nearly there!!

mmm ... yummy

that's better!

I have been moving the equipments around again. I lower the A Frame to its lowest height to retrain Saturn's contact. I am not given up on him, I just wanted to take time and do the right thing. I have gone back to the very beginning. It may take me a long time but I am in no rush. I have my manners minder out to get him to focus to run down to the bottom and at the same time to look ahead and not me. I also put a long jump on the peak to teach him to jump over the peak. Saturn has always creep at the peak of the A Frame, so I need to break the creep. I have been doing that as a separate thing to the target at the bottom. He got a little confused when we started it as I click each time he jump over the long jump. He wasn't sure where to stop but he soon learned. I didn't use the clicker on the peak for too long as I don't want him to get more confused.

the long jump on the peak is a stepping stone:

you can see how happy he is at the bottom, he carries on with the speed and stop at 2o/2o:

he is looking at the manners minder in front and awaiting for my release word:

this is us practicing on the AFrame:

I decided to see the doctor yesterday about my foot. I hurt the ball of my foot nearly a year ago. I think I was running (either in agility or playing with the dogs last year), I probably ran on a rock/stone or anything hard. I never thought seriously about it. I was hoping it will heal on its own. The pain comes and goes at times. It gets very painful lately so I made an appointment to see my GP yesterday. Well, what can I say? I went to see him and explain to him about the pain. He examine my foot, then he turned and tapping away on the computer. I thought he is going to prescribe me with some medicine, in fact, he was searching on the web for more info. That's really scarry! How can I trust a doctor who needs to refer to the web? :(


Nat said...

Great runs! Saturn's AF is looking good too! So cute how he stares at the MM waiting for the treat to come out.

I hope your foot starts feeling better!

OBay Shelties said...

We skipped Sunday also! They said the weather there was colder again and yet it was sunny and warm by us! Good decision to stay home for both of us I think!

Remington said...

Wowzers! You are good!

Vonnie said...

Lovely runs! Smo is gorgeous! I love Saturns weaving :) Well done Sizzle & Smo, Saturn & Bracken!

Priscilla said...

I don't know much about agility but I can see those runs are really great!

Love those shots too. They are precious!