I still can't get over how long of a dog Secret is. Please ignore the copious amounts of dog hair on the dog blankets. It would appear that my dogs will never all come together and decide to dump their hair at once. They think it is better to take turns so that our lives will always be fuzzy and filled with hair.
As I have no doubt mentioned several times now, Secret is running Open Chances at our trial on Saturday. To date, I believe we have worked specifically on "Chances Skills" exactly once. So... I figured that might be a good thing to do last night! Bethany & Rascal came over to play, and I set the following course that a fellow blogger posted -- It was the course they ran at Quad City Dog Center this past weekend (which we sadly could not attend).
I love how she included the lines for all three distance tests, giving us plenty to work with. The boys got to play, too, of course. Luke was awesome and pretty much could do no wrong. Kaiser was a bit put off by the heat and the distraction of Rascal -- He did the distance line but took the a-frame, then didn't really feel like going out to the hoops anymore. Ah well, he has perfect weaves at a distance, so I let him get away with it. He tends to be more willing to cooperate at trials and hates repetitive drilling. Northern breeds.... lol
My goal with Secret was, of course, to be successful at the Open line. Once we got over the distraction of me carrying the toy (?? hello, I always have it, dear!), Secret surprised me and sent out to the hoops in stupendous fashion. And then she took the a-frame. Okay, try again!
Never happy to be wrong and thus feeling the need to try something different, Secret skipped the furthest hoop, but she did get the tunnel and I kept going -- At which point she entered the first weave pole and then ran over to me (thus crossing the line). I may be guilty of not supporting the weaves since she pretty much always nails (and holds) her entries, but it still surprised me.
Her best run of this session occurred when I stuffed her ball down my shorts (that was lovely, trust me) to A) not distract her and B) make sure she will still run well without a toy as a "lure." She nailed it and I gave her a break while we worked with Rascal. When it was Secret's turn again she decided she didn't feel like working anymore and trotted off the start line and went around the jump.
It was hot, she saw Rascal getting food and she just wasn't giving a rip at that point. So I did something I haven't had to do for the longest time and put her back in the house while I worked with the other dogs. Someone was NOT happy and I heard her barking several times. Ah well, that's life!
I brought her out when everyone was done and ran her through again with the bars still set at 8" (we'd been doing 16" previously, so still not a huge effort). I also brought out her Jolly Ball for a change -- I got my happy & fast Secret back and she totally nailed it, easily with me handling from the Open line. We ended with a few reps across the dog walk and the a-frame.
Chances will be Secret's fourth & final class of the day on Saturday. We'll see what kind of mood she's in. Ultimately it all comes down to the course, I'm sure!