Secret had another fantastic trial weekend! We love trials at Family Dog Center -- Because not only do we get to play agility for three days in a row, but we get to sleep in our own bed at night. :o)
Secret ran 8/10 over the three days and earned her Elite Jumpers & Tunnelers titles! Her NQ's were completely my fault. I hate that. In Touch-n-Go Friday night I ran the wrong course. Sigh. Kaiser had just had a really wide turn on the last part of the course and apparently that was stuck in my head, so I made sure to cue really early for the turn. Like, REALLY early since it wasn't supposed to come until later in the course. Oh well.
I also asked for way too much lateral distance on the dog walk in Chances on Sunday, causing Secret to miss her very first contact! She popped right off the side to come into me (and the jump that was layered between us). There was no justifiable reason for me to be THAT far away from her, other than that I was trying to be in a better position for the next part of the course. I think I just got too cocky and left her alone. Bad handler.
More HUGE positives to take away from this trial! Secret is showing speed more consistently on a variety of courses. I noticed in the video that there were even several instances where she FINALLY jumped with her hind legs extended vs. tucked in and collected underneath her. For many dogs that's no big deal, but for Secret it's pretty big. She's finally starting to let loose and run on course!
Her stride is so deceptively long. I watched to see how many times she double-strides between obstacles and it was surprisingly more than I thought there would be. She can do it with little effort, it seems, when she opens up. When Luke double-strides it seems like there is more reach, but Secret's stride is so long that she seems to almost lope through it. So gosh darn it, if it's so easy why don't you do it more? ;o)
Secret's Tunnelers run on Friday was 5.8 yps this time, so she didn't quite hit 6, but almost. :o) And really, it was a very "non-Secret-friendly" course because I didn't have one single cross on the entire course. Talk about un-motivating for her. Again with the deceptive speed, though, because I thought she felt so slow on that run.
She also had a 5.5 yps Jumpers run on Sunday morning. I have to admit that I haven't really been keeping good track of her yps, but I think that's got to be about her highest in Jumpers. She had 5.2 on Saturday with it being the last class of the day.
Speaking of last class, she was definitely starting to drag by the end of the day on Sunday. It always shows in her weaves, but she was able to keep up fairly well for the rest of the Regular courses at the end of the day. I definitely think I made the right decision to keep her limited to four runs per day.
I've decided that this will be our last trial before Champs. Originally I was going to head over to Zumbro Falls on October 1 -- I love that trial and like to support a smaller club, but I really want to go into Champs on a high note. I am terrified to go and have a bad day -- Not just with Secret, but with all three dogs. So we are going to stay home, rest, visit the chiro and have fun for the next few weeks. I think we're as ready as we're going to be!
The boys had a great weekend, too! Luke also ran 8/10, got both of his Weavers and both of his Chances! That means that he's now just one Weavers Q from his second V-NATCH, which is what makes it hard to skip the next trial. Oh well, we'll get it when we get back from Champs! He's also just five Chances Q's away from his third NATCH already. Hard to believe, but he's just been on a roll lately.
Kaiser was FAST this weekend. He got three dog walks -- two decent ones, one was a gift (but in Chances, thank you judge!!!). He had some stutter-stepping issues that I believe are related to confidence (he knocked a bar and it freaks him out), but we are going to the chiro this week to get it checked out just in case. I want everyone as good as they can be, physically, when we head down to IL!