Sunday, February 2, 2014

(Another) Ring Rental

We did another ring rental at Family Dog Center yesterday. We haven't gone since what, the end of November or the beginning of December? I figured it was time. Following what occurred at the trial last weekend, I definitely figured Kizzy could use some happy, reenforcing time on the equipment.

I changed up a few things this time. I put the crate with the little dogs right in the arena and tied Secret to a pole to offer a "distraction" while Kizzy ran. Also there to provide distraction was the open bag of toys, food and other goodies. None of these seemed to pull her attention at all. I also switched away from the harness and instead used Kaiser's old fleece slip lead. That seemed to be way cool from the very start, as Kizzy actually left me a couple of times before starting her turns to go grab the leash. I rewarded this each time. Yes! Play with the toy!

I ran with the food-stuffable furry tug stuffed up the back of my shirt and into my bra, so for all purposes it appeared as though I was running without a toy on me (Kizzy has gotten wise to stuffing it in the back of my pants and has been known to jump up and grab it out...). I randomly rewarded for the dog walk, teeter and weaves, but otherwise tried to make all of the fun at the end of the run with the leash.

She was, of course, pretty much perfect. The course that was set was the Novice course from last Sunday. I tweaked it by putting in a full set of 12 weaves (she rocked them!), and adding the teeter, a chute, a table and a few extra jumps to offer some variety. It was a nice little set-up. The only time I really lost Kizzy was on her last turn -- I was going to end with one run around the outside loop and up on the top she started going around obstacles and started sniffing up and down the wall. I was pretty positive this meant she needed to go to the bathroom, so I whipped out the food, grabbed her and took her outside where she pee'd and poo'd right away. We had just enough time left in our session to do the outside loop that I'd planned to end on a good note.

Kaiser and Secret were equally as awesome. Secret was happy that I remembered her frisbee, although I always worry that she's going to get burns on her paw pads from sliding around on the turf the way she does when she chases it. Oh well, she was a happy camper and she had some awesome runs. Kaiser was his typical awesome self and I appreciated the opportunity to reward his dog walk and teeter.

I tried to get Kizzy into a class this session, but somehow they didn't end up with enough dogs to fill the one competition agility class they offer, so there is nothing available right now. It sounds like they might open it up one day a week for open ring time later this month, though, so I'll definitely be on the lookout for that and take advantage of any opportunity to get Kizzy in the ring right now.

There is a fun run in Minneapolis next weekend. I'd like to go, but it will add up to over $100 in gas and run fees, so I'll have to think about it... Weather will also play into it, of course. I went ahead and entered Kizzy in both Novice runs at the Oshkosh AKC trial I entered at the end of February, so it would probably be a good idea to do the fun run. I did just file my taxes and have money coming back, so.... We'll see.

Today is Groundhog's Day and apparently we are in for (at least) 6 more weeks of winter. Honestly, I'll be surprised if I'm able to do agility at home before May. There is so much snow out there...

We did manage to go for a walk yesterday afternoon when it was around 20 degrees or so, but today it's cold again and we've been stuck in the house minus a quick game of frisbee following poo pickup. We'll all be happy when this winter is done.

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