Wednesday, July 21, 2010

Extra dogwalk practice

Bentley turned 3 on Monday --yay!  But we did head up to the field for a bit of practice.

He hit EVERY SINGLE dogwalk contact.  I couldn't believe it.  And we were doing them in short sequences (5-10 obstacles).  I don't know how he knows it's practice vs. a trial, but he does.

Our goal is to get a trial-like atmosphere for him to practice in.  He's sometimes too smart!

Sunday, July 18, 2010

Trial Day 3

Proud of our little guy today.  He did some really great things this weekend.  As usual, lots of work to do, but he did some great things.


I was so tired this morning (Bentley was up at 5:30!), but I had a good feeling about this run.  He handled really well, but DARN IT if he didn't drop the first bar.  I have no idea what happened, I may have set him up too close.  The angle was funny, but I didn't think it would phase him.  Again, so proud of his out to a pinwheel.  It makes my job so much easier!  He also had another nice tandem turn towards the end.  He was pretty fast for him, and ran it in about 34 seconds (the timer didn't work, so they just gave us SCT--41 seconds, but I watched the video and timed it out of curiosity).

Steeplechase Finals:

Unfortunately you can't Q in finals, so it was just for placement/money.  I was very proud of Bentley.  A couple pinwheels, front crosses, and weaves.  His weaves (once he got in!) were nice, and his pinwheels too. Knocked a bar, but that was Jonathan's fault from his cross.  Not too quick, about 40 seconds (then add on his 5 second fault), but he came in second and won $15!

Next step in training is more dogwalk work (obviously), weave pole entries, and speed.

Saturday, July 17, 2010

Trial Day 2

Another long, hot day of agility!  When we started, the heat index was around 100.  Not too fun.  But, the dogs had fans and water, and seemed good to go.  Overall, we did a lot of good things today!


I was wavering about whether or not to pull Bentley if he missed his dogwalk contact.  I decided not to because I realized I couldn't stare at his feet, watch the judge, and try to get Bentley to the next obstacle.  Also, the dogwalk was the second obstacle and I wanted him to get some trial time in.  That being said, it looked to me like he blew the contact, but we kept going.  We also had a chute as the first obstacle, which I have never seen before, so I decided not to lead out.  It worked well.  Speaking of the dogwalk, you see the judge call the fault, but then he asked the scribe to remove it.  I'll take it!  I was extremely pleased with his tandem turn at the pinwheel and definitely want to keep using that one.  He barks at me and actually gets up while on the table, but did lay back down.  And for the FIRST TIME, I lost track of the course!  Thank goodness Bentley allows me to correct my mistake and we finished it--our first advanced standard Q!


Pretty not so great run all together.  Meg, our partner, did well (just a 5 point fault), and then we blew the dogwalk contact, and knocked a bar (not sure why?), so we were about 7 seconds over course time because of our 15 faults.

Grand Prix:

There were some really tough discriminations in this one, and actually one JUST like the one we struggled with in practice.  Bentley did great!!  Unfortunately, he decided that 11 p.m. was too late to weave, and got eliminated because of 3 refusals at the weaves.  He did get his dogwalk contact (must have been tired!), so I'm happy about it!  I tried to get my husband to do a tandem turn at the pinwheel, but he wanted to do a front cross.  Apparently Bentley heard me, and did the tandem while my husband attempted a front cross.  :)

So, one Q today, and I'm very happy!  Tomorrow is Jumpers and Steeplechase finals.

Trial Day 1

Here are the videos from yesterday's trial day 1.


There was a chance he could do this, which is such a huge departure from our  last trial.  He did get out, and then took the dogwalk.  Who can blame him since this is all we've worked for the past couple months?  But, I'm proud that he went out.  That's a big  step in the right direction.  Don't mind his horrible contact at the end.  I'm hoping it was because Jonathan didn't go with him.  But, it doesn't bode well for standard today.


This was our only chance to get Bentley's Advanced Snooker title.  Unfortunately, Jonathan started the rear cross too soon and he jumps off the a-frame.  Bummer.  Until next time, title!


We totally should have done better on this.  I'm still not sure why he misses the a-frame in this one.  Looks like I'm squared up?  Other than that, the rear cross was my mistake and next time I think I would have handled it differently.  His beginning was a lot smoother than I expected.  You can't see it, but he bailed a bit early on the a-frame.  Of course, it was a long, hot day, so I'm not sure I blame him.  His entrance to the weaves was spot on.  I meant to give him more room to approach, but sort of forgot, and he still nails it.  Woohoo!

So, no Qs yesterday.  As my husband said, when we were in Starters they "flowed like wine".  Now we have to really work at them!  Today is Standard, Grand Prix and Pairs.   Doesn't look good for our incomplete dogwalk training...

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

Disappointing Run Throughs

Yesterday we went to run throughs with our club.  I was looking forward to truly testing Bentley's contacts.

Unfortunately, it was REALLY ugly.  He missed just about every contact when running in sequence.  I was really bummed out.  We've worked so hard, and I felt pretty disappointed.

In retrospect, we just have some more work to do.  It's really hard for Bentley because we had been clicking and treating for every correct run.  Sometimes he had to wait for his treat for a couple obstacles, but never several.  I was afraid that the lack of feedback would be hard for him, and not only was I right, but he struggled before we even got to the next obstacle.

Take 1:
The highlights: He really does an excellent job with the pinwheel.  I was really happy about that as it's something we've worked on.  He also reads the front crosses well.
The bad:  His teeter is really bad.  We have yet to work on training it, and it shows.  I'm just hoping that he doesn't get faulted in our trial this coming weekend.  You'll also see that I don't handle the discrimination between tunnel/dogwalk well, and it frustrates Bentley.  And then, of course, his contact is bad.

Take 2:

Again, great pinwheel/front cross, not so good teeter, and he misses the discrimination again, but picks it up quicker.  Then he jumps off the contact, again.

Take 3:

He is super tired and hot in this video.  The humidity has been through the roof, and Bentley just shut down.  In the pinwheel he actually leaves me.  This has literally NEVER happened.  Then, he doesn't lay down on the table.  He just looked at me like "please no".  I should have stopped there, but I was really hoping he'd get the contact this time.  Of course not.  I did put him back up and make him be successful.  We also finished the course, and he did well on the a-frame and the weaves looked nice as well.

All in all, I was pretty frustrated.  That being said, I know it was hot and Bentley was tired.  I'm just getting worried about this weekend.  I was hoping he would be ready, but this may be too soon.

Saturday, July 10, 2010

Lexi does some backyard training

Our little Lexi girl is doing great!  The other day we did a quick sequence with her that included the table.  She had a tendency to turn and bark at us rather than going towards the table.  I suspect it's because she really isn't that familiar with it.  So we worked on it, and this is what we ended up with:

We've been working on a few handling commands, and she's doing okay on them.  She patterns easily, so that helps, but it also makes me wonder if she really knows the words that we are throwing at her, or if she's just reading us and the obstacle.  She was doing okay on "Round", but seemed to get confused today, so we cut that out for now.  We'll just focus on crosses and in, since it's just a cross.

Here's her in:  (Obviously as she goes on I want it a bit tighter, but this is a good start)