Saturday, November 7, 2009

another weekend in November...

Today I was really looking forward to going to the agility trial and watching my training buddette Denise and her dog Kodi run, and about an hour form my home the car broke down in the middle of the freeway. UGhghghghg, LUCKILY the car would go about 20-30 mph (on the freeway, yep I got some looks and flipped off quite a few times even though I was in the slow vehicle lane) I was able to limp up the Cajon Pass which is a very steep summit-I was sweating that stretch of the road-but we did make it home. I was so happy we did not have to call the tow truck, in addition to the hassle of calling and waiting for a tow truck- I had Breeze and I know she would have wigged out getting in a truck with a guy she did not know. I am just glad I did not have to find out.

I know I have complained about it before, but I have really been feeling a little lost losing my classes/privates after two years of having that sort of centering point during the week. It sort of leaves me not knowing where to go with my training. That night was not just a night to go and run a few courses it was my time during the week that I went and shook off all my responsibilities, I got out of the house,went out to dinner, there was no talk of house work or kids, or bills, it was the only time that was purely my own time, and being a stay at home mom, it really was something I really looked forward to. I think in the two years I only cancelled one night because I was really sick. On the other hand I have really been enjoying training with my best agility buddy Denise, she is terrific, and I LOVE Deanna who teaches at PawPrints--she is not using the same handling system as I have been working on, so that can make it hard sometimes, but she will help me figure it out as much as she can, and she always makes her classes fun, she is always totally into the person that is running, and she always just seems totally into the class, so I never go to a class that I am not able to just leave my cares at the gate and totally get into playing with my dog. If only they were not getting ready for their big winter break from classes. I just need to find an instructor/back up person that is using the same handling system as I am, a resource for when I really get stuck, and I will feel much better. I just want someone I can schedule a lesson with if I feel really stuck, like I started working on the back yard courses from Clean Run and at times I just wanted to ask someone elses opinions about them as I was trying to work them out. It is a good thing to be taking classes in a new place in some ways. I am finding holes where I just have not known we were lacking in our skills, and then I am finding places where Breeze can do way better then I thought. I guess mixing it up is good sometimes. I just wish those classes were not going to be over so soon.

OVERALL BREEZE WAS AMAZING!!! I mean really surprisingly amazing. Why didn't I video that class???? LOL. The course we did in class was soooo fun. Breeze was about sixty five obstacles ahead of me from object 7 until the teeter, I was seriously so far behind her in the dust, LOL, but by yelling "teeter" way back at the end of that serpentines she just took off to the teeter like a bat out of you know where. She also surprised me reading that serpentine as well as she did. After our trials this weekend I was not sure how her contacts would look but she nailed the aframe contact each time, it was gorgeous. I was surprised that I ran that course almost entirely with front crosses and I was not having trouble getting to the spot I need to be so that was a shocker to me!

I really noticed though that Breeze does not do well at all switching from handler focus to obstacle focus. So if I sent her to the side of the tunnel which was on her line I can send her from WAYYYYYY back, but if I need to pull on her line a little bit which switches her to some handler focus for a second....then she falls apart and can not figure out how to look back to the tunnel. I looked at her tunnelers tape from last weekends trial and she did it there too, and I know she did it in her jumpers run, and I think that is part of the reason we do not get weave entries sometimes. So.....I am going to set some things up in the back yard and hope she figures it out soon, although I am not really sure how to teach that, or is that something a dog just figures out with experience?

Another thing I wanted to work on was my start line because Breeze just looks so uncomfortable. I had some people treat her so she got a treat while I was away....well, I did not think that would be a problem because Breeze at first would not even take a treat from others, ....but about ten seconds later she was over that and every time she saw a person that gave her a treat she would veer off to go and see if they forgot a little tidbit. LOL. goofy girl. I am going to have to figure out how to lesson her stress at the start line, I think unless I nip that in the bud now it will haunt me in the future.


Sam said...

Sorry you're missing your old classes. That's really a bummer that you can't go anymore.

And, LOL, oh do I know that feeling you're talking about when you say you didn't want to see Breeze's reaction to a towtruck and man! That sounds just like my life every day, worrying about what kind of crazy reaction Marge will have to something!

Sounds like you really enjoyed class - no advice from me about the handler/obstacle thing, but I know you'll figure it out.

Sara said...

That course looks really fun (and challenging).

Such a bummer about your car and your class. I love going to classes too, and would be so sad if I knew they were ending. Classes are time for me and my dog. Plus it is the one place I can talk "dog" for a couple hours straight, and no one rolls their eyes, walks away, or tries to change the subject!

Ricky the Sheltie said...

We love going to our classes too for a lot of the reasons you mentioned! Sorry you can't find somewhere to take classes or someone to work with.

I think I have trouble going from obstacle focus to handler focus too. Mom and I don't know how to work on it but time working together as a team has got to help some.

It does sound like you have some good ideas of things to work on at home - good luck with it all!

Diana said...

Breeze's class sounded great. Im glad you had fun. The car, not to fun. I dont know what to tell you about not have any classes to go to. I have the same problem. Diana