Thursday, 26 February 2009

My Blue Asheroo

Asher's Kennel Club registration came back today, got my 1st choice name and he is now officially 'My Blue Asheroo'

Chose it because Tess is Mobella My Tess so thought it would be nice to start with 'my'. Blue for obvious reasons and Asheroo because it is his nickname, as i think he is part kangaroo! He also likes to talk to you and makes a very odd noise that sounds like rrrrrooooo ooo oooo lol :-D.

So this now means we can enter KC shows, don't know if I'm happy or scared :-s!

Wednesday, 25 February 2009

Agility Nuts -1st ever agility show

So I headed all the way up to Nottingham for our 1st agility competition. Stayed with Sarah, Jemma and Elliot which was nice :-).

First was elementary helter skelter, was quite a nice course apart from one quite big gap between jump 14&15 which made Asher stop and bark at me (he does that if he doesn't know where he is going next). Also the last straight as you'll see from the video was tunnel, long jump, spread. He has only done the long jump once (don't seem to do it at training for some reason?) and that was ages ago and he has never done a spread. I think with it being his 1st run he was quite unsure of what was going on and wanted to stay close to me so was quite steady (for him!!) and wasn't confident going on. He was really good and just had a pole where I think I dropped my arm as i tried to get him to turn tight and then on the last straight he pulled off the spread and I had to bring him back to put him over it so we ended up with 10faults which I was really pleased with as his 1st run.

Next was elementary agility. By this time he realised what was going on and had gone in to flyball mode. He was naughty at the start (got over his go on issues lol), did 2 jumps then shot past the weaves in to a tunnel, brought him back and he completed weaves on 2nd go despite the draw of the tunnel, he flew up the next line of jumps but then just stopped when I told him right, i think he was just over-excited. The rest of the course he completed really well, flew over the aframe and stopped but just came off the end so I put him back on. It was then jump, tunnel, dogwalk. The angle from tunnel to dogwalk was ok but at Asher speed it was a bit tricky and he nearly fell off the side on the way up which slowed him down considerably but he still went to his 2on 2off. So good points and bad points to this run and will have to work on maintaining his composure!

The elementary snooker was quite funny. I don't think I handled the start very well, should of handled it the same as Sarah with Jemma. He ran past the Aframe as I didn't give him a very good angle to work with, the next time up the aframe I crossed behind him and he thought i was pulling him off so he tried to turn around, i managed to keep him going but had a sketchy couple of secs which resulted in a v slow descent to FP, 3rd aframe I think he had lost his confidence a bit so waited for me before going in to FP so need to work on his independence in this. Yellow was a tunnel, green was 3 jumps that could be completed in any order. Asher decided to do them the flashy way, don't know how we managed it, you'll see what I mean in the video! I was laughing alot by this point, brown was another tunnel with another horrible angle to dog walk which was blue. So I stopped him to send him up it but again he nearly fell off (stupid dog!) which resulted in it being slow again. He then just missed his weave entry so we finished on 38points out of 51maximum and he came 10th. Rosettes went to 9th!

Last was elementary jumping. This was right at the end of the day. I had decided between this to try get some energy out of him so he wouldn't be such a lunatic however I think I overdid it abit and made him too tired. I also didn't get chance to walk the course as we didn't realise that the same course was being used for several classes and that walking had taken place prior to them which we missed. I thought it was a tricky course as the 1st part was quite tight with all the jumps on angles even though it was worked on 1 side, I think a slightly more experienced dog/handler would of found it fine though. Well he ran past the 3rd jump and after that I think I kinda gave up. I worked him round the rest of the course but he barked the whole time and missed a few turns, he looked tired and it wasn't a good run. He did the spread out section well, which was a simple go on around the outside of the ring, up 3 jumps, right turn, jump, longjump, tunnel.

Overall I think I learnt alot from the day. I learnt where he is at with regards to his contacts. As in we need more work on going to his position regardless of where I am and alternating as to whether there is food there or not. Need to do lots more handling exercises to get him to follow me particularly on tight courses and with slightly offset jumps. And we need to work on weave entries perhaps towards the end of courses when he is most excited to simulate the competition environment as at training even if he comes out further down he nearly always gets the entry. His waits were fantastic, didn't move so much as a paw all day. But then I expected that and would of been gutted had it been any different.

I guess most of this doesn't make much sense without the videos, I only have the Helter Skelter at the mo as I have to transfer the rest of them from my phone!

Thursday, 12 February 2009

One step forward...

And I think it was only one step back rather than two, could of been worse. Agility tonight had its ups and downs.

His contacts were amazing, best i've seen them, really really driving the dog walk and his final position was good too, he slid off the end once but was stretching his legs back to find the contact cuz he knew where he was supposed to be, was quite funny actually! Seesaw and aframe were excellent too, had a toy about 6 foot from the bottom of the aframe so that he was focusing ahead which worked well. Was pleased with his go ons as they have been a bit hesistant recently with him keeping glancing at me. He very much aims to please so needs reassurance all the time but tonight he seemed more confident. We worked some stars tightly and widely spaced and included front crosses which went really well but I was told I have to stop babying him as I was causing him to knock poles. I have to learn to trust that he will go on and turn when I tell him rather than calling him or bending over!

Now you know whats coming... weaves were crap! You think you might be getting there then it all goes pete tong again! He missed a couple of entries then he was coming out anywhere from the 6th pole onwards but only when he was on my right. I wouldn't mind if I hadn't practised but we spent time today working on his weaves from all angles and with him mainly on the right. Maybe it's because I don't have 12 weaves and he is getting used to doing 8? Doesn't explain the entries though. Going to have to practice more!

Oh and Asher is getting measured Sunday, my wonderful friend Sarah is taking him for me as I have to work. I have a sneaky suspicion that he may be large ;-)

Thursday, 5 February 2009

16 days...

Until Asher makes his agility debut!! We are going to the agility nuts winter league on feb 22nd. I'm a little bit scared cuz not sure if he's ready but I think he'll cope fine even if we make a few mistakes! I'm fairly confident in his contacts and his weaves are improving all the time, handling still needs work (for both of us) but as long as the courses aren't too hard we should be ok. Hoping for a little bit of extra help beforehand aswell :-D!

If all goes ok we are then going to the next agility nuts show in march. Hopefully he will make his KC debut at Wallingford in April.

Made a bit of a breakthrough on his weaves last week at training. After all the work I put in on his entries they were cracking, he only missed one, was so pleased. Problem I've had recently is him coming out on 9th-10th weave, realised that I am drifting away from him and slightly turning my shoulder at this point drawing him out as he tries to follow my body language so closely. After I learnt to run in a straight line he did them perfectly :-)

His contacts felt alot more solid this week, seesaw was really good and I feel like he's looking forward more now from the contact position. So a much more positive week, hopefully if i keep the work level up things will keep on getting better.

I knew this was going to happen!

I've been tagged!

The instructions were:
Open a document or file folder
Click on the fifth folder and then the fifth photo
Post the photo and describe it
Then tag 5 other bloggers.

Well everyone else ended up with lovely pics of there dogs or someone elses dogs and i suspected that wouldn't be the case in my situation! This is me and my friend Kim in Oceana Bristol, atleast we don't look too drunk in this pic although it was taken by some random guy who I believe wanted to be referred to as "sexy shane". It didn't exactly fit.

I think pretty much everyone I know has already been tagged, so don't know what I'm supposed to do!