Fun with dogs

Tuesday, March 20, 2012

Lexi's agility debut

Though I didn't post the videos for our February CPE trial, I did want to put up Lexi's first agility run at a trial.  We did not Q, but I just wanted to see where Lexi's level of training was.

Awesome things about our run:
  1. GREAT start line stay
  2. Came back to me after visiting the bar setter
  3. Beautiful dog walk contacts
  4. Came back after her zoomie laps
I know it wasn't what most people would consider the perfect run, but I am so thrilled with my baby dog.  She showed me she has GREAT foundation.  She had a blast, had good speed, and was HAPPY!  When we are able to focus the crazy, she will be absolutely rocking awesome!  Yay baby dogs!!!!

And yes, I know there is a typo in the credits, it was just too much of a pain to try fixing it. :)  Enjoy!
MCDF Trial, February 24-27, Albany, OR

This turned out to be a great trial for us, as are all the trials that we do close to home.  Because this venue is about 45 minutes from my house we entered all four days.


Our judges for the weekend were Howard Etzel and Carla Boudrot.  We hadn't run under either one before.

Unfortunately I have misplaced the maps for Friday, and didn't have any video.  The results were an NQ in Standard but a Q and 6th place (11 MACH points) in JWW.  If I find the maps I will post them at a later date! :)

Saturday morning started out with the announcements.  Because we had not QQ'd on Friday, I was totally not expecting anything for the High in Trial awards.  I was floored when we took HIT working group on our jumpers run alone.  Mind you, it was an AWESOME jumpers run, but there were lots of fabulous dogs there.  The problem was the standard course was not good for a lot of dogs, thereby handing us our fourth ever HIT.  Way cool!

The day, as usual started with standard.

Excellent B Standard

Looked like a fairly decent course, turned into a train wreck. :)  I sent HP into the tunnel for the start, then moved into a landing side FC on jump #2.  Over the dogwalk and he sighted in on that darn tunnel.  I was able to call him off it, and over on to the table, but in his excitement he blew his down contact on the dog walk.  Darn it!  He only blows down contacts when the next obstacle looks like it's the tunnel!  Shoot.  Oh well.  On to the table (with a FC), then in to the tunnel.  Nailed the weaves, as well as the 360 at 7/8/9.  No probs at the teeter or the panel.  My plan was to FC and call HP to the A-frame, and I pulled too hard.  He ran next to me, PAST the A-frame, then took an off-course tire when I tried to call him back around.  Bleh, bad handler!  The rest was rather uneventful, with a RC between 13/14, and a push out over the last jump.  NQ.  :(  I don't feel too bad though, as the Q rate for this course for the 24 inch dogs was 12%!  Ouch!

Excellent B Jumpers with Weaves

 Tricky little twisty course for jumpers.  For this one I started on the left, FC between 3/4, FC between 6/7, over the 180 and into the tunnel.  Nailed the weaves again, pushed him out to take 13 while I got in another FC between 14/15, and a push out at the last jump that he read really well.  I was very pleased.  Q and 6 MACH points, which I consider pretty good since this course was what I call a "border collie" course.  Lots of twisting and turning, hard for the big dogs to open up and really RUN.


Excellent B Standard
 Another tough standard course, which seemed to be the theme for the weekend.  The plan was to start on the left and stay there through the A-frame, rear cross between 5/6,  front cross between 9 and the table, front cross between 11/12 (almost a disaster, I got in his way, probably should have rear crossed that one!), another fc between 15 and the tire, then treat 17/18/19 as a serpentine (send him over 17, pull him back over 18, then send him on to 19 with a RC between 18/19).  Bad handler forgot where she was going after 18!   Thank god my boy is such a good worker, he was able to recover without earning a refusal for a Q for this run.  Q, 3rd place, and 12 MACH points!  We rarely ever place so I was very stoked about this run!

Excellent B Jumpers with Weaves

 Now THIS course looked like fun!  Like Friday's JWW course, it was wide and open, letting the big dogs really RUN.  HP loved this course!  I started out on the left, did an RC when he was in the tunnel (#6), then it was a flat out run down the back.  HP read my push out to #9 very well, allowing me to get in an FC between 10/11.  Another short straight to the weaves (the off course #6 was a worry, but he handled it well), then another straight line (14/15/16), RC between 16/17, and down the home stretch.  Q and 9th place, 11 MACH points!  Woo!  Fast and fun!


Monday morning we found out we had earned our fifth ever HIT working group due to our QQ the previous day.  Way to go team HP!!!

Excellent B Standard

Probably the best standard course of the weekend. The 180 at the start I handled with a landing side front cross at 2.  Around in a smooth loop (avoiding the off course table at #10), over the dog walk, tunnel, jump and on the table.  Nailed the weaves, around in another smooth loop, rear cross between 15/16, which HP read very well, then around to the finish.  Q, 4th place, and 14 MACH points!

Excellent B Jumpers with Weaves

Lovely, fun jumpers course.  I had great hopes of grabbing another QQ for the weekend.  It was not to be though.  Started with a nice line 1-3, FC between 3/4, then a knocked bar at 6. :(  It was the end of a very long weekend though, so we finished up, the only other side change being a rear cross between 17/18.  NQ.  Oh well, still very proud of my boy and a wonderful weekend!

Totals for our weekend:
QQs - 1
Qs - 5
MACH pts -54
HIT working group - 2

Current MACH totals:
QQs - 8
MACH pts - 360

Almost half-way there!!!!

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Rose City Classic, Portland, OR, 1/22/12 - Day 4

Last day of Rose City Classic. :(  Up for the day was agility for HP and Rally for Lexi.  Agility was up first with Standard. 

Excellent B Standard

This was our most tight course of the weekend.  There were lots of choices in the center of the ring for the dogs.  Our plan was to start on the right, with a front cross between 2/3, on to the teeter, quick 180 off the teeter to 5/6 (while avoiding the off course #12 triple, which trapped a lot of dogs).  Chute to table, then around to a straight line of jumps to the weaves.  I walked it several ways, with a front cross between 10/11, a rear cross between 11/12, a rear cross before the weaves, and a front cross after the weaves.  Unfortunately, EVEN THOUGH I KNEW BETTER, I chose to do a rear cross at the weaves.  Stupid me, I know HP will do rear crosses at the weaves in practice, but won't do them in competition.  Stupid handler!  Of course we got a refusal on that, NQ'ing our run.  We continued on over the dog walk, with a turn command into the tunnel, over the double, right side of the next tunnel, then a run over the a-frame to the finish.  Because we were NQ'd already I just ran for the finish and he blew his a-frame contact.  Not that it mattered at that point. :(  Oh well, next run!

Excellent B Jumpers with Weaves

Nice flowing jumpers course with LOTS of rear crosses.  The way we ran this one was starting on the left, rear cross between 3/4, between 5/6, between 12/13, then a front cross after the weaves and run for the finish!  Fun course!  Q'd and earned 6 MACH points!

Rally Novice A

I was feeling pretty good about Rally today.  Lexi and I had managed to Q the previous day so I figured we'd try again.  Well, it was not to be.  Lexi was actually much better, giving me more attention and less boxer antics.  The judge we had didn't seem all that entertained though.  We lost a lot of points through healing, then we got two 10 point deductions as well, one was on the down/walk around, where Lexi came up off her elbows (in hindsight, I should have re-done that one), and the other was station 4, which was a come front, finish right.  I have no idea what we did wrong, and the judge couldn't remember, so that was an NQ for the day.  Lexi was getting a little stressed by the last station, and avoiding a sit a little bit, so I'm not sure if we'll do more Rally or not.  We'll have to wait and see.

So agility totals:

Totals for the day: 1 Q, 6 MACH points

Totals for the weekend: 2 STD Qs, 2 JWW Qs (4 Q's total, 1 QQ), 48 MACH points.

MACH totals so far:  7 QQs and 306 MACH points!

Rally totals for the weekend:

1 Rally Q for Harry Potter, and 1 Rally Q for Lexi

All in all a very successful Rose City Classic weekend!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Rose City Classic, Portland, OR, 1/21/12 - Day 3

So today was a Rally day for both dogs.  No agility because we didn't get in. :(  We arrived early, watched breed, then got ready for Rally.

Wow, the obedience stewards were NOT very nice.  They wouldn't give out maps, they didn't want to let me move my dogs (They were set up to run one right after the other), and they were NOT being nice about agility conflicts.  Geez people, lighten up a little bit.

Rally Novice A

Harry Potter
Harry Potter had a better rally run than yesterday.  He was much more responsive, payed attention more, and in general would have had a better score than the previous day.  Well, we would have if I had not missed a sign.  For some reason, I walked right past sign #11, NQ'ing our run.  Oh well, better luck next time.

This was Lexi's first time ever in the ring.  For anything.  My only goal with Lexi was to go have fun and assess her ability to work in the ring (I wasn't setting lofty goals for a 22 month old). Oh my god....we actually Q'd....and in true boxer style. It was hysterical. She was entertaining as only a boxer can be. She stood up on her hind legs a few times to check out the people over the curtain, she boxer pounced the fence between the rings with both front feet, had some really high flip finishes.......when we left the ring people were laughing hysterically and applauding! I thought for sure we had NQ'd but nope.....we got a 70...and our first RN leg! The judge said it was the most creative interpretation of the course she'd seen in a long time! Too bad I didn't get video!

Friday, January 20, 2012

Rose City Classic, Portland, OR, 1/20/12 - Day 2

Today, thank goodness, didn't start nearly as early.  We arrived around 7:30am and spent some time hanging out until our first agility run.  We went around to all the vendors, and I tried very hard not to spend money. :)  I was mostly successful!  I did buy a Boxer pin to use to hold my exhibitor numbers at agility trials.

I successfully avoided some very nice boxer stained glass and boxer prints.  It was tough though!

Lexi got to play the perfect boxer ambassador today.  There was a HUGE group of kids coming through the show, all about 8-12.  She waded right in the middle and was hugging and giving kisses to about 20 children.  They LOVED her.  She's such an awesome girl.

Excellent B Standard

Beautiful course, open, flowing, perfectly planned for an awesome run!

Our plan for this one was to start on the left of 1, over the dog walk, pull around 3/4 and over the A-frame, rear cross at the chute.  Over 7 and to the table, then front cross before the tire, over the double, then jump 13 and the left side of that tunnel.  Over 15, teeter and a fast straight run into the right side of the tunnel then a straight finish.  Harry Potter was on fire!  He was running FAST.  Our only minor trouble spot was 13 into the tunnel. I over worked it, calling his name when he was headed for the correct entrance, I almost caused a refusal!  We didn't get called and finished with a Q and 18 MACH points.  It was our fasted qualifying YPS in Standard ever!  Yay HP!

Rally Novice A
On a lark, I decided to enter some Rally classes this weekend.  I figured since it was all in the same building, why not?  Turns out, we need WAY more work on our Rally (we haven't had rally classes in about a year, and other than some doodling around the house, we don't do much heel work cause I suck at it!)  We have never done any Rally competitions!

WORST....MAP.....EVER!  *snort*

Wow was HP distracted.  We started out pretty good through the first couple stations, but then it all went downhill.  He wanted to sniff the floor, his sits were far from straight, and he kept getting distracted by the people and dogs sitting around the ring.  He was also ignoring me and doing quite a bit of forging.  Gah!  We managed to get through it, but I was sure we hadn't qualified.  Turns out I was wrong, we did get an 81.  While it wasn't the worst score in the class, we definitely didn't place.  Oh well, lets me know what we need to work on, eh?

Excellent B Jumpers with Weaves

Another lovely course, fast and fun.

At first I thought I would try a front cross between 2/3, but then figured I'd be in his way.  I started this on the left, and used a turn command at 4 with a rear cross.  Another rear between 6/7, a front between the weaves and 10, and fairly straightforward run like heck to the end.  Unfortunately, I sprinted past 12 and 13, and in HP's effort to speed up, he knocked bar 13.  Dumb handler!  The rest of the run was lovely, but still an NQ.

Totals for the day: 1 Q, 18 MACH points.

MACH totals so far:  7 QQs and 300 MACH points!

And so our day ends like this:

No agility tomorrow, as I didn't get in.  :(  Sad!  Guess it's all rally, all the time.  Both Lexi and HP are entered in Rally Novice A.  More agility on Sunday!

Thursday, January 19, 2012

Rose City Classic, Portland, OR, 1/19/12 - Day 1

This weekend we're in Portland for the Rose City Classic, or RCC.  It is a huge show, with conformation, agility, and obedience, all indoors at the Portland Expo Center.  Rarely do we ever have indoor shows in this area, and this one gets a lot of public attention, so it's fun to show off your breed.

We arrived early, about 6:30, and had to unload in a torrential downpour.  It's the Northwest, I rarely ever mind our "normal" rain, and shrug it off like most people.  But the rain today was HORRIBLE.  So much more than we usually get, we are actually having flooding in some low lying areas.  Probably some of the worst rain I've seen since moving out here 10 years ago, but I digress.

Another aside, quick apology to those that follow my blog on a regular basis, I have been awful about blogging lately, skipping 1 show in November, 1 in December, and 1 in January.  Sorry!

So after several trips in the downpour, I got everything inside.  We were set up in between the obedience and agility area.  I tried to find my friend Kennedy's set up, but didn't have any luck, so we just grabbed our own space.

The plan for the weekend is as follows:
Thursday - Harry Potter is entered in agility, both Standard and JWW
Friday - Harry Potter is entered in agility, both Standard and JWW, and he is also entered in Rally Novice
Saturday - Harry Potter and Lexi are both entered in Rally Novice
Sunday - Harry Potter is entered in agility, both Standard and JWW, Lexi is entered in Rally Novice

Whew!  Crazy!  We are not doing agility on Saturday because we didn't get in, so I figured we'd toss in some Rally.  At this show obedience and agility are very close together, making it easier to manage entries in both.  And yes, I entered the baby dog!  I know, am I insane??  I haven't done Rally in over a year, and never in competition!  We'll see how it goes.  I'm expecting Harry Potter to at least pick up a leg or two, with Lexi, I just want some attention and good work attitude, I am not expecting qualifying scores.  If we get them, awesome.  If not, oh well. :)  She's only 22 months, so I need to be realistic and just try to set her up for a good ring experience!

Excellent B Standard
So today was an all agility day.  Our first course was Excellent Standard with David Hirsch.  Can I just say how much I LOVE his courses?  So big dog friendly.  He always puts in a few tricks, but overall is very fair and really pleasant to run under.

While walking this, there were only a few places that were a little tricky.  The plan was in to the tunnel, front cross between 2/3, then be sure not to push out too hard at the 180 (3/4).  There was a real chance that you would get that off course jump with the big dogs.  Rear cross between 4/5 to the table, around the loop (7/8/9/10/11/12), into the weaves, panel, tunnel, dogwalk.  There was the potential to miss the #12 if you pulled in too tight after the dogwalk, so I ran it out a few steps then pivoted for #12.  Then a fairly straight line to the finish after the push out to the triple.

HP performed well, on the 3/4 180 I ended up calling his name and he came in nicely.  After the number 12 jump, he looked at the off-course option but another name call worked well and we finished with a nice Q.  MX2 leg #6 and 17 MACH points!

Excellent B Jumpers with Weaves
Next up is jumpers.  Judge is Tim Pinneri.  We were lucky this weekend to have two great judges that are very big dog friendly.

Fun course!  I walked this course several different ways, with both front crosses and rear crosses.  What I ended up with was this:  We started on the left side, 1/2/3 and into the right side of the number 4 tunnel.  I stayed on the left over 5, and into the right side of the #6 tunnel, weaves, with a pivot around to 8, over #9 (on the right), serpentine and a send over 10, rear crossing between 9/10, then another RC between 10/11, and another at 11/12.  Front cross between 14/15, and another rear between 17/18.  It was a very nice run.  We Q'd for MXJ2 leg #3 and 7 MACH points.

Totals for the day: 1 QQ, 24 MACH points.

MACH totals so far:  7 QQs and 282 MACH points!

Monday, November 21, 2011

Mt. Hood Doberman Club AKC trial, 11/19/11-11/21/11

Mt. Hood Doberman Club AKC trial, 11/19/11-11/21/11

This weekend we attended the Mt. Hood Doberman Club AKC trial in Ridgefield, WA.  My initial plan was to drive up Saturday morning, but Mr. Weatherman was calling for a possibility of ice on Saturday morning.  Plan change meant driving up Friday evening, and checking in early at the La Quinta.  What a great dog-friendly hotel!  They don't charge a pet fee, don't care how big your dogs are, and our "Executive King Suite" was huge!  I would definitely stay there again.

Saturday, November 19th

We arrived bright and early to grab some crate space.  Unfortunately it was a small to tall day, so our first run wasn't even until mid-afternoon!  I decided to work a class to help out, and they needed a gate due to the person that signed up being late.  Boy was working an experience I won't repeat.  I normally try to work at most of the clubs we run, I feel like we, as exhibitors, should all help out when we can.  All I will say about this experience is:  Note to trial secretaries and clubs, if you yell at your workers for doing their job, they will not want to work for you again.  There are a few clubs I will not work for due to being berated about working, how the job is done, etc.  This is not fair to your workers, they are VOLUNTEERING.  There is no incentive to volunteer if you're going to be yelled at.  That's all I'm going to say about that.

Excellent B Standard

Our judge for Standard was Beverly Morgan Lewis.  I've met her before at trials when she's running her own dogs and always found her to be a pleasant person, but never run under her as a judge.  Turns out, her courses were nice, open, and very large dog friendly.

For this course, the plan was to start on the right, over the first two jumps and into the tunnel, over #4 and a swing through the "three sided box" and over 5 (the triple).  A pull back to the dogwalk, then a pull to the double (#8), teeter, then a front cross before #10.  A hard pull around and into the weaves.  Over the A-frame and on to the table.  Front cross before the pinwheel (14/15/16/17) and a front cross between 17 and the chute.  Then run for the finish. 

Worked out very well for us.  We ended with a Q and 14 MACH points.

Excellent B Jumpers with Weaves

Nancy Davis set this course up.  Again lined up on the right, with a fairly straight shot into the tunnel.  Front cross between #5 and the weave poles.  FC between #8/9, another between #12/13.  I intended to do another FC between 13/14, but forgot and ended up doing a rear to swing him around to 15.  From there it was a straight shot into the tunnel and then over the final jump.

Another Q and 7 MACH points.

Total for the day, QQ and 21 MACH points!

Back to the hotel for a relaxing night of the boxers hogging the king bed. :P

Sunday, November 20th

Tall to small today, so we knew we'd be done early!

Excellent B Standard

Nice course by Nancy Davis.  Our plan was to start on the right, decel cue for the 180 (#3-#4), rear cross between 5/6, over the dogwalk, weaves, then tunnel.  Stay to the left of the A-frame with a strong pull 11-12 to avoid the off-course chute. Teeter to table, moving out towards the triple to avoid an off-course, then FC between 17/18 to get the sharp right to the finish (#19).

Plan worked well, another Q and 13 MACH points.

Excellent B Jumpers with Weaves

Looked to be a pretty jumpers course, smooth and flowing.  When I was planning our course, I noticed that there were several nice places for rear crosses.  We'd been having trouble with rear crosses lately, my cruddy timing was causing HP to pull off, earning us a refusal.  We'd been working a lot on his "go on" command, so I decided to throw caution to the wind and do mostly rear crosses with this course. 

The plan was to line up on the left side, rear cross between 3/4, rear cross between 8/9, front cross after the weaves, then another rear between 15/16.  It worked!  He was driving ahead well, moving nicely, even when I almost forgot the course at number 6!  (You'll notice a slight pause on the video).  I was stoked.  It earned us a Q and 11 MACH points.

Total for the day:  QQ and 24 MACH points.

Total for the weekend:  2 QQs and 45 MACH points.

MACH totals so far:  6 QQs and 223 MACH points!

We stayed to grab a couple of the photos taken by Joe Camp.  He had captured a cute "out of chute" series from one of the runs.  It's nice to see my boy looking so happy as he runs. :)