We got to the trial site in plenty of time and Ein was feeling high and happy. We blasted through the first course with a 210 and not even a little bit of lagging. Einey was on! I love when he is feeling completely comfortable and relaxed and performs like we are in my living room! The next course was in the "back ring" and he is usually a little more nervous there. He was ever so slightly laggy and did some crooked fronts laying over onto his "good" hip but we got by just fine with a 209. It is such a joy to work with my little guy, every time. One of our "opponents" in Veterans was a golden retriever who just got diagnosed with bone cancer - it is a reminder to enjoy every moment inside and outside of that ring with our friends. It goes by so very fast.
Saturday was CPE Agility with Molly! We did all five runs and I was thrilled that Molly stayed up and fast for all five. I am trying so very hard to rebuild and protect her confidence and trust in me while I make handling mistakes. My main goal for this trial was to test drive Molly's reborn weave skills.
Fullhouse was first and she flew right by the weaves and into a tunnel. I was a little upset about this until just about this morning it occurred to me - "I always allowed Molly to run past the weave poles in game classes. She didn't like the poles, we needed to earn points and the poles were in our line so...we just ignored them." Sigh, talk about an eye opener. That is a new obstacle that we will have to get over, that pattern in her behavior. In any case Molly was fast in the weaves and even did a nice little entry send for her second pass through, I was very happy! 32 points and a Q.
Standard was next. I concentrated so hard on none of the "Easy!'s" or "Whoah!'s" or "TOUCH!'s" on that dog walk and ...she went to the bottom! She almost blew the weave entry and I love how she jolts back into it! But...about the 9th pole she pops out to go into the off course tunnel. She does a nice send back into the poles and stays in them...and then I just destroyed the next sequence of jumps by calling her into me too hard and...it all went downhill from there. I am so disappointed in myself, I was really overworrying about that sequence of jumps.
Jackpot was next with a pretty easy "handler box" gamble (You handle a designated set of obstacles from within a taped box on the floor.) and otherwise just flying around gathering points. Molly did a nice to-the-bottom Aframe with similar restraint of my words - very proud! We again had a flying right by the weave pole entrance and I had to bring her back twice to get her to do the poles. When she did them, she did them fast!
Snooker next and I really branched out of my comfort zone and did the Aframe twice in our opening and of course once in our closing. Molly was too fast for me as usual but we did my plan and she did all three Aframes clearly into the yellow and I kept my mouth shut and didn't micromanage the contacts and YAY. We made it through the closing sequence for the first time in quite a while...
Colors was last and I was a little discouraged by Molly missing her weave entry and then being a little slow through the poles. I worry too much. We Q'd and that was our final leg in Colors for our C-ATCH. Getting closer...
I put Molly's meatballs in a mac n cheese container...she is enjoying licking every remnant!
And Sunday...was Perri's day. I don't know what possessed me, but I entered Perri at Dream Park - the dusty, three ring infamous difficult trial site in our area. She has been doing so well every where that we go, I wanted to see how she would do.
She was stressed, and she stressed up into some pretty impressed zoomies. We did Novice FAST, and Open Standard and JWW. The video speaks for itself! Perri was really great ringside, warming up nicely and playing with her tug toy and eating treats, doing her tricks and heeling. But when we would get in the ring it was all just too much for her. I am so disappointed in myself on JWW (the last part of the video). I wish so much I had taken her from the ring after she did the first few obstacles correctly and was engaged with me... Instead I anticipated her being wide on the next turn, called her too tight and stressed her back up again. Sigh. It is so hard to make the right choice.
So, Dream Park is out for a little while. Perri has done exceptionally well but she is still very green and needs to build a lot more confidence in the ring. My friend and I plan to go to a show there at the end of January and more than likely I will focus on Molly for that show - although I may do one run with Perri. Ideally I would love to get her into one of the "B Matches" that are becoming popular with AKC Agility trials in this area.