Not such great news today as we didn’t Q….I completely messed him up and am embarrassed to watch the video because I caused one wrong course and nearly two. I really need to trust my dog more and learn how to handle him now that he’s much more confident. We can get away with some sloppy handling in the lower levels and in NADAC, but not in the twisty turny AKC courses…especially in Open.
The good points were that I left Miles in a stand stay for a one jump mini lead out which he handled like a pro and even after the wrong course and me calling his name rather forcefully he stayed with me and kept working. I don’t like having call-offs because it means I didn’t handle it well, but at least he’s starting to be able to work through them better. He’s taking obstacles on his own now which is huge, but now I really need to be careful about signaling jumps and turns sooner.
Our wrong course occurred because I should have layered a jump, but because I tucked myself in, my lateral motion pushed him off to the wrong jump. Good boy for reading my motion so perfectly. In my defense, I had walked the course planning on starting with him and then needing to do two rears in the opening. After thinking about it more I decided to change my plan and do the lead out in order to get the two fronts in and get ahead. Because I was ahead I should have layered, but I had planned on rearing which would have put me behind or with him at that point….therefore making layering the incorrect choice. So live and learn. He had fun, so that’s all that matters really 🙂
After we left, I swung by PBH to do some teetering with Rue. I’m dropping it from full height now and so I started to decrease the time holding it. She jumped off at the pivot once, but then came back strong. I think I need to slow down a little with her and make sure she’s not losing the confidence that she has. I also am going to take a break with the teeter and her for now because I don’t want to be doing too much with it dropping since her joints aren’t set yet. That seems like it would put quite a bit of stress on her joints, so we’ll back off on that for now, but feel I’ve given her a great foundation. We also did some mini handling and she was great! She left me once in the beginning to eat rabbit poop after she wasn’t sure what I wanted (I cued her to enter the tunnel but stopped my motion early and she didn’t like that). She came back to me after finishing her little gourmet snack and continued to work really hard!
It feels weird but good to not be going back to the trial tomorrow. I have plenty to catch up on! We’re also off next weekend, but have 1 day of NADAC coming up on 4/4 which should make for some fun fast courses 🙂