Learned some good lessons...(video added)

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Learned some good lessons...(video added)

Postby Lisa » Mon Jul 25, 2011 6:42 pm

I learned several good lessons at the AKC show this weekend!!!

Buster and I went to the AKC agility show in Houston at the Reliant Park World Series of Dog Shows. It's a HUGE show, and the agility rings are inside the main show arena with spectator seating right next to the rings. The surface is industrial carpet over concrete. Last year, Buster and I ran this and it was a complete disaster. He was distracted by the noise, the crowds, the new environment, etc. The one thing he didn't have an issue with was the surface. Everyone told me that the surface is bad, dogs slip...but we didn't have a problem last year. This year, I was determined to prove that he could handle the environment...and he did! I was so proud of my boy!! The crowds and noise didn't phase him at all. He was totally focused on running agility.

We did not Q in any of our runs, and that's where the lessons come in. Lesson 1: When you have a fast dog who's never run on carpet before, a slip in the weave poles is not something the dog knows how to recover from. Lesson 2: Fast dogs DO slip on this carpet! Lesson 3: I need to watch where I'm going during a FAST run...stepping over the line on the send means that my perfect Q run is no longer a Q, no matter how perfect Buster is. Lesson 4: When there's that much noise, Buster can't hear me...I must stay in front of him if I don't want him to go off course. Lesson 5: If I walk the course and I think, 'Oh my god, this course is nasty,' chances are, it's gonna run even worse. Lesson 6: When your dog just stops and stares at you halfway through a course with this look like 'what the heck are we doing out here???' all you can do is laugh and tell the poor boy, "I don't know, buddy, but let's make it look halfway good, huh?" and Lesson 7: If you KNOW that there's a huge chance for an off course, and you walk the course with a solid plan to prevent that off course, then you need to run the course the same way you walked it....if you don't, then sure enough, the dog will take that off course obstacle!

So - yeah - Saturday, JWW...Buster slipped in the weave poles and slid past the second pole. Then, he was just all out of sorts and couldn't seem to complete the weaves correctly. Saturday - FAST - they changed the running order, I missed my walk through, got to watch one dog run, then we were in. No time to prepare. Buster still ran flawlessly...would have had a 64 point run...and I stepped over the line because I just wasn't watching where I was going...he didn't need help or need me closer...my feet just were in the wrong place. Sunday - JWW - nasty, nasty course. About halfway through, Buster just stopped and stared at me like "WTH???" and I was thinking the same thing. Sunday - Time2Beat - Beautiful run....I walked the course with a solid plan to avoid the off course obstacle, and then didn't run what I walked, and sure enough, Buster went off course.

Still, we had a great time. Buster proved that he's a "fast dog" and that he can handle that kind of environment. He had some moments of brilliance and it was a great experience. I'll probably never enter him again at that venue, now that I've proved to myself that we can handle it. I hate the surface...it's hard on both of us, and I don't like watching my dog slip when he's trying to turn or navigate weaves at speed.

If y'all want to see video, I'll post links when I get them uploaded.
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Re: Learned some good lessons...

Postby rtropeano » Mon Jul 25, 2011 10:40 pm

Lisa, sounds like you had an interesting time at agility this week and definately learned a lot of lessons. I'd hate that hard surface too...even though I'm slow, Daisy is very very fast and I could see her slipping and hurting herself.

No need for that go with your gut and stay away from that course/environment. Better safe then surgery!
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Re: Learned some good lessons...

Postby Lisa » Tue Jul 26, 2011 12:23 am

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Re: Learned some good lessons...(video added)

Postby Cindy » Tue Jul 26, 2011 6:11 am

I just had to laugh about Lesson #6 - a lesson for every Britt owner to take to heart! And the videos never cease to amaze me about how far you have both come. You totally look like pros to me! :)
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Re: Learned some good lessons...(video added)

Postby Lisa » Wed Jul 27, 2011 10:54 am

Thanks Rose and Cindy! We had a lot of fun even though we didn't Q
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Re: Learned some good lessons...(video added)

Postby Alifaire » Thu Jul 28, 2011 8:05 am

Carpet over concrete??!!?? I wouldn't want to run on that either. Not only is it slippery but very hard on the dog's joints - regardless of speed. You and Buster are looking like a team - good job. A-frame running contacts with a fast dog! You go girl!!!

We haven't competed since mid-July and now that I've watched your videos, I can't wait for our next trial in August.

And, yup, I've seen that 'wth' face on course. And I'm sure I've shown Victor that look on my face too!

What's with the a-frame at the end of the Time To Beat courses? That's the 3rd course I've seen with that ending. I'm still waiting to run a Time To Beat course since I don't run outside.
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Re: Learned some good lessons...(video added)

Postby Lisa » Thu Jul 28, 2011 9:52 am

Alifaire wrote:Carpet over concrete??!!?? I wouldn't want to run on that either. Not only is it slippery but very hard on the dog's joints - regardless of speed. You and Buster are looking like a team - good job. A-frame running contacts with a fast dog! You go girl!!!

We haven't competed since mid-July and now that I've watched your videos, I can't wait for our next trial in August.

And, yup, I've seen that 'wth' face on course. And I'm sure I've shown Victor that look on my face too!

What's with the a-frame at the end of the Time To Beat courses? That's the 3rd course I've seen with that ending. I'm still waiting to run a Time To Beat course since I don't run outside.


I love our running contacts, but it isn't 100% reliable, and there are times I wish I'd trained a stop (like when he decides to go off course, because I'm behind him at the end of the contact).

This is the first time I've run or seen Time 2 Beat. It's not real popular here yet. It's basically USDAA Steeplechase, though, and that is very popular here...seems like practically every USDAA show has Steeplechase. It ran as a really nice, fairly fast course, we had some wide turns, and of course the off course after the a-frame. Buster is slow in the weaves, so I'm not sure we'll ever will either Time 2 Beat or Steeplechase, but it's still fun.

This was our first show since May. I don't like the indoor shows here...they are all AKC, all in the arena in downtown Ft. Worth, and between the drive down there and the $5 parking each day, it's just not worth it. Next show will be our Canine Cancer fundraiser in mid August. Then nothing 'til the USDAA tournament show in Sept.
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Re: Learned some good lessons...(video added)

Postby brittlover » Thu Jul 28, 2011 3:06 pm

I as well got a good laugh at #6, our boy just finished a beginner class, and when we did the test last class, which was set up as a rally course he got about half way through and just zoned out, my heart was pounding as he knows his stuff, my husband did the test with him as he was working better with him that day and we just wanted to get through it, and he showed us... When we got his attention back, he of course finished the course and he graduated, now we are hoping to get him into the advanced class and hope to move toward Rally and Agility, so we shall see but when I read #6 we just had to laugh... Love the video's it is great to see you both working as a team.
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