CPE Trial: Well, some good & some bad.
Saturday started out with 2 phenomenal standard runs in the covered arena--stayed at start line, got all contacts perfectly and waited; neither of us screwed anything up on the courses (but they were pretty straight-forward flowing novice courses). She took 1st & Q in both and was faster than any other dog any height, even with the long "good girl" waits on the contacts.
But the rest of the weekend was up and down.
In order of runs:
1 Sat: (see above).*
2 Sat: (see above).*
3 Sat: Gamblers: first run out in the grassy field. At start, stood up to sniff and wandered across start line. Put her back into a sit, led out (she stayed), and on the 2nd obstacle--Aframe--she jumped off early and wandered off to sniff. I put her in a down, called for her leash, and took her off.
4 Sat: Wildcard (standard course but you have to choose among some harder/easier obst's): Grassy field. She didn't stay at start and zoomed across the field. I waited for her to come back, put her back into a sit, led out (she stayed). Got thru 3 obstacles but took the wrong 4th one (bad handling), but although I tried to keep her moving in a circle to another obstacle, she came in and grabbed my feet. Put her in a down, called for leash, and took her off.
1 Sun: Standard in the covered arena. Perfect stay. Skipped 1st weave pole but got her circled to redo them. Had a perfect teeter. On a long, curving sequence of 5 (?) jumps, she didn't carry out ahead of me, came back in and grabbed my feet. Put her in a down, called for leash, & took her off. (Never got to Afr or DW.)
2 Sun: Standard. Perfect stay & gorgeous contacts. Skipped 1st weave pole but got her circled to redo them. Man, she's fast at them out there!*
3 Sun: Full house (kinda like Gamblers), out in the open field. Flew off Afr, which was 2nd obst, and zoomed into next obst (tunnel). Waited for her to come back, put her in a down, then redid the Afr, which was perfect. Stayed with me and did a moderately complex course fast & beautifully.*
4 Sun: Snooker (open field). Picked a course with two 7's, which was the only contact out there, so it wasn't the most flowing (not sure whether that's the right thing for her now--). She did some beautiful maneuvering around obstacles, with a great lead-out stay for me to get halfway across the field, got the contact perfectly, and through 5 obst's in the opening but ended up taking 2 reds in a row. Again, although I tried to keep her moving, my reactions just must be enough that she's knows we're off course, and she came in at my feet again. So although I considered it a big success, I still had the feet problem in the ring and didn't quite know how to handle it. I did get her into a down and then we walked off and then I played a lot of games with her, but I'm concerned that I might be confusing her.
*Coming in at my feet at finish line. Still a problem. I've been putting her in a down (once she wouldn't go down even after several commands, but she did stop grabbing). I'm worried now that she can't tell the difference between a successful end-of-run and being put in a down/taken off for being a bad girl.
Over all, I was pretty happy with the weekend. I sure have a list of things to work on:
- Grabbing feet during the course (what's the reason/what's a reasonable alternative)
- Grabbing feet at the finish line (same questions)
- Carrying out over lines of jumps where I can't keep up with her
- Getting weave entrance while hauling butt
- Trusting me to "come" (e.g., for snooker or for more complex courses) rather than looking for an obstacle to take
- Really reliable stay at start line; was a bit worse this weekend than the previous one.
- Really reliable contacts; a bit worse this weekend than the previous.
- FAST contacts--she's doing them and waiting, but she's really starting to slow down on the descent.
- Squirrels. :-) Fortunately there weren't any there this weekend.
- Yanking on the leash. She broke a leash last week. I'm inches away from moving to a prong collar, which worked for Rem without any trauma at all.
I try to remember everything that I need to do--but sometimes it seems so hopeless and there's so MUCH to remember and to do! Jake (for about the 4th trial) missed a high-in-trial by one popped dogwalk (he did it in 2 runs, so either one would have gotten us the award)--so even with my experienced beast, I've "got issues."