a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: CPE Trial Sunday The Natural Order Is Restored

Sunday, June 21, 2009

CPE Trial Sunday The Natural Order Is Restored

SUMMARY: Some quick (I hope) notes on results.

Weather was much more June-like today; getting a tetch on the warm side but not enough to be hot.

Today Tika earned 4 Qs out of 4 runs; much more like Tika at an agility trial. So 7 for 8 overall, with the only disqualifying fault being an off-course that I caused.

And among us, we got a few 1st places today, finally. Still, not many--I'm used to coming home with a boatload of blues from CPE and this time it was 3 1sts (only 1 for Tika! and two for Boost!), 4 2nds, 6 3rds, and the other 3 runs lower. Dogs were competing against anywhere from 3 to 10 dogs, mostly on the higher end, so we were still up there. But still.

Boost Qed twice today, the two non-Qs being--you guessed it--knocked bars.

Now, with Tika, let me tell you that we were knocked out of contention for 1st in Snooker because the judge called one of her A-frame contacts and out of contention for first in Full House because the judge called one of her A-frame contacts. She did 11 Aframes this weekend, so missing 2 wasn't maybe so bad--But.

--see--she has perfect 2-on/2-off (stopping at the bottom) contacts at home. And in class. And at fun matches. Almost impossible to make her blow them off. But at trials? Pfah! I just got tired of reinforcing them and refixing them again and again and again in competition, and since she needs the extra speed, my strategy for the last couple of years has become "try to get part of my body--at least an arm, or all of me if I can force or fake a front cross--in front of her as she comes down to make her think just enough to get a toenail or two into the yellow zone." (I don't think that name for my contact system is quite snazzy enough to catch on, do you think?)

Which means that she no longer has independent A-frames, meaning that I can't send her ahead of me to them, run out ahead of her while she's doing them, or be a long distance away laterally. It's a handicap against better handling strategies.

At the end of the day today, as we were all packing up, someone I know only somewhat came up to me and said that she noticed that I had taught my dog "modified running contacts" and wanted to know whose method I had used for teaching them. I laughed and said "modified is right!--because they're supposed to be 2 on/2 off stopping contacts!" She said that she liked the way that tika moves through the contacts. Tika likes it too, I can assure everyone.

Boost did all of her weaves perfectly this weekend if I remember correctly. Woot! And I only had to stop her once after a contact for leaving early--last class of the weekend--and that was after a class where I released her very quickly from 2 consecutive A-frame contacts, so that was undoubtedly my doing.

We still had issues with running past jumps because she's not looking for obstacles, slowing down and turning back to me rather than taking a perfectly fine straight line of obstacles, or crashing into obstacles because she's bouncing around in front of me backwards while I'm running full-tilt forward, the usual stuff. Sigh. But she had some blazing times on a couple of courses. Someday. Maybe.

So. Gotta go. Maybe more info some other time. Or not.


  1. I meant to say "much more like Tika at A CPE trial." oops.

  2. sounds like you had mostly a good weekend!!!