a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: CPE Was Very Very Good To Us

Sunday, February 26, 2012

CPE Was Very Very Good To Us

SUMMARY: A pretty good quantity of Qs.

Tika was a good girl, looked pretty healthy all weekend, Qed 11 out of 12 runs. Her only non-Q was a crash on the next to last jump in her jumpers round where on the video it looks like she completely misjudged it, but from my perspective running with her, it looked like she stumbled before the jump. I can't see that in  the video.

That, plus the one time that she stumbled getting out of the car, plus these "tunnel episodes", are among the things that make me think that her agility days are numbered on the shorter side rather than the longer side. On these two videos, her time in the one tunnel (per video) doesn't seem long at all, but on the ground, where you're expecting the dog to blast out of the tunnel, it seemed like forever.

In this Standard run--the tunnel after the dogwalk. You can see me stop and wait for her to come out.

In this Jackpot (Gamblers) run--yellow tunnel that I was trying to layer and send her to the jumps behind it. She apparently stopped and came back out the same way, which is really odd for her.

In all her runs, even when they went pretty smoothly, she looks like she's taking tiny strides, not long stretched-out strides. She definitely doesn't feel fast to me. But then--I'm also taking little tiny strides and I probably don't feel fast to her.

The other Standard run from today:

And her Wildcard run from today:

Boost Qed 8 out of 11, even though she's now moved up to Level C (championship) in everything except one class and they don't allow any faults in level C. (Remember that CPE doesn't count refusals.) Still, despite that, she had only one one run all weekend that I'd call really nice--her first Standard run from this morning. And even in that one, she stopped off the SIDE of the teeter and I had to tell her "touch" a second time for her to slue around front.

All of her other runs had problems. Sometimes, watching the vids, I can see that I stopped or peeled off sooner than a should have, but in others I am just bloody well running at an obstacle that she's running at and should just dang well take but doesn't.

Boost Sat Standard Round 1 Level C, Q and 3rd place--ran past a jump, came off the side of the teeter completely (when she comes in to face me, I try to get her to Down so that I can get a step beyond her and not have her dance backwards in front of me instead of looking at obstacles. She does NOT want to go all the way down on course. I suppose I ought to do something when she doesn't, maybe take her off, but I dunnooooo...)

Wildcard Sunday, Q and 3rd place--I am running straight at that jump, I swear I am.

Colors Sunday, Q and 4th place--lined her up to look straight across the middle of the 1st 2 jumps, led out, and, well--she didn't even look at the jumps. The REASON I wanted to do the leadout that I did was because I KNEW that if I was behind her when she went through that tunnel, she'd turn back to me instead of going straight into the weaves that are RIGHT IN FRONT OF HER. And--Q.E.D.

Standard Round 2 Sunday, not a Q because of a bar down. Great weave entry. Refusal on a rear cross where, for some reason, I decided I couldn't get in the front cross that I did with Tika (see her video above) and so I overran the rear cross. That was really my fault, but STILL if she'd only, you know, take obstacles in front of her...  And that tunnel that I tried sending her to just because I wanted to prove that she could send to a tunnel--but apparently she can't--

Jumpers Sunday, Q and 3rd place-- I am running straight at that jump, I swear I am.


Tika now needs only 225 points for her C-ATE. Next weekend's trial, if I counted right, offers 235 points. That still means that we'd have to Q in everything next weekend to get it, but we always seem to have just one or two runs where there's one blip (like her Jumpers run this morning).

Boost now needs only one Colors run for her C-ATCH. Next weekend there's one Colors offered. So it could happen.

It'll be nice to get these out of the way!


  1. I was watching what you were doing when tika went into those two tunnels. both times you were standing still behind her when she went into the tunnel and that may be why she came out slowly in the first and actually turned around in the 2nd. It seems like your lack of motion might be telling her not to go through the tunnel. Because otherwise she seems to be moving well and reading your handling like a champ.

  2. It is possible that I'm doing something, or not doing something, that she's having trouble with from vision or hearing, that didn't bother her before. Sending to a tunnel has never been an issue with her, and I've never before the last few months seen her go slowly through a tunnel or turn around because of something I did. These are happening more and more and it's not clear to me that my handling on those tunnels is significantly different from several other tunnels in these vids where I stop as she's going into the tunnel or send from almost a stand-still. I wonder whether sometimes I talk to her more while she's in some tunnels and sometimes don't, and while it didn't used to bother her, now it does. It's just hard for me to believe that, after over 1700 competition runs with her, and who knows how many thousands more classes and practices, that I'm suddenly doing something different in the last few months. It seems more likely to me that *she's* experiencing something different and actually I need to do something different from what I've always done. Maybe I do need to overhandle her now to get her through tunnels.

    Oh, as well as start doing some running on my own outside of the ring and lose 15 pounds [again] so I can actually move. And stand up straight. :-)

    She is such a good, experienced dog, saves my butt on course so often.