a Taj MuttHall Dog Diary: Not Quite As Bad as the Previous Trial

Sunday, June 17, 2012

Not Quite As Bad as the Previous Trial

SUMMARY: But I do wish we'd done better.

First: It WAS hot. Not 108; Saturday got up to around 105 (I took a thermometer this time) late afternoon, but there was a breeze/wind all day, which made it almost bearable. Today it was 102 when we finished about 3, but almost no breeze, and humid (at least for us). Very uncomfortable, very draining, tempers a little short I think, and so many people scratched the last couple of runs each day that we had trouble staffing the rings with sufficient workers.

Tika did the best of the 3 of us, especially after I discovered that hosing her down (which she hates) made her frisky. Boost looked pretty wasted to me midday today. I hosed her down before & after her runs, but in the next to last class (Snooker, she did jump-Aframe-knock jump, knock jump, so we left the ring and went back to the shade. Last class, jumpers, she knocked two of the first 6 bars, so we again left the ring.

Tika, on the other hand, ran that Jumpers one of the best (it felt) in a while and grabbed my feet joyously at the end of the run.

Slept in MUTT MVR with all the doors and windows open and it never got below 85; a restless night, sticky and sweaty.

Did have a nice time Saturday evening with pizza at the record-fast Bay Team meeting (we were all melting so much in the 105 heat that we couldn't even get up the energy to move to adjourn the meeting--pretty pathetic!) and another Bay Teamer celebrating her birthday later provided tasty marinated/bbqed portabella mushrooms, chocolate cake, and ice cream.

TIP LEARNED: On hot days, leave your sun lotion in the cooler; feels so much nicer when you spread it on!

Tika's Weekend

The hearing problems are showing up in a lot of ways. A couple of people even commented this weekend on how her attention is on me all through the course; this is not how Tika used to run. But she was a game competitor, doing what she needed to do even in the heat.

Wanted one Standard to complete her Standard Gold, and we got it Saturday, yahoo! One goal done anyway! Sunday's standard was lovely except for one rear cross that she didn't seem to understand and did a full spin right before the jump for a refusal, so no Q.

She qualified in Steeplechase (3rd of 7 dogs and only a little more than 2 seconds slower than the winner) and came in 2nd in round 2--missing first by .82, due to going into the weaves correctly and then coming back out right at me, as if she didn't think she was supposed to be there, so we had to come back around and try again. I'll take the $14, though.

Qualified in Grand Prix and came in tied for 2nd of 7 dogs.

Qed and came in 2nd in both Jumpers, but those were the last classes both days so tons of dogs had scratched, so combined we got only 1 Top Ten point.

The biggest disappointment and frustration is trying to get those last 4 Snooker Qs for the gold PDCH. I'm picking easy peasy courses and it's just stupid things. Saturday, in the closing #2 was a tunnel; I sent her in, and needed to come back past the tunnel to #3; saw her head blast out and she looked directly at my eyes, so I turned and burned--isn't that what you're supposed to do?--and she somehow reversed herself and went back into the tunnel.

Today, we got through 5 in the closing after doing a simple 1-3-1-3-1-3 in the opening, and then suddenly approaching #6 it didn't look right and I couldn't figure out what was wrong and we ended up with a fault (had to have someone remind me after we left the course what I should've done)--so no Q again. Jeeeezzzzz. Still don't know why it suddenly looked wrong. The heat getting to my brain?

The one Gamblers was a serpentine--thought we had it, she did sort of a double-step like she was shifting leads to go out to the next jump, so I moved on forward, and she changed her mind and came with me, so no Q.

Pairs relay, both of us on our team had miserable runs, go figure (we both did well in steeplechase & grand prix, for instance, but can't do 11 dumb obstacles in pairs??).

5 Qs of 10 runs; only 1 of the 3 that I really wanted but much better than the 2 Qs out of 9 from the previous trial.

Boost's weekend

Well--her weave poles remained superb. Her start line remains rock solid; I can't even remember the last time she broke her stay. Her contacts were...well, not rock solid and she was stopping with her feet off the side, but she left early only once and I was able to recover quickly from that.

You can see that I'm struggling for positives.

However--running past jumps--SUCH a frustrating weekend for that, even when I feel like I'm doing everything right, and, well, OK, you know.

Really really wanted to get Jumpers and SuperQs towards that elusive ADCH--

Saturday had me so frustrated with running past jumps that I left the course; Jumpers Sunday I already mentioned above, she was too messed up by the heat, I think.

Saturday's Snooker, she got all the way through on what would've been a Super-Q if she hadn't knocked a bar on #7 in the opening--but there was such carnage on that course that, although she got only 37 points (the minimum to qualify), she missed a super-Q by one place anyway, coming in 4th of 19 dogs.

And I mentioned Sunday's Snooker above.

Both Standards--refusals, runouts, bars; steeplechase--running past jumps and a knocked bar; grand prix--I think that was almost nice with just a bar down early; Relay--both of us on our team also has issues.

1 Q for the weekend of 10 runs, just another of the huge number of blah Snooker Qs that don't do us any good.


Still thinking about stopping agility. Would really like to finish those last 4 Snookers of Tikas, and would like to have the energy to work on Boost's issues to get those two SuperQs and one more Jumpers, but still not sure that I really have the enthusiasm for it. Boost just loves doing agility so much. The hot trials I'm really not liking. Wellllllll I guess I'll keep on thinking about it.

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