AKC Agility Trial Manhattan, IL October 17th and 18th

I have a few new updates on trials to write about. Things have been very busy lately-- just got married, just moved, general life still happening-- leaving no time for updates... until now!


In October, just three days before getting married, Baxter AND Ziggy (my little boy is all grown up!) entered an agility trial in the suburbs of Chicago. I entered both of them into everything. I may have even gotten a few videos the first day, one of which being Ziggy's very first trial run ever. Also, his very first Q ever!




Jumpers with Weaves Ex B-- NQ-- This was Baxter's first run of the day. I was very excited as the course seemed generally fun with a few challenges. Little did I know that the challenge would be in the first obstacle. The macaroni tunnel didn't seem that interesting to me, although I was just getting ready to pick Baxter up on the other side. As I am waiting for him, I notice he doesn't come out of the tunnel and instead starts to sniff the tunnel from the inside. I get him out of the tunnel and he starts to run with me again only to miss the next contact by going off to another sniffing tangent. So unhappy at this point. I get his attention and we finish the course without much issue after that. No Q and a lot of general course distraction. Sad.

Standard Ex A-- NQ--

FAST Open-- NQ-- I was very excited about FAST. This was Baxter's first try in Open, which means he would have to take two obstacles in a specified sequence with me at a distance of about 4 feet (I think.) Very exciting. I probably should have started out with some more obstacles rather than start with that send. The sequence was jump to teeter. He took the jump confidently, but saw the teeter and decided to just go around it. That's an automatic NQ. For some reason neither of my pups were big on this club's teeter. We were a bit out of control after that. I think there is something fundamentally wrong with me and FAST courses. Because you can do whatever you want on them, I feel I can just adlib. It's no big deal, but it leaves the course far too open for me to just mess around. I need to fix that!



Jumpers with Weaves Novice-- Q 1st place-- Ziggy's first time in the ring and his first Q. Could not have been more proud of my little guy. He did so well and paid attention. I should have the video for this run up soon.

FAST Novice

Standard Novice

-- NQ-- This was Ziggy's last run of the day. The first obstacle was the chute. I knew he wasn't going to be able to take the obstacle with me taking a lead out, so holding him by the collar, I charged him up and got him ready to take the obstacle... big mistake. After releasing a fully pumped, excited corgi into the chute, he exploded out of the sheet and just destroyed the bar of the first jump. He jumped on to the teeter with Kate Moss like confidence and then decided to just disregard me and go to the dogwalk out of sequence. It was totally my fault for not controlling him better and keeping him just a little more calm. He's waaaay too fast and young to get all riled up before a run. A big note to self on that one. =)


Thursday-- I got to the trial late on Thursday. This caused me to miss the walkthrough and to mess up Ziggy's first Time 2 Beat run. I felt really bad about it.


T2B-- Q 1st place-- Baxter got the advantage of me having already messed up the course with Ziggy. With little preperation, I took him out of the car and right onto the field. We nailed the course and took first place, earning 10 points. I was so proud of my guy. We felt more in sync on that run than we had yesterday. I was looking forward to some more good things happening that day...

Standard Ex A-- NQ-- This course was challenging and I happened to mess it up within the first three jumps. A serp of three jumps started the course off. The last jump was set further back. I didn't get enough into the pocket, so Baxter ended up taking the jumps the wrong way. On the plus side, he ended up running perfectly into a hard weave entry and then into a difficult tunnel entry afterward. Bad side, he jumped on the table and then right off the table. I think he was distracted. I think I also just need to work on the table a bit more with him.

JWW Ex B-- NQ-- This was a very difficult looking course. I was so excited to try it out with Baxter. Here is the funny part: he got all the hard stuff. The one easy part we messed up on. He got all the box work perfectly, took his jumps nicely, and even let me first cross him with minimal growl-back. The one part that we missed was probably my fault for being out of place, but he just wouldn't take a "go on." And that is funny because he did something similar in Arcadia in August. Very strange. Will definitely work more on that. Still very proud of him. It was a very good run dispite missing that easy part.


T2B-- NQ-- I felt so bad for making Ziggy miss his first real chance at T2B. It was totally my fault as I missed the walkthrough and read the map wrong. We were rocking the course when I took a wrong way on a pinwheel and found myself without any course numbers to follow. How sad. So we just did the weave poles and got off the course. He was so ready for that course too. I know he would have done better had I been better prepared. I will try not to let me pups down again in that respect.

Standard Novice-- Q 1st place-- Ziggy did a great job on his standard course. I wish I could remember more about it, but as far as I can remember he was paying good attention and had an excited control about him. Very nice little guy!

JWW Novice-- NQ-- This was the last course of the day and by then the already nasty weather was getting worse. It was cold and rainy and windy. The ground was getting muddy, but Ziggy was ready to run. I did a three jump lead out and Ziggy stayed like a champ. He took to the course really well and was doing great. The second to the last jump was a pinwheel outer edge that sat at an angle. He knocked the bar. I should have supported the jump more and maybe he would have gotten it, either way he worked so hard that run in the bad weather. I could not have been more proud of him. Getting off the course, Ziggy wanted to run so badly. So we ran. We ran and ran and ran and then Ziggy pooped. I praised him so much for not having gone in the ring. I can't believe he ran that whole course and had to potty. What a little trooper!

Overall, the trial was fun and the people were nice. I wish Baxter and I would have felt more like a team, but everyone has off days. I need to make sure that I am doing my best to complete the courses without always trying crazy new things. I need to trust my dogs but also make sure I guide them well-- aka supporting jumps and getting into those pockets!

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Comment by Beth on November 13, 2012 at 8:41pm

I find the AKC rules about dropped bars very strange indeed.   Agility is borrowed from horse show jumping, and in show jumping a dropped rail is 4 faults (a refusal is 3, two refusals is a DQ).   The horses with the least faults then compete in a jump-off.  Time overages are converted to penalty faults, and so on.  Anyway, the idea that you can't drop a single bar makes it hard for a lot of dogs who are not as careful with their back ends.  

Comment by Judith Andre on November 13, 2012 at 8:23pm

Win some,lose some.   I haven't had the "pleasure" of competing in the rain yet....not much rain around here this year.  Last we ran, Murray had all clean runs in CPE where he is allowed to drop 1 bar and still qualify.  The next weekend in AKC  where he can't Q if he drops a bar, the only thing between 3 Q's was 1 dropped bar in each run.  Oh well....He did Q in AKC .'Fast'  That is right up his alley...can go like crazy and if he drops a bar no big deal as long as he accumulates enough points and gets the distance part which he's getting better at all the time.  I am not that competitive and just trying to have fun with my dog....that being said, I have to admit it's more fun to Q.  As my advanced agility instructor said the other day "Murray would be a super star if he'd just quit dropping bars.".....if only!

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