Thursday, 28 August 2008

Ears really bleed don't they?

Last night on our walk my friend's young collie was totally obsessed with Dudley and kept rounding him up and staring at him, you know how they can be, and poor Dudley was getting more and more p****d off as he wanted to go hunting and couldn't get away. Well by the end of the walk he'd had enough of being stared at from about 4 inches away and jumped on Freddie who managed to bite his ear so not only was there a lot of noise there was a lot of blood and trying to grab a terrier is like trying to catch wet soap. It was nothing really and neither dog seemed that upset, apart from Freddie not liking the blood on my hands, and both just carried on as if nothing had happened. What suprised me was the reaction of the other dogs, one tried to put herself between them as if to day 'Now, now boys' another just took one look and carried on walking and Suzi and Tom just looked on.

I'm not really sure what to do about Freddie's obsession as Dudley does nothing to give him the impression he likes him and normally grumbles at him if he comes to close so it seems that treating him mean is keeping him keen :)

Sunday, 24 August 2008

Bridge House

The day dawned wet and dreary but the BBC promised that the rain would be light and gone by early afternoon, well they were right about it being gone but not about the amount.

Thomas was the first to run today in his G1-3 Agility and I thought that it was pitched more towards 3 than 1 as there was a wrong end of tunnel with the added draw of the dogwalk and I was hoping to cross behind him in the weaves to pull him into the tunnel and block the dog walk but had to change this and push him into the tunnel which actually worked well, I'm lucky that he is quite good at obstacle discrimination so didn't even look at the dog walk. The reason I changed my mind was to ensure I gave him loads of space in the weaves and I felt that I would get right on top of the weaves and crowd him if I tried to cross behind. As he took the jump before the weaves I sort of half checked my stride to allow him to get to the weaves before me, this worked and he went straight in, I could see that his nose was starting to drop so I said 'Yeah' in a high pitched voice and he suddenly speeded up and did them really well and quite quick. The rest of the course, after the tunnel, was on a slight curve to the finish so I kept my arm up and said 'Go' and took the risk of slightly cutting the corner which paid off and he got a really nice clear, unfortunately, the collapsy tunnel had been left outside the ring but with the open end facing in and in line with the finish and Tom ran straight in, I felt awful as I hadn't spotted this before we ran and although he didn't care I would have been terrible if had been butted up against something hard. I was chuffed to bits to find out that he had come 2nd and even more chuffed to realise that if I hadn't held him on his dogwalk we would probably have won as he was only half a second slower than the winner.

I decided not to do the open agility with either him or Suzi as it was still raining and Suzi would not have been impressed by having to get out of the car in the rain but ran Dudley and Suzi in the 4-7 agility which had a Go Round as the finish! Dudley worked really well but missed his dog walk by a toenail then went on to get a perfect go round in quite a respectable time for him. Suzi was like a wild thing and took off like greased lightening nearly catching me out and was going really well until the dog walk and even though I was behind her, because I couldn't catch her, she missed it by about three slats then went on to whizz through the weaves and completely ignore the 'Go round' command (Naughty white dog!!)

The sun then came out and Dudley reverted to his old self of 'it's too hot to do agility' and practically walked round his jumping course and went in and came out the same end of the tunnel, OK so I probably called his name too early but I would have thought with his experience he would have know to keep going but there you go that's terriers for you. Suzi once again went like the clappers and finished just one out of the placings, she worked so well and even though I had a head start on the home straight she came past me and had to wait for me at the finish unlike Duds who took his own sweet time and gave me the chance to have a cup of tea and a sandwich while waiting for him to finish :)

Tom's last run was G1-3 jumping and was a nice course with some handling but also lovely and smooth, I didn't call him at one point and he got a bit distracted but as soon as I said his name his came straight away and after hanging back from the weaves and 'Yeahing' again he managed a clear and finished in 6th place, very encouraging as without the slight diversion he would have definatly come higher.

Thanks to Bernadette for putting up with me keep talking about myself and her new car is lovely.

Monday, 18 August 2008

Happy Birthday Thomas

He's 2 today, my little ginger boy will be enjoying a long walk on later with his mates and maybe and extra special something in his dinner.

Can't believe it's been nearly a year and a half since he came into my life.

Here he is the day I saw him.

and this one was taken at Aylesbury show.

Monday, 11 August 2008

Go Weave

As we didn't go to the KC Festival I booked Tom and myself on a weave workshop in Somerset which thinking about it now I was probably a little mad to drive a round trip of 350 miles for an hour and a half but we did then go to Burnham on Sea afterwards to meet up with some friends and enjoy a very bracing run on the dog friendly beach.

The reason I went on the course was mainly because what we did was videoed so we could see exactly what we were doing wrong/right we also sat down to review what we'd done between exercises so the dogs weren't weaving constantly and therefore getting bored with it. I was hoping to sort out our ring problems but Tom weaved really well and I couldn't seem to duplicate what goes wrong. I did discover that I run like a duck though and that even if I give him loads of room I come in towards the last weave nearly every time especially if it looks as if Tom's nose is going down. I'm not sure that driving all that way was really worth it as I didn't learn anything I didn't already know but the video is useful.

We then moved on to the beach and this, according to Dudley, made the long drive all worth while. Both dogs love the beach and this one was gorgeous, loads of sand and dunes to explore and even a pond to swim in. The weather could have been a bit better but the company was great and all the dogs there were well behaved and played as if they'd know each other forever.

Here are a few of the 60 odd photos I took.

Tuesday, 5 August 2008


Saturday was a day of almosts, Dudley almost won into Grade 6 with a 2nd in Grade 5 agility, Suzi almost won into Grade 5 with a 2nd in Grade 4 agility (shame they only placed to 1st) and Thomas almost got a clear round. The weather was wet and some of the equipment had just been repainted but without the gritty stuff so was a bit like an ice rink and while the course as such wasn't dangerous you had to really handle your dogs properly to prevent accidents, some handlers were moaning that it was dangerous but still working their dogs and still pulling of the contact equipment before waiting to see that the dog was safely on/off. In my view if you think it's dangerous you don't run your dog FULL STOP. I know the Dudley isn't one for hareing across the dog walk so was happy to run him but made sure that he was going on very straight and very steady (at this point I didn't know that the equipment had been painted wrong, if I had I may have had a rethink, all I was aware of was that dogs coming at an angle were slipping off the dogwalk which I put down to the wet weather) I started to have an inkling that something may have been wrong with the equipment when Dudley struggled to get over the top of the A frame, luckily he got a purchase on a slat and scrambled over, but we finished the course clear and he came 2nd.

Because of the problem with the equipment one of the large dog agility classes had to eventually, after being restarted 3 or 4 times, be turned into a special jumping class and the classes that followed it in the ring had to be transferred to another ring, luckily by then a different set of contact equipment had arrived as these classes were all my dog's ones. I felt sorry for the poor organisers as it wasn't really their fault but boy did they get some stick and I'm afraid it brought the worst out in some competitiors.

The weather in the afternoon was drier and brighter but also hot and humid so by the time Duds came to do his 2nd run he'd had enough and just ambled round :)

The littlies had a lovely jumping course in the morning and part of in involved crossing a box diagonally then turning left to cross diagonally the other way, this was poor Tom's almost clear round as I forgot to tell him to turn left and he kept turning right so I tried to fiddle him through the gap but didn't give him enough room so he went over the jump again but finished the rest of the course so well that I wasn't worried about the E at all. I remembered to tell Suzi left and she got a lovely clear although just out of the placings.

Tom was very wild in his last run of the day and it didn't go well, although he got his contacts and nearly all his weaves (we'd been E'd so many times by the time we got there I didn't put him back in but just carried on) Suzi did a lovely clear although a bit slow across the dog walk which I think is where we lost out on the win but she did get the judge's special but whether this was for her or because the judge felt sorry for me when I was running the loony ginger one I'm not sure :)

Sunday dawned a bit brighter and drier and luckily Dudley's first run was first in the ring, this was his grade 5 agility and I walked the course thinking that it was a lovely course but a bit fast for Dudley so was only hoping for a clear round and after seeing who was there I didn't get my hopes up at all but I have to admit that I am trying something to change my attitude as I've been guilty of walking courses saying my dog can't do that for too long. I stood in the queue and told Dudley we were going to win and instead of worrying the he was going to bite me I ran him as if he wouldn't and .......he didn't. He was the best dog on the day and if other people were getting caught out by dog walk to tunnel then that's their problem not mine he beat them and they were pleased for me, well some were anyway. Now I've aways said that if/when he got to grade 6 I would retire him so I'm going to finish this season and next year I'm going to see what happens. I may enter him for the odd class or do allsorts with him I haven't decided yet but to be honest a lot of his classes this year have been 5-7 so he wont actually be competing against anyone different next year it's just that I wish he was a small and not a medium as he does struggle a bit if the ground is uneven. Now I'm sitting here getting all emotional over something that may all change when I find that he doesn't want to stop now he's won into grade 6.

Sorry if you were hoping to read about Tom but I'm so chuffed about Dudley he's taking second place for a few days :)

Sunday, 3 August 2008

Dudley does it

Jusy got back from Aylesbury tired and a but emotional because my little man won into Grade 6 today. I've always hoped he would but never really thought he could but today he proved me wrong.

I'll write more when I come down to earth a bit :)
Web Statistics