Summer Wrap Up

Cyno ribbons

Well I think this time I have really blown it with my lack of blog updates.  Its crazy how time gets away from you.  One moment I feel like I am just recovering from our European travels, then in an instant the fall chill is in the air.

The pups and I have had a nice mixture of agility and down time the last few months.  I have been busy training little Miss Roxy in short sessions almost everyday.  Well actually, I always hope to get a training session in everyday, its probably more like four to five days a week if I am lucky.  She is really coming into her own and has been such a joy.  Such a happy pup, always willing to try something new with such gusto!  As of today’s post we can do 12 weave poles and have started to sequence them with jumps and tunnels on both ends.  We are also working on our running dogwalk and teeter.  Roxy and I participated in Loretta Mueller’s running contact seminar in August so we have a plan and we are sticking to it!! The RDW is a process with highs and lows, some sessions are better than others but I am hopeful that we will be successful.  Who knew that such a small dog would have such serious springs on her feet and is not afraid to use them!!  I am also retraining Zip and Zorro’s RDW as I feel we can use some work on them as well.  It’s great for me as it gives me more reps to train my eye and get a feel for what my “perfect hit” is.  Zorro is flying though his retrain which is great.  Zip has his moments of brilliance.  As of today’s entry we had a couple weeks off due to Cyno and me being away so we had a minor setback but I know once we are in regular training again he will be back on track.  In addition to contacts and weaves, Roxy and I are also working on our handling skills.  We attended an Anna Eifert seminar right after Cyno and she did great! She showed me things that left both Anna and I speechless!! Because I train in small increments and short sequences its hard to imagine everything coming together.  I often think to myself, “I don’t know how we will ever learn an entire course!”  But here I am, dog #5, and luckily it is all coming together once again :-)  Here is a short clip of Roxy at Anna seminar:

On the show front, Zip and I have had two major events this summer and early fall.  We attended the Western regional in Prunedale, CA over Labor Day weekend and just a couple of weeks ago attended USDAA’s Cynosport World Games (aka USDAA Nationals) in Morgan Hill, CA.  Lucky for us, Zip had earned all his byes for Cynosport at the first regional we attended earlier this year in Southern CA.  So we came into this regional a bit more relaxed, ready to give it our best but no crazy pressure to perform.  For the team event we were teamed up with our CA teamies, Dave with Boca and Erika with Cadence, team “Zip it!”  We all put in a great showing on some challenging courses and over the course of two days we ended up 3rd overall and on the podium!!

Western regional

Our next big event occurred on Oct 15-19, USDAA Cynosport World Games.  In past years we have had to travel considerable distances to attend this event.  Lucky for us this year it occurred right in our backyard, only 1 hour away!! One of the best parts of the event was getting to see all my east coast friends!  This year’s Cynosport was a little different for us in the fact that Zip and I were not trying out for any of the international teams.  While I still was hoping to make it into a couple of finals, the added pressure of team points was not there.  Our Dog Agility Masters Team for this event was Andy with Crackers and Kayl with Grand Slam, team “Zip is a Grand Slam on Crack.”  The three of us have known each other for a couple of years and both are phenomenal international competitors so I was super excited for the match up.  All three of us put in fantastic team runs but unfortunately each had a small bobble here and there.  At this level of competition a dropped bar or missed contact could really hurt your standings.  As we came into team relay finals we were sitting in 9th place out of 150 teams.  Not too shabby for such a competitive event.  We decided we needed to give everything we had in relay in hopes of boosting our standings if possible.  All three of us put in a great run and we ended up 4th in relay and 7th overall in the team competition. Here is our Team Relay Finals run:

Zip and I put in some great runs in our individual classes as well.  Had a nice run in Master’s Challenge Standard but had a call at the teeter.  It just so happened that the sun was rising as our group was running and blinded many dogs on the dogwalk and teeter.  Not sure if that’s what happened with Zip but I know he lost his footing on the teeter and came off the side.  I had a less than stellar run in Steeplechase finals, sending Zip into the wrong end of a tunnel.  We did made it through a tricky Grand Prix semi-finals course into Grand Prix Finals.  Here is our GP semis run:

Grand Prix finals was a great course and we came in ready to give it our best.  Well, little Zippy did not disappoint.  He gave me 110% and did not put a foot wrong.  I was so very proud of him!! Our run was good enough for 4th place!!   Here is our Grand Prix finals run:

All in all we had a great time at Cynosport this year!  Great catching up with everyone as well as watching all of our friends’ successes.  The best part was being home Sunday afternoon!!

Now that the hustle and bustle of Cynosport is over, time to continue our poodle training!! We have a couple of seminars lined up this winter and hopefully in the beginning of 2015 we will start showing.  Can’t wait for another adventure to begin!!

Poodle training!

roxy tug

 

Had a nice training session with Roxy today at Jumpin’ Java training center.  For once I remembered my camera and took some video.  Too lazy to edit so you get to see the unedited version.  :-)  This is our first time sequencing more than 2 jumps and I also introduced her to the spread jump.  Doing most of our training at 8″ to build confidence and speed but we did try a couple of sequences at 12″.  I just LOVE this dog!! She is so incredibly brilliant!! :-)  We are having a blast!!  What is not in the video, we did a little chute work as well as breaking down the 3 jump serp that we weren’t quite getting right in the video.  Rox had seen the chute for the first time last week and did great.  Last week I was running with her while someone held the chute open for us.  This week I was by myself so I had to put her in a sit/stay and call her through.  She ran around it a couple of times but then got the hang of it.  Her toy drive is looking great too!  It improves with each session.  She is just too darn cute!! Enjoy!!

Jump sequencing at 8″

Jumps at 12″