My pack and I have had a light summer. Sticking close to home, hiking, playing, and maybe a little training squeezed in here and there. As fall approached Roxy and I started to focus on the upcoming IFCS World Team tryouts in Tyler, TX at the end of September.
I had my homework that I took away from the IFCS World Championships in April. I wanted to improve our dogwalk performance and also improve our weave pole skills, particularly tough entrances into the poles. Throughout the summer I started Roxy’s running dog walk behavior from scratch. I got some help from friends and audited an online class with Katarina Podlipnik. I really liked her method and the way she broke things down. Her method came highly recommended by friends I admired and trusted so I gave it a shot. Can’t say I was disappointed. 🙂 I feel that both Roxy and I are getting a much more solid dogwalk behavior. I also worked on getting our weave pole entrances much more solid. I broke things down and slowly added degrees of difficulty in order to keep Roxy’s confidence level high.
As we headed off to Texas this past week I hoped our training would be paying off. I always tend to doubt myself a bit right before big events….could I have done more? What new challenges could we see that I haven’t thought of? By the time I arrive at the event I push any doubts aside as best as I can and repeat my mantra of “trust my training and trust my dog”.
We arrived in Texas on Thursday and man was it hot!! Luckily the facility is under cover but unluckily not climate controlled. I knew that keeping Roxy cool and rested would be my top priority. We acclimated to the site on Thursday afternoon and settled into our cozy Air BnB.
The courses all weekend had their fair share of challenges. I felt each course had weave pole entrances that played to our weakness. I hoped our training would pay off. The pool of 12″ dogs was small but these dogs came to play. They were a talented group that rarely made mistakes. I knew I could not afford errors like dogwalk and weave poles faults.
I am happy to report that Roxy stepped up to all the challenges like the true Rockstar that she is! This little dog gave me her heart and soul on each run. She continues to astound me. How does such a little body contain such a big heart? With my friends reminding me to trust my dog and my training we did not miss one weave pole entrance and only had one dogwalk fault all weekend! We ended the first day of competition in 1st place for 12″ dogs for IFCS team selection points and held on to that lead all weekend! We ended tryouts as top 12″ dog earning one of two coveted win-on spots for our height. We will be heading to Belgium in May 2020 as part of the USA team. I was truly blown away. I know I keep saying it but it is worth repeating, Roxy is all heart. Just love my tiny little powerhouse.
It goes without saying I have my training notes that I took away from this event that we will be working on in preparation for Belgium!!
Here is a little montage of our weekend, enjoy!