The 2014 CPE Nationals have come and gone. It’s nice to have them in MN but it is sooo much work. I do not feel like I ran my dogs to the best of my abilities this weekend. We had mixed results but ended with 5 Qs out of 9 runs for each of the girls.
Thursday I got to the fairgrounds early and tracked with Letty. I laid a pretty long serp track with buried food. She tracked beautifully but did not eat any of the food. I think I need to use bigger pieces of food. At least in new places for now. Then I met Denise to unload the MMBC trailer with tents and tables and stuff for the trial. I was able to setup my stall with my dogs crates. Then we went up to Hooley Hall and I helped Karl unload his first load of food and drinks from Cub Foods. Then we got things setup for Friday morning. Karl asked someone camping there to plug in the coffee pots at 6am so people would have coffee by 6:30am. That worked out great. Then I went and did another track with Letty. I did an article track with food. I made it too hard and it was not pretty. Plus, I realized later, that the ground had been driven over quite a bit by last weekend’s USDAA trial. So we will do another tonight or tomorrow night. Then Karl and I stopped at the Dollar Tree to get stall decoration stuff. After we got home, about 8pm, I had to dial in to work for 2 hours to update some reports. Then I started making my stall decoration poster. It turned out great. Not a winner but it showed my dogs. I put all 4 on there since they all 4 qualified for Nationals. I just chose to only enter Vada and Letty. But Narc and Seven got to come along and hang out on Friday and Saturday. I didn’t have much time to walk them but I got them out a time or two. It’s either be crated at home or in the stall there so at least they got out of the house and got to go for a ride. I’m sure they would have rather been running though. So it was almost midnight til I got to bed.
Friday morning we got up at 4:30am in order for me to get on the road by 5:30am and get to the show site by 6:30am for check in and the briefing. Karl got my dogs fed so I could get on my way. Then he was able to stay at home a bit longer and get some things done and get the dogs out one more time and stop at Cub for more stuff on his way to the fairgrounds. I could get to the fairgrounds and check on the coffee and see if any more food needed to be put out. It got pretty hot out that day. I was worried that Letty would get too hot but she did not and she ran really well. Vada ran well too. Vada went 3/3. Letty was 1/3 I think.
Friday they did a picture of all dogs there that were double digits. I got there a few minutes before the stated time and they were just releasing everyone from the group. Grrrr! So I took my own double digits pics. It also took the wind out of my sails for the Minnesota competitor pic on Saturday and I did not wait around for it.
On Friday Karl was able to video a few of our runs.
Saturday was another early morning. But what a change in weather! All day Saturday was cold and rainy and wet and MUDDY! The dogs ran GREAT! I, however, did not. In Jackpot while I was running Letty the buzzer did not go off to indicate that I should start the gamble. And we were the last dog to run in our rotation. So we started over again. When I stepped out to try to send her to the 2nd tunnel in the gamble my foot slipped in the mud and I fell into the puddle. It was not there when I had run Vada! This was the first rotation of the day too. Then in Standard when I went to do a front cross with Vada I, again, fell. After that I ran tentative. So no Q for us. 😦 After that I changed shoes to one that had a little bit more tread. That seemed to be enough as I did not slip any more the rest of the day and I felt like I was able to run normally. I think Vada was 1/3 and Letty was 2/3. Saturday night they do a banquet but we do not go as we have dogs at home and it’s kind of expensive.
Sunday’s weather was perfect! Still lots of mud but it was drying as the day went on. The girls ran well. Just little mistakes kept us from Qing. But then on our last run – Snooker – they both had really nice runs and Qd! Great way to end the weekend!
The weather wasn’t ideal but everyone kept up great attitudes. Lots of hard work went into this event. It showed – things ran very smoothly. The best thing is that everyone was so appreciative of everyone else’s hard work.
Monday night obedience classes are finished until we start again for the winter. Next week I start a new obedience class with Letty on Tuesdays. It’s a Ring Confidence class. Great idea and I was hoping they’d do it again over the winter. Then I read the description and many of the skills that we will be working on will apply to IPO trialing and preparing Letty for her BH. So, I signed up. They had so many people sign up that they ended up making it into 2 classes that night! It’s a great idea. And great that so many people who are training positively are thinking about (or are) trialing. And it’s great that we are not preparing our dogs for these things instead of throwing them in the ring with us being nervous and then getting mad at them for not performing like they do at home or in class. Training has definitely advanced since I started a million years ago!
June 1st I started taking an online tracking class with Shade. I love it! It’s really pushing me to work on tracking every day. And we’re finding foundation holes. It’s a 6 week course so we have 4 more weeks left.
Letty turned 4 years old yesterday! Time goes by way too fast. She sure is turning out to be a great dog that is teaching me a lot!
Yesterday I got an update on how Merlin/Lazlo is doing. He’s enjoying sitting in windows and he sleeps in bed with them. He’s getting along great with their dog. They play and the dog cleaned Lazlo. I am so happy for him. I was so sad that he was so restricted at our house and I was on the verge of letting him loose to see if he could be a porch cat. I’m so incredibly happy to see how things have turned out for him and how he has bonded with his new family.