I swear I had written MORE in my last blog post and it’s not there now. Grrr!
In October we celebrated our 7th wedding anniversary by going to Timber Lodge for some awesome steak!
I trained with Warren one last time before the seminar on a Wednesday night. We just did lots of fun drive building stuff.
We had Tracy in for another awesome 3 day agility seminar. Friday I worked Letty. Saturday I just watched. Sunday I worked Fringe for half of the day and Letty for the other half. It was suggested that Narc was too old to work a full day seminar. I’m not certain about that. Our older dogs are pretty fit and “young” compared to others it seems. However, I do think the things that we worked on were above his level of skills. I don’t do seminars any more with Vada because most are all day and they are too hard on her since she bangs on her body while I try to figure out my handling. I got good work in with Fringe and Letty. Karl was not able to run Fringe on Friday since he was still healing from surgery. Next year!
Saturday night of the seminar after dinner with Tracy I ran over to Cortney’s wedding. Many folks had left already but I got to see Cortney and her kids all dressed up and beautiful, meet her new husband, see her dad again and see an old friend from high school.
Wednesday I headed out to Knoxville TN for the 2014 WDSAA IPO Championship! I stayed in Indianapolis the first night at a Motel 6 that I will never stay at again as they only allow 1 dog. The next day I made it to Knoxville. I stayed at a Red Roof in that was pretty nice.
Letty at the Hotel
Friday I was able to get on the field and warm up with Letty. The field was down a hill. There was hill on 2 sides of the field. Letty had great focus for being on a new field in another state. Her first time with retrieves was good but after that it got worse and she wouldn’t jump. She had trouble with the wall too. I was able to work her a 2nd session and we did a send out and I tried some more retrieves with the jumps but they weren’t any better. I went to a park and did an article track too. It did not go well. Friday we were going to do 2 of the BHs and the others on Saturday. But the original judge had an issue with the flight and was not able to judge. So at the last minute another judge was able to come and judge the trial. She arrived late Friday night and did the 2 BHs. It was hard for them in the dark and cold and rain. Then we went to dinner and did the draw.
The next morning it was lightly snowing. Nothing was sticking though. I drew to go first for tracking. I was nervous laying my track and I don’t think I did my corners well and I was not making note of where my corners were. We were in the middle of a huge open field and I think that threw my bearings off. Letty was excited to track. We had a long wait by the track while it finished aging. We reported in just a few feet from the flag. Letty had trouble finding the scent pad and kept going to the right. I stopped her and brought her back. I was told that I pointed at the track/scent pad. I do not remember it but I’m sure I did as I was very nervous. I lost lots of points for that. She tracked pretty well. Nailed the first corner. She stood over her first article and then finally downed. Her restart was too fast. I wasn’t confident on the 2nd corner and if we were at it yet even though it felt short when I was laying it. I felt like she wasn’t on the track. Then she got tangled in the line. I asked if I could down her and untangle her. She did not down as she was tracking and I have never interrupted her tracking like that before. More points lost. But then she was on the track so I just let her go. She paused over the last article and I let her go on. Stupid. I wasn’t confident it was the end. So we lost a lot of points there too – 11. We ended with a 75. Sami passed with an 86 (I think she pointed too and her dog missed the first article) and Summer’s dog was hunting and failed.
Tracking Group – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Letty’s obedience routing was really good. I was thrilled with how well she did. The mistakes were mostly due to not having trained the exercises long enough or missing some proofing. On her down stay she sat up on the gun shots. She has not cared before but this one was much more whip crack like. She held the sit stay the whole time but I think we lost all of our points – 10. I was happy that she stayed. Her heeling was really nice. Although she got jacked up on the gun shots. Her motion exercises were nice too. I called her on my own off the down in motion and I was supposed to have waited for the judge. She was telling me this as I was heeling to the dumbbell rack. As we chatted Letty kept heeling amazingly. Her retrieves were great except she went around the jumps on the way back. For the wall she went all the way around all of the jumps to bring the dumbbell back to front. Very clever! But we lost at least 10 points. On the send out she was like “what?” but then she went out …towards the down marker flags. I downed her but she was still looking around for something. I looked to the judge for permission to do a 2nd command but the rules say it is on me. I was erring on the wrong side since I got in trouble already for calling her without permission on the down in motion. So we lost all of those points – 10. Our final score was 66. Sami did not pass and Summer had a 66 too.
Letty Heeling – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Groupa in Heeling – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Sit in Motion – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Letty Retrieve – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Letty Retrieve – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Letty Wall – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Protection started out crazy but we got it together. I wasn’t sure where the field started and I did not have Letty heel down the hill. So the judge yelled to me to have her heeling. She heeled to the judge but was focused on her and not me. When we set up for the blind search she was looking at the find blind. I sent her anyways and she went to the correct blind. When I sent her to the find blind she went to the judge and barked a few times and turned right (away from the blind) to come back to me. I knew that I could not bring her back to heel position so when she came back towards me I sent her again. She went to the judge again but this time turned left away from her and then saw the decoy and went to him and started barking. I needed 3 cues to get her to leave the blind with me. She setup nicely for the escape bite. Her outs were good but were getting slower. Heeling down the field she was distracted by the decoy walking to the find blind. But she decided to come with me. She was pulling on her collar while the decoy was running down the field. And the judge did not like that she collected before the grip. On the side transport when we heeled into position she was sniffing the decoy. I told her to sit (I thought a sit was required) and we lost points for the cue. It felt really ugly but we scored an 80. Sami got excused when Cada didn’t out on the escape bite and Summer scored an 80 too. So, Letty was 4 points away from passing. One correct down or even one return jump. Our next trial will be a club trial somewhere in WI since we currently don’t have any active MN clubs.
Guarding in the Blind – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Escape – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Guarding – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Drive – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Side Transport – photo by Jamie Berry Photography
Critique – photo by Leslie Howe
5 of the 8 BHs passed. None of the IPO dogs passed all 3 phases.
The weather sucked. The judge was hard on us competitors especially in regard to the rules. But I had a great time. I got to meet many of my Facebook friends in person and make some new friends. And I learned a lot. I have a long list of things to work on before we trial again. I’m glad that I went. I’m very proud of how well Letty performed 1000 miles from home on a strange field with strange decoys.
Letty During a Critique – photo by Leslie Howe
Letty at the 2014 WDSAA IPO National Championship
Letty and Vada at a Park in TN
Vrijheid Dogs Present – photo by Leslie Howe
And I won some awesome raffle prizes!
Dutch Shepherd Mosaic that looks like Vada