Monday, April 20, 2015

The Weekend Report: Odd Mistakes

Jimmy and I had another weekend of agility. This one was given by the Potomac Valley Golden Retriever Club. Unfortunately, I must report that we were largely unsuccessful. It only takes one mistake to be disqualified, and that's what we had. They were weird ones as well.

On Saturday we started with Standard. The course wasn't too difficult, just a couple of places where you needed to pay attention. We were off to a great start, made it through the 7, 8, and 9 turns and Jimmy ran right past the teeter. Ordinarily I talk as little as possible to Jimmy. I don't tell him to jump or go in a tunnel, etc. unless it is not at all obvious. He is expected to seek and take the next obstacle, so I never said teeter. I don't know whether its location made it somewhat less visible to his doggy vision, or if I was out of position to a degree that made him doubt it was next. Who knows, but he ran past and we were disqualified. He finished the rest of the course nicely.

The Jumpers run had one real challenge, a backside jump at #4. Almost all of us handled it just fine. The judge did point it out in her pre-class briefing that AKC is really encouraging judges to put in those kinds of challenges more often. AKC wants all of us to get used to tougher stuff as they get ready to roll out their new Premier class which will have a much more international (read that as harder) flair. So listen up agility peeps, if you don't have a good backside jump command now is the time to train one! I've good a pretty good "around back" and I definitely practiced it several times on the warm-up jump! You can see it in the video:

Jimmy did a beautiful, speedy job with this course and was rewarded with 1st place and 21 speed points. That's a good points tally in Jumpers!

Sunday again started with Standard, and an old issue reared its ugly head. Jimmy did not get on the table on his first approach. That is considered a refusal and we were disqualified. Not sure what was going on, but I hope and pray that won't be repeated!

Here's a look at it:

The Jumpers run wasn't too difficult and was actually set up for a nice speedy course. The weave poles were at #5, and for whatever reason, Jimmy popped out a pole too soon. It may have been that I started my turn too soon, or that he was distracted by a nearby off-course jump (it was much closer than the maps made it look!), but whatever it was, Jimmy will be working on completing ALL 12 poles independently of where I am. He did not get to complete the course. I walked him off the course, also known as the walk of shame. Getting to continue would have rewarded his pre-mature weaving exit.

So all in all, a rather disappointing weekend. I do try to remind myself it is just a game and to not take things so seriously, but occasionally I let it get to me. I need to work on keeping a better attitude! Shame on me, Jimmy deserves better!



Tracking Jimmy's PACH progress:
Very 1st Double-Q: Saturday 06/21/2014
Masters JWW legs: 14...MJP Title 01/25/15
Masters STD legs: 16...MXP Title!10/24/14
Double Q's: 9
PACH Points: 699

AKC Nationals 2016:
Double-Q's: 2 (out of 5 needed)
Points: 181 (out of 600 needed)....
Masters Legs: 8 (out of 20 needed)


  1. Thanks for sharing the videos, they were really interesting to watch. Jimmy did such a great job and hopefully he'll work out the issue with the table with a little more encouragement or training. It's probably hard not to take it seriously because you invest so much heart and time into training. I would probably have to keep reminding myself to keep things in perspective too. Great job, Jimmy!

  2. Awe! I'm sorry things didn't go so well this past weekend! You and Jimmy will do better next time! <3

  3. Well, I'm still impressed - as always. And super impressed that you don't even really need to talk to him while doing that. I suppose it's inevitable to be disappointed when things don't go well, but still....I bet Jimmy considers every run to awesome, so it's all good!

  4. Well, I still finks you and Jimmy are amazing!!! You get a gold star from me
    Loves and licky kisses
    Princess Leah xxx

  5. I thought Jimmy did a great the videos.

  6. Oh is early in the season, isn't it? We think Jimmy does a fantastic job.

  7. You'll do better next time! The not so great runs make the others that much better. ;)

  8. I have to say that the backside jump in the Saturday Jumpers course was super impressive!!!! You and Jimmy looked amazing in that run - so maybe you should keep remembering it!!!! In my piddly backyard agility, teaching Shyla backside jumps is on my list for this summer (if our course ever melts out)! I'm going to look at your again :) Way to go!

  9. I'm amazed at how you remember which way to go. I got dizzy just watching. Win or lose, I was impressed. And it looked Jimmy was having fun. Congrats.
    Kelley’s Dog Blog - The A to Z of Dog Shows


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