Monday, June 11, 2012

Hot, Hot, Hot!

We went to the All Dogs Sport Club's agility trial this past weekend. It is one of the few outdoor trials that we go to. They, along with the Ottawa Valley Border Collie Club, host one weekend trial in June and one in September. Saturday was supposed to be cloudy with sunny periods with a high of 23 degrees C so I decided to take all three dogs along with me.  It was hotter than expected and by the third event, Tucker was whining at me to get out of the heat and I had forgotten to bring his cool coat. Fortunately, it had rained the night before and the ground was still damp so for most of the rest of the day Tucker just hung out in the screen room laying on the cool ground rather than in his crate. Keltic was little party animal, happily greeting all the people and dogs he met with one exception, he didn't much care for an Aussie puppy that he met named Jive.

Beckett ran in five events on Saturday and he was hot and I don't mean he was overheated. While we didn't get any qualifying scores, he ran extremely well in all of his runs. In our first event, Snooker, he had a bar down (his only bar down all day) at the last obstacle of our opening and so we were out with not enough points to Q. We were really in sync though and I'm sure had he not knocked the bar we would have finished the close with lots of time to spare. In Jumpers, I momentarily forgot the course (it had run so smooth, I thought we missed part) so I stopped rotating and he took the obstacle in front, just like he was supposed to do. In Steeplechase, one missed contact took us over time but again I felt he had run very well. The course time was 40 seconds and Beckett ran it in 36.95 seconds, since he is slow on the A-frame that was a good time for him but the five faults put us over the course time. In the Standard run, the judge had set only 6 weaves which meant of course at Masters level we had to take them twice as there must be a minimum of 12 weaves at Masters. We got the first entry but on the second entry, I wasn't in a good position and he missed the entry. I don't even think he saw the weaves.

Master Gamblers

In Gamblers, I had Beckett try a mini gamble which was a teeter angled away from the line and then out to a tire; all the practices with him going away from me on a teeter paid off. The main gamble required a flip away, which I didn't think he would do but he surprised me in getting the third obstacle but didn't then take the tunnel right in front but came back to me on the line. We didn't actually flip to the third obstacle, instead after sending him to the tunnel, I called him back to me on the line so that we sent him over jump 2 on a slice.

So Saturday, although he ran great and I could feel that we were really in sync most of the time, was a bit of a disappointment.

Sunday was another day. Sunday was forecasted to be even hotter so I left Tucker at home with the AC on and a neighbour to check on him during the day. On Sunday, Beckett had four runs, a Gamble, a Jumpers, a Standard and a Snooker. The Gamble had a similiar flip to a jump. This time I guess I hadn't set him up as nice and he didn't get out to the second jump. As it turned out we didn't have enough points to qualify; I'm sure that the scribe failed to write down the points from the second time we did the weaves as there was only one 5 point indicated on our score sheet. In Jumpers, I came out of the ring disappointed as on the second last obstacle, a tunnel, Beckett started to spin and I was sure we had a refusal but maybe he stopped spinning just in time as there was no refusal called. Next up was our Standard. Beckett was the second dog in the ring. I noticed the first dog doing the tunnel at the end of the field. I quickly pulled out my course map, I had walked the course wrong. I'm not great at thinking on my feet and instinctively I did what I had walked. That put me on the left side of Beckett with the tunnel to his right and trying to push him out to the tunnel didn't work and we got a refusal. The rest of the run was nice so if I hadn't of screwed up, he likely would have Q'd.

Our last run was a Yin and Yang Snooker. I had never seen a Snooker like that before; two of the other competitors, who are also judges, wondered if it was even within the rules.  What it was, was there were two closing courses, a white course and a black course, hence Yin and Yang.  You could do obstacles from either the black or white course in your opening but in the close had to follow the numbers of either the black or white course but here's where it may have been outside the rules, if you faulted an obstacle on your colour course, you could go to the same numbered obstacle on the other coloured course and continue now on that coloured close.

Yin Yang Snooker
Beckett didn't do exactly what I planned, taking the jump of white obstacle 5 when I had planned to do obstacle 6, a tunnel; but I quickly revised that plan and put him in the second part of obstacle five, a tunnel. The rest of the run went as planned. We did the white course as our close. Beckett only needed to get through obstacle 6 to qualify; a good thing as he missed his weave entry, like many of the other dogs. I guess they just had too much speed coming out of the tunnel. And so with that we had finished the day with 2 Q's, his fifth Masters Jumpers and first Masters Snooker. I was glad I had not entered him in  the fifth event of the day as by now it was so hot (and now I mean the temperature) that Beckett ran out of the Snooker ring and to the first shady spot he found, a friend's sun shelter.

So while our Q rate doesn't show it, we had a great trial. Beckett was really hot; both Standards had course time of 60 seconds and Beckett ran each of them in about 45 seconds. Just hope the weather isn't as hot at Regionals in two weeks.


  1. I hate agility trials in hot weather. It can be so draining on both the humans and dogs (especially black dogs!).

    Glad that you had lots of fun!

    1. Funny that, Tucker my older sable has always minded the heat more than my bi-blacks. Maybe being more drivey they just hide it better.

  2. Hoping for 2 happy birthdays this week for our little friends. Glad to meet Keltic!

  3. We love the part about little Keltic being a party animal!!! The agility maps look so confusing to Mommy -- glad we don't do agility -- we would probably end up in the next continent if Mommy tried to read an agility map!

    1. Lassie and Benji, your Mum isn't the only one to find course maps confusing. And when you don't know the rules they are definately confusing.

  4. Sounds like things are coming together . Sorry it was so hot.


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