Sunday, June 7, 2009

Sonic and the Scooter Child

Sonic and I had a fairly quiet time at training this last week. With the ADAA three day trial last weekend I think most people were too exhausted to head out to training and stayed home to rest instead. I managed to do one night of see saw work with Sonic and the rest of it was spent doing jump grid work. I had hoped to work more on his other contacts but unfortunately it didn't happen. I have to admit though it was nice to have a couple of early training nights. However after this weekends trials we definitely need to work on them this week...

Saturday was a double trial run by the Sheltie Club at the Canine grounds. It was magnificent weather so I was looking forward to a really nice day. Sadly it wasn't quite as good a day as I had hoped for. Sonic and I started with an Excellent Jumping run. The course was quite tight and I was interested to see how Sonic handled being able to stretch out and then collect up for a couple of tight turns. As it happened he ran really well but was unlucky to have a bar down when I front crossed (very badly I might add) on his line to get him round to an off tunnel entry. There was some bottom sliding on his start line too that needs to be addressed. I'm glad he's keen but I need to nip that stuff in the bud now. It was slack of me to not jump on him about it then and there and I'm going to have to at future trials otherwise I'm going to have crap start lines. Nothing worse than not being able to trust your dog to stay put when you lead out. The sneaky little bugger must think that I don't notice. Next up was an Excellent Agility run. This run was a bit average with Sonic managing a massive fly off on the see saw and a very average dog walk performance. His weavers on the other hand were great as was his A-Frame. I really felt the course was too hard for Excellent level. It was nested from a Masters course and in one particular part the Masters dogs really struggled to get through so it was no surprise that most of the Excellent level dogs couldn't manage. In the afternoon Sonic and I had a fantastic Excellent Jumping run for a clear round and a pretty good Excellent Agility run where I front crossed him onto a A-Frame on a ridiculous angle and needless to say he couldn't hold on and went flying off the side! The upside was that he didn't fly off the see saw.

Today was another double header, this time at Northern Suburbs Dog Club. More amazing weather was on the agenda and I was hoping for a slightly more successful day. But, it certainly wasn't looking good after the first run. Unlike most of our other trials, Northern Suburbs run their trials at a huge sporting complex in Carine. On any given weekend the place turns into sporting grand central with every sport imaginable being held on the grounds. It is also the local dog walking, child playing, bike riding and general exercising area for all the surrounding suburbs. Sonic's first run was on the closest side to one of the main walking paths and just as we were about to start there was a few loud bangs and then a child went whizzing past on a scooter. This was a little too much for Sonic's senses to handle so after the fourth jump he could go no further. With hackles up Mr Reactive started alarm barking and staring off after the scooter child. The best I could do was collect the youngster and depart the ring. Shortly after we ran Excellent Agility. Luckily the ring was further away from the path and I was able to keep him focused and calm with a nice clear round to follow.

Lunchtime saw me, frankfurters, clicker and Sonic standing by the path and some serious "look at that games" were happening with any oncoming scooter children (of which there were many). Sonic has a serious love of frankfurters so scooter children were soon forgotten. The afternoon trial was on the other side of the grassed area so although we had spectators sitting on the ground watching there was no moving objects. Sonic lapped up a really nice Excellent Jumping course with an easy clear round. Shortly after was the Excellent Agility and although I believed that we went clear, the judge gave us a penalty for a jump that she said was taken the wrong way. I am pretty positive that we did it correctly but the judges decision wins so no qually card for us. As much as it's annoying I'm in no rush to title him so I'm not really worried that we didn't get the card. However he is now sitting on four Excellent Jumping cards so if he titles at this weekends double header we may be doing Opens for a while. Sonic is not even remotely ready to tackle a Masters course.

Some other fun stuff last week was one of Riot's new commercials debuting on TV. Better Pets and Gardens had a three day "Riot" sale. Kathy their promotions manager is quite chuffed that Riot is called Riot. It has certainly helped them develop some catchy phrases for their advertising campaigns. I'm really looking forward to seeing what else they have come up with from all the footage that we got on the day of filming. Nothing like enjoying seeing the fruits of your labour.

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