Monday, May 30, 2011

Good Behavior

Cosi gets in a quick nap on "Cousin Susie's" comfy bed.

The dogs are on their best behavior at Grandma's house. They are sharing beds and water bowls. Why is it that the water in someone else's bowl always tastes better? Is that like the doggie equivalent of the grass is always greener on the other side of the fence?

The best thing about Grandma's house is the low windowsills. The house is like one giant yard to Brisco who bops from one window to another, "chasing" the (fill in the blank here: dog walking, person jogging, or kid on a bike) outside all the while in air-conditioned comfort! We love Grandma's house.

Thursday, May 26, 2011


What captions would you put with these pictures?

Do I hafta wear this? I wanted to be a penguin for Halloween this year!

I wonder if I can get in the treat jar. If only I had opposable thumbs...

You get it. No, YOU get it. It's one of those pinch bugs!

Tuesday, May 24, 2011

Lull in the Action

Cosi and I will be off the trial circuit for a while now. We will compete in June but then we're off until August. The indoor place I used to frequent with Brisco in July and August has indoor/outdoor carpet as its surface. Cosi slides on that; he needs sprint turf for grip. So there will be a lull in the action for a while, which is good too. We can work on foundation skills and enjoy classes.

Here's a good foundation drill to work front crosses and serpentines:

Set up two jumps in sequence about 15 feet apart. With your dog on your left, run from jump #1 to jump #2, slowing up right before jump #2 to cue a turn. Turn towards the dog and now he's on your right. Run towards jump #1, slowing up to cue the turn, and turn towards the dog.

For serpentines, turn the jumps so they are parallel to each other. Set the dog up with his left shoulder just about at the jump bar. On the opposite side of the jump and with your left arm cuing the jump, release the dog. Switch to your right arm and indicate jump #2.

Happy Training!

Friday, May 20, 2011

Safe Journey, Anna

Today our Anna leaves for a year-long internship in Ottowa. We wish her well and safe journey. She is a light in our lives.

Friday, May 13, 2011


That Cosi is a heartbreaker. On the second day of the trial we had great runs in both standard and jumpers. However, in standard we had one dropped bar. In jumpers he popped at #10 weave pole (I don't know why; I was running straight). I checked his time at the results sheets as we didn't get a copy sheet ringside. In standard he beat the first placed dog by 1 second; in jumpers he beat the first placed dog by 4 seconds. If we had run clean, we could have had to first places. *sigh* shoulda. coulda. woulda.

Next time.

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

A Q Beats Working!

Cosi and I are at a three-day agility trial--in the middle of the week! We ran standard and jumpers today, and qualified in jumpers! #2!! Here's the uploaded video on YouTube. I was very proud of this run as it required front crosses and Cosi keeping his back legs UP. With all the bars up at the end, I was a happy, happy handler.

Click here to watch the video.

Saturday, May 7, 2011


NQ - Not Qualified. These are the letters that appear on your score sheet when the judge--for whatever reason--takes your qualification (Q) away from you. Perhaps your dog fouled the ring, perhaps you touched your dog to guide him into the weaves, or perhaps you used foul language. These are obvious reasons for an NQ.

I recently saw a scene at a trial, and, after you read it, let me know what you would have done, what you think of the outcome. Here's what happened:

A woman ran her sheltie in standard and Q'd. She then ran him in jumpers and Q'd. This was her 20th QQ so she earned her MACH. The club was prepared for this, and a club member handed a jump bar to her while she and the dog were still in the ring. She took the bar and did a victory lap. The dog was unsure (why is she holding this big thing and running towards me?) and skittered away from her and out of the ring. Rule #1 in AKC: Your dog must be on leash when they leave the ring or it's an NQ. The woman tried to call the dog back to her. He had jumped onto a chair that was ringside and sat there, making no motion to go back to her. Rule #2 in AKC: If your dog leaves the ring, it must return to you to get its leash on or it's an NQ. A fellow competitor tried to "help" by picking up the dog and handing it to the woman. Rule #3 in AKC: If your dog leaves the ring, no one else may touch it or it's double handling and you NQ. The judge, meanwhile, was making faces as if to say, "OK. I'll overlook his leaving the ring. Hmmm....he's not coming back. No! Don't touch it, don't make me call this. Rats." The judge regretfully came over and told the woman she'd have to NQ her run.

Do you think the judge did the correct thing by NQ'ing the run? Here are some arguments that were floating around the crowd ringside:

She was already done with her run, what does it matter if the dog left the ring?

It was a MACH run, the judge should have given her the Q.

The judge was right because the other person touched the dog.

What are your thoughts?

Sunday, May 1, 2011

A Great Weekend

Jack and Cosi and I traveled to Maryland this weekend for the Shetlant Sheepdog of Greater Baltimore trial. We had a great weekend. The site (a new indoors sports center) had great footing, the hotel was clean and close to the site, and we went out to dinner both nights (always a favorite for me!).

Cosi and I got our first leg in Excellent B jumpers with weaves. We had a good run on a tough course, one that a lot of fast dogs were messing up at the end. Here's the video:

We had fun at this trial, but then SSCBG is always a good luck charm for me. Brisco and I got our MACH at their trial. The tradition of good runs continues!