Saturday, March 6, 2010

What a week...catching up

Mostly this was a boring week. Thursday was our usual agility class although we only did two courses this week and Vegas was more cooperative (Yay!). After we completed our two runs of two courses, we all loaded equipment into the trailer for today's agility demo. As per usual, Jim's courses were quite complicated and gave us ample opportunity to test our skills and apply different handling techniques. Some of the sequences included serpentines and taking the jump from the back side and a few tight wraps. Definitely some good handler moves required!

Friday night we went to the dog park for a while and I was so proud of Vegas because she really got out and played some more, chased a bit, and wasn't a complete cling-on to me. That's a huge accomplishment for her every time she does it so Yay, Vegas!

Today was March for Mutts at North Clackamas Park. We were running behind and I didn't get there nearly as early as I wanted. However, when we did show up, we briefly walked the course then waited our turn to run. It was certainly warmer today that we are used to and perhaps because of that Vegas was not as energetic as normal. On top of that, two obstacles into her first run she pooped on the course! She has never, ever done that before and it was quite the shock to me. Once that was cleaned up, boy though did she have more energy. Hahaha. Although we didn't have a clean run, we had a fun run and got to redo some areas, and basically the goal was just to show people how much fun the dogs can have and let them see how obstacles are completed. Of course plenty of people who I had talked to were just plain impressed to see a Great Dane run in agility.

Then we went out into the fray for a while and met some people with an uber-cute merle puppy named, Luna. She is a very unusual merle because she has a lot of larger black patches and her overall coloring is much darker - very gorgeous. Can't wait to see her grown up.

Okay, so then we headed over to get little brother his Rabies vaccination. Of course the two were quite the hit together and Vegas showed off her stuff in order to get treats. Then back to the ring we went for run number two. She did quite well and got a chance to do some serpentines and threadles and I got to use that good ol' opposite arm throw. Basically I learned this move from Craig French last year where in order to change direction after an obstacle, you can throw your opposite arm up. So, in this case, the jump was at my left him and I needed Vegas to go over it going the opposite direction from the next obstacle, the teeter. That meant that I needed her to land and immediately turn to her right to get back facing forward like I was. I throw my left arm just before she jumps and she knows to turn when she lands. It sets her up perfect for heading for the next obstacle. If she didn't know what direction to turn, she might back-jump the jump we just took. In a trial that would be bad. The arm trick works really well for her and I use it quite frequently.

After we were done running, it was time for our confidence course. We had quite the line going to try things which was great! We had worked out with the hosts ahead of time that we would split the proceeds since our group is non-profit too and we need to maintain our equipment. We collected $64 so $32 went toward our group. And in the meantime, that meant we got to share agility with a lot of neat people and their dogs. I started out by helping at a tunnel but supporting it when it was scrunched up and short. Eventually it appeared I wasn't needed there so I went and helped out this lady and her granddaughter with their little black mix named Holly. She was a natural who wasn't afraid of anything. What a gem and it was so fun. I spent about 30 minutes with them because each granddaughter had a chance at working Holly. What's even cooler is they just adopted Holly two weeks ago and she is really bonded with the lady who adopted her so it'll be exciting to see if they decide to do agility in the future.

We finally left and went to my mom's for a visit. Leo had fun harassing the Yorkie trio and Vegas just hung out getting loved on by Mom and I. After that we headed home where I spent almost two hours mowing the lawn and Vegas and Leo just hung out waiting for me. And now all I hear is the snoring of a tired big dog after an awesome day in the sun.

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