Sunday, October 08, 2006

Close but no Q

I'm as pleased with Murphy as I think I could be today - he was a good boy and came very close to qualifying in open today. I'm optimistic for tomorrow.

There were some difficult surroundings today - three little girls hanging over the ring gating (ack) and several dogs on the other side of the ring gating in the direction that we were sending the dumbbell for both the flat and over the high jump.

I still need to work on transitions - it hasn't been an issue at home training so I know it's a matter of comfort level - his and mine. I need to be more animated between exercises and I need to be better at keeping him engaged with me - more hand touches, more spins, more stupid pet tricks.

Murphy's heel work was nice I thought - a slow sit, and he forged on the fast which I compensated for by moving faster, the ring gate about turn always re-connects us. I had some inattention on the fig 8, but he was there. His drop was perfect - on man he was brilliant. No problems with the retrieve on the flat, we rean into a bump on the retrieve over high. My throw could have been better - for sure. I try to throw left, this one went right - into the corner of the ring where the rally people had gathered with their dogs - waiting to go in and waiting for scores. Murphy does have issues with competition for his dumbbell - in that he won't compete for it. If another dog wants his dumbbell - or he thinks someone else does he will yield it to them without question.

So we position ourselves in front of the high jump, I throw the dumbbell, Murphy waits, I send him and he sits there - "this is a test", I'm not leaving (argh!), I give him a second command - he sits there. So we've just NQ'ed - what do I do? I decide to help him aka schooling in the ring. I move with him and bowl him over the jump (the judge - a lovely very very very nice lady) gets a bit flustered: "You touched your dog!" - yeah, by accident - the schooling part was on purpose - the touching was accidential. The judge rushed in towards me after I "schooled" and Murphy debated whether or not to return over the jump - the judge though - and that's what she's such an awesome lady - noticed this and backed off so Murph came sailing over the jump and fronted beautifully. :-)

His stays were prefect - no problems. What a good boy! So, the lessons learned - there's always something. ALWAYS something. Murphy seems pretty tuckered out at this point. I'll order some dinner and go to bed early again tonight. The show starts at 9am tomorrow. We're "on" at 11:15 so I figure we'll mosey in around 9 tomorrow.

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