Sunday, August 23, 2009

The joys of gravity...

Murphy and Teller had a long day yesterday - A LONG HUMID day starting with agility in the morning - and since there was a relatively small turnout both boys got several turns to play - working a couple of things each turn. Teller is still focusing on contacts - specifically the A-Frame contact. Then we came home and had a 45 minute swim session, then some obedience work and another swim. TIRED doggies. The result was two passed out golden retrievers by 8:30pm. I'm watching a movie and catching up on some work when I look over and see this:

Yeah - gravity is a bitch!


And then, just for fun, I rotated the image 180 degrees:


Alien Woo!

And this is how dogs are fundamentally different from children...I also posted this goofy picture on facebook without fear that someday the capturing and posting of this image would ever come back to bite me in psychotherapy years from now...Dogs are much harder to screw up :-)

Friday, August 21, 2009

GMGRC and NOMAD

Wow, I got behind again. Let's blame the weather. Why the weather? Because it actually got nice out after a really wet, cold and miserable May, June and July. Now we're into really hot temperatures for Vermont and high humidity.

So where did I leave off - Green Mountain Golden Retriever Club AKC agility trial:
Another home show for us - love the home shows. I dropped Murphy back to Novice Preferred to see if he liked the easier game (lower jumps and less complex) and I think he absolutely liked the easier game. I did see some stress on Saturday JWW when he missed a weave entry and wasn't sure he wanted to continue playing the game. He got it together but spent WAY too much time goofing around and NQ'ed. In standard - which has always been Murphy's challenge because he has to slow down and think - Murph went 3 for 3 and finished his NAP title with three first placements. Murph also got a NAJ leg with a 1st place.

Teller is now in Excellent Jumpers and Open Standard. For the first time ever Woo was Q-less all weekend. We had some SUPER jumpers runs but one mistake took us out each day: The first day he popped out of the weaves at pole 10, the second he missed his entry when I got in his way and the third I got in his way (theme here) on a front cross and cost a refusal (not his fault). I got some great distance work in jumpers and he didn't make any mistakes that MACH dogs didn't make - so we were in good company.

Teller's Open Standard runs had brilliant moments and some not so brilliant moments - mostly just some teamwork stuff - calling him sooner and a couple of off-courses that I just never thought of when I walked the course..

Here's the video:


Then we took a couple of weekends off and did a lot of this:




It was nice to enjoy the summer and enjoy the pool - it's been a little weird existing as a homebody for so many weekends (if you count the on-call weeks and also teaching Saturday mornings and training on Sunday as being a "homebody"). I wish I had gotten a little more done around the house - but no one ever looks back at their life and regrets not spending more quality time with the Dyson.

Then last weekend we went down to the NADAC trial in Stowe (NOMAD) -We generally don't play in the NADAC venue but it's really hard to pass up a local trial - 40 minutes away from home and a chance to get a bunch of inexpensive runs in each day. The trial is in Stowe, VT in a beautiful meadow along the famous Stowe bike path - a babbling stream just on the edge of the field for some canine play and cooling-off. It's a small trial, nice folks and did I mention a GORGEOUS site?

Last weekend's weather was 85-90 degrees for both days - with a relatively high humidity. Tough conditions for Vermont dogs!!! Both dogs stayed cool with the help of shade cloths, cool coats, fans and LOTS of water. Teller gave me nice efforts in all of his runs - holding up unbelievably well in the heat. We finished with a bunch of first placements (7) and some legs (6) towards various NADAC titles. It's hard to believe that this trial is where he made his debut last summer before coming out this spring to trial for real. I think we've both made a lot of progress as a team - I know now that I can trust Teller to do what I ask him to do - he's going to stay in the game and he'll keep working for the whole run - but I've got to hold up my end of the bargain!!!


Another AKC trial for us in Mass and then I think we'll "call it" for the season and get ready for next spring.