So, sometimes you win, and sometimes you just gotta deal with the hand you’re dealt. Overall the trial went well but this morning got off to a rough start with a really unfortunate incident that the judge could have (should have) prevented. I wont go into it, but I had enough people come up to me and tell me we got a really bum deal to know it wasn’t all in my head. It was our first go in Excellent JWW and was kind of a bummer to get “introduced” that way. But, whatever. Like someone I was talking to about it after the fact said, sometimes you get screwed and sometimes you get a gift. I got a gift from a judge not all that long ago so I guess I was due for a bit of the other side.
Anyway, Forest was very, very good. He was “up” the whole time, even if he did run out of gas a bit at the end of Saturday when the heat turned on. That was one of my most motivating factors into doing the move up–to get him early in the day with hopefully more energy and lower temps. Basically at this point, any messes that occur are either due to a bad handling decision by me, or just lack of proper foundation training. I have no excuses for not training more on the basics—hello weave poles! And, honestly, I feel pretty good about how far my handling skills have come in the last 6-9 months. Funny thing was I managed to get us through the most technical bits of the courses—but we fell down on silly things like completing the weaves or rear crossing tunnels (still!). So, nothing to do but keep at it.
He also recovered spectacularly from a little snark fest that occurred between him and another reactive dog and went on to his job like it never happened. That in and of itself should be considered a victory. A year ago we never would have been able to hang out in front of the ring gate with the chaos that goes on during Excellent. He was a champ all weekend, and I am proud of him for that.
It was a nice trial and as much as my judge incident sucked, it was comforting to have so many people who I do not know come up to me and talk to me about and it be supportive. The agility community is pretty cool, I am coming to find out. And, speaking of, I am included in the “Agility Blog Action Day” post that Steve of Agility Nerd is hosting. So, I’ll be back on Tuesday expounding on my very important thoughts about volunteering at trials. Hah. Or maybe just making excuses?