Aframes and Blogs

Blog needs a facelift.

I'm making MORE COOKIES. (Shakes fist at Tammy again, because they are AWESOME and somewhat counterproductive to my fitness and health goals).

Did some AF's today. Geeze, Ten's look awful, but generally speaking I don't know that I care a lot since 100% of them were "good" today. Ky's are awesome. Rave's were reasonable when I put the apex of the frame back down below the top of my head.


RHR Recap

Reasonable weekend overall with the dogs.

GP Q for Ky and the bye.
STP Q's for both girls.
Team Q's for both girls really not much thanks to me beyond team building skills.

Rave ran really nicely; super happy with him. No putzing out, all pretty good big boy running. Tire definitely needs work.

Ten, Rave, and Ky, all missed AF's over the weekend!! Part of that was Ann tested the RAF to a turn pretty hard, part of that is Ten and Rave needed work.

Teeters . . . the girls just have shitty teeters.

Yesterday did basically nothing - would have let the dogs have today as a recovery day as well but for the girls the clock is ticking for Nationals and for Rave I'd like to not just be flushing money at his AKC show next weekend. Doing enough of that as it turns out Ky is already qualified for Tryouts (easier than ever . . . huh), and Ten only needs 13 points for AKC Nationals having been off of AKC since July. Hopefully three days not really required. With any luck the courses will be a lot of fun and well worth the $$.

Today worked on AF's with Ten and Rave. Was pleased that a little reminder seemed to help Ten and that Rave changed his behavior with reward withheld with one failed rep.

Worked on the teeter with both girls with it lowered to about 12" to the pivot. Really, I think I suck at training teeters and maintaining my criteria in the ring. There's part of me that just wants to accept that I have fucked it up and stop kidding myself that I'm going to fix it.

Filmed a weave entry session with Rave. He has had a little trouble sticking the entry on 90 degrees to the "far" side of the poles, so I thought I'd make it hard and do short sets of poles. He was a good boy. Session below; commentary by Ky, classic falling on my ass by me. Someone told me I should be running barefoot last summer. This is why I laugh. I am a person who requires cleats if I expect to remain generally vertical.


Keeping Records

Going to try to start doing some record keeping again. Nothing interesting for the world at large.

Cynosport is four weeks away. Working on spit polish with the girls.

Rave; just puppy stuff. Getting him confident with sends for the most part, and really challenging his weave entries here since he's struggling with them away from home.


Difficult soft side weave entries, proofing against motion that doesn't support pole completion.
Reinforcing DW end behavior.
Handling polish.


Working the verbal collection cue.
Light backsides.


Full speed pole entries which require independent collection.
Commitment to jumps.
Plain old practicing handling responses.
DW end behavior.

Sick right now; makes it easy not to over do.

This is my first week of not teaching anymore. It's more than a bit sad. I was sad to give up my students, and feel like I'm leaving them on their own, even though I know they're in good hands.

Meanwhile working on a consulting job today, along with course designs for a judging assignment in December and a seminar in October.

LoseIt! Redux

Getting plum, getting back into the LoseIt! accountability habit. Anyone feel inspired to join in? May switch software annoyingly shortly after, but need to change my behavior now, not after I have time to go software shopping. I'm up 10# and want to get that turned around before it's 20#.

My damn gym cancelled my class after my awesome coach left, so I'm getting far less exercise (um, none, actually) and inspiration. Need to get myself to a new gym but I keep finding reasons not to do that, nor do get into the mountains and hike which would be another thing to do this summer since I think it might be the last summer of my giant vacation (formerly referred to as retirement).



I love this book. Listening to it again today while building some jumps (turns out I'm more than a little short on equipment at home for practice these days).

There's a long half finished post about Nationals this year. I will eventually get back to it.

The short version of it is that I totally cracked this year under pressure. It was that essay in Malcom Gladwell's "Outliers" all over the place. I choked. It was like being a novice again - forgetting courses and not cuing jumps.

Yes, we had some lovely runs over the weekend, but the closer we got to being successful overall, the more I melted down. There are plenty of details that go along with this, but they really don't matter that much.

Anyway - back to "Wait" and why I had to jump up and run in here to dash off a quick post. I'll even leave this one public despite Russian Coach Purse selling commenters.

Frank Partnoy suggests in "Wait" that part of the trouble someone like me might experience is when to know when to delay a decision and when not to. When an expert can make that split second decision, but a novice needs to delay the decision as long as possible. I hesitate to use the word "expert" in relation to myself, but I do get around courses without much thinking these days at local shows. Perhaps with too little, in fact.

However, when it gets to be a high pressure event like Nationals, it's hard to be more of a "noob" than I am. Last year was our first AKC and USDAA Nationals. My expectations were not much, just to do respectably well and gather information about myself.

This year, I may have had expectations. Ten is a damn fast, damn good, dog. There aren't many that can match her speed. Yes, she has bars if I'm not perfect, but gosh, I get her around local JWW trials something like 80% of the time clean. So, reasonable enough to think we could go clean twice and at least expect a challengers berth. Especially after that TTB run on Friday. JUST be clean.

Ky is just a damn good dog. In fact, I'd say shes an awesome dog. Forgiving, fast enough, hardest worker ever, EXTREMELY trainable. Her "goal" would to be to get to 26" finals having given it our all on three rounds.

Yet with both dogs, when the critical runs came around I had novice handler errors. Ten's JWW run I got so rattled by a rattled bar and forcing myself not to look back at it, I did not push her hard enough to the back of the jump after the poles and we went off course.

Ky - oh my! She is SO good. Total rookie melt downs in Hybrid AND Challengers (which I never expected to make it into) and failure to work every jump.

Anyway. Mr. Partnoy's point is that we may think we are experts, but when presented with a certain problem set we may be no such thing despite our expectations.

I needed to handle all of those runs like they were the hardest International courses I had ever seen, with EACH obstacle being a difficult challenge. But no, I decided on some level I didn't need to . . . and kept both girls out of Finals again.

Live and learn and that ends this year's dwelling on the negative.

Great book. Next year I'll manage the pieces better - the ones in the ring and outside!

18' Jump Spacing

Just looking at doggie decisions based on handler location and cues at 18' with three jumps.

Interesting . . . if you're kind of a jumping geek.

Tennie. Sigh. Ky - UP is better than collecting!

2012_11_23 Ten RDW

Need to get the newly revamped DW training (and last hurrah for the attempt to retrain Ten) documented somewhere. So here it is. Dry as dirt and not really meant for public consumption but I'll leave it unlocked and take the spamming anyway.

2012_11_23 Setup Notes and Summary

Puppy is doing well. He's onto leash walks and looking forward to being "freed" on Christmas Eve. I'm tired of listening to him whine and yell about being crated, but hey, that's part of the deal.

Please help out if you can

Please help my friend Teresa Smith if you can. Even a small donation will help and be sincerely appreciated.


Teresa is one of the most hardworking and deserving people I know. About five years ago she was laid off from her job of 20 years, she had trouble finding another job so she started cleaning houses and doing odd jobs. She sold her condo and moved into a cottage on property in exchange for caretaking. She is always working to make ends meet. Zhoie's surgery and rehab are a significant financial hardship for Teresa, but there was never a moment where she considered not doing it.

Zhoie 300 dpi

Zhoie was running strong and fast in my class a week or two before her injury. If you don't know Zhoie and Teresa; they were an amazing team in agility. Zhoie was fast as anything, and she and Teresa really read each other's minds.

Give a little bit if you can. Truly anything helps.

The n'awesome that is 22" poles plus DW hose game

Set up the 22" poles today. The girls are finished with their competitive season for the year, with just Nationals ahead.

Time to set up the 22" poles so they at least have a few reps before Nationals. They'll only practice (and as little as possible) on the narrow poles between now and then.

Gotta say - Ky, never a good weaver, looks AWFUL on her first shot at 22". She body slammed herself on the second pole, and her footwork was abysmal. Sigh. If I still had my 22" 2x2's I could at least build her up to the full set but as it is, I think it's just trial by fire. Poor girl.

Ten, no problem. In fact she looks a bit sharper still than she does at 24" which looks pretty sharp. Those front end angles she has may not be in vogue for agility dogs, but I think they do give dogs an advantage in the poles.

I've figured out I can use the hose for Ten's DW and suddenly she's making big breakthroughs. Ah. Well, of course who knows how those breakthroughs at this late date will hold up at Nationals, but she has had some awesome DWs lately, and some leapy ones. Hard to really think she "gets it" when her failure rate is still so high, but she does have enough really nice hits that I have to think there is SOME understanding happening.