Wednesday, 15 September 2010

Catch up...

We've had a few flyball competitions since our last update, including Drax where we had a line up of Lucy, Brooke, Jet and Murphy and managed to run a fantastic 18.57s and I know we had room. The best thing was that we were consistent all day long, each race we were 18.80s and below, only slower if we actively held off. We won the div after a few close races, but our speedy black whippet brought it home for us every time.

Next competition was Bakewell last weekend, after a string of disasters we ended up with a very mixed team of Buddy, Dylan, Bailey, Jet and George. We did however win the division, but it was hard fought and definitely close racing. I think my favourite moment was Jet racing a JRT when she ran anchor. The JRT was at the jump closest to the box when Jet went through the start gate. She still beat it back, good girly.

I'm really pleased with Jet's flyball at the moment, she seems to be in top condition and running like a star bless her. We've been putting the jump in front of the box at training to get her position on the box better and it seems to be working:

Agility wise I'm at a bit of a loose end really. Jet is an absolute star at training, very fast, keen and responsive. I know that she is capable of running at the higher grades and I know she can win out of grade 3, I watch dogs in grade 4/5/6 and think, heck, Jet is faster than this and I know she can do the turns. When I get to competitions, I get so het up about needing to win out and worrying about whether she'll be quick enough, that it all falls to pieces. Jet is a sensitive soul on the sly, and she starts lip smacking/yawning on the line and doesn't want to play with her toy etc. I know it's 100% me, and even when I sit there and focus on just chilling doesn't work....I get in the queue and see a fast dog go and I'm like "oh no, we'll never win this now" and it all goes down hill from there. I know that I need to stop being like this, but somehow I just can''s so frustrating, and being frustrated makes me even worse!

Therefore, I have come to the decision to have a break from agility until Christmas at the earliest...enjoy training Fly on the weekends and flyball with Jet. Leanne has offered to take Jet to a few agility shows, and I know she enjoys running for her so she's booked in for a few over winter without me. Hopefully next year I'll be a bit more chilled, probably with Fly to worry about at this stage lol.

Just flyball training this weekend, and then back to uni!

Thursday, 2 September 2010

7 Things...

Stolen from various blogs. Firstly 7 things you may not know about me, and 7 things you may not know about my dogs.

1. I was born two weeks late, if I had been born on the "correct" date, I'd have shared a birthday with both my Mum and my Nan.
2. I am super competitive with everything that I do, in fact I hate how nasty it makes me sometimes!
3. Every day of my life at uni I ask myself am I on the right course (and occasionally I get the inspiration to say, yes, you are).
4. My next dog will be a dark faced border collie (but I've said that twice before)
5. I have 2 bedrooms at home, and they're both tidy right now (shocker).
6. I am a massive geek on the subject of conditioning.
7. I'd really love to specialise in sporting dogs or sporting dog nutrition.

My dogs:
1. Jet used to be a massive fatty as a puppy/juvenile, in fact I may have to post a photo one day.
2. Poppy is featured in the Tia Greyhound Rescue Book, talking all about her flyball/agility.
3. Chip used to be called Chester. The rescue suggested that we call him Terry because he was chocolate/orange, I personally find it hilarious and call him Terry just to wind my Mum up. Tehehe.
4. Whisky is actually Kennel Club registered as Whirlwind Whizzer.
5. When Jet started flyball at our old club, she was terrible and I stopped taking her to beginners cos she was just so bad!
6. My first ever dog was a little whippety-terrier cross called Bobby. Looking back he'd have been an awesome heightdog, lol.
7. I'd quite like to take up obedience again with Fly, she is set to have some lovely heelwork.

Tuesday, 24 August 2010

Also a bad blogger...

...But a bit more recent than Fly at least!

It's been a busy few months. We have competed at EMDAC in the British Open Championship (2Es, way to go!), then at Rotherham Flyball, then Dinnington, Scunthorpe and the British Championships. No exciting news from any of them, but Jet is running much better at flyball. She was really good at the champs and at training too.

She did loads of agility on Anglesey...she taught agility "Jet style" to the High Flyers, who I think all had a go at running her. The "OMG I actually have to run with her" look on their faces half way around the course was great. She was great for them too, you'd not know she was mine, totally focussed on whoever ran her.

My concern recently has been that Jet hasn't had the oomph in the agility ring that she does at training. I think I get nervous, and it passes onto her. We were at Dashin Dogs today, totally solo - nobody there that we go to shows with regularly....which I think was a good thing. I focussed so hard on being calm and playing loads in the queue with her (even though it took some real enthusiasm as she looked totally disinterested for some reason) but she was off and got really hyper and less worried. She did three stonking runs speed wise, just little mistakes - a wrong tunnel entrance, I cue'd her wrong in another course and the finally I pulled her off a all me. But I was very pleased!

Anyway, probably more Dashin updates soon!

Monday, 12 July 2010

Jet's turn

Not sure how well this will play, but a video that Leanne kindly took for me.

I'm pleased with it in some ways, she's neat and it's fairly effective but not technically perfect (or that good!). Some more work to be done, as I feel she can push off more than she does. This is probably due to her being a bit too low on it, but she's also hitting with separate paws. I must bear in mind though, that this was when I wasn't too happy with how she was running, so maybe if she did have an underlying injury it's related? Anyway, she was a good girl at Rotherham and was back to her old self again....having rested for a good few days!

She'll be off to boxwork bootcamp soon anyway, so we'll see soon how she does ;)

P.S. It appears that blogger makes videos reeeeeeally slow. Will upload to youtube too...

Thursday, 24 June 2010

One of those mixed sort of posts...

Well this is one of those posts where there are about a million things I think I want to talk about, and it will go one of two ways; you will either have to contend with reading masses of waffle, or I get bored and summarise quite shamelessly. We will is our week...

I went to Doncaster with my Mum to captain and generally help out. My little team were super and Lucy, Kim, Stripe and Chip clocked 20.03 (although it has to be said, Chip did put in a fairly crazy fast run!)! Even though it was getting hotter, they were staying around the 20.90-21.20s mark most of the day - fantastic! They came 4th in the end, but similar to Rotherham, they probably should have won the division - tiny mistakes, lights by fractions.

Jet's turn at Doncaster, running in div.3 on a declared time. We had our super subs from the second team, in the form of Dylan and Buddy. We ended up coming 3rd. Jet ran all day, except for 2(?) legs and when she ran lead in the last leg of the day, she wasn't great. For the rest of the time she was ok, and had some good runs, but she hadn't run over 14" for quite a while. It was hot I guess, but I came away feeling like Jet wasn't quite herself. I had her checked by Kath just to be sure there wasn't anything wrong in her opinion...nothing. I think sometimes I am maybe just a bit harsh on the poor dog.

Away from flyball and back to agility, I found out on Monday that Jetly has qualified for the British Open Championship class at Asfordby in July. I had no idea, but a few weeks ago when she got her two wins she amounted enough points to go through - who knew! Anyway, according to Leanne, there are jumping/agility rounds, just like a real champ class. It should be exciting anyway!

I came home from university for the night, partly to have my hair done (good god I feel BLONDE!) and also to bring back some junk....oops, I mean very important items of high value. Having clearly lost a few brain cells with my hair going several shades lighter, I thought it might be a good idea to go to agility with Jet. First off, we helped Emma with one of the new beginners whilst Leanne did some work with my Mum and Chip before the weekend. Seeing as we were very quiet (unusual at the moment!) I decided to bring Fly down to soak up the atmosphere....goodness me she was driving me mental! "Arhooooo" and throwing herself about like a total monster watching Chip. That and trying her damnedest to throw herself over any jump we walked near, safe to say she was put away before Jet came out.

Jet did some nice work, she was neat and tidy, but her seesaw wasn't great. To be honest, her seesaw needs work, but I just haven't had the time. In the ring she doesn't seem slow on it and *touch wood* never flies it, but at training she's quite creepy. I tried everything from quick release to having Leanne with treats at the end, throwing a toy....she just wasn't having it. Ok, she did marginally improve, but I didn't want to push it and put her off completely. She did a couple of reasonable ones, so she got a lot of praise and left her at that.

Back to university, oh I do love motorway driving....almost as much as putting petrol in my car everyday...grrrrrr! Well, to be honest, I do really like driving, I just hate paying for bloody petrol. I saw that we had 4 hours of lectures of behaviour and hoped that it would be interesting...and it really was. It was a bit of a revelation to be honest, as a lot of what I thought I knew was pretty much send out of the window. All four hours was on dog behaviour and it was great, but it really did make me think. Anyway, through one thing and another I have come to the conclusion that Jet is actually quite an anxious dog at home. Everything that I thought was confident about her, is probably actually a diffusion behaviour...I make her worse with some of the things I do. I don't want to bore anyone with the details, but it definitely made me think. I keep considering getting her a DAP diffuser, to try and ease things as well as me changing? Answers on a postcard.

I came back from uni for the summer, all my stuff packed into the little car. I arrived just in time to set off to flyball training. I did some stuff with chasing Jet off the box, but she kept ball spitting the little git. It was kind of like the toshy thing, and I had Jane release her and me running after her....she was quick, I'll give her that, but she spat her bally out every time. Hmph. I asked Jane if I could train her over 14" as I felt she was struggling a bit with it, she was good and her box was nice but she slowed quite quickly. I'm in two minds about this really, as she is a very fit dog. Now, I keep asking myself, is she a) unfit (unlikely!) b) struggling with 14" due to her stumpy legs (possible, but she did a season of sub4.6s over 14" not too long ago!) c) just not giving it her all, as she was running lead and needs winding up d) has an underlying injury. I feel like I'm so totally overanalysing (congrats if you're still here....welcome to my musing!), but I think it's possibly option C, as she just doesn't get wound up going lead....

However, I can't help but feel like there is something else. I watched Jet walk as she got out of the car when we got home, and there was just a small amount of stiffness in her right fore...she also occasionally skips one of her back legs. I don't know if I am being overly keen, but I keep thinking she's maybe just one tenth lame. I have kept her on yumove (double dose after training) and she wears boots, and she is checked regularly by Kath! I have recently changed her leg supports to some which we bought from the USA, as her Dog Boots Active ones have lost the stickiness of the velcro. I will revert back to those after getting my Mum to re-velcro them. Might be worth considering.

Anyone still reading now will think I'm totally neurotic, which I am. Also, anyone that knows me will know that I'd never ever tell/show to Jet that I wasn't pleased...she's my little sweetie.

This weekend we have Dogs Unleashed and on Tuesday I drive to Bristol to meet up with Nat for the Euros....exciting times!

Monday, 14 June 2010

Rotherham Flyball

Very tired so not too much to say. We were there both days, on saturday to captain/scribe and on sunday to run Jetly. Ghost came 2nd in div.4 in the end having declared a time and run with Lucy from the second team - we ran 18.84s, so not too bad.

Nat also let me have a go at running Faith in division 2, she was fantastic and I really enjoyed running her - she said I can run her in Belgium now too - eek how exciting!

Division one was amazing to watch, with Live Wires running 16.63 over 13"...absolutely amazing stuff.

Fly enjoyed herself too...

Tuesday, 8 June 2010

Midland Counties

I finished my exams on Friday (woohoo!) and whilst incredibly tired, I was very happy to be driving back to Huddersfield that evening. My parents had set off to go on holiday that morning, so Leanne kindly looked after Jet for the day....after a satnav-led mystery tour, I arrived in Meltham at 9pm.

We were having a weekend off flyball and had been persuaded to do agility at Midland Counties in Chesterfield. On Saturday, I was totally out of it as I was exhausted from 4am-1am days of revision, and made daft mistakes. The first run was Primary Tunnel Teaser, she had a nice run but was very wide (me forgetting how early to call her), then she ran around a jump so needed taking back. In the end she was 1.8s off the winner (who was Dylan, so we can forgive her for not winning it hehehe), so I'm pretty confident she'd have done well in that class. Her second run was Primary Agility which I made a total hash of, but her contacts were lovely - including the aframe she ran behind me and did! I had to laugh....

Next run was Primary Helter Skelter, Leanne and I decided to have a bit of a swap, so she ran Jet and I ran Dylan. Poor Dylan was a bit confused, and although he did some very nice bits, he just had to check in with his mum a few times. Jet on the other hand was fantastic, she didn't care about me and just wanted to do the agility - she did a super run but got E'd three from the end...she was the fastest thing I saw go around anyway!

The final run was Primary Jumping - a massive course with some close work too. She set off like a bomb and did everything really nicely. I can only think we wasted fractions at a pull off the tunnel but she was fabulous and won the class....!

Sunday was full of yet more "if only" runs. In Primary jumping I slipped and fell (!) but she was fantastic, and had we not had that massive blip in the middle I think we'd have won that too as she was only 3.5s off the winner even with me floundering on the floor for a while. Our next run was Primary Agility - we were a bit messy but she won! Yey! We won't go into what happened in TFO....but she had an awesome run in Primary Circular Jumping, shame about the pole! She was 23.80s and the winner (again, Dylan!) was 24.98....clearly they just felt the need to equal out their wins!

We had a good weekend all in all, with 2 wins and I feel like she could have had a few more with little blips ironed out. So she's halfway to Novice after just one show....and one win away from her BAD fingers crossed for Dogs Unleashed!

Congrats to Leanne and her gang on their various wins, Jane & George on their two clears and Katie & Bonnie with two clears at their first show!