Saturday, 18 October 2008

This Weekend

There are fewer shows now it is coming into the autumn / winter (cold!) season, so we haven't been up to much. Today we have decided that we will be entering an open 1-7 agility show in December, and Kiah and I will be travelling up there with Lisa and her Belgians, so we have got that to look forward to too. At the moment we go training twice a week; once on a week day evening indoors, and another at the weekend during the day which is outside at the moment. Kiah has been glad to be at training, she has been very good, with good waits, excellent contacts and picking her feet up too so working nicely. Just me not really working it properly sometimes, we need to start doing some more difficult turns, courses, challenging things and handling bits and pieces so that Kiah realises that not all courses are to make sure she can go as fast as possible!!

So our big mission for the beginning of next season is going to be to win out of G2 and firmly into G3, not just for the fact that I want to progress up the grades, but because Kiah needs to start showing what she can really do and I will be able to improve my handling a lot more.

Apart from agility training we are having a chill out day for Kiah tomorrow, lots of walks with fingers crossed for nice weather, lots of toy raggy, some more trick training, and cooking a roast chicken for dinner!! A day which I don't think Kiah will disapprove of! I know this picture cuts off the top of her ears, but I just love her happy eyes and smiley expression in it, and that's why I have attached it here.

Sunday, 12 October 2008

Blog/News Update

Oops, just noticed how long it has been since I updated this. Naughty blogger.

Anyway, we have been up to quite a lot since I last posted, so thought I would fill you in. Well the most important thing is that Kiah's leg has healed up perfectly, the nice vet at the agility show did a good job as its a nice clean small scar and the fur is slowly growing back, so all good on that front, hopefully (whatever she did!) it won't happen again.

For the few weekends we have had off from training, we have visited my mum twice, and had one lovely sunny weekend where Kiah could play a lot in mum's nice big garden (see pic!), and another weekend which was not so nice, torrential rain and wind! Well we had walks down to the seafront on both weekends, managed to take some pictures of Kiah posing (see pic!) at the beach on the more pleasant one of the two, she loves being on the beach, running along the sea defence walls, and investigating lots of smells! The rainy weekend we again went down to the seafront, some of the waves were getting up to 4-5 feet, Kiah didn't get too close but was very impressed!

To help keep Kiah mentally stimulated while we had no agility, Kiah has also been learning the very basics of obedience, thanks to my friend Lisa showing us how to get the very beginnings of how to start learning to heel properly. We are using a clicker, and I can see how quickly Kiah is picking it up. Just need to carry on with this, and hopefully next time I see Lisa we can move on a step.

I think Kiah (and me too!) had started to get a little bored of on lead walks, limited running, AND no training, AND no shows either, so once her stitches were out, we were glad to go back to training as of last week and an agility show yesterday. At the show it was a case of 'dog needs new handler' - Kiah was amazing in both her agility and jumping she was running like a rocket - and no poles down all weekend! The only problem we had in agility was the see-saw, there was just no grip on it at all and she was airborne! Now everyone who knows Kiah knows she doesn't fly contacts. I even saw her try to stop with her claws scratching along the surface, and maybe I should have said steady earlier, but she doesn't usually have an issue stopping. But never mind, it didnt ruin what was a great round, we had great fun, and I know she is a good girl and I just wanted to reinforce our contacts at her speed, so that's why I put her back on!

The jumping was even better, a very different type of course from what I had ever seen before in grades 1-2, but very good nonetheless. The jumps were differently spaced, but Kiah was very responsive and worked well, again handler issues just two obstacles from home! The weave entry was slightly offset from the tunnel, but by the time Kiah was out of the tunnel she would have picked it up perfectly, now silly me decided to put a steady in, ok fair enough, but then not tell her what to do from there!! By the time I had, bless her, I had moved and into the second pole she went. So very annoyed with myself only (not her!) but I don't think Kiah minded too much as we had a good tuggy and play afterwards.

For agility competitions, that's almost the year over really, there are two shows - one up near Manchester and another in Rugby that I haven't decided on yet, but the major agility season is really finished. I'm sure the winter will go quickly though, and Kiah and I will have to decide what shows we are going to do next year!