Monday, March 9, 2009

March DOCNA Agility Trial

It was a beautiful weekend for a DOCNA agility trial out in Queen Creek at Club Doggie. My main goal for the weekend was to get the doggies qualified for the Championships. Anything extra was just icing, and we got lots of icing! Kaylie did qualify, but Conor did not. He just took the wrong end of the tunnel, but other than that he did quite well. I'm sure he'll get it next time. I'm just so happy that I'm going to the Championships with at least one dog. Here's the low down on how the Wonder Dogs did:

I entered Kaylie in just a few runs this weekend -- she's getting close to her Bronze MEX, so I just entered her in classes that would count towards that.

Standard 1 - 2nd Place
Standard 3 - 4th Place
Trigility - 1st Place
North America Challenge - 4th Place

Jumpers 1 - 3rd Place
Standard 1 - 1st Place
Gamblers - 2nd Place
Jumpers 2 - 2nd Place
Gamblers - 1st Place

Kaylie ended up finishing her Bronze Specialist Standard Merit Award and her Silver Specialist Trigility Merit Award. YAY!! And Conor finished his Beginner Jumpers Award and his Beginner Gamblers Award. More YAYS!!

We had a couple of very scary incidents this weekend though. On Conor's Snakes & Ladders run, when we got to the dog walk, he hit the up ramp with such force that it caused him to lose his balance. He tried his very, very hardest to stay on, but he ended up falling off. He scraped up his belly pretty good, cut a pad and one of his nails started to bleed. Poor little guy. Unfortunately, this fall has caused an issue on the teeter -- he's jumping off too early now. Hopefully it was just an issue on Sunday, and he'll get over it quickly. It turns out that the dog walk wasn't set up correctly, so that's why when he hit it, it bounced him up way too high. All his other runs were in the other ring, and this was the first time he was in that ring with that particular dog walk. I had noticed a lot of other dogs were also bouncing up that dog walk, but didn't realize why. And then in Conor's second Standard run, he totally busted through the tire jump. He tried to take the tire jump (the first jump) from his sit position without taking a couple steps before hand, and he just busted through it. The photographer even got a photo of it. The interesting thing about this photo is that he looks like he's 3 months old! Very bizarre. He may now become the poster boy for this new displaceable tire.

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Kaylie - The True Wonder Dog

At our last DOCNA (Dogs on Course in North America) agility trial in Prescott, Kaylie did fantastic! We are trying to be the first team to earn the MEX (Merit of Excellence) who started in the Beginner level. We are getting VERY close. All the other teams that have earned the MEX were grandfathered in at higher levels. Kaylie was just starting her agility career when DOCNA was created, so we had no choice but to start at the beginning. And as it is, I believe there are under 20 teams that have even earned the MEX to this point.

Well, going into the trial at Prescott, we needed 2 Specialist Gamblers legs and 2 Specialist Standard legs. In DOCNA, there are two types of Gamblers runs -- Traditional and Strategic Timed Gamblers. Unfortunately, we have only earned 3 Traditional Gamblers legs -- one from the Beginner class, one from the Intern class and one from the Specialist class. All the other Gamblers legs have come from the Strategic Time Gamblers. So, I knew going in that the chance of getting that Traditional Gamblers leg on Saturday was slim. We walked into the ring, and I knew Kaylie was on fire and ready to go. The Gamblers class is usually the first class of the trial, and Kaylie is usually absolutely wild in the first run. Well, this was no different. She was incredibly fast, and I was not -- I kept getting in her way, and things just fell apart. At 30 seconds, the buzzer rang, which meant I had to get to the gamble portion of the course. I sent her over the jump to the tunnel -- she took the wrong end of the tunnel, then came right back to me over the wrong jump and that was the end of that. No MEX for us this weekend. BUT, she did qualify in the two Standard runs she needed, getting First place both times, and she got her Strategic Timed Gamblers leg on Sunday, earning a Second place. Wooo hooo Kaylie!!! Out of 10 runs over the weekend, we qualified in 8 of them, placing 1st, 2nd or 3rd in all but one run -- our Jumpers run on Sunday. I got lost on the course and just got confused. Luckily, Kaylie can read the numbers on the cones (that's the only explanation I can come up with) because she ran the right course despite my mess ups! Hence the name "Wonder Dog." So we still Q'd, but got 6th place. Still, not too bad!!

So, our next DOCNA trial will be in Pinetop the end of August. Hopefully we'll get our MEX there! Just one Gambler leg to go.