Wednesday, March 10, 2010

Double Q #10!

Kaylie and I are finally half way to our MACH! We got Double Q #10 this past weekend at the Fiesta Cluster. On Friday she only Q'd in Jumpers. Saturday we got to start with Jumpers, my favorite. She ran great, but she had actually slipped after the 3rd jump, so she ran a little tentatively. She actually finished just 3 seconds under time, so that was close! Next was our Standard run. I was glad to see that the grounds had dried up so there was less of a chance of her slipping. We were running along, doing great, hitting all the contacts, hit the weave poles, stayed in the weave poles, and then finally crossed the final jump - a Q!! Yay! Double Q #10. I was on Cloud 9 the rest of the day. I even celebrated with a delicious peach smoothie with whipped cream on top! YUM! Sunday was a very dreary wet day. It was drizzling when we got there, and it didn't let up. Once again we had to do our Standard run first. We got to the dog walk, and right in front of the end of the dog walk was the tunnel with the wrong end right in front of the dog. You had to pull the dog off to the left to get the right end of the tunnel, and if you pulled too soon you'd probably pull the dog off the dog walk, missing the contact. Well, Kaylie got the contact, along with the wrong end of the tunnel. Bummer. No chance of a Double Q today. It was raining pretty good during our Jumpers run, but she did great and qualified in that. Good doggie! Conor didn't qualify in any of his runs the entire weekend, but each day we did improve. The trial ended up being cancelled on Monday because of all the rain. We got so much rain on Sunday - our set up was completely under water. I was running my friend Terri's dog Chase on Sunday because she had to stay home with her older dog who wasn't feeling well. When we got back to our set up, we were surprised to see that everything was under water!!!! OMG!! What a mess. I had no idea we'd have lake front property! Our next AKC trial is in April at the Cardinals' Stadium in Glendale. And this weekend is a DOCNA trial. Kaylie is very close to getting her Silver MEX. We won't finish it this weekend, but perhaps the next DOCNA trial.

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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.