We set off Friday lunchtime to the new SWAT show, and I for 1 was really excited. It was our first weekend show for 3 weeks and I love being away in the caravan, and also it was our first weekend away with Twiggy so I was looking forward to seeing how she coped.
The ground was pretty bad, not the show organisers fault but it was a cause for concern. Deep cracks in the ground due to being irrigated by the farmer, and then no rain, so everyone was a bit iffy. I ran Lily in the Grade 1-7 jumping and she was flying until near the end and she crashed a pole. Looking at the video and listening to Rog & Fern afterwards, it seemed her foot got stuck in a crack as she took off, so she twisted and dragged her back leg.
We then spent the next hour debating as to whether to continue, and missed 2 classes. I decided that my dogs are tough. Lily was fine, not at all bothered or lame from her incident, and Olli spent 2 winters running flat out over ploughed fields and rough terrain picking up pheasants, so we carried on and decided to stay. Lily was a complete mad cow in the agility. I think spending a few hours doing nothing whilst we were debating, gave her too much energy and she forgot I was in the ring! I took her out half way round. Daft bitch was making her own course! Olli missed his weaves in his jumping so he had 5 faults and I was beginning to think we should've gone home after all. Olli had just a Grade 1-7 jumping to do, so I didn't expect too much out of 200 dogs, but he did a lovely round, went clear and ended up 17th. Lily had a Grade 5 jumping course, and I figured if she wont listen to me I just wont speak! Did the whole run without saying a word and it was like clockwork. She watched my body, focused on the job and we won it by over a second!! Her first Grade 5 trophy!!
Sunday, Olli did a lovely running contact on dogwalk and A frame in his agility run.................which is not what I have trained, but he went clear and ended up a very respectable 6th!! Not bad for a spaniel, but I really must keep my criteria of stopping 2 on 2 off or he will never learn. Lilys agility was a fab course and we were totally nailing it with my silent approach until 2 obstacles from the end. Tunnel entrance right on dog walk and I over handled it so she took the tunnel. Bugger! I was so sure she would get the dog walk. Never mind, the rest was brilliant, and she then went on to get another trophy, 3rd in the jumping to finish the weekend.
Twiggy was gobsmacked by the whole event when we got there, but I walked her around loads, rewarded her meeting people, even had her playing tuggy with me right by the ringside! She grows in confidence by the day, and I just love her to bits. There is a bright spark inside this frightened little girl, and it is starting to shine through. A long road ahead, but so rewarding.
Really looking forward to the future. Lily aiming high, Olli too and now Twiggy. Life is good.