It seems like it’s been a while since I posted about Liezel, let alone agility. We skipped class last week (too hot, too lazy) and have not had tracking for weeks.
Agility resumed last night, and boy was it hot and mosquito-y! There were only two other people there – one with the Mastiff and the other with the French Bulldog.
The trainer started us out with a game called “Jackpot.” It’s a choose your own adventure with the goals being 1) get 15 points and 2) complete the “Close” (which is a set of specific obstacles) without being disqualified.
Different obstacles have different point values: round obstacles 3 points; textured obstacles 5 points; and jumps 1 point. You have 30 seconds to get 15 or more points. When “Time” is called you have to direct your dog to the “Close” obstacles. Once you begin the close obstacles you can’t run with your dog, but can only point and call out the obstacle names.
We did tire (3pts), tunnel (3pts), A-frame (5pts), tunnel (3pts), Liezel ran through another tunnel without instruction (3pts), dog walk (5pts), and tire (3pts). When time was called, we were near the close obstacles and she did surprisingly well. I stood in the middle of a “U” shape of obstacles and yelled “Tunnel,” “Jump,” “Tunnel,” and “Table” all of which she did.
It was a little haywire but we had fun and Liezel got to run around in a frantic manner without me trying to wrangle her in. Goofy dog.
After two Jackpot runs, we went back to regular courses with some difficult changes thrown at us. One of the tunnels was put under the A-frame with the tunnel opening lined up with the approach of the A-frame. When Liezel came out of the first tunnel, she was instructed to go into the tunnel next to the A-frame, but experience told her that the A-frame would be the next logical obstacle, so she took the A-frame. The second time we ran this course, the trainer told me to stand in front of the A-frame approach so she would be blocked. She jumped on the A-frame from the side. The third time the trainer told me to call her to me when she exited the first tunnel. This will put her focus on me and not the next obstacle. As she ran toward me, I yelled “Tunnel” and she did it. We’re way beyond rewarding on the course, but she got treated for finally getting this tricky change.
The only reaction she had was when the French Bulldog was running the course and ran at us. The two of them taunted each other, but Liezel was easily corrected and returned her focus to me.
By the time the lesson was over we were all hot, sweaty, panting and tired. Liezel jumped right into the kennel in the car and laid down. I didn’t hear a peep out of her the whole way home.