Saturday, June 25, 2011

On a scale from 1 to 10 . . .

Today was about a 1. Our UDX debut was less than spectacular (although thank you Earl and Shirlee who brought OTCh. cake, Michele who brought cookies and Sharon who brought chocolate - all were very much appreciated!) 

Other than that, our day was just plain miserable.

While I wasn't expecting all our ring issues to be resolved, I was at least expecting effort and hoping for some small improvements. Didn't get either one.

Again, Phoenix warmed up nicely, tugged, did silly tricks, went into the ring with enthusiasm and immediately went flat. I don't want to agonize over the details. No sense rehearsing bad stuff. Suffice to say he simply wanted no part of the obedience scene and went through the motions with a marked minimum of effort. We NQ'd both classes, blew signals in Utility and then he sat up on the long down in Open.

We'll go back tomorrow and give it another shot. I'm not entered in any more obedience trials after tomorrow and it's looking like that's a good thing. In fact, there aren't any local trials until Labor Day weekend so I'm looking forward to having two months to train without any trial pressure. 

Who knows, I may not be entering anything this fall either. Not too excited about throwing entry fees down a rat hole until we're showing solid progress on rebuilding attitude. (Yeah, WE. This isn't just about Nix. It's about me, too. We're still  a team, even though we're a pretty pathetic team at the moment. I love my Skinny Little Dog.)

The only good thing to come from today was Michele and Cider finishing their UDX. They've had a long road, with a whole year off after cruciate repair surgery following leg #9. I'm very, very happy for them! You go, blonde girls!


  1. I am sorry to read this. I've been anxious to see what happened today, I am struggling with exactly these same issues with my Welsh Springer. And they became really bad as she earned her UD. I'm trying similar things to what you are, and in training today she got pretty flat after doing about half the open/utility exercises. These were broken up with play, silliness, resting.

  2. My sympathies. I know exactly how you feel. The last time in the utility ring with my sheltie, Jack, was abominable. He was sleepwalking through it, but qualifying right up to the last jump. I was actually glad he NQ'd at that point, since it would have been our 3rd UD leg. I didn't want him to earn his title with that performance!

  3. So since he seems to be good about it every where but in the ring, then you think its ring stress? Sometimes that can only be worked out in the ring. Sorry to hear there was no improvement.

  4. Hey Melinda, If you can solve the issue of what happens with well-trained dogs when they cross the gate into the ring, you will make a million dollars and those of us who also face that problem will be eternally grateful! We're rooting for you :)

  5. Don't give up! I had the same thing happen with one of my dogs when I went away from the toys in training (playing with toys isn't all that different than using food in training when the issue is getting into the ring - you don't have it in the ring). The next thing I had to do was become an expert at exactly what play moves I could do in the ring, and which ones worked for her. And also to use primarily ring objects as her toys - to this day her dumbbell is a huge motivator.