Tuesday, March 1, 2011

March Goals

I think our last set of goals should be more of a pass/fail assessment:
1.  Practice the teeter, weaves, chute, table and tunnel at home.
      Pass minus.  I didn't get the chute out because I can't use it without staking it down, and the ground was still too frozen to get a stake in it.  Other than that, though, he was good with all the obstacles.

2.  Enter the trial at Breezethru, our first trial at a place we haven't been to class at before.

      Pass.  We entered both Breezethru and Gemini in April.  They'll be back to back weekends, so very busy.  I have to admit I'm worried about the Breezethru trial.  I was talking to someone at the trial this weekend who said she'd had a pretty bad experience there--that the dogs didn't like the surface on the contacts and that the days were very long.  We'll have to see how things go.  The Gemini will be outside.  In early April there could still be snow around, or at least a lot of mud.  So, that could be interesting as well, but at least it's local.

3.  Have a positive lesson at Riverside on Wednesday, and hopefully use the measuring wicket again.

      Pass.  We didn't use the wicket but our lesson was very good  (see its own post).

4.  Have another positive trial experience at Riverside this weekend.  We've got Jackpot and Snooker at Level 2 and Fullhouse and Jumpers Level 3.  That's a pretty tough day for us, and we're really just going to have to see how the courses are.  We know we're capable of doing Level 2 Jackpot and Snooker, but they can be difficult depending on how the judge is feeling.  Then Jumpers will be the 3/4/5/C course and could provide some real challenges.  Fullhouse should be a bit of a break, though.  I'm not too worried about that round.  Anyway, as far as goals go, I'd love to Q in all of the runs, but we'll see how challenging they are.

      Pass.  It wasn't our best, but it was positive and we got all our Qs.

5.  Get Jonah his rabies vaccination next Monday.

      Pass.  Jonah was nervous in the office but was brave and good for the doctor.  We went to the pet store on the way  home.  He got a tasty snack and we got a new blue leash to match his new agility collar.

February was pretty good!

Here's a look forward to March.  School is really outlandishly busy for me right now, so I don't have tons of time to work on agility.  I will have a week off for spring break, so we'll have to see what we can do then.  I was hoping to put the equipment back outside during my break, but it's looking like there will still be too much snow.  Goals for March:
1.  Work on accelerating out of technical questions.  Often the pinwheels and tight turns seem to turn Jonah off.  He starts his runs great, but now I need to figure out how to get him back up to speed after he slows down for harder questions.
2.  Four more Qs at All Dogs Gym.  Things could go wrong and make this a stretch goal, but it should be doable.  We'll have a run in Standard (lvl 2), Colors (lvl 2), Jumpers (lvl 3) and Snooker (lvl 3).
3.  Work on off-side weave entries.  He doesn't care which side of the poles I'm on, but he sometimes struggles finding the entry when he has to push hard around the right of the first pole (as in, if he has to turn left to the pole entry).
4.  Fast tunnels.  Lots of dogs just love tunnels.  Jonah has no problem with them, but I guess I haven't rewarded them enough for him to be excited about them.  It will be fun to just spend some time having him run full speed through the tunnel and get big rewards.
5.  Go to Willards Woods and keep him on-leash for some introductions.  Hopefully this will help for when he is near other dogs at the trials.  I'm excited to go to an outside trial in April where we won't be crowded together with other dogs in a small indoor space.
6.  *Hopefully* (weather permitting) set up our outside agility area.

Our agility fun for March starts tomorrow with another lesson at Riverside.  Fun!

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