Sunday, August 18, 2013

Sawyer's First Agility Trial

Sunday, July 18, 2013.  We finally took the plunge and entered our very first agility trial.  It's about time we got out there after all the classes we've taken.  I decided to start in a few venues other than AKC.  As luck would have it there was a NADAC trial this weekend right in Madison, NJ that was accepting day-of entries.  We were busy on Saturday taking the anise Odor Recognition Test (ORT), which Sawyer passed, YEA!  But we were free on Sunday to do agility.  I originally planned to enter 4 classes but chickened out of Tunnelers when we got there.  It was the first class up and I wanted to watch some runs before we jumped in.

The first class we tried was Jumpers.  This is a course consisting of only jumps and tunnels.  Sawyer did pretty well but on the very last jump he went passed it and apparently that's an NQ.  With the other obstacles the dog was able to pass it and the handler could call them back to do it, unless the dog took another obstacle, but that can't happen on the very last one.  After watching the video I see I started to slow down so Sawyer came into me.  Handler error, shocker! 

The next class was Touch N Go.  This class has contact obstacles, tunnels and hoops.  Sawyer started out slowly and about half way through he picked up speed.  As he kicked it in gear I thought "oh crap, he's picking up speed and I have to keep up".  Right before the end of the course was a discrimination between the dog walk and a tunnel.  My dogs always choose the contact obstacle because they are rewarded there so often.  But not this time.  Sawyer went right in the tunnel.  Looks like I didn't turn enough to direct him to the right place, handler error, again.  He also missed that darn last hoop again!

Last up was the Regular class.  This class can have any of the obstacles used by NADAC.  The second obstacle on the course was the weave poles, our weakest obstacle.  Oh well, we were there and was still going to give it a go.  Glad we did because Sawyer did great and qualified!  He even went through that darn last hoop!  At least it was a good ending to the day. 

We ended up with First place too! 
 Thanks to Andrea Kilkenny for video taping our runs for us!  At least I can see where I went wrong and what I need to work on. 

Sawyer and I were exhausted when we got home.  I'm still waiting to take my nap.

Sawyer's Anise ORT

Saturday, August 17, 2013.  Today we commuted to South Jersey with our friends to take an Odor Recognition Test (ORT) for Nosework.  A dog needs to pass an ORT to demonstrate they are odor obedient before entering a trial.  Sawyer has already passed the birch ORT and obtained the first level title in Nosework (NW1) back in May.  This time we were taking the ORT for anise.  We're not ready to trial in Level 2 yet but the ORT should not be a problem and figured we'd try since the test was being offered close by. 

Sawyer passed, no problem.  He found the box with the odor in it right away but of course I didn't trust him and made him go back and search all the boxes.  When he got to the right box again he pushed it with his nose as if to say "This is it Mother, I already told you that!"

Also taking the test were our friends Sarah (who is also our instructor) with her Vizsla, Rayne and Pat with her Tibbie, Zeke.  I'm happy to report that we all passed. 

Sawyer and Michelle celebrating our ORT pass.  A photo with Sawyer's eyes open, YES!
A happy Sarah and Rayne after they passed.
Pat and Mr. Zeke after he passed.
Next up for us is the Nosework trial at the end of October.