Wednesday, September 15, 2004

Flyball and agility

Well, last night I had my agility class (agility is like a doggie obstacle course). We continued to work on the weave poles--have to say they are not my favorite and I don't really get the point of them. My person had especially bad food last night, so that sure wasn't any enticement. Plus, three of the boy dogs in the class kept going after each other and since I like to flirt with all of the, I was just in a dither. Luckily, I was able to check each one to make sure he was o.k. We also got to do some mini-courses. The first one involved going through a tunnel and then over an A-frame and then through a tire jump. that was fun and I really, really liked it (if truth be told, I was kind of bummed that I didn't get to keep doing it). The second course was going over two small jumps and then over the dog walk. that was o.k., but I think the dog walk is kind of boring. Here are some pictures of BCs doing agility.

On the flyball front, my people got a flyball box for me to practice on at home and I'm really liking it. We work on it a couple times a day adn today for the first time, I hit the box with both of my front feet and not just one. I got to tug for a long, long time for that. It was awesome. Running back to the tug is pretty fun (I don't know why Renzo doesn't like it), so I think it won't be that long before I'll do it in practice too. I start my formal flyball class tomorrow and I can't wait. I wonder how different it will be from regular practice....

Monday, September 13, 2004

Things are starting off great this week

Originally uploaded by Pippin Noodle.
I just love my fabulous life. I have so much fun and am so excited about all the experiences I get to have. Me and my buddy Renzo just got back from playing at our friends Andrew, Nancy and Monty's house. Our other friend, Zuri, was visiting too (that's her chasing Renzo last winter--they do a lot of that) and we romped and played a lot. I'm still low dog on the totem pole, so I make darned sure that the big guys know that I know my place. Andrew may find me to be a pest, but I sure don't want him to think I'm dissin' him!

Sunday's flyball practice

Well, despite my best intentions, I just wasn't able to focus on the tug at practice. There's just too much going on and so, so many people to see and greet that I lose track of myself. I did run over four jumps back and forth to my people. BUT, the only reason that I didn't run off to greet the other people was that the gating was up so that I couldn't go anywhere but over the jumps. Even though that seems like it should be a pretty easy thing to do, it's hard in such a new environment. I have to keep reminding one of my people that it'll all come together in due course. She sees how good some of my teammates (especially Cap, who grew up on the same farm that I did, but he's a week older than me--we are so proud of how well he's doing) are doing, but then I give her a quick lick and let her know that even though she may not see it, I'm soaking it all up.

tomorrow I have agility class, which I love 'cause I get to show off how athletic I am and be out in the late summer sun to boot. Even better, this week flyball class starts!! To get ready, my person and I practiced on the flyball box at home today. The flyball box is a box with a pedal on it. When a dog hits the pedal, it triggers a spring mechanism and a ball pops out. Having a "good" box is an important part of being a good flyball dog because, just like in competetive human swimming, the turn around can make all the difference. Also, like swimmers, flyball dogs tend to be fastest when they can do a "swimmer's turn". That's not always how it was, though. It used to be that the handlers actually walked the dog up to the box. Here's some more interesting facts in the history of flyball. As dogs have gotten better boxes, world records have also gotten faster. The earliest world record was held around 1985 by Canine Express and was 24.49 seconds. My team, Front Runners, were the world record holders in 1986 and 1987 (with times of 22.96 and 21.48), but now the fastest team is Spring Loaded and they just keep breaking their own records--most recently last week-end when they ran the course in 15.37.

I'm pretty sure that I'll be able to run the course in under 4 seconds--I just have to figure out how to ignore all the lovely people, other dogs, crazy barking, interesting smells and moving tennis balls. But, it'll come...