Sunday, March 8, 2009

scary yellow monster

Yesterday's agility class was fun. Oreo got off to a rocky start. We began with a really easy sequence - no front crosses or anything new. Oreo popped out of the weave poles after doing just three, then completely left the course and headed to the door!

What was wrong?

There was a scary, yellow monster lurking by the dog walk.

Funny, the monster looked strangely like a tunnel which had been stored in an upright, vertical position.

Oreo was not going anywhere near it, or doing any agility until it was unscrunched and placed into a friendly, upside down "u" position.

Freak boy.

After that embarrassing episode, we were back on track. We practiced some more obstacle discrimination. This time, we had 3 obstacles to choose from ~ teeter, A-Frame, and a tunnel directly under the A-Frame. Boy, was that a challenge.

Oreo headed right toward the teeter every time.

My teacher told me to make sure my feet were headed in the right direction, toward the tunnel.

I did.

Oreo still went to the teeter.

She said, "He wasn't looking at you at all, he just wanted to teeter."

OK. Plan B.

She had me feed him cheese after the jump, just before the 3 obstacles, to get his attention. Even then, you could see Oreo longing for the teeter, he put one paw on the A-frame (his 2nd choice), and then begrudgingly went in the tunnel.

Poor thing. I'm such a mean mommy.

It was amazing though. I felt like I could see his tiny brain actually thinking things through. He was clearly making a decision.

Next go round, my teacher said, "Oh, just let him do the teeter." She likes us to end our turn on a happy note.

Finally, we played a game they use at CPE trials, called "full house". Like a card game you do 3 jumps, 2 circles (tire/tunnels), and a joker (a-frame, dog walk, teeter), and get points as you go. There is no specific order, which makes it easy, because if the dog makes a mistake it's no big deal. You have a time limit of 45 seconds, and must end on the table.

I'm not good at card games, so I was a bit confused (what else is new). While we were running around doing obstacles, my teacher was yelling out points. After awhile, I said, "What do I need to do now?"

She said, "You can just go to the table early if you want."

I did. She tallied up our points, and said, "Well, if you had been at a trial, you would have scored at an expert level."

Ha! That was hysterical to me.

Oreo was so tired after class, as soon as Misty came out of the crate, he crawled right in and laid down. I didn't hear a peep from him during Misty's class. In fact, he didn't even want to get out of the crate when it was time to go home.

Misty's class was good too. Misty did the full A-frame for the first time! I was so proud of her. She walked up and over like she had done it a million times. My teacher was on the other side with some warm meatballs, and Misty loved that part.

I told Jeff about the meatballs, and he said, "You guys are out of control. I know where I need to go if I'm ever hungry, agility class - cheese sticks, chicken, meatballs...."

Misty also did the full chute, completely closed, and a tunnel shaped like an "S". That was new for her. Our teacher had us do a rear cross after we sent them in the tunnel. It was funny, because Misty was looking for me on the wrong side when she came out. Poor girl got tricked. Hopefully not traumatized! More cheese, she's fine.

One more class for Misty, and then we'll see what happens. I'd like to see how she does at an outdoor class. Will it be warm enough to have classes outside in April?


Diana said...

Dogs are funny. Sometimes Miley is going crazy to get something. You would think is was a cat or rabbit. Its just a basketball. But she is going crzy until she gets to it and sees what it is. It always makes me wonder, Can she see? LOL Diana

Ludo van puppy said...

Sounds like it was a good class.
No wonder he loves teeter with all the games he and Misty play with it. :)

Ricky the Sheltie said...

You can never be sure with a yellow tunnel in a non- normal tunnel position! I don't blame Oreo for being wary. Your class sounds great - Misty did a lot of new stuff - that's just great! And I guess it's much better that Oreo loves the teeter than hates it!

Nicki said...

Crazy herding dogs. My unflabbable boy, Zodiac, once freaked out over a teddy bear statue (a big one) at a children's hospital on a therapy visit. So weird.

Dawn said...

It's good to be an "expert" even if you are a confused expert! Sounded like a great time! Hope you can be outside in April!