The day after Thanksgiving, Hank and I embarked on our first ever agility trial. I was super nervous, but thankfully I had three very supportive people there to help me. Vinny came, even though it was probably the most boring day every for him, just to keep me from totally freaking out. My teacher, Frankie Joiris, came to run her dog Boing! and to make sure I got checked in, Hank measured, had a decent handling plan and to make sure I was in the right places at the right times. And a fellow student, Lindsay Hill, who’s first trial was last Spring so she had good, fresh advice for me. I do not think I would have gotten through the day without those three people.
Our first run was the Novice Standard run. Hank held his start line well, took the first jump then messed up his contact at the end of the dog walk. I stopped, asked him to sit at which point he knew he screwed up so he took off. Boy did he take off! If it hadn’t been my dog I would have been giggling at how much fun he was having. But I waited him out and he eventually came back and we finished the course.
I was very happy that he finished the course with me. His contact on the the teeter is fantastic! Overall, I am thrilled with the performance for our first trial. It was a challenging environment for him to work in. We were in one of three rings running at the same time, plus tons of people and dogs milling about. Here’s the video:
Our Jumpers run had many more handler errors, but Hank stayed with me the entire time and we had a blast! If you’d like to see that video it’s posted on my Facebook page.
I am already trying to plan when we can go to another trial. We have a plan of what we need to work on and maybe next time we’ll even Q!