Our 3rd Agility Fun Match

Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
At the last minute this weekend, I decided to pack up our gear, and attend our third-ever agility fun match. This one was the farthest away we’ve traveled, so sleep wasn’t really a part of our weekend. But I really wanted to go as the judge was our teacher Nicole. I knew she’d be able to give me good feedback afterwards, and I wanted to see her in action. Miles loves Nicole to death, so I was also unsure if he would go nuts with her in the ring (he didn’t!). Our buddy David came along for the ride, and we met lots of really nice people.

Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Miles was ready for action. He could barely wait for his turn!!

Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Crummy random action shots (due to stormy dark weather):
Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
We did 4 runs in total: one standard (a numbered course with all the obstacles), one gamblers (a game where you get the dog to do as many obstacles as possible in a timed period, at the end of which you direct the dog to do a short sequence of obstacles from a distance), and two jumpers (numbered course consisting of only jumps and tunnels). For the first time, we placed in every run we did! The two major lessons I learned from this experience? That bacon is too exciting/distracting as a treat, and that when you are starting out, the morning briefings are important for success throughout the day, so leave yourself extra travel time. I got lost on the way to the match, and wasn’t able to attend the “course familiarization” part of the morning (and also missed the opportunity to walk the first course). Course familiarization is when each handler gets a chance to show their dog the obstacles, so he/she can get a feel for what is there. We lost time and points on a run because Miles initially mistook the dogwalk for a frighteningly high teeter. If we had done the course familiarization Miles would have known what was what. Lesson learned!

Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Even after he gets his celebratory post-run treat, Miles is extremely excited and wants to tell me how great it was. This is my favorite moment, seeing his pure joy!

Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Our buddy David (who I met at art school) amused himself by sketching the dogs.

Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
It was cold out so me and David took turns sharing the lap-warmer for naps.
Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
For the first time, at nearly 3 years old, Miles asked to go in his crate whenever he needed a break alone. He sat upright and alert, but the fact that he could relax that much in a barn with barking dogs, crying dogs, and irritated horses was great. Again, I think the crate is a fantastic way to allow dogs a bit of autonomy and control over their surroundings.

Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
In between runs and torrential downpours, I took Miles outside to explore rural life. He seemed to like the horses. This beauty was particularly friendly.
Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Miles was so excited for every run…

Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
… And dead tired after the games were over.

Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Our 3rd Agility Fun Match
Best part of the day? Our first-ever first place!
Special thanks to: 
{ Our teacher Nicole, a fantastic judge & awesome course designer.
The Dogwood Pacesetters for a welcoming, well-organized match.
And to our friend David, for getting up really early to support us.  }
Our 3rd Agility Fun Match

6 comments on Our 3rd Agility Fun Match

  • Judy

    sWell done, Miles…great pictures!

  • judy

    he

  • Emma (author)

    Thanks Judy!

  • David

    He worked so hard , well actually you both did. You just keep getting better and better.

  • David

    he helped keep me warm it was a west coast wet cold.

  • Peg

    Okay David– now I seriously need that Welshie sketch!

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