The tiredness this morning is a little overwhelming. I was so sleepy I even let Shiva tug me across the parking lot after a couple of ducks. Ducks know how to fly don’t they? You’d think a maniacal dog lunging towards them, panting and whining, would incite them into action. Slowly waddling in the opposite direction is not the best way to get the Shivster to leave you alone. Maybe they know something I don’t. Or maybe they were just too tired to fight, like me. Lazy ducks.
It was a good weekend. Ever so short, as always. Saturday’s agility class went super well. I really need to get her on a full course again one of these days. It’s the best way to practice a lot of the handling moves I need to work on. This week we mostly focused on send-outs and I’ll admit Shiva’s are pretty rough. She does it perfectly the first time and then for some reason all other times runs to me instead of the obstacle. I don’t get it. Once is enough, she says. Let’s run around and play!
Obviously we need practice. I tried at home a bit but she kept doing the same thing. Once, brilliant; second, third, and fourth times, “huh? what obstacle?” I tried with weaves and I tried with a jump. After she decided to duck under the jump instead of over, I gave up and just did set points. Now that was reinforcing. For the most part she’s only been jumping sixteens, especially in the house. But this weekend I tried her on twenty-two and Shiva’s form was beautiful. We need to start getting photos of these moments. I always think of that too late.
Next weekend we have another workshop in Grand Desert so we won’t be going to our usual class. This time the focus will be on contacts and crosses. Shiva’s contacts are solid as they are something I can work on pretty much every where we go. Which is good, I guess, because she is so freaking fast. On a course I’m going to need her to hold her place at the bottom of the obstacle so I can get my bearings back. (I can see it now, “just one more jump and then there’s an A-frame”, “thank the gods, the teeter is next. We’re saved!!”). However, my crosses are not nearly as perfect…
The workshop is held outdoors, although the instructor will have an indoor facility built by the end of the month. Outdoors and Shiva do not always get along. Rather, they get along too well. Every single time we’ve gone there it’s all we can do to just get her to look at us for half a second. So far our track record is not very good. I’m hoping this time we will actually be able to complete an exercise without her running away to eat something. Maybe if I can score some puppy Valium within the next couple days we’ll have a chance in hell. Gotta stay positive, right?