Friday, July 8, 2011

Mach's Debut :)

yay Mach!
Such a cool day. So special.

Here's the story. It's pretty extensive, so I will try to keep it short..eek.
(Completely failed on keeping it short, so here's the full story, beware, it's basically a novel, but it has a happy ending :))

So Mach is awesome, right? Everyone knows. Because, I mean, it's Mach. His training has been going great. I'm really pleased about how he works for me. Still working through little things, like keeping him (okay, me) upbeat through the troubling times, but mostly his confidence. He came to us a very very very timid little boy and that held us back a little bit, but no worries, he's pretty good nowadays :)

And since his training has been going along so great, I thought I would try him in a jumpers at a trial sometime this summer. Just to see where he's at in new environments, etc. I thought it would be really cool to trial him first under the same judge that Toffee and I had our first trial. Good karma, right? And so, I entered him.

A last minute one-day/Canada day trial came up, and I thought that would be awesome to start Mach off. There would be only about 20-30 dogs, therefore nice and quiet and (almost) stress free. But not under that judge..oh well.

We were at a two day seminar the weekend before. The first day he was fine. He did all the things I asked him to, and surprised me, even, on some stuff that I didn't think he would do. Yay, proud Mama :) The second day, however, he decided to ..uh, how do I put this..uhh...Say, "Hey! F*&k off! I'm going swimming! And running away forever and ever!!" And did 4 times. So needless to say, I wasn't impressed. A little scared for his whereabouts. And, well. Sad.
But when he worked for me, he was quite impressive, I must say.

I then decided against the one day trial, and was going to email the trial secretary of the next trial to scratch him off the list for jumpers. We didn't need confidence building stuff, we needed Recall Rehab. Badly.

And so that's what we did all week. Recall games.

My mom kept at me, because I was without a doubt, no way in poohland, going to enter him in that trial. She thought it would be a good idea. I didn't think so. Especially since the trial was being held at the same spot as the seminar that he decided to run away from me.

Finally, I caved and entered just two runs, Steeplechase 2 and jumpers. I tried to be optimistic, but inside, I was a nasty little pessimistic parasite. Yuck.

When we arrived, we almost missed the measuring. Just under the 21" mark.  Phew :)

We hung out for the first run, watched some of the newbie newbies run their first run ever. Mach got excited over a few, too.

Then, I had a ..umm..meltdown. I think that's the correct word. BUT, in my defense, if that lady didn't talk to me in the first place, I wouldn't have cried like a baby!! However, her words were very kind and sincere and very much appreciated, but don't ever do that again. :) :) hehe. She was very nice and consoled me when I was overreacting about running Mach (for the above reasons^^^) and ..well, I hate it when other people are right. Gah. So Vic, if you're reading this, thank you very very much. :) You're truly awesome :)

We prepared for our first official run ever, and I was feeling much better about it. It was a nice course, and I knew Mach could do it, he'd done much harder things before (and aced them, might I add;)). We were super awkward at the startline. I wasn't sure what he was going to do, so I put him in a sit, which I never do. I was going to do a lead out pivot at the aframe, but he was unsure about the whole thing, because I was. It looked like he was about to break, so I released him before he could. However, I was like...a kilometre away from where I wanted to be and almost broke his neck doing my front cross. haha

He missed his second aframe contact, but in his defense, he hadn't been on one before that for like..a month. So, I guess that's fair.

He was running great, so I decided to finish the course (whereas, if he wasn't, I was going to loop back around and leave on a *hopefully positive note). He lost his focus for a split second at the back as he was approaching a jump and went around it. I didn't want to stop him and bring him back, I wanted to keep him going smoothly, so what if he screwed up. We finished the run, fast (32 secs :)) and 25 faults. I was *SO* happy. So so so happy.

Right after the steeplechase was over, starters jumpers was next and this time I was feeling perfect fine going up and running. My dad and his buddy showed up, though. I got a little nervous about that. My dad rarely comes to trials, and since this was probably the first time he'd ever see Mach even doing agility (unless he snuck him a few James Bond moves and watched me in the yard without me knowing hahah), I wanted him to be impressed. There I said it.

We went up and started running, though bad mama over here forgot to call his name when he came out of the tunnel and he came shooting out straight (which is what I trained him to do!! Good boy :)), so he overshot the turn and went around the jump. No big deal. We kept going, and then in the homestretch he read the rear cross very nicely but went a little too wide and proceeded to go around the last three jumps. haha, oh well.
We ended that run with 19 secs and 80 faults. hahaha, that sounds so bad, but it was SO good.

And also, he had only seen a double twice and a spread once in his entire life. So, I applaud Mach on his awesomeness.

In the end of the day, I don't care how many jumps he went around, I'm just happy that he stayed with me and he seemingly was enjoying himself. He wasn't as fast as he could have been, but that doesn't matter. He's a baby dog, living and learning.

I just think back to when Toffee first started running. She wasn't the fastest out there, but she was consistent. As we grew older, grew more confident, her speed increased, my speed increased and a lot of other things fell into place, no she's not the fastest dog, but she still kicks some serious butt :). So Mach may never be the fastest dog out there, but that's alright. If he's consistent enough, we can get to where we need to go. But for right now, all I wanted was for him to go out there and run WITH me, and be happy about it.

Mission accomplished.

Things will start piecing together soon enough. Maybe it wont be as quick as it did with Toffee and I, maybe it will. Who knows. Only time will tell.

Watch it here :)

On another note, I drove all the way home from Salisbury. It wasn't bad at all! Kinda cool, actually.

On another completely different note, Canada Day was super fun, I went out with my good friends to watch the fireworks. They're friggin sweet.

Life is good :)

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