My dad has been back in the hospital this past week. He's not doing very well; basically he needs a new liver as soon as they can find him one. He's fairly stable right now, and lucid, but he's not healthy. I am hoping something comes up before I have to leave for AKC Nationals in 10 days.
Went to 2 different trials this weekend. Saturday I went to an AKC trial in NJ. It was an indoor trial at the great Dream park in NJ, but the weather outside (I crated out of the car, the crating room is tiny and crowded) was just terrible! Pouring rain, really hard driving winds, etc. Roads were closing because of flooding nearby. The site stayed OK, and the parking is flat and paved so no problems there, but everyone got soaked just walking the dogs to potty for 2 minutes. I actually ended up buying a waterproof coat from a vendor. Which is fine, since I don't have a good weatherproof coat, really, that isn't an oversized rain coat.
Kiba ran well, she tripped and just didnt' jump right on the last jump in standard so didn't QQ, but was otherwise perfect, blowing away the JWW course with some insane time. I felt that she was turning more tightly at 16" than she was last week, when I felt that she was just running full out and not wanting to decelerate for corners. 16" isn't a bad height for her, with her constant sore/tight back, but she can really open up over it. Drifter was at 26" again, and he was absolutely perfect in JWW in the morning, but just had a major brainfart run in Std in the afternoon, beginning with missing his dogwalk contact (he seemed to just misstride somehow over the 2nd apex, not sure if I was too far ahead or if he just didn't judge it right) and ending with almost going off course and knocking another bar. D'oh! Seri hit bars in the morning in JWW and missed a weave entry in the afternoon in standard, but at least kept her bars up. She is a very talented and capable jumper; even at 26" she has a lot of flexibility in takeoff spot, but she just gets so excited that she doesn't look ahead down the line and guage her speed and stride. Yet. I felt like she was more tuned in for standard at least.
Today I went to Keystone's makeup USDAA trial. Unfortunately this meant a day to day change in jump height for Kiba and Drifter. Kiba had to go from 16 to 22, and Drifter went from 26 to 22 (not nearly as difficult). Kiba had trouble. She hit several bars, but otherwise was listening well. Her back seemed a bit tight to me, so not sure if it was physical or just her flattening out too much after doing 16" the day before. Drifter was very good except for staying like an untrained dog, which is to say hardly at all. He returned to evil creeping. But he won both Gamblers and Grand Prix. He's fully qualified for USDAA Nationals now so I think I probably won't enter him in any more until Regionals end of August. That will make it easier for me to focus on Seri. Speaking of whom, she also got the gamble for her 2nd Masters Q, but was a total dork in GP and got walked off halfway through for assuming my shoulder pull was a rear cross and blasting off the wrong direction. I also ran Trig today since my mom is in the hospital with the my dad. She was really, really good for me, getting a gamble Q on a tough gamble, and only a single refusal in GP. I forgot how much of a baby she was and didn't show her a really angled jump well enough.
Drifter's been running so well at 26" in akc that I'm having second thoughts about him being done with 26" for good after IFCS. I am now thinking I might throw him in a few AKC trials at 26 - on good footing! - and see if I can get him Q'ed for Tryouts one more time. Plenty of dogs running full height at 8-9 years old. If he doesn't look good, I'll drop him down, no issues. Regardless, he is so well trained and I'm so used to him, that i feel I can do this and at the same time put a lot more focus on Seri. I'm not sure if I'll get her to Tryouts or not. She is a slow maturing dog who needs more skills and drills type work. I would love to take her a good work-heavy camp over the summer but simply can't afford the $500+travel it would take. Oh well. I can figure everything out myself, just would like to take her somewhere and focus on her. She's a good girl, just very. . . excitable!
And speaking of Seri, I've pretty much decided that next May (2011) is when I'll breed her. I have even found a stud I like for her. This dog had one offspring on the AKC World Team, and numerous healthy litters of intelligent pups who excelled at obedience and agility. He is from working lines and was also talented on stock. A fast, but thinking type of dog. Nice structure. . . if you're interested feel free to email. I would highly prefer to sell puppies only to people I know personally enough to be able to feel safe and comfortable with where they are going. Seri is a very sweet, athletic, healthy dog. But she's a LOT of dog. She's fast and loud in agility, with more "Go" than "Slow" right now. But she's got lots of nice relatives out there too, and in fact her littermate just qualified for Tryouts this year. Nothing's certain yet, timeline-wise - if she DOES qualify for Tryouts I'd like to take her, but she's due in heat May 5-7, tentatively, so that would be right around Tryouts time, so we'll see what happens.