03 April 2013

Tentative decision

Regarding Kiba - I have tentatively decided to retire her from most AKC competition. I think that attempting to collect all the necessary points, Q's, and double Q's will be too difficult for her, and the consitency required at Nationals is probably also too  much to ask. However, I am going to attempt to finish out the year in USDAA, so that Cynosport Games in TN would be her last big event. To this end I am going to spend the next 2 months working on a few things I think I will need to be able to run her, and then she will run Team and the other events at the "local" Regional in June, and that will be my deciding event - if we can figure out how to run with some consistency, most of the bars staying up, and in a manner that seems safe, then I will attempt to continue running her and possibly reevaluate running in AKC. If she struggles to focus on my motion, hits bars, and generally runs like she did in Tulsa, I will probably retire her.

Strafe is feeling great, and he is my only dog entered in the AKC trial this weekend. We are really focusing on conditioning and fitness in general with him. To that end we are working on increasing our hiking time again (trying to do at least 80min, at least 4 times a week, with hills), working on jump grids that require some extra "push" about once a week, doing some walking up/down the stairs, short sprints, etc. All things to build up his core, back, and rear end especially. I was happy with his performance at Nationals and he held up pretty well; I was happy to see him leaving some strides out and pushing himself a little. So we are continuing in that vein.

If you're wondering about my other dogs - Drifter is feeling fine, he goes for walks in my field every day with the other dogs, and gets to play at agility training once or twice a week with low jumps. Seri is doing pretty great, actually, I have just decided that it is not worth the  money to enter her in trials just to run her with an increased risk of injury and a low risk of success. She is beginning to join us on the longer hikes, and she trains full height agility once or twice a week as well. Last week she got to sub in for a student's dog in class, which she very much enjoyed.

On the puppy front, it is looking like next winter for me to go back to Europe and bring home a little half-brother (or sister?) of Strafe. There is a likely stud chosen, but nothing is written in stone yet.

Strafe had several bitches possibly lined up for breeding this spring but all of them came into heat at just the wrong time in one way or another, so we've ended up having no breedings. I am OK with that, as I told his breeder - I got him primarily for agility, not for breeding.

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