Sunday, November 04, 2007

Outdoor Obedience - class one

Well, today was a big day for Mollie and me - we went to our first ever training class together. Her previous owner took her to puppy obedience once, but Mollie was booted out for being a typical JR and barking at everything.

Today's class was an outdoor class with Theresa Franklin, who is based in Hinckley. It took us around 35 minutes to get to the field, I had to go on the motorway to get there on time as we'd taken Mollie for a short walk to take the edge off. When we got there, we had to all line up and do a short walk to heel, then a sit, then a down so that Theresa could see what levels of ability there were, then she split us into four groups.

We were meant to be doing retrieve to start with, but Mollie was distracted by the other dogs, and I hadn't taken a squeaky ball, so although she fetched it she kind of dropped it and ran towards a black lab as he had a squeaky toy! Then we swapped instructors and did a recall - Mollie was perfect!! She even did a perfect stay with the instructor holding her!!

After the recall check, we moved into the agility area. I should probably mention that by this time, Mollie was very VERY excited and moaning lots, although the barking had mostly subsided. While waiting I had to give her lots of fuss and also we did loads of sits and downs for treats to try and keep her focussed.

Well. The agility. Initially, Mollie just ran off, but I got her back easily enough and into a sit. Then we did a weave through some ickle cones and straight through the tunnel, then there were some low jumps, so obviously she went under every other one! Next was a pole weave, which she did near perfect, then through the hoop at the second attempt, and then a jump with one pole about 5 inches off the ground and one about 2 inches off. We tried EVERYTHING - I jumped, I threw a treat (which is how I'd got her through the hoop), I tried to lead her - nothing worked, she just didn't want to do it. Finally though there was the platform, and she jumped up OK and went into a down stay beautifully. Whenever we've seen agility displays she's got really excited, and I think she enjoyed it as much as she thought she would .

Lastly there was a bit of walking to heel (appalling), about turns, sits etc, then home to a big bowl of chicken and tripe (for Mollie) and lasagne (for me). We both had a great time, and we are both utterly exhausted. Mollie's been asleep pretty much since we got back, and is still crashed out with heavy eyelids, and I'm just shattered, but so proud. Definitely going again next week, and if I can make the flyball classes when they start up I think I'll give that a go too. Fantastic stuff, and hopefully Mollie will soon learn to ignore what everyone else is doing and focus on me... i9.gif

Congrats to the other JR Mollie, who by strange coincidence had her first try at agility yesterday and also took to it like a duck to water!!