Monday, 28 June 2010

Watford and Lansdown

During the week, we panicked when we realised that Matthew was competing Brodie for the first time over agility equipment at Lansdown and he had never ran him on it before! Fortunately we managed to take the dogs to the arena where I work (which is great as its always set up and ready to go and the surface is fabulous!) and have a quick practice. I have got some good videos but I'm waiting for Matthew to show me how to put them on the computer!

Anyway, Brodie did a couple of runs at Lansdown and went clear in both although Matthew said he was a bit 'dreamy' which I think he does when he is stressed. It probably relates to the incident at Axstane but he did run better in his agility. Brax was a superstar and got 2nd in Grade 7 jumping!

We had a great time at Watford show yesterday although the temperature must have hit 30 degrees easily. I have to say that without Brodies cool coat, I doubt he would have run as it makes such a difference. It was the first time I was running him as a Grade 6 and I loved being able to do more challenging courses. He was a wee superstar in both the agilitys (G4-7 and C6-7) and managed to get 3rd in both of them!! I need to learn to trust him more as the weave entry was tricky in the C6-7 and he would have done it better if I hadn't tried to help him so much! He did go clear in the jumping as well and was one out of the placings so just to get three clears made me so proud of him. I also discovered that running in bare feet really suits me!! I spent a lot of time as a kid running around outside without shoes on and it made me more confident of my footing - I know I'm weird!!

Brax and Matthew had a fantastic day at Watford. She got a 3rd in the jumping and won BOTH her agility runs!! All that contact work is starting to pay off :) She is most definitely solar powered though and goes so much faster in hotter weather. At least Brackens victories made up for Englands sorry defeat in the football.

Well done to Megan and Hattie with 4th and 6th in the agility and jumping, Jackie with George and Ellie who got 1st and 3rd in the agility, Tamar who won an agility and Diane and Riley who won the Grade 2 jumping. I missed Jane running Millie and Robbie but I saw the video and I just have to say his weaves are cracking now :) Sorry if I've missed anyone out but the heat is frying my brain!

At least my pony is good at keeping cool!


The dogs did well at Axstane last weekend despite the bizarre weather which meant I ended up wearing four layers, a winter coat and gloves! Brax had a champ jumping first and did really well to only get 5 faults. She did a lovely run in the agility and ended up clear and making it through to the champ final. There were only FIVE small dogs that got through and unfortunately Brax got 5 faults in the weaves. Amy and her sheltie Fudge won it with a cracking run.

Brodie had a faulty sat nav at Axstane as I was not handling well and kept forgetting to call him off things early enough! He got two E's but I managed to navigate him round the graded agility to get 2nd which I was really pleased with. He had been upset earlier in the day by a nasty border terrier who decided to have a go at him while the owner wasn't paying attention and then he had to put up with a loose dog in the ring while he was running, so he wasn't really on form.

Friday, 18 June 2010

Our shelties are magazine stars!!

Brodie and Brax are featured in this months Your Dog magazine in a article about Shelties. I did an interview over the phone a couple of months ago and didn't expect it to ever be in black and white. As my Mum said, I come across as a bit of a sheltie fan!!

They stay with Matthew sometimes if he is working from home and that means I feel a bit lost without them at work. So to fill the staff room void, we sometimes let a boarding dog come and spend lunch with us! Yesterday we had an adorable Bulldog puppy keeping us entertained by learning how to get biscuits out of a Kong toy!

Monday, 14 June 2010

Brax gets Reserve CC at Thames!!

We are so proud of Bracken! We went to Thames show for just the one day this year and didn't expect to do that well as it is such a huge show. Brax surprised us in the morning by getting 3rd in a C6-7 jumping class as it was a fast course and she went wide in a couple of places. She was a bit cheeky in the agility which was the first class of the day but once she was e'd, Matthew used the opportunity to practice layering which is not Brackens strong point!

In the Champs, the courses were very interesting in that there was a good combination of straight runs and very tight turns. Not many dogs went clear and Brax got faults but managed not to get eliminated on the jumping or agility rounds. One of the trickiest bits was a straight tunnel and weaves side by side. In the agility the dog had to go from the tunnel round into the weaves but in the jumping the handler had to call the dog back after the tunnel and start the weaves from the other direction (I know I'm not explaining this very well!) Quite a few dogs got eliminated on this bit but lucky for us Brax has never been that interested in tunnels!!

Matthew was third to run in the final but there were so many good dogs in there that we didn't hold out much hope! He went clear and I don't think I breathed at all while they ran! Watching the rest was equally nerve wracking, although the tunnel into weaves bit still caught a few people out as did a straight line of jumps into a 270 left turn. Anyway, despite the quality of the dogs in the final and a few clears, the only one that went clear faster than Brax was a stunning run by Scout handled by Greg Derrett. To be fair he was 3 seconds faster but he is about twice her size!!

Ironically, when Matthew got presented with the Reserve CC, it had been written out wrong and said 'Matthew Burdett owned by Mountland Made in Heaven'. Hehe, thats about right really!

I am so very proud of Matthew and our little sheltie girlie. He has worked so hard with her to get her consistent in the ring and when he started competing her in Grade 1 a couple of years ago she was a cheeky madam! Ok, she still is but we love her to bits and she will always be our champion :)

Monday, 7 June 2010

JDA Show

We have had a very busy 3 days at our club show JDA. It went really well despite being incredibly hot and everyone involved did such a fab job. I was on ring party and it was fun helping set out the courses and getting to put some faces to names meeting people.

Brodie ran ok but wasn't on full power for the weekend probably due to the hot weather. If I hadn't had a cooler coat on him I doubt I would have run him at all as he is so bad in the heat. Having said that he won the graded 3-5 agility on friday so at least that confirms that him winning at Nottingham wasn't a fluke! He also got a couple of 2nds and a couple of 4ths which I was really pleased with considering the weather.

Bracken had some cracking runs that were just out of the placings but she did get a very well deserved 2nd on a tricky agility course. Well dones must go to Lian and Sizzle who have gone grade 7, Miranda with her amazing shelties who did a 1,2,3 in an agility class, Lisa and Tyler who had some amazing placings and Angie with young Midge who has gone Grade 5. Sorry to anyone I didn't mention but my brain was fried over the weekend!! Thanks to Lian for sending me some funny pics of my two woofs! The final pic is Brodie with two of his relations, Sizzle and Skye - aren't they similar?!

Tuesday, 1 June 2010

Brodie goes Grade 6!!

Quick update as I have got way too much housework that I should be doing after our busy weekend! Brodie had his first show for a month and it was also his first show competing at Grade 5. I was worried that he wouldn't cope but he only went and WON the graded 5-7 agility!! I'm sooooo proud of him :)
It was a great course as well, probably the most challenging I've done with him at a show. In fact he went clear in all five classes over the two days (Nottingham and Packington) and we both really was enjoying being back doing agility. He also came 2nd in the G5-7 jumping at Nottingham and got a 5th in the C4-5 despite me not having walked the course! Poor dog doesn't have a hope really!!
At Packington he did two classes, he came 6th in the C4-7 agility which I was really pleased with as there were some very fast collies in our class. He went clear in the jumping as well but it was a very fast course and his wee legs just weren't fast enough!!

Brax did really well on the saturday at Nottingham as she got through to the Champ final and came 4th, superstar pocket rocket! The rest of the weekend we don't think she was feeling great as her stomach was making some very odd noises :(
Anyway, better go do some washing...