So we went to a little dog show this weekend (actually, a really big dog show). The conformation show was hosted by the Lone Start - Louisiana Toy Fox Terrier Association and the Rally trials were hosted by the Southeast Texas American Eskimo Club. When all was said and done here's how it washed out. I'll go one dog at a time.
I had Shiner in all 4 Rally Trials and both conformation shows on Sunday in the Champion's class. Saturday morning in the first show we NQ'd pretty spectacularly. This was my first weekend in Rally, and (unsurprisingly) it turns out there's a lot I don't know! For instance, I didn't know you have to have a training collar with a detachable leash. I had my regular slip leads.
So I borrowed collars and leashes and with that first embarrassment done into the ring we went. Shiner was ALL OVER the place - zooming this way and that, and generally just being very overstimulated by everything going on. The second show was a lot better - we squeaked by with a 72 for the first leg of his URO1 title!
Sunday we gave it our best effort but neither show resulted in a qualifying score, though we got through the course together, gave it our best shot, and I'm super-proud of how hard my little dog went at his new sport. The conformation ring was a bust for us, but I hadn't planned on entering anyways, so there were no hopes there to thwart.
This dude is a year old and has not as yet had what I'd call a successful show career. Point of fact, last October he was being handled by a friend and had a mega freakout on the table. Since then, the table has been a real problem. Tibbs is a pretty sensitive guy in the first place, so my new goal is to desensitize him to manipulation by strangers, both on the ground and on a table. This fear of his could be a problem in more than one venue (veterinarians and groomers both use tables) - it's not just a dog show skill.
As far as how we did, Tibbs is still pretty leggy and apparently at the moment he's "high in the rear", something he should mature out of. We went Best of Winners in the first show on the second day. He didn't win any of his other shows, but he came a long way on his tabling issue, we had fun as a team, and he's one major closer to his championship.
G-money is nearly 7 years old and has just been my best buddy in all that time. Turns out being my best buddy is damn good training! G was the first dog I took in for all 4 trials, and the only American Mixed Breed competing. In my ongoing "Things I didn't know" issue, I NQ'd us by patting him after a good exercise. In the end that didn't matter. On the last sign, a Sit->Down->Sit, I cued him to come back up from his down into his sit. I looked at him. He looked at me. I could see it in his eyes: "Noooooope." To emphasize the degree of his nopeness, he then rolled over onto his back and had a nice long back scratch, got up, shook off, then looked at me like, "Whatcha gonna do?" We dragged ourselves out of the ring, metaphorical tail tucked between my legs.
After some revision of my strategy we went back in, and the next three trials knocked out a 94, a 90, and another 94 for Guinness' URO1 title. Go Guinness go! So very proud of him.