Monday, 17 August 2009

Cocker Kidz at the KC Festival

I'm writing this with the feeling that I took a load of kids to the KC International Festival. Well, I suppose I did - Jordan, aged 9. Rupert aged 4 and Magic aged 1.

It started with the excitement of the arrival and all 3 were manic with excitement and the atmosphere. Friday morning Sara came to give Rupert some Galen therapy before the International Young Handler and he went bonkers to see her. He is a real Galen groupie and it proves it's making him feel better. He was so excited and got 5 faults in the jumping. Next up was Magic and it was all too much for him and he ran out of the ring to tell Mummy how exciting it all was and jumped back round the course, so got E'd. Next was the agility round, which was in a ring in the middle of the show ground. This suited Rup fine. He bolted for the A fame and stood on the top watching everything from that view point and howling his delight. Then went up the dog walk to do the same. Magic meanwhile discovered the Purina van and paddling pool and ran out of the ring to visit the pool and then did a few more obstacles and back tot eh pool. So much for the International Young Handler this year!!!

The next day Rup pulled himself together and got a 5th in the G1 agility which qualified him for the YKC Crufts agility semi final at The City of Birmingham next year for Crufts 2011. He then got a 20th place in the G1 jumping which again qualifies him for the YKC semi final for the jumping at Crufts 2011 at the KC Festival next year. So all we need is a jumping placed clear for Magic. It wasn't at the Festival it was all too much for him and he kept running out of the ring to the Purina van except in one more quiet ring where he did a lovely round with Jordan but unfortunately got a refusal in the weave entry. I will say that he was a bit responsible as when he exited the ring he did run along the walkways to the Purina van and not through the rings!! So there is hope yet.

The YKC Crufts qualifier saw Magic take yet another trip to the Purina van and an E!! Jordan got badly stung running Rup and it all went belly up.

But all in all the cocker kidz did OK with the 5th and the 20th and most of all the experience. The highlight was meeting Orianne and Murphy, Magic's brother.

Off to DINAS with the kidz.

Sunday, 2 August 2009

A week of rain, mud, promotion and Crufts Magic

It seems like last century but on Monday we drove up to the UKA Nationals at Tewkesbury. We had a late start as I had to sort out my tax credits or else... and we didn't get the camping pitch we wanted and had to camp up the hill by the sand pit away from the rings.

The week began well - Jordan and Rupert did a stonker in the Monday evening tunnel maze and came 2nd or 3rd. Magic enjoyed it but I had to choose to run or hold up my trousers as the belt went half way through and dignity won over glory. Seconds later the heavens opened and every one scattered so I should have erred on the side of glory. The next day Rupert won the juniors and was placed in all his other classes. Sadly he and J got E'd in the Nationals - in the dog walk/wrong end of tunnel grave yard.

Meanwhile the relentless rain continued and the 2 roan cockers became grey cockers. It was like Glastonbury. Wet and damp was the theme. But I was on the top of the hill. I decided I needed some warm so J and I swam down the main road to the pub for dinner. When we came back it was like Supa dogs. Everybody down the hill had or was being moved up the hill. J dug in and helped carry caravan awnings up the hill for people moving before being dried off by me before going to bed.

Mud took over the week and damp. Rup runs well in that kind of weather and did a beautiful agility round with run contacts to rival Dawn Weaver's and won into Senior. But it was the Rise of the Worms and Magic discovered that the rising water drove the worms to the top of the soil and was relentless in his quest to dig them out. It put a new slant on spag bog. Luckily - apart from juniors - we were running him NFC to perfect the run contact, weaves and to make him run with Jordan.

On Friday I decided to go to the Chippenham YKC Show to run Rup in the Agility Dog of the Year and Magic but I felt it really was a year early for him. He still has problems with the A frame and finding the weave entry. If there are worms he just won't run. Greg Derrett was very supportive and said they'd tow us out. But the 4 wheel drive got stuck towing someone else out. was decided to take down the post and rail fence at the top of the hill where we were camped. Horray we were now a 5 star pitch with road access and we took off for the Chippenham show.

After an evening on a camp site on Watership Down and Magic with a dead bunny - caught on his bedtime walk. But on the up side camped beside a wonderful pub called the 4 Magpies. We set off late for Chippenham as I had to clean the van of mud and remains of bunny. It wasn't torrential rain but it was constant, relentless drizzel.

I love the YKC CHippenham Show - the club are so supportive of young handlers. There was a practice ring until 10.30 and we unleashed the cockers. Rup went well over the large KC height on quite a difficult course and Magic was running for Jordan with lovely run contacts. First up was Rup who decided he'd left his brain at Tewkesbury but he was going clear until J decided to run for the weaves and layer the jump with another obstacle. Rup, not used to doing the large height, didn't see the corner jump and followed J's path and was E'd. Ohhhhh!!!!!!!!

J was devastated his Crufts dream was gone. He was quite realistic that Magic wasn't ready. But Magic by name and Magic by nature.... The start was bad, Magic decided to treat himself to some worms on the start line but once he'd done that was over the start line and galloping round. It was a lovely round until, for some reason, he slipped on the A frame. This dented his confidence but J encouraged him back up and he redid the A Frame but jumped the contact. 10 faults. But very fast and lovely weave entry and weaves. E's followed and a slow round with 10 faults. Magic was through to Crufts with what was a lovely round bar that slip on the A Frame and reaction to it. A deserved result as he is only 20 months and this was his 2nd agility round in competition.

He also came 4th in the tunnel maze.

Don't ask me about Rup the rest of the day. He just barked and acted like he'd never been trained for agility.

So Magic is off to Crufts in the U12 Young Kennel Club Agility Dog of the Year (medium). He's also qualified for Stoneleigh 2010 jump off for an agility place at YKC Crufts. And Jordan and Magic now enter the Agility Club U12 League.

Unfortunately the rain brought the worms to the surface and Magic decide they were more fun than agility for the rest of the day, so I took them all home - exhausted, muddy and exhilerated well one was with Crufts, the other with worms and Rup is high most of the time.

I NEVER WANT TO SEE MUD AGAIN !!!! I have spent the whole day cleaning cockers, going to flyball training (where Magic cocker decided the fox hole was the best thing) and Galen sports massage and washing clothes, van etc and cleaning up Magic poo as teh diet of worms does not suit him.