Well, Rosie didn't go on the dogwalk again this week, unless you count being dragged up the ramp and across the top by the teacher, with me as spotter, and I don't count that because Rosie looked so distressed that I think we all regretted it halfway through but by that time there was nothing to do but keep going. She slid/scrambled/fled down the off-ramp at the end and I think we won't be trying that again for a while.
She also regressed a little on the teeter totter, but, oh well. It's all for fun. And she did everything else with gusto. She particularly liked the table, which she jumped on, sat on, and waited on for the count of four perhaps better than anyone.
The agility class is fun, but I think there are too many dogs. We spent the first few minutes practicing as a mad group on various pieces of equipment--randomly going up the A frame, or through the swinging tire--and of course those damn tollers were there, the absolutely perfect one, Nikko, and the nearly perfect one, adorable Cinder, as well as little rat terrier Toast, who has taken the class three times and so knows exactly what to do. They zipped through the course with confidence and speed.
The rest of us were kind of mucking about, not sure of the proper hand signals to get our dogs to run through tunnels (what is that hand signal, anyway?) or to stop in the middle of a teeter-totter (good luck with that one) so that it can teeter. And with so many dogs the teacher was overly busy, and I can hardly blame her that she devoted a lot of time and attention to the really excellent toller because there's some real talent there and the rest of us B-students (or, let's be honest, C-students) are never going to go anywhere, but Nikko might.
Every time Nikko ran the course with her mom, her dad was there, filming the whole thing on his iPad. So I think they have plans to keep going with this. They seemed very serious.
Most of the class, though, was two-on-one work, one at a time. So six of us sat behind a little moveable fence in the foyer, while out in the main room one person led their dog through the equipment, with the teacher spotting, explaining and helping.
This is the best part of class, when it is your turn and your dog has all the equipment and attention. This is when we dragged Rosie up the dogwalk, and this is when we decided we probably won't do that again.
I wish there were somewhere to practice! Rosie really seems to enjoy parts of it--the running, the jumping (her ears stand straight up when she flies over a barricade), the A frame, the swinging tire. She even seems fearless of the tunnels, though she is sometimes confused that I want her to go through one.
In an hour class, we each had time to run through the course twice. The rest of the time we sat and watched the other dogs, which was highly entertaining and sometimes (Nikko!!!) discouraging as hell. (But this is not a competition.)
What Rosie really needs is practice. If she could do this stuff more than for 20 minutes once a week, I think she'd get the hang of it. Still, I am pretty sure that we won't be loading our tiny back yard up with an A frame and a dog walk and a couple of tunnels. (Doug, that tyrant, says no.) Fortunately, we have plenty of tables in our house. And that, as I said, is where she really excelled.
When it was over, she had had fun, and she was tired. And that, more than anything, is the point.