Seriously!! I had a feeling it was going to be long, I just didn't know how long it was going to be. I was up early and I left the house with both dogs at 5:45am. We were in Albany at the fairgrounds around 7am. First up was Bess. I got our crate set up ringside, got to see Mia, and popped over to the agility arena to say hi to some people. I ran into our agility instructor who thought it was pretty funny to see me dressed for conformation since she always only sees me in "agility" clothes.:o) I got to chat with her for a while and then it was time to go grab Bess out of the truck and get her ring side.
The thing about having both dogs loose in the back of the truck is that they get antsy. And aren't terribly cooperative when I'm trying to only get one out. There was no way that I could have crated either of them. Only one of my soft crates will fit back there and I needed that one for conformation. And I left Heffner's crate by the rally ring any how. So while it appeared as though they were going to cooperate and Heffner was going to remain in the back of the truck. They both leapt out when I let the tail gate down. Don't worry though! I always have a hand on their collars just in case, so neither of them got loose. Heffner was just not thrilled that I was making him get back into the truck when I very obviously was going somewhere fun with Bess. Somehow he lived through the ordeal. **dramatic eye roll**
Things clipped right along with danes in conformation. We were the first breed in at 8am and had a pretty small entry. I got to take Mia in for her class and she took second to her litter mate Serena, who has been burning up the shows late. Bess won her class, but she was the only one entered in it. Then we went in to the Winners Bitch ring. Serena went Winners Bitch and Bess went Reserve Winners Bitch. So no points today, but we did come out with a reserve.
Then I put Bess away and got our crate broken down. After that, I had a fair amount of time to kill. Rally novice A was scheduled to run dead last today. Since the entries essentially doubled today, things ran a lot slower than they did yesterday. I had planned to get Heffner out and potty him and let him stretch his legs a bit once the advanced class went in. We did that and then I took him to his crate. And there we sat for QUITE a wile. On the up side, he was able to relax more in his crate today. There were still some grumbles coming out here and there, but all together better. Meanwhile, I was FREEZING! I knew it would be relatively cold, just not how cold. I was really tempted to crawl in the crate with Heffner to soak up some warmth.
Things progressed, and finally I think a little after 3pm, rally novice A went into the ring. That's right. We were there since 7am and only got into the ring after 3pm. I got Heffner out and worked him a little bit. He was pretty happy and paying attention to me, so I felt we were ready. Once it was our turn, things got a little rough. We started off well enough. Our first station was a serpentine around cones. That went well. From there we walked a ways and then went into a down. Heffner just had too much momentum and was getting too distracted to slow down. That station didn't go so well. This course was also more involved than yesterday's was. Yesterday it was mostly turns with the halt and the three steps backwards thingy. Today there were all sorts of things thrown in. And Heffner was just so distracted. We actually redid two stations. It was pretty rough. He stayed with me for the most part, but it's hard not to be critical when I know he has it in him to do so much more. I just have to figure out how to get that out in a trial setting. But we finished the course and we qualified to boot! Our score was either an 82 or an 84, but I think it was an 82. The scores that were in the ribbons also were a lot lower than yesterday. Fourth place went to an 85. All-in-all, not too shabby. I think I just really need to get him out to random locations and work on keeping his attention.
While it would have been really awesome to have him entered in rally tomorrow and hopefully finish his rally novice title, when I sent in my entries I didn't enter him on Sunday. I didn't want to do too much too fast and I'm still happy with that decision. So tomorrow it will only be Bess and I.