Today's performances were MUCH better! I left him in the van till just a few minutes before I knew we were due in the ring and that greatly helped his focus and willingness to work. I covered his crate in the van with a quilt to keep him a bit warmer, but I think by afternoon it might have been a bit warmer than I intended. Thankfully not hot enough that he was panting. But once he was out for our second time in the ring, I didn't put him back since we were done showing.
Our first go in the ring was looking really good. Till we got to the group sit stays. As we were setting the dog's up, the person in the next ring tossed the dumbell and I could see Dazzle was really interested. In hindsight, I should have said we weren't ready and taken a bit more time to "set-up" so that the person's second throw would have been complete before I had to leave him. But hindsight is 20/20. I did actually consider doing that at the time, but didn't know if it was allowed given that he was actually sitting and looked ready when the judge asked if anyone wasn't ready. And I didn't want to hold up the other people. I won't make that mistake again. :-)
After I walked across the ring, the person in the next ring tossed the dumbell the second time. Dazzle started to move, then stopped and remained sitting, looking between me and the other ring. I thought there might be a chance he would see it as a proofing exercise and actually stay put, but the dog went for his dumbell with great joy and animation and even veered around the jump to get close to the fence to "show off" his prize to the dogs in the next ring and that was just TOO much for Dazzle's brain. I'm sure it didn't help that there was only one dog between him and the fencing between the rings, putting him close to that fun/temptation. He charged off after the dog/dumbell wanting to join in the fun. Thank God he didn't jump the ring gate! I was able to grab him and held him with me till the judge had everyone back with their dogs on the other side of the ring. After Dazzle left the line, the dog that was next to him broke position to go greeting another dog in line which got that dog up. Bad chain reaction and I felt so bad. Thankfully the other compeditors were understanding and not mad at us.
We would have had a 190.5! (if he hadn't broken the stay) I was really dissapointed in myself for not taking the extra 30 seconds, especially after I found out I could have! Oh well, live and learn. Dazzle went back in the van till it was time for his second run.
Update: apparently this didn't NQ us! I got Dazzle's UCD certificate in the mail. I looked at the score sheet again and it doesn't say NQ, I just assumed we NQ'd.
This run also was going well and other than some minor issues during heeling and having to touch his butt to get him to actually sit for the sit stay, he did it all without an NQ! So we got our second leg (of 3 needed) and even got 1st place with a 186 (which surprized me because I thought the other dog that qualified did really well.)
So if I had taken that extra time, we likely would have gotten his title, but now we have to wait for one more round. It will give us extra time to practice anyway. There's another UKC show the end of Feb in Columbus we may attend to try for that elusive last leg :-)
Here are some photos...
A few photos from the heeling pattern:
Figure 8 pattern around 2 people acting as "posts":
"Honor dog" (dog on a down stay) can be seen in the background:
Set-up for "stand for exam". I'm just leaving and the judge is moving in to touch Dazzle's head, shoulders and rump. Dazzle's giving a stress yawn, but his tail is still fairly high.
Ready to repeat the heeling pattern off-leash:
Getting set-up for the recall to "front" over the jump. The ring stewards remain standing next to the jump as I go around them to the opposite side and call Dazzle.
He was rather distracted getting set-up for the sit stay exercise and I had to touch his butt to get him to sit.
But he HELD it and Qualified! and even took 1st place!