Dazzle and I went to the Hamilton AKC Rally trial today and managed to get the first of three Qualifying rounds (legs) needed! It wasn't a pretty run, but he DID do well on the move to front we have worked so hard on. :-) His brain just wasn't in it today and he seemed stressed out for some reason. Sniffing, stress yawns, etc. I went in the ring expecting and envisioning that we would do really well, but I could tell as soon as I got in the ring that wasn't going to be the case. With the judge's permission, I tried going out and coming back in, which worked for a few seconds, but then he was off in la la land again, so that raised my stress levels. So maybe he was picking up on my stress, which got worse as his heeling and attention deteriorated.
He was fine outside the ring. There was a pro photographer there, but none of the photos were good enough to purchase (through no fault of the photographer!) We squeaked by with an 85.
I have some ideas about what I want to do to better prepare him for future off-leash runs. So we'll see if that helps.