Wednesday, May 20, 2015

AOC Trial - Maddie

Miss Maddie continues to surprise me! She is doing so well! Her runs are solid, fast, consistent, and FUN!  I really expected her to take some time to get where she is now.... but here she is already and she is not even three years old yet.  I guess she just wanted to torture me as a puppy
And I am proud to say we got there without me rushing her.  I still see too many people rushing their dogs too soon and too young.  Other than some wobble board and tiny teeter tipping, Maddie did not do any climbing or weave pole training until she was 14 months old.  My goal is for Maddie to have a long, sound career. I am sure we will have our bumps in the road like all athletes, but I don't want it to be because she was doing stuff while too young.
We finally finished that last pesky Excellent Standard leg.  On the same day, she also qualified in both classes,but it does not count as a Double Q because she is was still in the Excellent grouping. But now that is all done! She is now running in the Master classes with her sisters and can earn Double Qs now.

Monday, May 18, 2015

AOC Trial - Riley

Riley earned her 49th Double Qualifier at the AOC Trial in April. That means she needs 11 more to earn her third agility championship. She is nearly 9 years old so I consider a third MACH to be a relaxed goal. She still runs with her typical speed, joy, and enthusiasm so there is no reason she can't get there, but I also do not want the pressure of trying to eeek out the 60th Double Q when you have a dog that just doesn't want to run anymore.
Honestly, it would be totally Riley Greyhound style for her to retire with 59 Double Qs. It would be true to accident prone, roller coaster career. A bridesmaid till the end!  I love this dog so much!
Here are her best runs from the AOC Trial:

Thursday, April 30, 2015

AOC Trial - Seven

After getting back from Texas, we competed at a local trial the following weekend. Seven did great! She would have QQed twice if she had not knocked a bar.... something she very very rarely does. But she did complete her 58th Double Qualifier.... just 2 more to go!

Monday, April 27, 2015

Texas Fan Club

Maddie had the fan club with members, John and Kelly, in attendance as much as possible. I am not sure if returning to the farm triggered some memories, but she was all over John and Kelly.

Maddie has seen them twice before at events in Georgia, but never paid them much attention. But she sure did in Texas!
 Maddie loves to give hugs and kisses to her favorite people.
Of course, the only run that Kelly did not see is the only run that Maddie qualified in and it was in Master Jumpers.  So the last Excellent Standard leg continues to elude us.
All in all, Maddie ran very well and had a positive experience at a new venue with different equipment. The chute was different and the dogwalk ramp was unsupported so it bounced.  Riley really bounced the upside ramp hard and made a lot of noise.... so much so that the judge came over to check the obstacle. Riley could care less so she did it every time. I was a little worried about Maddie being surprised, but after one noisy completion, she seemed to master the art of running up the dogwalk very quietly. No problem. Had a little trouble with weave poles in one run where she could not complete them for some unknown reason, but then came back the next two days and did just fine. So I was very happy with the baby dog. Here are her best runs.

Thursday, April 23, 2015

Texas Bridesmaid

Riley Greyhound continues with her Bridesmaid status.  In her very first run, she slipped on a hard turn and came up limping. Luckily, she walked out of it and was able to run the rest of the weekend. We did manage to knock out her 48th Double Q and almost another one except for 1 knocked bar in Jumpers.
Happy, wonderful, silly, and forever content! Here are her best runs from Texas:

Monday, April 20, 2015

Texas Star

As you know, Seven was the agility star in Texas! She had a perfect weekend with three Double Qs! She now only needs 3 more Double Qs to be the first greyhound to earn three Master Agility Championships.

Thursday, April 16, 2015

Texas Trip

Stephen wants everyone to know he took this photo. Thanks, Snookums. 

Last week, we traveled 14 hours to Texas to hang with our friends, Kelly and John (Maddie's breeders), and to compete in a three-day agility trial.

On the first day, we headed to Kelly and John's greyhound farm. We got to see a few litters of greyhound puppies at different ages. They were super cute! We saw Maddie's siblings.  I had seen Maddie's brothers, Sam and Jack, a couple of times in the last year or two, but not her sister, Tia. I should have taken a picture of her, but had forgotten my camera.  Lets just say that Tia is the short, big boned sister. Ha! Maddie and she are complete opposites. We got to see Maddie's parents, Cleopatra and Guliver. They both are doing well.
Cleopatra, Guliver, and Maddie

On Thursday morning we got to see them school the young dogs on the training track. John's goal is for the dogs to have a super positive experience and to really feel confident about what they are doing.  They school on Mondays and Thursdays. He keeps track of their times so he can evenly match dogs the next time out. Matching a slower dog with a fast dog does nothing to build the confidence and speed of the slower dog so he pairs them with other slow dogs so they each have a chance to win the race to the lure and be successful. Positive reinforcement is the name of the game.

After schooling, my girls got to play a little on the track. Riley was especially cute! Even though there was no lure, she took off around one turn before heading back.  She loves sand under her feet. Seven sprinted back and forth between Stephen and I. She was all business as usual.  Stephen and I took turns having Maddie chase us down on the long side. She had a blast!

On Friday, Saturday, and Sunday, we competed at an agility trial near Austin, Texas. It was fun to compete somewhere new and where no other greyhounds run. The girls ran well and received lots of wonderful compliments. We even met one blog follower which was really fun!
I will post the videos of their runs in the next few posts.

Tuesday, April 14, 2015

Maddie and Brooke

Last month at one of our local trials, Maddie got to play with Brooke, the bearded collie pup.  They both had a great time and tired each other out.  Here are the fun photos:

 Look! They are in sync!

Monday, April 6, 2015


Just goofing off around the house when the weather was bad back in February.

More goofing off at the training building.

Friday, April 3, 2015

End of Seven's Streak

Here are some photos and video from a trial several weeks ago.  I believe Seven earned one Double Qualifier, but hasn't at any of the trials since then.  The year started out on such a roll, but I guess the streak had to come to an end eventually.
It has been raining quite a bit.... sometimes day after day. Generally, my agility field is always in good condition, but there were times when it was actually muddy and we just could not practice. So maybe the lack of practice has something to do with it.  I swear that the older Seven gets, the faster, more driven, and more excited she gets about this sport. Most of her errors are off courses or teeter fly offs. Silly hound!

Wednesday, March 25, 2015

First Excellent Qs

At our last agility trial, Maddie earned her first Excellent Standard leg and finished her Excellent Jumpers title.  That means she is now competing against Riley and Seven and can start earning Championship points in Jumpers. Here are the runs.
Maddie had moved up quicker than I thought she would.  I hope we can get the Standard title finished soon so she can start earning Double Qualifiers.

Since there are so few greyhounds competing in agility in the USA..... or anywhere in the world actually, it is likely that Maddie will qualify for the Invitational. The Top 5 of each breed is invited to the event. Riley and Seven are already qualified, but I do not like to run Seven on mats with her bad wrist and with Riley turning 9 soon, I figured all the big deal events were behind us. But a friend mentioned taking Maddie. That running our baby dogs with no expectations, but to have fun would be.... fun! So I might just do that.

Monday, March 23, 2015

Big Sister Reagan

In October, Stefanie, Tom, Wilson, and Reagan welcomed a baby boy, Oliver, into the family.  As you know, Reagan has been living with Stefanie and Tom for a year and a half now. If you don't know, Reagan had trouble with noise phobias and was TERRIFIED of my van. Stefanie would babysit Reagan when I was out of town and finally we just decided that Reagan should stay.
And it has worked out beautifully!
Reagan has never avoided Oliver, but over the last couple of months she appears to genuinely like him.
Reagan is quite the snuggle bear so she would, of course, snuggle in close if there was a chance that she might get petted.  
But recently she has started choosing to lie down next to Oliver. Even when she is allowed on the couch, she has been choosing to lie on the floor with him.

Stefanie has never asked Reagan to lie down next to Oliver, she is just choosing to do it all on her own.  How cute is that?!?!
When Reagan turned out to be so noise sensitive that she had to stay home while I was out with the other hounds, I would sometimes wonder if another puppy in her litter would have been a better choice. When I evaluated the litter at the age of 9 months, I had narrowed my choices down to two pups. In the end, I chose Reagan..... and I'm so glad I did. Although, she is no longer my dog, I am glad that I was able to bring her to Tom and Stefanie. They love her so much!
We are all so thrilled with how great a fit it has been. 

Thursday, March 12, 2015

Snow Day

A few weeks ago, we got a few inches of snow.  I love 1 or 2 snow days a year!  My pictures are not the best, but they are better than nothing.

Seven's Kodak moments were staged.

 Ahhh... much better. Warm and inside.