Wednesday, March 30, 2011

Preparations


As you know, Riley and I have been invited to compete in the Purina Incredible Dog Challenge. I am very excited and really want us to do our very best and have a great time. I would love for us to be included in the televised portion of the event. As you can see above, Riley is very stressed.... NOT!

If you are in Atlanta and wish to attend, the event will be held at the Atlanta Centennial Olympic Park on April 2nd at 11:00 AM. I believe attendance is free, but you may have to pay for parking. The event includes agility, Jack Russell hurdle racing, dock jumping, weave pole challenge, and Frisbee. Riley will be doing agility and the weave pole challenge.

For those outside of Atlanta, I believe you can watch live streaming of the event at Bark Network (Click Here). It begins at 11 AM Eastern Standard Time.

There is really not much I can do in preparation other than have a good plan for managing Riley at the event.  I plan to have Stephen drop me off with her crate and things.  I will check out the area and set up her crate while Stephen stays with Riley in the car.  Then I will go back to get Riley and can hurry her back to the crating area.  Since she is occasionally "weird" about things, I want to avoid being casual, getting lost, or just hanging out when she is with me.  Outside of her crate, I want her to be happy, ready to work and too busy to be soaking in sights, sounds, and smells.  Inside her crate, I want her to chill out like she normally does.
The best part is that Friday is a practice day.  Its an excellent opportunity to carefully manage Riley so she has a great time and then she will likely have the same expectation when she arrives on Saturday.

I also plan to bring Riley to the event HUNGRY. I normally suggest bringing hungry greyhounds to the classes I teach, but I never implement it with my own greyhounds because they are always hungry... even after meals. But for this event, I am going to heed my own advice.  On Thursday, Stephen is going to grill Riley (and himself) a steak so I have super high value treats that Riley does not normally get.
Lastly, the only other preparation to make was to practice the weave pole challenge.  It is basically a race to see which dog can weave 30 weave poles down and back the fastest.  Riley has only ever done 12 poles at a time so I created the 18 weave pole challenge with what I had.  I was pleasantly surprised that she seemed to really have fun and get faster and faster as she went.
Mmmmm.... canned dog food jackpot. Today, I am planning to work on our turn around.

15 comments:

OnrushPam said...

You say "down and back"...
Does the time after exiting the 1st pass count? Or, do they stop at the exit and start timing at the begininng of the 2nd pass?

Cat said...

So excited for you!

Jenny said...

Do you know when you & Riley will be competing/practicing on either day? I'd love to watch, and apparently we can bring our hounds too (so says the Centennial Park office).

Tons of luck to both of you!

jet said...

Good luck! I'm so glad that you decided to do it. :)))

jcp said...

I'm going to try to catch the webcast. What an awesome opportunity. Congrats!

Never Say Never Greyhounds said...

Pam, I think the timer starts, you pass through the weave poles, run around a target a short distance from the poles, pass back through, and timer stops. That way everyone's dog goes the same distance. I need to practice the going around the target to turn around.

Jenny, its starts at 11AM on Saturday and agility is first so I would imagine we'd be between 11 and 12. The weave pole challenge is around 2 - 3 PM I think.

For anyone that is coming, I would probably not bring a greyhound that has a very high prey drive. Watching dogs run agility (especially smalls ones) and the terrier races are very stimulating to dogs with strong chase and lure drive. Seven is a good example... she is staying home. :-)

Sam Burton said...

Brittan and I can't be there, but we'll be rooting for you just the same.

Amy / Layla the Malamute said...

That's so cool! I'm so, so excited for you. I'd love to get chosen for that one day.

As for the weave pole challenge, one of the recent ones I saw on TV had the dogs weave, then go into a tunnel, come back around (it was a regular curved tunnel) and then weave.

I can't wait to hear how it went!

houndstooth said...

I think you and Riley are going to do great! I'm really excited for you. I wish I was near Atlanta, because I'd definitely come to watch you. We'll try to tune in on the Bark Network!

Muttsandaklutz said...

Awesome -- best of luck!!!

Jardine Hounds said...

Good Luck! hope to get to see you on Bark Network.

IHateToast said...

getting closer. i have no idea what time that would be in australia, but i'm betting i'll be asleep. let us know if there's a link to the event for viewing later.

where's your jackpot? and where's your special meal by stephen? and why doesn't he put an up-close photo of you sleeping in your posts?

love riley's excitement after every run. such a "wheee!" moment.

Greyhounds CAN Sit said...

I hope I'm not too late to wish you and Riley a bit of luck, I'm sure you won't need much! I never know what time of day it is in the USA, or even if we're in the same day!

I had a look at the Bark Network and it doesn't look like I can get it here:( Hopefully Stephen can video your runs, or maybe that won't be allowed?

Anyway, have fun whatever happens. Can't wait to hear all about it:)

Never Say Never Greyhounds said...

Getting ready to leave for the practice day. First time I've every put on make up and blown dry my hair for agility, but we have television headshots at 11 AM and I don't want to be ugly :-). Greyhounds Can Sit, you left your comment at 5 AM April 1 my time... if that helps you figure out the hour change.

Heather said...

Good luck! I'm so excited. I'm going to attend via streaming! The girls and I will be wearing TEAM Riley shirts!