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I went down to Northern California last weekend to the SMART trial.  The goal was to get the girls qualified for Cynosport by the end of the year.  Kona needed her Master Challenge legs, she delivered and is now fully qualified.  Lucy has no PGP q's, oh well.  She may or may not compete in PGP at Cynosport, kind of doesn't matter to me.  She has her PVP partner set up, they started their USDAA careers together in Starters Pairs and both dogs will retire after competing at Cynosport next year, seems fitting to go full circle with a very dear friend as our teammate.  She did remind me that we "E'd" the pairs run because she didn't know that the dogs couldn't run with collars on in USDAA, and it was her first USDAA show.  Lucy may make an occasional appearance in AKC, but it is quite clear that her vision is failing.  I've been watching her closely for signs from daily life and this past weekend she tripped going up a dimly lit stairwell at the motel.  First time her vision has impacted her day to day life and I can only hope that she'll be safe enough to run in agility for the next year.  She clearly still loves the game, but as we all know she'd be just as happy visiting everyone at the trial instead.  This was road trip #2 for Merlin.  His report card:   Car ride = A, Trial site = A, Hotel = F.  There was no way he was going to settle down in the motel room after we arrived in California, even after playing with Kona for an hour.Because of the need for me to get some sleep and some mild concern about the occupants in the room below us he was once again banished to the car for the night.  We did see his littermate Dirtt, who is a wonderful little blue merle bitch with the same outgoing temperament, Rex, Grandpa Ricky, Tcam, and a lot of other relatives.  It was also fun for me to see my Northern California agility friends, I hadn't been down for an agility trial for almost 4 years.

We'll be headed down to Northern California one more time in December, then enter agility hibernation, probably until March or even April.  I am quite happy to skip the January RHR show this year and may even skip WAG.  There are many skills I wanted to work on with Kona, without the pressure of having to trial and get her qualified for Cynosport, and I would be happier just staying home and training.  I'm quite pleased that we can take an extended break and reemerge when the weather is nicer.  Merlin also needs some stay and recall training over the winter.  Unfortunately being home every weekend is really going to cut into Gus' nap time, I might need to find a quieter place in the house for him.

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I keep offering to my PNW agility friends it I'm just 5 minutes off of 80 and and you are welcome to stop and stay in December!

Thanks! I'll take you up on that offer when I'm traveling with one dog. I think it's a bit much to show up with three :)

Well you don't need me telling you I love Kona again do you? No, no you don't. But you guys are sooooo gooooood, I want to write it again. Stopped myself from sharing your video so that I am not a total stalker. More like a nerdy adoring fan. It's progress.

Funny. Everyone needs one cyberstalker, it's very flattering.

Wow, SO MUCH FUN! I'm not really screaming it, but emphasizing how much fun it is to watch you two run.

I bet it is nice to go down and see all your old pals and all of the Merlin relatives.

I'm looking forward to many more videos of you two. Tell Lucy I said hi;)

Edited at 2013-11-20 03:47 pm (UTC)

Wow, those runs were awesome. Little Kona is growing up! How nice to be able to go down to CA for some trials. And thanks for the Merlin video and report to remind me why I haven't done any road trips with a certain little Mr. yet. ;-)

Thanks! He did as well as could be expected for a 5 month old puppy, but really there was no sign of getting any sleep.

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