Welcome to the Blog of Rosie Ison & her Scruffy Hairy Mutts.

I do hope you enjoy reading about all the various exploits of the Hairy Gang !

Monday, September 27, 2010


My clever boy Fozzie, aka The Hairy Muppet has WON grade 3 agility, so moving him up to Grade 4 :-) I am so proud of him.
I really wanted to win out of Grade 3 with Fozzie. Its a lovely class for baby dogs to start out in, but I wanted more of a challenge than just straight up and down ! Also the class sizes of Large grade 3 are enormous. Most shows split Grade 3 into at least 3 classes because of the shear numbers, often in excess of 600+ dogs !! If they don't split then the class sizes are huge. Fozzie won out of a class of 285 dogs ! The class he won wasn't just an up and down( thank goodness), it was tricky with lots of handling. At the end of the class only 23 dogs had gone clear !!!!

He nearly won out the day before but he knocked a pole. He had the fastest round including the fastest 5 faults ! Coupled with the show a couple of weeks ago where he was beaten by such a small margin, I now knew he had the potential to do it , it was just a case of wondering if he actually would !
So in his last class of 2010 ( unless we brave the cold and do North Downs in November) he did me proud and won it. Whilst watching the video I can still see places where we can improve things so he has way more in him. It will be lovely to be in Grade 4 with him next year, the same class as Woody..Phew less course walking ;-)

Who would have thought that my little lad who bought me to tears so many times at the beginning of this year, and who I thought may never make an agility dog did so well.
Roll on the 2011 show season. However lots of winter training & areas to work on.

He's got a bit naughty with his start line waits during the last month or so, he's great at training but he's got very show wise, so that's one area to work on during winter. However his weaves have turned out brilliantly and also his dogwalk contact. I have been doing a quick stop go up till now at shows, but in training I do stop, play & then go. But for the last 2 shows I have done almost a running dogwalk (or so it appears) I still give a release as his feet touch the ground but it is instant. I am sure this has helped the speed.

Here is a video of his winning round ,and then one below of some of his other runs including the near miss ! Also his last run on this video is the Helter Skelter. Although he had 2 poles down, he had a lovely jump style for most of the round.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Almost there !

Well only one more weekend show to go and maybe one winter show and that's it till next March :-(
I just wanted to post this about Fozzie this weekend at Trent Park with a small video. It was a Grade 1-5 combined jumping class and it had an angle after the weaves over a jump. Ideally( with a more experienced dog) I would have switched behind the weaves to pull Fozzie over to the jump, however it would have meant an acute switch behind the weaves and with the previous issues with the weaves I didn't want to do anything that would upset Fozzies confidence. My other option would have been a front cross after the weaves but once again I felt I shouldn't do that, also only having 6 weaves it didn't really give enough time for this !! I ran Woody in the class first and I was able to get to the end of the weaves and push him over the jump( No video I'm afraid) Woody did this beautifully and ended up clear and in fact ended up having a run off for a place..I left before the prize giving, but I think it was for about 12th. Anyway I digress, so back to Fozzie. He picked up another gear in this class and unfortunately cut in front of me at the end of the weave to take the jump straight in front. Extremely shoddy handling from me caused this, I just needed to be quicker by the weaves get to the end and then POINT towards the jump !!! I really need to smack myself for this, Terrible :-( Studying this video it made me realise I really don't give him as much help as I should i.e hand signals
However what I am so pleased about was his jumping and attitude. He's really driving over the jumps and is so much more committed, also his style is improving ten fold.
I hope Lisa and Gemma watch this video , because they gave me so much advice re jump grids and exercises to help him understand *how* to jump,and I am sure that has helped along with a thorough warm up massage/stretch routine beforehand.

I am now so excited about next year with Fozzie. He has come a long way since we started training this time last year. I didn't dream he's ever become this good. OK he hasn't reached the dizzy heights of Grade 5 or 6 like a lot of his fellow puppy mates have, but for me he has done amazingly and I am very proud of him.

Here is the video.

Just wanted to finish this post with Mr Woody..3 runs at the weekend and 3 places, to think 6 months ago I thought he may never work again !!! What a boy :-)

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Back to Normal and Great News

Well September has arrived and my agility holiday is over. I had a fantastic time. We started our holiday at Paul Moores & Kate Smiths place. They have a lovely house with a huge field for camping plus a lovely area for their agility equipment. We stayed there chilling out for 3 days before the tiring 10 days ahead.First was the KC Festival at Kelmarsh hall, then onto DIN at Ipswich.

Woody was well back on form with several top ten places, who would have thought that 6 months ago I thought he'd never compete again !! I tend to take him or steer him wide on most turns which costs time unfortunately ,however the last thing I want to do is wrap him tight round the jumps and potentially risk an injury again. Woody has never been a particularly tight turning dog like Chip so its not a problem.

Disney continues to be a star for his age. He makes me laugh & smile everytime I work him. He can be Soooo naughty but I just love him so and really appreciate how lucky I am to still be working him, and with him being in such wonderful health still.

Chip did some lovely work at the KC Festival but it all fell apart at D.I.N and I don't think we had one clear round !!!

My star was little Fozzie bear. He suddenly realised at the KC Festival that he could weave and boy could he. He got faster and faster. He is still struggling with the jumping and in nearly every round had a pole down. He is still not stretching as much as I'd like and regularly deer bounces.. Over winter I shall go back to regular grid work again, that certainly helped before.

Then last weekend we were at Letchworth. He was once again doing some terrific work but if for any reason we stopped on the course he became very distracted by everything around him and would just stand & stare around him. After a couple of attempts to get him to concentrate I would then just finish on a jump. If he is fully focused on his job he is fab and doesn't notice what is going on around him.

On the last day I was overjoyed to just get another clear from him & get a 14th place in Grade 3 Jumping. That was with a couple of wide turns and a couple of stutters. Then out of the hat on his last run of the weekend he came 2nd in Grade 3 Agility !!! He was leading the class nearly to the end. I had mixed feelings as to whether I wanted to win out or not. I wanted too mainly because it would give me such confidence and also it would mean that he would be in the same classes as Woody, but the other half of me wanted him to stay in Grade 3 for the start of next year. In the end he was beaten right at the end by 0.08 of a second !! When you see the video you can see why. He was slow on his down contact of the Dog walk & also he didn't drive to the last jump and did one of his funnies over it, both these things cost him definitely more than 0.08 sec , more like 1 second + !!

I have put on several Videos I have done over the past 3-4 weeks of all 4 dogs.
First up is a compilation of Fozzies runs at KC Festival and DIN

Woody at KC Festival

Chip at the KC festival

Disney at the KC Festival

Fozzies 2nd place at Letchworth

Fozzies Jumping round at Letchworth

Lastly Woody's 6th place at Letchworth