Open Obedience

Well we went to the AKC obedience trial today!  Zumi was entered in Open A for her 2nd trial.

I was both happy and worried when I saw that the steward for Open was a child.  A lovely young girl who did a great job stewarding all day!

It's just that Zumi wasn't well socialized to kids and she's very nervous by them.  A recurring them in some past problems we have had with Zumi working in both agility and obedience trials.  A problem that is purely my problem, not a fault of the club and certainly not a problem that she was there stewarding.

I was optimistic that since the girl was older we would be fine.  I could keep Zumi in "drive" and hopefully have her not even notice her.

That didn't' happen.  Zumi saw her right away as we were getting ready to enter the ring and started worrying.  She recovered really well as we got to run to the heeling setup spot and heeled relatively well.  Some lagging. A few glances to the steward table, and a brief moment where she cut behind me to heel on the wrong side.  But trying hard and playing with me before the figure 8 setup.

Then a little worse.  Zumi needed to sniff the girl and did some ducking away.

At the start of the cue discrimination, she was still a little worried and not able to focus on my first cue to stand.  NQ.

But then I was really proud of how she pulled it together!
No squealing on the first retrieve!  Just a tiny squeal on the retrieve over the high.

She did her down from a sit for the stay, complete with a "sad" chin rest!

Lesson learned for me.  If there is a child steward, even an older one, I should just pull.  Zumi tries hard, but she can't quite handle it.  And it's certainly not worth pairing that stress with a trial!

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