Saturday, 4 August 2012
Time to catch up
Well I have been a really busy boy since my last post at the end of May. Flushed with the success from my performance at the H4H working test Mum was all full of hope for our next working test which was held at the Italian Spinone Club, Elstead on the 23rd June and she was feeling pretty confident. Well I decided to be a bit of a wally and keep her on her toes. We were first up for the hunting and Mum thought that it would be good as we would be the first to cover the ground. Nope - I hunted a bit but mainly spent my time staring up at the trees looking for squirrels, I only ran out to the left, wouldnt cover the right hand side of the woods at all and then decided it was far too wet and muddy for a vizsla and stopped. Never mind Mum thought let's carry on, next test was a split retrieve, well I really didnt get it and got all frustrated with Mum and stood in the middle of it barking at her, I never normally bark so she knew I was pretty cross with her, mind you I think she was pretty cross with me too! Next up was the memory retrieve, easy peasy we do these all the time, but no I was a horror, I did eventually go and get the three dummies that we'd put out but only after Mum went into complete meltdown mode and shouted some very rude words at me (it was ok though as she did give me big cuddles when I eventually retrieved the dummy) The specators were laughing a lot at Mum as she was well cross. It was at this point that Mum decided some 'time out' was needed and I was put back in the car while she went off to get a cup of tea and some cake to calm down: We then went off to do the water, I refused point blank to sit as it was terribly muddy there and I didnt want to get my 'boy bits' all covered in mud. Mum sent me off to do the retrieve as by this time she had lost the will to live, I dived in and boy was the current strong I really had to swim hard to get to the other bank, I did it though and swam back and plonked the dummy in a big pile of mud - there you go Mum! We came 34th out of 37th dogs - enough said really As you can imagine after that miserable performance my training went into overdrive and Mum and me have been working really really really hard. Mum's been taking me to all sorts of new grounds, she even borrowed a 100 acre farmers field for me to practice my hunting for goodness sakes!!! Here I am after quartering like a pro across the field We also got together with Auntie Katie with Willow and Ollie and Mark with Meeka (super duper vizsla who is in Open competitions, she is amazing) and went for a lovely training day on Twyford Down, we had a dummy launcher and all sorts, it was brilliant. Here's Mum, Katie and Mark, us dogs were too tired to pose for a picture! When the training finished we had a little play around in Mark's garden, here is left to right Meeka, Me and Yaz - Meeka's new little sister. After all this training Mum decided it to brave it and go to another working test, this time the Large Munsterland Club in Beaconsfield on the 1st July. We did the hunting first again, the field had lovely long grass and there were loads of great game smells, I was on fire, even more so when I flushed a pheasant, I did my best score ever in hunting a whopping 33/40. That really put me in the right frame of mind for the rest of the tests, I have started being a pain though in refusing to sit at the set ups, I am so focused on retrieving that Mum is having difficulty getting me to plant my bum. This means I am losing a lot of points as I am not under control, on the positive side though I do fly out like a loonie to find the dummies and dash straight back to Mum, have forgotten how to do it to hand and am reverting back to 'spitting' the dummy at Mum's feet. All round a much better performance than the last test (well let's face it, it couldnt be much worse) and we came a respectable 12th out of 42 dogs. Mum wasnt leaving it there though, oh no loads more training sessions lined up for me. We went to GSP club in Romsey, here is me and Ollie being good boys in the back of the car Then Mark organised another training session, this time at West Meon, there was Ellie (GSP), Isla (Viz), Meeka and Yaz plus me Willow and Ollie, here are our Mum's and us. We did loads of retrieves, some hunting and also had the dummy launcher again. Here is Mum sending me out on a retrieve, that's Meeka sat behind her not me, I'm up front somewhere being a little so and so as you can tell by her negative body language!!! We went to the GSP Sussex club working test in Barcombe (Woof woof get it?) last weekend. The ground was lovely. Katie, Mum and us three dogs (willow, ollie and me) were stood next to the lake admiring the view when both mum's jumped as an adder slithered past and plonked into the lake OMG OMG and I was expected to swim in there, you are joking! First up was the hunting again, lovely woodland ground, Mum remembered everything Mark had told her to do in training and she set me up fine, only trouble was I was so excited I barked - that's a big NO NO, oops! - I soon calmed down and got into my stride, I was quatering right out and working the wind. Mum was really pleased with me. Next up was the water, once again I didnt want to sit, we were nearly disqualified as I was taking so long to settle, in the end Mum had to growl at me in her really fierce voice and I listened - well for a nano second anyway. Dived straight out for the retrieve and back, not to hand again (sorry Mum). We then did the furthest blind retrieve ever, I reckon it was at least 2 miles but Mum said it was about 150yards, with a lot of persistance from Mum on the whistle I eventually got right out to where it was and found it, Mum was so very pleased with me and gave me big fusses. Last up was the seen retrieve, bish bash bosh job done straight out straight back, not to hand though. Not the best performance in the world but Mum was very pleased with me and knows what she needs to work on, her body language is a bit off so that is making me go out on the wrong direction, I need to calm down and sit and not anticipate the release command oh and of course there is the little matter of retrieving to hand to conquer again - we did it before so we can do it again. Here I am at the end of the day, one very tired content vizsla. We came 22nd out of 47 dogs Next weekend we have two working tests to do, one on Saturday in Haywards Heath and one on Sunday in Wiltshire - so watch this space!