Posts Tagged With: Stewie JRT

If I knew then what I know now-Don’t blame the dog!

Today is a Dog Agility Blog Event Day. Check out all the other blogs on this topic here.

When I started agility about eight years ago, I was a novice and so was my pup. There are several things I would do differently now looking back. But my main piece of advice is: Don’t blame the dog!

As a novice starting out there are so many things to remember to do, watch the dog, give your cues, move your body, watch where you are going, and remembering where to go next!

Train your dog and train yourself! In the beginning you are training your dog to do obstacles. I have found out that training the dog is the easy part. It was training myself that is hard. The handler must be the leader, providing the dog with timely cues on what obstacle to take and where they are going next. Your dog will go exactly where your body tells it to go.

When I watch novice handlers at trials I sometimes see handlers frustrated when their dog goes off course when their body language is clearly sending them that way! Dogs pick up on your emotions, frustration, and disappointment. Please do not de-motivate your dog.

Stay upbeat. Do not scold or become upset with your dog. Your relationship with your dog is much more important than any Q. That can be hard to see when you are first competing and you really want to do well. I found out that I was a lot more competitive than I thought I would be. But think about the your partner, he needs to be having fun too. When you make a mistake use that as information for next time. Just continue on and praise your dog, he is working his hardest for you. Always keep the fun in agility! If you keep up the fun, your dog will always be willing to play with you.

I am lucky, my Jack Russell Terrier ¬†was and is highly motivated to do agility. He was very forgiving of me and my mistakes! I didn’t understand as a novice handler that mistakes were my fault. I thought I needed to keep training the dog when I needed to improve my handling.

Try new things and listen to your dog. When it became clear that my Jack Russell Terrier, Stewie really disliked 2 on 2 off contacts, we tried something new. I went to running contacts which he very clearly preferred. Now one of his favorite things is “making air” over the A-frame.

Enjoy agility with your dog, and remember to play with your dog and have fun, that is the most important thing!

Stewie Aframe

Please check out many other blogs on this topic at If I knew than what I know now.

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Sunday practice and tugging success

We had a great practice in the horse barn Sunday! ¬†Stewie really needed to run and stretch his legs after the recent snow and cold. We have been practicing our tugging, using Susan Garrett’s Brilliant Recall program for guidance. Stewie’s tugging has really improved! He tugged inside the barn, and also outside with other dogs and horses present. He was really keeping his focus on me.

 

Click here for a recent Susan Garrett post on tugging duration.

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The Coliseum in Springfield Illinois

Here are some shots of the exterior and the interior of the Coliseum where the NADAC Champs was held last week. It is a beautiful building, the the running surface was fabulous for both dogs and handlers alike, It looks like dirt but was actually a 80/20 mixture of sand and coarse sawdust.
Stewie loved it in there and responded the the energy and applause like the champion he is!
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NATCH Stewie

NATCH Stewie with Judge Sarah Fix at Act Up Agility trial, September 24, 2011!!
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Introducing…NATCH Stewie!

Stewie is now NATCH Stewie. He finished his Championship on Saturday, September 24 with a beautiful and fast Chances Q. Sarah Fix was the judge and the club was Act Up Agility, in North Smithfield, RI.

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Moving Wait is coming along well!

We have really been training on Stewie’s moving wait the last couple of weeks, and I am very happy with it! It is a good winter project!  He thinks it is a fun game where he gets extra cookies.
Whether he will do it in competition is another story, but we will see!

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NADAC Top Ten Jack Russell Terriers 2010

Stewie placed in 4 classes in the NADAC Top Ten Jack Russell Terriers 2010 in the USA and Canada.

Jumpers               4th place
Tunnelers           4th place
Touch and Go    5th place
Regular                6th place

What a great job Stewie! This is the 3rd year in a row he has placed on the Top Ten list.

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Workshop Video 1 1-30-11

http://vimeo.com/moogaloop.swf?clip_id=19414319&server=vimeo.com&show_title=1&show_byline=1&show_portrait=1&color=00ADEF&fullscreen=1&autoplay=0&loop=0
Stewie 1 from Heidi Konesko on Vimeo.

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Chances course 12/31/2010

This is the Elite Chances course from New Year”s eve 2010 in Smithfield, RI.
We went off course after the # 6 jump. Stewie turned in to me and took the # 4 jump again, going in the wrong direction.It was too bad, I really think he would have gone on and done the hoops if we hadn’t blown it there. Only a couple of dogs got it.

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Stewie earns his Superior Elite Regular Title!

Stewie earned his S-EAC title on New Years Day 2011 with a 1st place Q! This was at Addicted to Agility’s trial at N. Smithfield RI with judge Roger Coor. It was an awesome run with great weave poles with a time of 37.72. The 2nd regular run that day was the same course turned around, and Stewie had another blazing fast with with great poles, and beat his own time by 3 seconds with a time of 34.73!

You need to have 40 Elite Regular Q’s to earn the Superior title. Great job Stewie!

According to my records, Stewie has gotten 7 Regular Q’s since August 1, 2010 toward Championshops 2011!

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