Alena started the AD at 6 in the morning. The other entry had pulled, so Alena and Valenzia were the only pair, with Anne riding beside them to help with traffic, pacing, etc. We had to start early because of temperature worries (the test must stop if the temperature reaches 70 degrees), but it turned out to be quite chilly with the wind. Alena borrowed my new Goretex pants, a jacket from Anne, and gloves from José.
The AD was run on a stretch of road outside Progress City, with unfortunately rough pavement. The wind was sweeping, making parts of it quite difficult to ride, but they held in there, and Valenzia was still running strong at the end of the 12.5 miles. She had torn her pads a bit at the very end (she was fine during the first two checks), but the judge passed her anyway, as she was utterly unaffected by it and he recognized the rough pavement was an issue. Valenzia would have been fine with running some more, in fact, returning to the bike – silly dog. And she never did start panting or take any of the water offered on the mandatory breaks. Doberman.
Afterward, a group of us went for breakfast with the judge and helped Anne grade college tests.
We watched the Search and Rescue demonstrations then, and after that did a Rally introduction. Laev and I of course were already familiar with Rally obedience, but it was good practice and *great* training, working in the conformation ring liberally littered with liver and hot dogs! I had to switch to some nice sausage to keep Laev’s attention up after her initial dive for tasty bits, but by the end she was focusing much better.
Then I went back to the field for practice. Oops! Others had taken the field for protection practice. I waited, fidgeting, for them to finish; I didn’t want to work elsewhere, I wanted to fix the problem we had *here.* Finally they were done, and I pulled Laev for a super-fast session. I put the electric collar on her, just in case, and took her off-leash. Once again, she never took a step away from me. I never touched the electric. Once again, I was very, very happy that I hadn’t needed it, but worried about the next day. Would she remember leaving me when I didn’t have a contingency plan?
Then back to the hotel for the silent auction and draw party! I was running late, due to practicing with Laev, and sent Alena ahead to set up the silent auction. This is a big fund-raiser for the club, and it went very well this year – except for the items which were misplaced! We’d had some mis-communication, and several items were still at Progress City, not at the hotel to be sold. I promised a second auction on the next day.
Draw time – BH number two! We’d do our down first, which was fine by me, and then work the heeling pattern. And we’d get it all done early, as opposed to building up slow nerves while waiting our turn.