Tuesday, January 20, 2009

10 things to work on to get Mika ready for Regionals

We've got quite a few things to work on before the AAC Regionals, which is May 29-31. At Regionals, we'll be running in 2 each of Masters Standard, Jumpers, and Gamblers. Even though Regionals is May 29-31, I'd like to get all these things done before May, so that we're completely prepared for Regionals. These things are listed in no particular order, except for the first one, which is the one I really have to work hard on.

1. MY HANDLING!! (this is biiig priority!) especially front crosses

2. more control of Mika (but still mix up with motivational sequences)

3. build Mika's independence (might be hard to encourage this AND control)

4. no weave popping, great entries

5. use PVC hoop to encourage running through contact on dog walk and A-frame (she might need reminders once the field opens again, since she'll have gone through such a long time without regular practice on full-size contacts)

6. train rear crosses (I never really trained them properly, and though I do use them with tunnels since Mika can't see me crossing behind her, I'd like to be able to use them before jumps without worrying about a spin)

7. correct tunnel entrances (this links back to handling, since Mika will always go where she thinks I tell her to go)

8. focus at all times (she has her rare lapses of attention, mostly when she's getting tired, so this links to conditioning which I'll discuss below, but probably won't be a problem because there's only 3 runs a day at Regionals)

9. Mika's conditioning (exercise ball 5 days a week until it gets warmer outside, then when it does get warmer, daily 30 min. walks on weekdays, 1 to 2 hr. walks on weekends, as well as continuing exercise ball 5 days a week)

10. This isn't exactly something we need to work on, just something I need to remember: Always remember to continue on when Mika makes a mistake on course, and reward the off courses in training (the next time we try the sequence, make handling clearer and jackpot if she does it correctly)

So there you go, that's mostly everything that we have to work on before May. The biggest ones are probably handling, weaves, rear crosses, and conditioning.



  1. Aren't dog-related to-do lists the best kind of to-do list... Sounds like you've got a clear picture of where you'd like to get to, which is great. Have fun tackling the list! :-)

  2. That's a lot of stuff to work on but we're sure you can do it! My mom needs to make working on her handling a priority too!

  3. Thanks, I've actually got so many dog to-do lists scribbled down on paper that I don't know what to do with them all! :)


  4. Ahem, well miss Nat it seems you've got a bunch of little things to work on before I come and cheer you guys on. Luckily for us the price for our travel has gotten cheeper, but I'm afraid I'll be missing Sunday. I'll definitely see Saturday and hopefully see you Friday. Remember KEEP RUNNING!

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