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First trial! Very nervous

Running, catching, leaping; this is the forum to discuss dog sports and agility training with other active pups!

  
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Lenny

Lenny -The- Wrecking Ball
 
 
Barked: Thu Feb 23, '12 9:32am PST 
cheerLenny and I will be attending a mock trial at the end of April, and then our first real NACSW trial in early June. In class he is proving to be phenomenal. He can work past food distractions (ignoring bags of dog food/treats, unattended pig ears) and other distractions such as people and other dogs near by have never been a problem. We've been working on vehicle searches most recently (just 2 weeks ago introduced to those) but otherwise I feel pretty confident in the other parts of the trial (box drill, room search, and area search).

And even though it's a mock trial and the out come won't matter to me as long as Lenny has a good time (and that goes for any real trial as well) I'm very very nervous. Trial environments are stressful. I'm glad to have an opportunity for the mock trial though, to gage how trial ready he is (and me too!)

I'll stop myself from rambling any more, but any trial advice? I am new to the dog sports thing and I'm a total nerve bag. Mainly about mistakes I will make, not so much worried about Lenny. What is important to take? How to keep down stress? Anything like that will be awesome! I'm forming a list of things to take and remember... listing and prep time help decrease my crazy anxiety.

My instructor told me not to worry, to just work Lenny on a long line and stay out of his way. Said all he needs is a ride there. laugh out loud But advice for his momma would be awesome.
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ARCHMX Asher RL1X RL2X RL3X RL

we will dance in- the ring without- words
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 24, '12 4:05am PST 
You are going to be fine. Relax. It's just first trial jitters and we all get them.

Get there early to set up. There are a couple of threads here on what to bring. Ne prepared to do a lot of waiting.

I always find having friends with me helps it go faster and easier. My trial buds. my mom, just someone to pass the time.

Make sure you give Lenny the time to do his job. Don't rush. Use the time you have when you are out there.

And breathe. I am pretty sure you NQ if you pass out smile.
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Czarka, CGC- UJJ

Why walk when- you can run?
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 24, '12 8:18am PST 
Listen to Asher laugh out loud

Arrive and get set up early...

Watch others run... if THAT doesn't give you a sense that everyone out there is dealing with nerves (dog and human), I don't know what will.

Remember to breath...

Relax... your pup does not care about Qs; so, regardless of your desires, HAVE FUN with your dog!

You WILL mess up... no biggie... relax and learn (whether mock or real trial). Did I mention HAVE FUN with your dog!

Oh yes... and if you are lucky, you won't be first up laugh out loud

Regardless, you judge will give an orientation; you'll have time to walk the course and plan your attack (watch what other handlers are doing during the walk-through... you'll see some different approaches... some of which will relate to dog control and speed).

Breath, relax, no worries!

Edited by author Fri Feb 24, '12 8:21am PST

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Lenny

Lenny -The- Wrecking Ball
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 24, '12 8:54am PST 
Thank you both! I found one of the threads on what to bring, added a couple of things to my list.

Czarka, I don't think we are allowed to watch other teams run since that would disclose where the hides are. For the ORT we were not allowed to watch the other teams run for that reason. I was going to offer to volunteer the day I was not going to run Lenny so I could watch, but I didn't want to miss another day of work and have to pay for a hotel.

One of my really good friends who loves dogs might actually be coming with me, which would probably help Lenny and I both. And a good majority of teams from my classes will be going too, so even though I am not best buds with all of them, there will be familiar faces too. But none of my family is really into it so they won't be coming.

I'll try to remember to do that thing called breathing... I remembered to do it for the ORT so hopefully I can remember to do it for the mock trial (and later the real one too). I'm prepared for all the mistakes I'm going to make, I'm sure there is going to be plenty. But I'm pretty good at laughing at myself, and I have a very forgiving team mate laugh out loud

How early is early? The site opens at 8, so I was going to shoot for 7 so I find half way decent parking and have time to get everything set up/together. To get there by seven I have to leave by 5:30 if not a little sooner so I was hoping that would be early enough cause I am not a morning person. lol

I'm glad to know this is normal, I was worried it was just me being weird.
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Toto, CD, RN, CGC

We don't do- doodles!!!
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 24, '12 9:33am PST 
Lenny, I was sooo bad when I started trialing that I COULD NOT sleep at all the entire night before a trial. I would be a zombie when I got there.
It did get better, I learned that I COULD go all day on no sleep, and finally, after a couple of years, I learned to have fun!!!
A friend and I left at 2AM once for a trial because neither one of us could sleep, BOL!!! Fortunately, it was outside so we stopped and got breakfast, went to the show and sat around relaxing for FOUR hours watching the sun come up. We BOTH qualified!!
Now I leave late and somehow, someway, manage to get there with five minutes to spare. And, I can now nap in the car while I am waiting for my turn so it is much more relaxing.
Good luck!
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Jewel, PCD

8.6lbs of fury- in a bow!
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 24, '12 10:42am PST 
Don't worry Lenny I'm a hot mess at trials! My first trial EVER (never got to a fun match) didn't know anyone, my dad dropped me off at the door and my group is first and in my group I'M FIRST!! I had a minor panic attack, I think the judge was worried about me I was such a mess. laugh out loud

Um, there's no uplifting "now" story like Toto because I've only been to 3 trials so far. I will just say that if you're going to take someone it helps me if it's someone that knows dogs or someone that won't make you want to stick your head in the sand. My dad sleeping in the front row of trial #2 did NOT help me. My mom reading the schedule and loudly asking me "Shorthair German Pointer...that's a mix right?" did not help either.
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Jewel, PCD

8.6lbs of fury- in a bow!
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 24, '12 10:42am PST 
I'm such a mess about trials that even talking about them makes me mess up! shh Nomnom double post.

Edited by author Fri Feb 24, '12 10:43am PST

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Toto, CD, RN, CGC

We don't do- doodles!!!
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 24, '12 12:33pm PST 
Jewel... I'm laughing!!!!! I took a "non doggy friend" once, she reminded me of your Mom, BOL!!! She was all upset because my dog was listed as a Retriever, Labrador. She couldn't understand why they didn't know it was a Labrador retriever. Uhhhh, mmmm, NO! Then, she said, "Hey, that sheltland sheepdog looks JUST like a sheltie!!!" Why do these people always talk at 100 decibels??????
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ARCHMX Asher RL1X RL2X RL3X RL

we will dance in- the ring without- words
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 24, '12 4:12pm PST 
You DO learn to relax after a few trials. I am now at the point where I can be in one ring while they are calling me in another and just keep going without missing a beat. But it takes a while.

The most important thing you can know is we all make mistakes and the judges have probably seen it all. If you call alert too early (the biggest mistake I have seen in NW1 trials), the judges SHOULD let your dog work through to source. The dog never loses. Watch your dog. TRUST your dog. Don't stand on any cracks in the sidewalk.
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MIKA&KAI

Akita Pals- Always.
 
 
Barked: Fri Feb 24, '12 8:21pm PST 
Lenny, I have no experience at the kind of things you are working on.
We just wanted to tell you relax,enjoy,and have a good time and most of all GOOD LUCK &wishes

hug Mika,Kai&Pam(their Mom)
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