10 February 2013

Sunday at Turlock with very special guests.

I had helpers on Sunday at the dog show.

One of them jumps 26" no problem.

One of them has an affinity for anything pink.

They set some bars.

We hung out. My nephews came to town, and I threw them in the car and brought them out to the dog show. We didn't stay all day, just a couple classes, and I can't say that I ran particularly well. The dogs were great for the most part, Gustavo ran focused and fast, although not clean. One teeter totter performed quite nicely, and one refused. A table disaster, and a bar. One disasterous blind cross. Otterpop had one nice run and one big fail where I just plain old lost the course.

The handler was the unfocused piece of the equation, is what I'd say about the quality of my runs this weekend. Damn it all to hell, except really, I just didn't care. This one was more about my helpers.

I learned a lot about bringing kids to a dog show. These are great kids, well behaved and did everything right. No one brings kids to dog shows. There were exactly 2 other kids there. I didn't bring mine ringside, they occupied themselves in their tent, watched my runs from behind a fence, and had a great time meeting people and dogs.

One lady approached me and my well behaved guys, letting me know that I needed to keep them out of sight and away from the ring when her dog ran, not for the kids' safety, but because her dog gets nervous when she's near kids. Crabby, irritating lady. The kids didn't approach a single dog they weren't invited to, stayed away from the ring, and still a crabby lady got her panties in a ruff over them. I was happy that many of my friends chatted with them, brought them stuff to play with, and were nice. To hell with the crabby ones.

There should be WAY more kids at dog shows, not fewer. Everybody try to bring a kid sometime.


Anonymous said...

kids are the best leash runners ever.

Terry A said...

SO agree, kids are part of our world, not socializing your dog around them is doing everyone a disservice.

Unknown said...

I show conformation and we love kids. In fact I just got smacked by a 5 year old showing a dog. When she ran around the ring with the dog, almost everyone in the building clapped for her! When she went in group, professional handlers helped her out. We need more kids in our dog sports for sure! Glad you had fun with your helpers!

Anonymous said...

Indeed. I have two sons, 5 and 8, who love coming to (part of the day of) dog trials with me. (They sit around and design courses on paper, and then after I run they tell me everything I should have done differently LOL). Only one other person around here ever brings kids.

Like your nephews, my boys are most excellently behaved around strange dogs; and yes, we too have hit crabby people. "Keep your kids away, my dog doesn't like kids, you shouldn't have kids here". Well, news flash folks, my little red dog doesn't much like border collies, finds them distracting and inherently upsetting, but I do not ask people to keep their BC's away when I have him out...

It's just like weather and scary umbrellas and things blowing over and a dog getting loose at an inopportune time. It happens. Part of showing. People need to cope! Glad you took your nephews and had fun regardless.

Maura W said...

Wow- what a crabby annoying person- really?! Next will she be asking men, people of another race, etc. away from the ring while her dog runs? That's a little crazy! There should definitely be more kids, normally I see them loving to help out and getting raffle tickets and lots of prizes for working so hard! Your nephews looked like they were having fun with that jump yesterday!

Lynn Ungar said...

Clearly, your nephews rock. My daughter used to come to obedience trials and climb in the crate with the dog. This was adorable when she was four or five and crawled in with the Berner. When she did it at age nine or ten with the Terv it was a little beyond cozy in there, but neither of them seemed to have a problem with it.

Unknown said...

Your nephews are adorable! When my son Shane was into agility many people were surprised when their "kid reactive" dogs would go right up to him for attention. Sometimes I think it's the "CRABBY" owners of the dogs who don't care for kids and teach their dogs not to like them..

Unknown said...

Wendy V left the last comment.

Anonymous said...

my son grew up at horse shows. if i had been doing agility back then, before it was invented, he would have grown up at agility trials. he knew the rules.
not everyone has kids, nor should everyone have kids. but no matter how much we love our fur kids, in the hierarchy of the planet, people are above dogs. people who love their dogs, but are lacking compassion for humans, have learned very little from those dogs they love...
and some people are just assholes, so stay as far away from those as you can.

Elf said...

I know a couple of people for sure whose dogs love kids so much that, if they see them, they'll run out of the ring to visit. Those people seem to laugh about it.

I could see someone asking nicely and apologetically if the kids would mind staying away from the ring while they ran their dog. Some people don't know how to do that. And you wouldn't have had to stay away if you didn't want to.

Reminds me of the lady (someone I didn't know) when i was chairing a CPE trial who said in a very upset tone when she was about to run to tell "that man to get away from the ring, he can't be down there scaring the dogs." That man was a photographer. He was calmly sitting there taking photos. I DID tell her that she could ask POLITELY whether he would mind moving away while her dog ran, but that it was her responsibility, not his, to have a dog who would work wiht distractions and that he had a right to be there. I think her husband finally did that because she was too upset to be nice.

I blamed that on her being a novice handler (although I don't know whether she was). I have a feeling that you're not talking about a novice handler.

I think it would be great if there were more kids at agility trials; *everyone* would become more socialized. :-)

Jenn said...

"Living near a high school, we go to soccer games, band practice and football games. Socialization only needs to be for thirty minutes, it’s not all night expeditions. I track down children to play with my sheltie youngster.
This is the work that pays off when you stand at the start line in two years and three kids with food and balloons are waving at your dog, or the belly dance troupe goes by. This all sounds so basic, but the more I train, the more I discover how much people skimp on socialization with young dogs. I weary of listening to people at agility shows fuss over anything unusual on the course or around it. If they had done their homework with their dog they could relax a lot more."