Monday, March 19, 2012

That time I tried to kick Porter into the correct end of the tunnel...

So on the jumpers course on Saturday, there was a straight tunnel pointing to the wrong end of a tunnel entrance (the next obstacle was that tunnel). I watched dog after dog fail when the handler tried to pull them to the correct entrance. I knew Porter had a very good chance of doing the same thing.

I assumed he'd be running slower than usual since he had in that morning's run (and he had since had another run plus his obedience run). So I planned a front cross before the straight tunnel so I could push him to the correct end.

Well, "best laid plans" and all that...

He was on fire! He was back to his fast self & so I knew there was no way I could pull him to the correct entrance, but getting in that front cross was also going to be dicey. 

With his increased speed & drive, I was able to send him out to the middle jump in the pinwheel before the straight tunnel. This did give me time to put in my front cross, but it also meant that we would hit the end of the straight tunnel at the exact same time.

As he came blasting out of the tunnel, I continued my path merging into his. I didn't slow up, he didn't either. He was locked onto that wrong end. Our paths began to intersect, but I held my ground, thinking he'd surely back off and turn toward the correct end.


We collided. I bumped him out of my way, he gathered himself, scooted around, and still took the wrong end.

As I kicked him in the butt, I heard the crowd do the collective "ooooh" (well, I heard Megan, maybe a few other voices) followed by hysterical laughing (again, mostly Megan). She said the judge winced as well.

But as you can see from the photos below, Porter was none the worse and continued on enthusiastically. The weave photos I posted earlier were from later in that same run.

So much for all that work I do with "bending to pressure" and "moving out of my space" in our herding lessons...

You can already see he is locked on to the wrong end of the tunnel

Porter is bracing for impact...

I think my next stride is where I made contact.

And he exits the entrance... (Notice the little dust balls he's kicking up?)
He was fine. Never slowed down...

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