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The Triumphs and Iniquities of the LDD
Ina has been taking Draco to agility classes for three weeks now. (Or rather, I have been driving Ina and Draco to agility classes, along one of the most potholed single-track lanes in All England, and she has been training with him.) I have been really surprised by how well he is doing. Though taking off the lead is something the instructor only tried once so far - he went galloping back to the other dogs who were just waiting to savage him if he'd got within range - he understands that he is supposed to jump the jumps, go through the tunnels, and cross the dog walk. In fact, he loves both the jumps and the dog walk. However, tunnels are something to lurk in. At the first lesson, we had the edifying sight of a plump lady getting on in years (not me, for once!) crawling into the tunnel to try to dislodge him. She competes Minis herself, including terriers, so understands their sense of humour.

On the other hand, Draco has yet to get the point of weaves.

Last night, though, was about training owners. Val, the trainer, had laid out a course that started with two jumps in line, then a two hundred and seventy degree turn back to the other side of the fence you'd just jumped (and which you mustn't jump again!) to a fence at right angles to it. The problem for the non-experienced owners, or even the semi-experienced ones (none of the dogs are experienced in this beginners class) was which way to go so the dog didn't just whirl and jump the wrong fence. A lot of people got it wrong. Ina, going last, benefited from watching someone take an alternative route that was acceptable and easier.

Draco has started enjoying these classes, though he really does get hyper afterwards.

This morning, though, he blotted his copybook by rolling in another dog's poop - one where the dog wasn't exactly continent - and ended up with excrement smeared over his head, neck and collar, and even in his ears. Some of it came off with tissues, but walking him home via the baker's was problematical. I had him, because I'd been wielding the tissues, and he plainly knew he'd been a BAD DOG because he walked perfectly on his lead, and sat neatly beside me outside said baker's and the village shop. He went straight into the shower when we got home, and now he is asleep and totally satisfied with himself...

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Just as some dogs are smarter than others, so are some owners. Cunning of Ina to get placed at the end of the sequence.

She gets away with going to last of the Minis - which alternate with the standard-sized dogs as the jumps get lifted and lowered - because she is the least experienced person there. I don't suppose Val will let that last.

It's a toss-up from profiting from one's inexperience, and getting rid of it to useful effect, then.

Too clever for his (or our) good, and in the terrier definition of 'clever.'

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