First of all, I can't believe my little dog will be 7 next week. SEVEN!!! Where did the time go?
* I want to step up my training again this year, after things fizzling out somewhat around the middle of the year in 2017. Plans are to work through several Fenzi classes in my archive again, take some new ones, and I'd really like to achieve at least Team 1, if not 2 as well.
--- I did take a couple new classes, but didn't really push for achieving Team. This will be on the menu again for 2019.
* In addition to the above, I also joined a DMWYD Facebook Group and want to work toward Trick Dog titles. Novice and Advanced shouldn't be an issue as far as capability is concerned, but I need to work on my video recording skills.
--- This has completly fallen by the wayside. I didn't work on it at all.
* Agility classes are still on the wish list. Now that I'm not going to group obedience class anymore, hopefully it will fall into place.
--- Nothing has materialized yet. No really safe, fenced options within reasonable driving distance for me. I might have to commit to a place farther away. We did run some more on-lead "baby agility" classes at JRTCA trials though, both standard and jumpers, and won several big ribbons for high combined scores and/or reserve.
* Continue to work on the Open routine, first by rebuilding the retrieve. Practicing Team skills should help as well.
--- This is working pretty well here at home, but I really, really need to find some good public places to train, where it's safe for Dax. Our main issue is dumb people letting dogs run loose and out of control.
* The most exciting thing for 2018 will be that Dax becomes eligible for
1. the JRTCA Bronze Medallion conformation class and
2. JRTCA Veteran classes (6+ years of age) for both conformation and performance. This gives us some new competition opportunities.
--- This was exciting for the year. Most often Dax was the only entry in Bronze, and didn't get picked for Best Working Dog or Reserve, but it's great to see his name in the trial results. He was Reserve Best Veteran on Sunday at California Commotion though, and at Nationals he placed 5th in Veteran Terriers and 2nd in Bronze Medallion Terriers in the Miscellaneous division.
* Although Dax earned his Bronze, I want to take him hunting again. He needs two more NHC's (doesn't matter which quarry), earned after his 6th birthday, to qualify for his Lifetime Achievement Award. We have to wait until Nationals 2018 to pick up his Bronze, so hopefully the Lifetime will fall into place by then as well.
--- This is the biggest deal of 2018, and I'm so glad it all fell into place. It turned out Dax actually needed only one more NHC for his Lifetime Achievement, and the judge under whom he earned his Bronze in 2017 was happy to accommodate us for one more hunt, a month before Nationals. So we took a trip to Illinois, the rain eventually stopped long enough to actually go out intot he field for an afternoon, and Dax found - Surprise! Not! - another nice, big opossum. All paperwork was in time, so I was able to pick up both awards at the Nationals dinner. Dax was one of only two!!! terriers earning the Lifetime Achievement in 2018.
* Attend some more JRTCA trials. Texas in March is already a firm plan (yay for another road trip with my mom!). 2018 will be the last Battleborn weekend, and I won $100 worth in entries for California Commotion in an auction, so these are firm commitments as well. I'd really like to add a new trial I haven't been to in 2018, so I may not go to WA, but we'll see. Due to 1. above Nationals are also in the plans for 2018.
--- We went to TX in March, WA in July, NV in September, Nationals (MD) in October, and had our California Classic in Tulare in December. The December trial was the first one I ever attended where we had to shut down the obedience and rally ring (outdoors) due to heavy rain, and had to do make-up runs for missed classes on Sunday. It was hard work for the dogs!
* There might possibly be some WCRL rally trials on the radar on the West Coast, so we'll see about that.
--- Unfortunately there was only one trial weekend, and it was in conflict with another event, so we didn't go. Still hoping for improvement in 2019.
* Whatever else we can find, hopefully some lure coursing, maybe we'll give weight pull a shot. I bought him a harness but haven't started training yet.
--- We had a lot of fun with this in 2018! Dax earned his UKC RO1 rally title in January, in a single weekend no less. He also passed his SPOT (UKC Socialized Pet Obedience test). In April he completed his UKC CA (lure coursing) and started on his CAX legs.
We did start training for weight pull, but he's not steady enough for an actual competition yet.
* I definitely want to continue working towards earning Trick Dog and TEAM titles. Ultimately it would make me immensely proud to put a CD on Dax (ASCA or UKC), and we'll certainly work toward that, but who knows when we'll have opportunities where I feel entirely safe working him off leash in a busy area. He's been really good about staying in the ring at JRTCA trials, even under very adverse circumstances, but ever since he got attacked (twice) at obedience class, and the second time resulted in a trip to the emergency vet, I just don't know. I don't want to risk group stays.
* Definitely continue working on weight pulling, so we can compete eventually.
* Dabble more in scent work (nose work, trailing & locating, shed dog), and maybe see if Dax would be interested in barn hunt again. He's been doing ok at JRTCA trials, but got bored with the BHA format.
* Once again the JRTCA trial in TX in March is happening, yay for another road trip with my mom! Beyond that I haven't really made plans yet, so we'll see. I had a great time traveling to JRTCA Nationals in 2018, with one day of dog show and two days of sightseeing and hiking in places I haven't been to yet, so there might be another excuse to visit the East Coast.
* When available, I want to do some more UKC performance, like racing, rally, and lure coursing.
* Possibly ASCA rally, if there are trials at locations where I can reasonably hope that Dax can focus. The park where most of the recent trials were held is full of bunnies, so that's entirely pointless.