Tomorrow starts a new half-session of agility during which I will gradually become more agile as I run after my damn dog who ignores everything I say, harrumph. (Yes, we're back in the slump part of the cycle. I just have to keep reminding myself that she really is having a good time...)
There have been four dogs in the "advanced" class for the past few months, but for the next three weeks the intermediate class will be combined with ours since only one person in that class is in town. This will give Ginger a chance to show off her excellent on-leash social skills with the new dog by which I mean she will prove that five years of constant training have pretty much done nothing and she will continue to act like a crazed piranha.
Anyhow, Ginger has a soulmate in the class -- Trinket is a Rat Terrier who exhibits the same bad little dog attitude. Ginger and Trinket sort of tolerate each other -- I think it's a case of flirting through bad behavior.
Of the other two dogs, one is a gigantic service dog who I will call The Big Guy since I don't know how to spell his real name and his shoulder is at my hip height. I run the course with TBG (whose owner is in a wheelchair) which is a nice change from Ginger because TBG actually pays attention. In some ways he makes me look good because he's really smart and usually has most of the course memorized just by watching the other dogs go through it. On the other hand, if The Big Guy doesn't do the right thing, it's nearly always because I screwed it up. The one exception to this is when he stops and walks around the jumps while looking me in the eye with the clear message that whatever treat I gave him last just wasn't good enough. (I mentioned he's smart, but did I also mention how manipulative this dog is? I really, really have to watch what I'm doing or I'm in trouble.)
Ginger tries to pull her "I'm a little land shark, short and stout" song with The Big Guy, but TBG just can't even be bothered to notice so she soon gives up.
The final dog in the class is a Labrador that I'll call Bambie because I can never remember her name. (I swear this is the only dog/owner pair where I remember the owner's name more often than the dog's.) Bambie is a really nice dog. Not much of an athlete -- she'll usually knock down at least one or two jumps during the course -- but really wants to please.
Sadly, Ginger has terrorized Bambie so much in the last six months (from a distance) that Bambie sees Ginger and gets behind her owner's legs. It's sad.
So, yeah, my dog is that kid in kindergarten that none of the other parents want their kids to be friends with. I guess I would expect nothing less.