Each year at Thanksgiving we head out to Springfield, MA to the “Greatest Show on Dirt”, the Thanksgiving Agility Cluster.
This year was O’Connor’s first Cluster (not as a competitor), he tagged along to support his dad, Aiden! This is a very large, busy, noisy four ring agility trial, with over 500 dogs entered, going on at the same time as an AKC conformation, obedience and rally trial.
Great exposure for a young dog.
As usual we drove out on Thanksgiving Day and set up our crates and chairs at the Eastern States Exposition Fairground and then had dinner at the Storrowton Tavern.
On Friday we woke up to this…
Aiden’s first class of the day was Time to Beat Preferred. He had a clean run and qualified coming in 2nd for 9 points.
The second class was Premier Jumpers with Weaves Preferred. Aiden had a good run but knocked one bar down.
Next up was Masters Jumpers with Weaves Preferred. Aiden had a great run on a tough course but unfortunately got a refusal when I did a rear cross.
In between classes we took the boys out for a nice long walk despite the frigid temperature.
Connor found a Styrofoam ring that he thought was great fun to play with
The 4th class was Premier Standard Preferred. Aiden qualified in 1st place.
Aiden’s 5th and final class of the day was Masters Standard Preferred and Aiden was still raring to go! He qualified in 2nd place and earned 23 PACH points.
Aiden’s first day ribbons
On Saturday Aiden’s first class was Premier Standard Preferred. This was a very hard course with the second jump being a “backside”. Bad handling on my part caused Aiden to crash into the first jump as I was so concerned about getting him to the backside of the next jump I called him to soon.
The second class was Masters Standard Preferred. Aiden had another good run but one bar came down.
During an agility trial this large there is always “down time”. We took advantage and brought Connor to the AKC Trick Dog testing area. Each dog is required to pass 10 tricks for the Trick Novice Title. Since Connor has already passed the Canine Good Citizen Test, that counts as 5 “tricks” so he only had to do 5 more.
Walk across balance beam
“Get on” to a table or step with four paws
Jump a low bar
“Touch it” hand or target
Connor passed the Trick Novice test and earned his Trick Novice Title (TKN)
Back to agility…Aiden’s 3rd class was Premier JWW Preferred. This was another challenging course. Aiden had a nice run but took an off-course tunnel.
Aiden’s 4th class was Masters Jumpers with Weaves Preferred. He qualified in 3rd place with 19 PACH points. This was his 25th Masters JWW leg and he earned his Masters Jumpers Preferred Bronze Title.
The final class was Time to Beat Preferred. Aiden had a clean run and qualified in 1st place for 10 points.
Aiden with his day 2 ribbons
The boys with their New Title ribbons
VP Alta-Tollhaus O’Connor BN RN TK CGC (10 months old)
and his sire
V, U-CH, PAM Alta-Tollhaus Aiden IPO-2 VCD2 BN RE FDC MX MXJ MXP2 MXPB MJP2 MJPB MXF MFP TD CA SCN SIN SEN DN HIC TC TKI TDI CGC