The Claremont Barn Hunt Trial was last weekend. Since Bailie has one leg towards her novice title, she went with Mom for the day on Saturday. The hope was Bailie would get two novice passes and her title, but what started out awesome ended up in disaster!
Practice For Barn Hunt
We don’t have rats, nor do we have hay bales, so practicing for this sport is pretty much non existent. Bailie and Mom went to a class two months ago, but that was about it. Because it is imperative that Bailie do the tunnel and climb with all four paws on a bale besides finding the rat, Mom made a living room course.
The week before the trial, Mom made couch pillow tunnels and had Bailie hopping on the furniture on command. She seems to have learned it quite well. They hoped it would transfer over to the hay bales at the trial. We understand the sport is really instinct based, but we really need to practice to learn that the actual rat is what we want. Since we can’t practice, it is basically left up to chance.
The Instinct Trial
The Claremont Barn Hunt day started with the instinct trial which was in this super cute barn. Bailie rocked her instinct test. She raced right through the tunnel, jumped up on the bales of hay, and found the rat right away. This is Bailie’s second instinct title, as she passed back in June when we first tried barn hunt, but they used it as a warm up for the novice runs. Mom and Bailie were pumped up and had the feeling it was going to be a great day!
The First Novice Run
Bailie started off her first novice run right were she left off on the instinct test. She bolted right through the tunnel, jumped on some bales of hay, and then it happened. Bailie darted across the search area, headed into the corner and pooped! Yes, can you believe it! She pooped in the search area which is grounds for immediate disqualification. Mom was mortified! They had taken a good ten minute walk before her run. Silly Bailie also did her business at home before they left for the trial, but she decided to poop on barn hunt! It wasn’t a small job either…Mom says it was like elephant poop! I’m glad I was not there as I would have died of embarrassment!
The Second Novice Run
Okay. Time for the second novice run. Mom and Bailie had a couple hours to regroup and start fresh. If she passed this one, they could try for the third at another trial next weekend. No problem, they would get this. The first clue there would be trouble was when they found out the second course was outside. Outdoors has so many more distractions, but that in the end, was not a problem. One of the first dogs was running when the owner called snake. Yes! There was a snake coming out of a bale of hay and the dog was after it. My mom doesn’t do reptiles at all! After a time the snake was captured and taken away, but Mom was not happy about going into the course. Bailie started her run all wrong. She didn’t tunnel, but she did get on a hay bale, but then she false alerted on the tube with rat litter. Game over.
After the poop and the snake, Mom and Bailie decided this is not their sport. They tried their best, but they will stick to tracking and nose work. Gramma never liked us even trying this sport. Next time we hope Mom listens to Gramma a bit earlier. What a disastrous day! Thank dog I quit after the first try!