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I know that Dog Sports are competative but.....

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I suppose I should start with a little background first.

 

The place and instructor for Rally for us is the place where Blaze goes once a week (cage free facility) for a fun day to play with other dogs. He has a standing Thursday all day appointment, and has been attending their facility for over a year. The instructor for Rally is the owner of the facility. She served in the air force as a k9 instructor for over 15 years and I agree with most of what she says. We also took her basic obedience class.

 

Now, Blaze and I have only gone through 6 rally classes and these are the first rally classes that the instructor has taught. She competes with her Sheltie and the other person that practices with us is someone that works for her, and she uses her German shepherd.

 

Last weekend she asked me if I would be interested in going to watch a rally competition that they were both participating in. (They were looking to earn their 3 leg in novice). Of course I jumped and say YES! It will be good for Blaze to walk in with his friends and see what they do and it will be good for me to see how Blaze will behave, give me a chance to see what we need to work on.

 

I asked her to please either call me or email me as to what time they would like for me to meet them so that I could follow them to the facility holding the trial. I explained to her that I did not know where it was.

 

Well by Thursday I still had not heard from her and I called my husband to ask him to please find out what time I should meet them Saturday morning. He asked the owners husband and the husband went inside to ask her. The husband came back out and said 8:45am

 

Here comes Saturday, I am up and moving and there to meet them at 8:30am. I do see their vehicles so I go inside and ring the doorbell. The husband comes outside and tells me that they left at 7:45am. I explained to him that my DH had talked to him on Thursday and that he came back to me and said 8:45am was what time he was told, the husband then said "oh no, 8:45am is what time the competition started, that is when they had to be there". So.... I asked him to please have one of them call my cell phone and let me know if they would be going on Sunday and if so at what time so that I could join them.

So I cried and cried some more.....

And then decided that I was going to take Blaze to the dog park for a fun day instead of sulking about it. (pictures to follow in the gallery)

 

By 6:00pm I still had not heard from either of them and decided to call them myself. I left a message which of course was not returned.

So... on Sunday (not wanting to sulk) I decided to set up a play date with a couple of Blazes brothers.

 

While at the play date, I asked my Aunt what she thought of all of this and the first thing that she asked me was "Is Blaze any good at Rally, what does your instructor say"? I explained to her that she did nothing but compliment him and tell me how she wished that her Sheltie had that kind of drive and passion and that she wouldn't be wasting any time with him, that she would be working him to master them(insert dog sport here) all.

 

My Aunt then told me that that is what she thought and that I am going to need to grow a thick skin, to remember that I have a border collie and that no one is going to give me a leg up in anything because of it. That I need to be prepared for the judges being harder on us because they expect perfection, etc., etc., etc.

 

 

 

Okay, now, what I want to know is... do you think that this is the case? I mean, I have given this woman probably close to 2K in the last year for my dog to continue to go to her facility. Is this right?!?

 

Would someone be this deceitful and despicable?

 

Please help! I am not sure what I should think about all of this, I am not even sure what I should say to her. Blaze probably still has about 10 daycare days paid for aas of right now, so I will have to see her. Or should I be pulling him out and asking her to refund me?

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Having competed in agility for 10+ yrs (talk about competitive people!) with border collies I sincerely doubt that you're having a border collie had anything to do with this. It might have been a miscommunication between husbands, or a miss understanding, but I couldnt see someone deliberately misleading someone simply to keep them away from a competition they werent even in! I would say to your trainer though "hey I thought we were going to meet up so I

could come watch you on Saturday". As for not returning a call, I know when I go to a trial unless I specifically am expecting a call my cell stays in my bag normally unchecked, after a long day at a trial I'm mentally as well as physically tired and with another day coming up all I want to do is get home, feed the pups, feed me, shower and crash.

 

I know a lot of people in agility with border collies and personal likes and dislikes not involving dogs aside, I dont really see any antagonism between competitors.

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My Aunt then told me that that is what she thought and that I am going to need to grow a thick skin, to remember that I have a border collie and that no one is going to give me a leg up in anything because of it. That I need to be prepared for the judges being harder on us because they expect perfection, etc., etc., etc.

 

 

Please help! I am not sure what I should think about all of this, I am not even sure what I should say to her. Blaze probably still has about 10 daycare days paid for aas of right now, so I will have to see her. Or should I be pulling him out and asking her to refund me?

 

 

Hi,

 

I agree with Pat W....Give her a call. It was most likely a misunderstanding....

 

I've competed in several dog sports(obed, tracking, herding, agility, etc.) for 20 years. I have BC's now, but started out with a different breed. I don't feel that my BC's have been judged any more harshly than my other breed was. Or if they have been, I didn't notice=) In fact, I've had some very nice comments from judges about my BC's performances.

 

It sounds like Blaze is doing really well, be proud of how well you two are doing and don't worry about what others may or may not be saying. You'll find plenty of very nice, supportive people at the shows!

 

Have Fun~

 

Janet

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I'm sorry I must have said it wrong. I didn't mean just because he is a BC, I meant just because he is doing well. The BC part was just a side part-she was just trying to prepare me for what I may encounter in the future from other people competing.

 

Edited cause I wanted to include a couple of pictures. I'm proud of him! :rolleyes:

 

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My guess is that your instructor assumed you could figure out how to use something like Mapquest or similar to find the location, much like the rest of the population does to get places they are unfamiliar with. She likely had trialling on her mind; not you. And non-competing spouses of instructors are frequently no good at delivering messages. I personally think one is lucky if a NCSoaI picks up the phone at all ;-)

 

Obviously you are a functional adult, so jumping to conclusions about "deceit" and whatnot is ... I dunno, weird? That's the sort of thing that is more likely to cause dissent amongst friendly dog sport people than a busy instructor / competitor who probably figured you could maybe read a map. She was nice enough to invite you in the first place - she probably didn't think she had to hold your hand on the way there too. This all has nothing to do with dog sports being competitive!

 

You don't need a thicker skin, you just need to give people the benefit of the doubt. So does your (oddly paranoid) Aunt.

 

RDM

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My guess is that your instructor assumed you could figure out how to use something like Mapquest or similar to find the location, much like the rest of the population does to get places they are unfamiliar with.

 

Well I did try this and come to find out that the name of the place that she told me was hosting it... is where I went on Sunday to meet my Aunt and low and behold... they weren't there.

 

Obviously you are a functional adult, so jumping to conclusions about "deceit" and whatnot is ... I dunno, weird?

 

I did not jump to conclusions. I was actually upset with my husband about all of this to begin with. What YOU do not know is that I normally DO NOT count on my husband to find these things out. BUT... have been working on trying to share responsibility and control (it's a part of my stress management therapy, not that that is any of your business, but since you have a tendency to be so rude when it doesn't call for it...)

 

So does your (oddly paranoid) Aunt.
Please don't be so rude... she was simply sharing with me some of the things that she has had issues with.

 

She was nice enough to invite you in the first place - she probably didn't think she had to hold your hand on the way there too.

It was HER suggestion for me to follow them. If you read what I said... I said that I told her that I did not know where it was.

 

Mr. Snappy - It must be nice to live in a perfect world where you are God and the only perfect person out there.

 

Did you never here the saying that if you don't have anything nice to say, then don't say anything at all.

 

I was coming here asking for opinions as to whether this seemed like a normal behavior or not, and I have received that and I do thank you for it. But adding in the insults and rudeness is just immature and not necessary. I have been coming here for months and enjoying very much all that goes along with it. Learning etc. I have never, NOT ONCE been rude or even close to rude to anyone. Do you not think that you could be decent enough to give me the same respect?

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I go with the wires crossed thing. Some how the whole thing got buggared up. I would just chalk it up to miscommunication, and not let it affect what you do in the future- save for getting the info right from the horse's mouth so to speak :rolleyes:

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Hey! take it easy.... You're adding more information in your later posts that wasn't in your first post.

 

I ditto chalking up this first time to mis communication, and approach her in that way - you don't want to ruin a good relationship if that was the case. People who are very involved with dogs also tend to be very busy. If it happens again or she gives you some wild explanation then you can draw your own conclusions and walk away from the situation.

 

I don't think it is fair to this lady for you to be jumping to conclusions before hearing her side of the story. I would assume she has treated you right in the past or you wouldn't have given her so much buisness.

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FWIW

 

It sounds to me like she wanted to include you, was reaching out to you and just got to frazzled as the tournament approached to follow through the way she had intended and you seemed to expect. You said she had told you the wrong place for the tournament. Again, it sounds to me like she was frazzled had place wrong and found out at the last minute. You said you had your husband call her husband to find out the time. Her husband probably yelled down the stairwell or whatever that some lady was calling to know when the tournament was. So she told him the time it started, which is what he relayed to your husband. I assure you, as nervous and frazzled and anxious as you were about finding the tournament, getting there on time, etc., she was ten times more so.

 

Quite honestly, she probably invited you at least partially hoping for the support of a friend at the tournament, and instead she's getting suspicion and accusations of not doing enough.

 

You've known this person for awhile now - just take a moment to ask yourself which rings truer to you: That this person was trying to be a friend but as the tournament approached and she got more nervous and wrapped up in how she and her dog would do and just got too frazzled to follow through in the manner she had originally intended? Or that she invited you to this tournament that otherwise you wouldn't have heard about for no other reason than to yank you around and spite you, even though you were a good and promising client who could become very good advertising for her as a trainer?

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I can attest to the part about forgeting my head for other things and sometimes even others when I'm doing dog stuff. I'd invite more non dog friends to come out and watch what happens at a trial just so they might understand what it is I'm so addicted to (stockwork not trialing) except I'd be worried about being there for the person I invited and wouldn't be albe to concentrate on the dogs. It's kinda like a zone I go into, anything and everything might be happening around me and I'm oblivious.

 

I had a good friend awhile ago that is a dog person too, we were both somewhere working dogs together. I had a young new dog and was totally involved with what he had just done on the field. The friend had just gotten in a big fight with her DH. The second time she came over to vent to me, I looked at her in a daze and said, "I was so sorry but didn't the dog do great?" She actually hit me on the head and told me to go to hell. I was totally floored by what she did. I never even knew what had happened. Apperently it was a really bad fight and I hadn't been listening the whole time. I appologized for not listening and said if she ever smacked me again, I'd knock her on her butt (I'm a big lady and she's a tiny little mite). A few days later when we talked we agreed to never talk serious stuff unless we weren't working dogs.

 

Like I said. it's like a dog zone and nothing or nobody gets though except the dogs. I'll bet your friend or trainer lady was in the same place. You also mentioned that she was in novice? In stockwork that's the beginning level, I'd even be more of a mess if I was just starting out. So much to learn, so little time.

 

I'd say, let it go, chalk it off to miscomunnication. If it's more, you'll soon know.

 

Enjoy you dog, that's the important part!

 

Kristen

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Most likely wires crossed. Dog trainers who are also competing can be quite forgetful to the outside world when competing or just simply too busy. I had a similar experience recently and it was nothing intentional.

 

I find trialing people to be very helpful. At first I thought they were stand offish untill I started competing myself and realised how much focus is required especially when trialing a number of dogs.

 

Type of dog is irrelevant really. Plenty of smart breeds out there and some people just like trialing their favourite breed of dog. I have a BC but I also trial with 2 ACDS and always will because I like them. I never feel threatened by BCS but I enjoy beating them which my ACDS sometimes do. There are some very good shelties, kelpies and poodles in the mix too.

 

In agility at least BCS are not judged more harshly or in any other dog sport that I have seen.

 

If you get on with this trainer dont let this ruin things. Just sort it out.

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I'll put my vote in for the instructor was flaking out and/or the two husbands communication thing fell through. It's not impossible but I think very unlikely that the instructor would want to alienate such a keen student. You are a source of income to her and your future success will only reflect well on her. She may also genuinely like you and your dog. Lots of instructors do.

 

The thing with "dog friends" is we connect over our love of dogs and dog activities. They understand us on a level that many of relatives and other friends don't really get if they're not also loopy about dogs. But they have quirks just like anyone. You've seen a side of your instructor where she may not always follow through in certain situations. I would want to ask her about the mix-up (when I was over feeling upset) but if she did just flake out/make assumptions/get so wrapped up in competing then you know that for the future and can act accordingly. There are dog friends that I will not travel to shows with. One regularly disappears just when it is time to leave and you have the choice of abandoning her or spending 30 minutes, often when you are hot and exhausted searching for her. A couple friends I've caravaned with seem to think this involves taking off like a shot and never looking back to make sure you're in sight. One of them did this right after I specifically said "Please keep track of where I am behind you because I don't know how to get there." My mouth dropped open as she peeled out of the parking lot.

 

A few friends are wound so tight at shows that I stay out of their way or keep any conversation with them extremely light. One person might want you to provide extensive feedback about a performance. Another might snarl at you if you say anything at all. Some intense people are very focused on their dogs before competing and need to be given their space, other than a smile and wish for good luck. Others are nervous and cling to you chattering nonstop. These are the things we learn about each other and decide whether or not we want to put up with them. Most of the time, I decide I do but plan accordingly.

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Thank you all for the feedback. I did place a phone call to her last night and left her a message stating that I was sorry for any miscommunication that may have occured and that I was just calling to find out about what time the new practices would start and how she would like me to handle them. (we are starting rally on a weeknight since it is getting so hot, and this will be the first one). I was very nice and pleasant with the message and am hoping that she does return the phone call.

 

Again, thank you for the feedback.

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Honestly? I think you read waaaaay more into the situation than what was there. It sounds like a simple mis-communication to me, which is what can happen when you depend on word of mouth. I don't see deceit or anything despicable. It's unfortunate that your plans went awry, but I don't see anything sinister in your instructor's behavior. If I were you, I'd just let this one slide. There will be other trials.

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Well, we don't do the agility thing and maybe it's because of threads like these, hearing the stories, etc. But I would definitely have a talk with her about blowing you off. You talked to here that day she made the invitation and for her not to call you... and your husband had to call is ridiculous. I'd make her explain herself. If her explanation is to your liking then forget about it, but not. I mean, always keep that in the back of your mind if she ever makes an offer like that again. If her explanation is bull and you know it, I think I would pull my dog out. Why would I want to give someone that deceitful and ignorant one more of my hard earned dollars. Something to think about. Sorry you even had to go thru that.

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