Tonight was our last agility class for a while. We're taking a break to decompress, to build better engagement, and to work on desensitisation to the car. It was our last class for a while, but we could not have ended it better. I'm posting this so that I can remember, when things get frustrating, that
Normally at class, all of the dogs are crated behind a barrier until it is their turn; today, everyone sat (leashed) in the "arena" until it was their turn, and all of the dogs worked great with the other dogs around. I was worried about Ida, but... I didn't need to be. She did fantastic. When it was her turn, we walked out. She ignored the other dogs until I too her leash off and then decided to look around. When she spooted them, she made one small woof without breaking her sit. She was completely engaged with me in between reps. She relaxed in the crate while I was out of view. She even tolerated watching the other dogs moving to set up in position, although she couldn't hold it together while they were actually running.
But I don't care. She was able to be in the room with three other dogs (and within 5 ft of the nearest one!) without fixating on them, without freaking out, and she was able to work - and work well - knowing that there were other dogs in clear view.
We'll get there. And probably, we won't even notice that we've arrived until the "Welcome Sign" is right in front of us.
<3 <3 <3