D’Wildcat 16130 IGP3 5th Place
Wild went to Maine to compete at the American Working Malinois Association (AWMA) national championship. This was the first time that he had been able to travel to a trial, and was also his first exposure to national level competition. Traveling can take a lot out of a dog, especially when there are big changes in climate. Going from hot and humid Florida to some very cold days in Maine was a big leap! The AWMA nationals is also especially nerve-racking for a handler, because the best of the best are there competing. Wild handled everything in stride, and came away with a 5th place finish.
In tracking, we had some issues on the corners and a slow article indication, but his straight legs were phenomenal. Very consistent and correct work there got him an 88 point score.
On Sunday we were in the stadium, and were the last flight of the whole trial. Some issues in our heeling were the biggest hit to our score, as well as some issues with our fronts and finishes. All in all, the judges awarded us 89 points.
After coming off the field from obedience, my friend let me know that we were actually in the running to make the team. We needed an 89 point score in protection to make the cut, so the pressure was on for me to handle him correctly and make sure he had every opportunity to hit that benchmark.
We had been battling with a guarding issue and a slow sit on the side transports, and both problems showed up, but he still had a very nice showing, and we managed to pull 90 points!
With the performance he put down, we qualified for the FMBB team that will be going to compete in France in May of 2020. This is a lifelong dream of mine, and I am so excited to be taking this journey with Wild.
AWMA Nationals Footage