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Discussion Starter #1
:whatever:

So I'm showing the boys tomorrow and Friday. Simon is on Thursday, Angus on Friday. We will be attempting a second CD leg for each of them.

It's less than 24 hours away now, and I'm already jittery. :scared:

I wish I could get on top of the pre-show nerves. I feel OK once I step into the ring, but the minutes leading up to it are absolute torture!

It's so silly, because there is no reason to fear this. My job doesn't depend on it. Someone's life doesn't depend on it. It's not as though they have never screwed up before - they have, and they will continue to do so, I have no doubt. We are no strangers to NQs. It's not even like obedience is a huge spectator sport. More than likely, the only two people who will be paying any attention to us at all are the judge and Kevin.

Logically, I am aware of all this. And yet I am still nervous. Why!?!

What do you do to conquer ring nerves? :D
 

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Here's the honest to God truth.

I've never been nervous going into the obedience ring. Either you pass or fail, and you and your dog make that decision.

On the otherhand, I am a nervous wreck about conformation shows. There are far too many variables in there for me to possibly be in control.

What do I do to conquer the nerves? Make sure I am there on time, and spend some loving time with my dog.

Good luck!
 

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Hey Connie! I was just thinking about you today, and wondering how everybody was. I get the most nervous while driving to a show, which results in several "potty stops" for the human! Once I get there, I'm not too bad, but right before I go into the ring my heart starts to speed up and starts pounding a little. I always thought that I was OK once in the ring, but after thinking about Emilu's behavior in the ring ( she just freezes and barely does anything) , I revisited my behavior. I realize that while I don't FEEL particularly nervous, I'm really air-headed, forget to give my leash to the steward, walk from point to point in a fog, etc.No wonder poor Emilu isn't sure what to do! I'll let you know if I learn how to control this ;)
 

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patm said:
Hey Connie! I was just thinking about you today, and wondering how everybody was. I get the most nervous while driving to a show, which results in several "potty stops" for the human! Once I get there, I'm not too bad, but right before I go into the ring my heart starts to speed up and starts pounding a little. I always thought that I was OK once in the ring, but after thinking about Emilu's behavior in the ring ( she just freezes and barely does anything) , I revisited my behavior. I realize that while I don't FEEL particularly nervous, I'm really air-headed, forget to give my leash to the steward, walk from point to point in a fog, etc.No wonder poor Emilu isn't sure what to do! I'll let you know if I learn how to control this ;)
Hi Pat! That could be my problem too. I don't *feel* nervous - heart pounding, etc. - but I have definitely experienced that walking around in a fog feeling.

The last show when Angus ran out of the ring, I went the wrong way on the heeling pattern and tripped over my own feet! He didn't run out until Recall, but I'm sure he probably knew Mommy didn't know WTH she was doing that day. :laugh:

RE: Nervous at conformation and not obedience - See, I think it would be the exact opposite for me! I can see going into a conformation ring and not being even the slightest bit nervous, because either my dog is a better example than the others in the judge's eyes or he is not. Either way, I wouldn't feel like I had much stake in the decision he made. Of course, I have never done conformation so I do have a very limited grasp of what all is involved. :D Obedience seems more intimidating to me because you are being judged along with your dog, and there are SO many little nitpicky things that can go wrong!
 

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Hi Connie! I was wondering the other day where you've been........

I haven't conquered ring nerves, altho we're not in a ring, but on a hunt test ground. I have found that if I feel pretty secure that we can do what the test requires (altho there are many factors I have no control over) and have in fact over-trained for our level, then I am much less nervous. when I have doubt about whether we're "ready" is when I'm cat nervous and it's really not much fun to compete.

Frances
 

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I never get nervous anymore. The world won't end if I don't win a dog show. I still love my dogs and they still love me. It's supposed to be fun. If it's not fun, I stop doing it. Mostly I sit back and watch all the little games that people play and smirk.
 

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Connie, I would think the best way to remember to relax is to keep reminding yourself that whatever you are feeling is telegraphed down the leash to your dog. If you are jittery or shaky or in a fog - he will be, too. If you are relaxed, confident, and happy, your dog will be the same.

So, relax, have a glass (or two) of wine, and go have fun! ;)
 

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I've never done a dog show, but know the feeling you're talking about well!

I second the suggestion about showing up on time, just so that you don't feel rushed or anything. Take a deep breath! You guys will do great!!!
 

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Always show up early. You never know when a guy outside the ring will be taking his shirt off. LOL
 

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Hi Connie! Where are you showing?

The best way I know to get rid of it is to do it more. The more times you are in the ring (or standing outside waiting your turn to go in the ring) the easier it becomes.

Good luck. Hoping to hear that you have a couple more legs soon!!
 

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It's really quite simple. You show Madam for 3-4 years, then you retire her. Showing anyone else is a breeze. :laugh: You may think I'm kidding, but I'm totally serious. I always had to make that last minute run for the bathroom before going in the ring. Since I retired her, the nerves are gone. Soooooo, do you want to borrow her for a few shows? :scare:
 

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raian said:
Hi Connie! Where are you showing?

The best way I know to get rid of it is to do it more. The more times you are in the ring (or standing outside waiting your turn to go in the ring) the easier it becomes.

Good luck. Hoping to hear that you have a couple more legs soon!!
Ditto this.
Really try to just have fun.
 

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I tell myself that everthing is ok at this moment. I take the time I used to spend being nervous playing with my dog. Right before we enter the ring I tell them to "jump for joy". Each of my dog knows this and will jump up and put their paws on me and I kiss them on the nose (usually, I get one in return ;)). Panda my aussie rescue has really helped me with my ring nerves. She is so sensitive that if I get nervous she cannot perform. I have to focus on being positive and having fun in the ring. Good luck! Have a great trial!
 

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ruff n tumble crew said:
It's really quite simple. You show Madam for 3-4 years, then you retire her. Showing anyone else is a breeze. :laugh: You may think I'm kidding, but I'm totally serious. I always had to make that last minute run for the bathroom before going in the ring. Since I retired her, the nerves are gone. Soooooo, do you want to borrow her for a few shows? :scare:
Now that was really funny! :laugh: I think Angus is my Madam. I don't get even close to as nervous when showing Simon. I am starting with him tomorrow, so I can warm up with the "good" dog. :D Of course, there's also something to be said for getting the "naughty" dog over with... ;)

Linda, we are showing at our club's annual show in Franklin. It is a really big show, four days, with agility too. The venue makes me a little nervous, just because it is so huge. But it's very close, only about a 20 minute drive, so we can't pass it up!

The other thing I'm telling myself is, we are going into show season around here. There are about 4-5 opportunities coming up in March and April that are within 20 minutes of the house. And two of them are at our training building! So, if we don't Q this week, we have more chances coming soon. And if they can't qualify at their own training building after four years of training, then something is very wrong! :laugh:

Simon has shown at this place much more often than Angus. I think Angus has only been there once before. Simon has been about 7-8 times. We put Simon in all the ones that have been there because a) it's so close and he doesn't ride well in the car, and b) some of the shows are down on the dirt floor, and I didn't trust Angus on dirt.
 

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agilitymom said:
Panda my aussie rescue has really helped me with my ring nerves. She is so sensitive that if I get nervous she cannot perform. I have to focus on being positive and having fun in the ring.
I can see how that would help. Maybe that's why I don't get as nervous with Simon...I am more concerned about how he is feeling and keeping him "up."

Angus needs no help with "up." :laugh:
 

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Ok, I don't have a lot to offer because I haven't shown Shane in obedience yet. I will when I'm ready. But I did have a horse and did show him. I was nervous before every show, mostly because I want nothing more than to do well. Being early and prepared helps too. I like to "hurry up and wait". I would rather be really early and have to wait than to run in late.

PS: My 9 year old daughter tells me it helps for her to hear me say "you'll do fine". Best of luck to you and I'm sure you'll do fine. ;)
 

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Shane23 said:
Ok, I don't have a lot to offer because I haven't shown Shane in obedience yet. I will when I'm ready. But I did have a horse and did show him. I was nervous before every show, mostly because I want nothing more than to do well. Being early and prepared helps too. I like to "hurry up and wait". I would rather be really early and have to wait than to run in late.

PS: My 9 year old daughter tells me it helps for her to hear me say "you'll do fine". Best of luck to you and I'm sure you'll do fine. ;)
Same kind of thing with horses - thanks for the pep talk. That's sweet about what your daughter says. :-*
 
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