Saturday, September 29, 2007


Is it just me, or does life seem to be defined by our relationship status, how many relationships we have had, etc,etc,etc. I hate how you seem to be divided into groups of those who are single and those who are not... I hate how some people who are single spend their whole lives looking for something they may never find, or have idealised so much that they have made it impossible to find. Why not just enjoy the life you have now, embrace what you have, what you are lucky to have (and many others don't) and don't worry about 'providence' 'fate' or whats meant to be.... maybe it's easier said than done.... well I know it is!

It seems weird, but I hate the fact that i'm drifting away from one of my closest friends. Different stages of life I guess and perhaps we all change, but i'm beginning to feel more and more recluse from those that I used to see day in and day out.... and I don't understand why!? I know a lot of my friends don't share my interests.... I mean you have to be a pretty 'special' person to take SUCH an interest in dog sports right?! But maybe i'm using that as a defense to 'hide' something? I don't know - but I do feel a little alienated from some friends now and I don't get it.... we used to be so close... heck - SHE was as nutty as I was!! ROFL! I don't see myself as a boring person... I have some pretty twisted interests that not everyone shares (hmm... lets see - dogs, LMM, some TV shows....), but I don't think (at least I hope I don't, and if I do I would hope that my friends would tell me) that I harp on abut them and that they are the only things I can talk about.... I hope i'm not one of those "me, me, ME" people.... but I just hate the fact that friendships drift apart... I know people change, and all things like that but it still doesn't make it any less frustrating... LOL.

I guess the scariest thing is that while i'm meeting new people and making new friends, the number of people that I mix with on a more social basis (ie: outside of our interests) is less... not to mention, not really in my age group! LOL - everyone keeps telling me to develop new interests, but I don't really have anything that will interest me... aside from what I already do!!

ARGH! This is very frustrating!!

Monday, September 24, 2007

Kinta at the Royal

Well - that is the end of another busy weekend. Spent Saturday getting Kinta ready for her (and mine) first Royal show - I was quite excited about it actually! Getting Kinta ready for the show consisted of taking her to Ana & Ben's shop on Saturday to get all groomed and spiffed up 'properly' (ie: Ben groomed her!). I must say - he always does a great job with her! Ana mentioned she was quite pleased with how Kinta is turning out, so lets hope those points start rolling in soon. I must say- the more I see of Kinta, the more I like her - but that could be me, just getting used to her living with me and such :P

Early start on Sunday - Mum and Dad were coming to the show as I didn't know what it would be like/ how busy it would be, so planned that they come and we could walk around together if we had time, otherwise, they could wonder around on their own etc. Got to the show at about 8ish and set up Kinta's bench etc. Each dog is given a bench which is where they must stay prior to and after showing. All dogs must be benched from 9-5 each day.... so it was going to be a long day! We were told to 'dress' up our benches - and seeing as how creative I am, this is about as good as it got for me:

Kinta was entered in 2 events for the day - the Aussie breed judging and Puppy of the Year sweepstakes. For the sweeptakes, to be eligible for that, the dog must have won at least one Puppy in Group (all breeds) or a Puppy in Show (specialty). The Aussies were up first in breed judging. Kinta won her class, although wasn't really all that exciting as she was only up against one other bitch, who was withdrawn after gaiting around the ring as she was noticeably lame. Bit of a bummer as while I like getting 'first' I would have liked to get first after 'beating' another dog so to speak. Anyways - she *did* behave well and I think she looked very nice, if that accounts for anything. I actually thought that for the 'reserve challenge' and 'puppy of the year finalists' Kinta was getting a look in, but alas - it was always the dog 'next-door' LOL!

Lining up to go in the ring:
being judged (I think this is a really nice stack in this shot... I like her angles, topline, front, good neck etc,etc. Shows her off to her best IMO :) :
Setting off to 'gait':

Bitch challenge line-up:
Kinta & Marli:
Not the best 'gaiting' shot but... here it is -( I like it coz I look skinny!!!).. Photo was just snapped at the wrong time :p

'Nother stacked shot:

If you want to see more of the 'breed' judging (ie: all the dogs entered) - click here to see an album of it all.

Puppy of the Year sweepstakes:

Some cuddles while we 'wait' for the loong line to get through:

Stacked and ready to go - ugh - wind is NOT good for her ears :P

For the rest of the day - we sat around the benches and talked about the breed to passer-by's. I couldn't be prouder of the way that Kinta handled this. Kids with sticky fingers, big men, funny people, disabled people, elderly, people who don't know how to pat dogs, show bags, funny blow up things.... this list goes on. The good girlie took it all in her stride and NOTHING phased her! Compared to the usual live-wire that she usually is too, she was so well behaved - just nice and calm as she should be (and no, not from stress.... she was perfectly at home in the situation!).... even to the point where the obedience gang were wondering if it was the same dog VBG!

Pats left, right and centre:

Making it look like she owns the joint!

Kinta and Bec (Kinta is soo tired by this point :p)

I had a great time chatting and eating :P. Mum and dad had a wonder while I stayed around with Kinta as it was very busy with a constant flow of traffic. By 5pm we packed up to go and it took us around 1hr to get out of the city and onto the freeway! A drive that normally takes max 10mins!!!! WOW! Kinta slept the whole way in the car, which meant that by the time she got home, batteries were recharged and she was ready go play with Leo. My poor man Leo was left at home pretty much all weekend (you can't take dogs who aren't entered to the Royal.... pity as Leo would have been in his element!). Leo was extremely happy to see us home again and gave us a very cheerful "Welcome home" greeting :p. I was feeling guilty about leaving him all weekend so after dinner brought him inside and we curled up on the rug together and watched some "Road to Avonlea" before slowly drifting off (and deciding time to hit the sack!")....

So a very good, but very busy weekend for all!!!

Friday, September 21, 2007

Rant, Rant, Rant

You'll get my drift once you open it! It disgusts me and I usually don't get caught up in the whole DD thing.... usually! I just hate the way they 'ruin' a breed and then write it off as a 'purebreed'...... directly related to the Aussies of course.... funny - they look a lot like Pom/Chi/Papillon's to me! They are breeding 'mismarks', trying to breed blue eyed dogs (that is one of their goals) and just by looking at the dogs you can see that they shouldn't be bred with.... poorly structured and just.... yuk! Anyway - I better not say anymore, but I just find it sooo..... infuriating!!!

Went to another piggery yesterday. It was a very interesting visit - they recycle all of the pigs' waste and use it to make fertiliser (obviously) and methane to run the piggery on. Most interesting! Hopefully this will be one of our last visits - although when we got back home to take the video tape out of the camera - it was 'eaten'.... so we are hoping against hope it worked! It was a 4am start to get there!!! NOT something I want to do again! I also found out something else which was most interesting..... the diet that these pigs are fed on was.... amongst other things..... CHOCOLATE! Apparently they can get a lot of 'nutrition' out of it etc.... I couldn't believe it! ROFL. I want to be a pig!!! (well... not quite!)

Am very excited/ nervous about Sunday - being the Melbourne Royal and Kinta's show. Excited as it is such a prestigous event and I haven't shown for a while.... nervous because i'm not 110% sure on what is going on/ where i'm meant to be/ when we are showing etc,etc,etc.

According to the entry -there is only one other Junior B!tch - so I hope we do well.... but i've heard this girl is quite nice... so we'll see.... Plus - Kinta is miss baldy too so there is no promises. But she is moving nice.... I guess :p. I will let you know how it all went!

Sunday, September 16, 2007

City Travels

I knew I should have waited and posted together!

Ah well - more reading for you all. The dogs have had a *really* busy weekend and I assure you - are completely crashed outside right now!

Got up and took the dogs to obedience first thing. Leo did a really nice round for me and am pleased to say - 3 lovely retrieves - 2 x flat and 1 x over the jump. I couldn't be prouder as we have struggled at times with the 'send out' and enthusiasm of the retrieve so to get a SUPER eager retrieve was just fantastic! Just goes to show that you should never skip the minor steps.... not that I knew any better as I taught his d/b without any instruction initially. I also did my first open stays with him today. I didn't want to g out-of-sight for the sit-stay as I thought that might be 'jumping the gun' a little.... he held his sit stay, although not as solid as I would like.... his 5 min down was out of sight and he was fine and solid through that so overall was pleased with his performance. Critique from instructors - great dog, shame about the handler ROFL - watch the hand signals, but otherwise.... WHEN AM I ENTERING HIM :p.... so very pleased with his efforts.

Kinta had a quick run through - was pretty good, but she was a little 'too' eager for her heelwork and also needs a bit more work on her LT, positions and things like that... so thats our homework for this week. Everything else was really nice. I did some d/b work with her out of the ring also and I was also pleased with that. I have a new way of rewarding the dogs too - I have a small container where I put a handful of treats in for them to 'jackpot' if they work well in the ring. I was razzing K up before we went in and whaddya know -she took the container from my hand and started carrying it :p. So in the 5mins while we were 'waiting' our turn - I shaped that and now she plays/ retrieves her treat container which is a great little way of getting her 'geed' up before entering the ring too!

We decided to be a little different today in entering the city. On Sundays -the train tickets are only $2.50 and pets travel free. I double checked the website and all it said about pets was small animals have to be crated and large animals on lead (and muzzled... but I didn't worry about that)..... Well obviously it was all fine as we had ticket inspectors who just cooed at the dogs anyways ROFL! I was really impressed with both dogs who, once they got used to the motion of the train settled right down for the ride! Got out at Flinders st... walked up to Vic markets as I needed to get some pigs ears for them (quite cheap there)... walked back down through the Docklands.... at which point I was really cross for not bringing my camera as they have really done some nice work with the place now - some nice sculptures (far better than the 'cow in tree' one!) and things which would have been a nice place to take photos and such. We then slowly strolled back from Docklands to Flinders St to come home. It was a lovely, relaxing afternoon and I am sure the dogs loved it.... I just wish I had the camera! On the train trip home, we assumed the dogs would flake - but all those people were far too interesting and deserved their attention *sigh*..... even to the point of barking "uh hello!!! pay attention!"..... came home and do we crash? Nope, we pick up a toy and entice a game.... will they ever stop!?!? Luckily once we came inside, both dogs fell straight to sleep!

Well- must go - I promise to take the camera next time we go to the Docklands, but until then, dinner is calling :D

Saturday, September 15, 2007

My dud agility dog.....

See - I told you i'll have something to tell this weekend! Just came back from Hastings trial and had a great time :D. Leo had 4 runs today - 2 Excellent Jumping and 2 Novice Agility. We had a clash as they tend to run the Ex and Novice courses together... so while NA was running so was ExJ.... bit of a tight squeeze! Had to walk 2 courses at once which always tests memory and stresses me out a little (particularly with Ex J as there are a lot of twists and turns to remember!).... NA was a nice course, Ex J was a bugger - lets have 5 straight line jumps, let the dog to 2, call them off and push them out diagonally toward the broad, push them out diagonally again to another jump (with another jump straight infront) then do the outer tunnel, then do some more weird stuff, hard entrance to the tunnel again, more diagonal work toward the finish! I've never had to run diagonally before (and I literally mean diagonally!!) so that was interesting.....

Soo... enter Excellent jumping expecting us to make a dogs breakfast of it (also 1st run of day...).... Well - Leo ran it just BEAUTIFULLY!!! I was soo proud of him! We got a NQ though as he knocked one bar and I think I cut him off one of those 'diagonal' jumps as he 'refused' it (ie ran past it).... but in all honesty, it was a beaut run! And the best bit? Even with having to go back and do the 'refusal' jump again - we were still 5-6 secs under time!!! Woo hoo! Not bad for my dog who I say is a 'dud'.

So - off we go, have a nice game of tug while we run (thankfully next door) to the NA ring, which was ready for 600s... they call my number and still puffing and panting (me, not the dog!) enter the NA ring. Another beaut run, Clear round, slightly slow weavers, but who cares! I had to be careful and not get too excited at the end (before he finished) but he handled it really well! Result?! FIRST PLACE! Time of 39.34secs with a Standard Course Time (SCT) of 64 second!!! WOO HOO!!! So - my slow dog can apparently do the NA course 25 seconds under time!!!! So I am very, very proud!

Loong wait now until the PM trial.... same deal with the clash. Ex J was a nicer course, but very much going round in circles (I was paranoid i'd go the wrong way!) and a couple of tight call offs.... Again, Leo ran this beautifully and *just* when the thought entered my head (darn those stupid demons...) that we *might* get a pass.... I completely forget we are passing a jump to tunnel where the tunnel is in direct line of vision, MY body is saying 'go do that tunnel' and the DUMB handler doesn't even call her dog off!!! Grrr... So otherwise a beaut clear round, with one wrong tunnel which was totally my fault!

Quickly into the NA ring, but thankfully not as quick as the AM trial. Another beaut run... nice and steady, but quick enough..... 5 secs at the table, gives me time to get myself into position. Now this is the issue with walking 2 courses... I didn't assess the course properly so 'assumed' that the jump after the table was in direct line.... which it wasn't. So I stepped out too far, and when I called Leo to the jump, he ran past it :(. Everything else was clear though, so major bummer!

All in all I am SO proud of my boy - he gave me some beaut runs and has reinstated my faith in him actually becoming a masters agility dog :)

Miss Kinta also came along for the ride, and the girlie was just soooo hypo!!! Apparently EVERYBODY loves to be jumped on and EVERY man and his dog HAS to say hello to her and how could you NOT pat her..... *sigh*.... on the up side... she was very quiet when I ran Leo, not a peep from her :)

Off to dog training tomorrow and maybe in the arvo a trip into the city to wonder around Southbank, the Yarra and the markets with the hounds for a nice relaxing arvo :)

Friday, September 14, 2007

Whats new?!

Been a while since i've posted.... a couple of reasons..... one being I *have* been busy, and the other that i've got nothing really to share!!!!

I've pretty much been doing the same old, same old. Had a pretty quiet week and have been just training the dogs and such. Went to an agility trial last Saturday and although we didn't qualify - we did come 3rd in Novice agility after clipping ONE bar... always the way. We also had our first run in Excellent Jumping but had a couple of refusals (handler errors only).... anyways - here is a video of our run for the day. Keep in mind the distance away makes the run look slower, and he wasn't running at 'break speed' anyways :P.

I still have no avail with that dratted earing the naughty black blob swallowed, so i've just counted my losses and given up looking (trust me it is NOT a nice task)... In the mean time - Kinta decided that it was perfect time to do a junior drop/ pre-season drop this time of year. It has been happening for around a month though, but looking at these photos, I didn't realise she had dropped *quite* this much! I just hope that all of this means that she will grow back a lovely thick coat which wows the judges away :D... pretty please :D

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Photo Sharing and Video Hosting at Photobucket

Of course this is 2 weeks before the Royal isn't it! Ahh the joys of owning 'entire' b!tches! We have entered a lot of shows throughout October, with me taking some time off from instructing. This was purely because there were so many things I wanted to enter, which fell on Sundays, so decided to take a short break to fulfil what I wanted. Am looking forward to getting back 'into' showing again though.

I have been so proud of how well these dogs have been going lately. Due to better weather and the sun staying up a bit later, I have been able to get some decent training in with the dogs. Whilst I am sometimes a little perplexed at Leo and his agility (ie: he isn't the fastest dog ever... but I am assured he is a nice steady dog!) I am incredibly proud of the both of them. They give me so much back in return, not to mention they are always enthusiastic about training. One of the main reasons I think of Leo being a little slower in agility is the fact that he doesn't want to get anything wrong, plus it is quite likely I have stuffed him around a lot with him being my first dog! On the whole, I am just so proud of what I have achieved with these guys. I know many of you would have seen this already - but this is a video I made of the dogs when I had some time to spare:

We have another agility trial this Saturday which should be some fun. I'm also contemplating a trip into town on Sunday afternoon with Kinta just for some social and 1:1 time. I'd like to do this a bit more with both dogs and the nicer weather etc, is getting me all motivated again!!!

Hopefully next post, i'll have some exciting news.... well, more exciting than this post anyway :P

Tuesday, September 04, 2007

Sydney adventure...... amongst other things

Ok - been busy on most aspects of life the past week. Work has been 'steady' with deadlines for this pig project looming and with piggery visits, annual leave etc, eating into my days, I've had to keep ahead of it all. I much prefer work this way - makes you feel like you have achieved something when it is all done! The latest piggery we went to visit was great as it was all 'free range'/ echo shelters.... a bit different to all the other piggery's I've been to which are all 'sheds'.

On the dog front - it turned out Leo was quite ill - his ear issue was a bacterial infection - likely that his tummy bug ran through the bloodstream to his ears.... not all that uncommon apparently. Either way the vet said he should have been a lot sicker than what he seemed to be ie: off his food/ lethargic for more than 24hrs! Bl**dy stoic dogs!!! This however hasn't dampened his spirits and pretty much straight after he was on the antibiotics and his ears started to 'deflate', he has been back to his usual loony self, wiggles, grinning and picking up toys all over the place..... this dog is such a clown to be around - you can't help but laugh at him!!

After their break from training due to KC, they were back at agility this week. Leo was a dream to handle both nights (tue/wed) , very enthusiastic, consistent and 'fast' by his standards. Seeing how he runs tonight will determine whether or not I take him on Wed.... we have our first trial for a month on Sat, but only 2 runs, so not that much :). I was very pleased with his efforts, sometimes I think i'm too 'hard' on him with my expectations saying he won't be any good, as he always comes through and seems to show that he CAN be good and i'm just getting disheartened for no reason! Kinta is great also - she will be a challenge for another reason - ie: not listening and devising her own course if I call too late. She is teaching me to call a lot earlier as she runs faster than my brain thinks! Either way - I am having a GREAT time running her and boy, I am so glad Ana 'encouraged' me to take her!!

The dogs had a nice stay at the kennels while we were away. They were bathed/ cleaned (at no extra cost) before I picked them up which saved me the hassle when I got home. Both dogs were very excited to see me, but you could tell they were well looked after as they were quite happy to follow the owners around, seemed to 'know' the place (ie: indicated they were let out of their kennel) and the owner was telling me things about their 'temperaments' so in other words, you knew they got the pats, attention and some 1:1. I warned them (erring on the safer side) that Kinta could be reserved/ nervy as I wasn't sure how she would go without me/ new environment etc. Apparently they didn't know what I was talking about as she was the opposite of nervy - they said she was as confident as the rest of them etc.... so I was VERY pleased to hear that!

Evidently K was a little *too* happy to see me as on my 2nd (or was it 3rd/4th/5th.... anyone who has left dogs knows what I mean!) reunion with them at home, I knelt down to give them cuddles. Both dogs wriggled around giving me licks/kisses.... Kinta decided the ear needed a considerable clean, but by doing so swallowed my gold earring!!! This has since put me on 'poo patrol' - partly coz I want to find it, and partly coz I want to make sure it doesn't get lodged in there! Funny, but not funny!

I've started my 'fitness frenzy' again as i've put on a bit of weight over winter (ok,ok, not much, but enough....) so want to start riding with the dogs again. I started with Leo this morning, but the 5am devils got to him. Apparently going at *my* speed isn't fast enough... we also have to pull to catch the possums and birds, stop abruptly when nature calls (I almost went A over T at this point) and go at break neck speeds down hills..... obviously oblivious to the calls/ shouts of "STEADY, SLOW DOWN!". If this is how it goes with Leo..... one can only imagine what Kinta will be like.... perhaps I should write out my will now?!

Sydney trip was great too :-). Saw Scott's new appartment as well as his NY/ London adventure (well... pics anyway!).... also caught up with our friends in Glebe on Fri/Sat which did include walking across the Harbour Bridge - surprisingly, not something we have done before! Sunday was a lazy day at home as Mum was teaching Lily (Scott's g/f) how to ice a wedding cake and the boys later wanted to watch the footy. Came home late Sun evening and I stayed home yesterday so that I could pick up the dogs and clean up a little etc....

Some piccies from the bridge walk:

On another note - it's been over 1yr since our whirlwind adventure now! Kind of sad!!! I would really love to go again!!! I can't believe this year has gone so quick :p