Tuesday, February 24, 2009

A training update amongst other news

Ok - well it's been ages since I've told you where we are at with our training, so I guess this post is just for that.... mainly on obedience as that is what we have been focusing on :D

Leo and I are basically working hard at getting our work together to enter the UD ring in the first half of this year. As usual with UD work, you have your ups and downs, so one minute you think YES everything is going right and the next it falls in a heaps and you wonder if anything you have taught him has sunk in. My main enjoyment out of UD work is Leo's pure enthusiasm and basically busting his gut to get out there and do some more work. The joys of clicker training means that he has basically just built on his confidence and I really hope he carries this through to the ring. Our aim is to have an absolute ball in the ring and the way things are going, I think it's possible.

Ok so now down to the nitty gritty. His seekback is going well - he definitely understands the task, but I wouldn't say we are up to a full trial sequence yet. I need to slowly increase this but I am fairly confident that it won't take long. I am amazed that he pretty much follows my track, MOST of the time and he *really* loves this game! His directional jumping and sendaway only started a few weeks ago really, and he is doing this well. Sending out to the box isn't too much of a problem and I am gradually increasing the distance (lateral) away from the jumps to 'trial' level. Of course these are still taught as separate exercises. Scent work is probably the one we've worked on the most, and probably the closest to trialling level. He can work on a full set of articles but his biggest problem is the metal. On the whole, going quite well, and I'm trying to encourage him to search the whole mat.... it is NOT a race LOL! Signals heelwork - I must say I'm impressed! Happy, peppy and if possible I think it's improved with me keeping my mouth shut!!! LOL! Lastly gloves - going well, slowly moving away from food bowls and to gloves, but at the moment have only glove 1 & 3 out... he will lock in and charge out, but glove 2 does confuse him a bit.

So basically it's slowly, slowly, but it's coming along. Any of you who know me know I'm a pretty lazy trainer, so this seems to be going quite well in my opinion :D

Kinta is also going well but what can you do with a girl who has great foundations but refuses to pass a trial?!?!?!?!?! Her heeling is great and I'm trying to work her in 'mild-moderate' distractions. Not crazy busy (I know this trick and will only watch you mum) and not dead quiet (oh goody, lets do some WORK!). Working on her dumbell and some open stuff and she's doing that really well too! I've been practicing pivot turns with her (moving your rear end and staying in heel position) and she has a great understanding of this which is just getting better and better. Basically I'm really proud of her, but gee I wish she would work as well as she does in training in a trial... just once... PLEASE!

So basically that's it!

Other news?! Had an awesome Muder Mystery night on Saturday just gone - photos are on facebook if you want to see :). Was a whole tonne of fun.

Kinta also has gained back to back challenges after the past two weeks, meaning we only have about 2-3 challenges left in order to gain those elusive 100points and the CHAMPION title. When that will be I have no idea as we have not entered any shows after Feb, and don't know when we will again. Only fate can answer that for us!!!

Since you are probably wondering... although her whites are a little over-exposed.... an updated pic of the girl :D

These two pics were kindly taken by Gayle - great photos, though the one on her 'off show' side she is a bit forward on her front :( I can never get a great stacked shot of her :p

Tuesday, February 17, 2009

signs that dogs are not mans best friend....

Don't be suckered by the cute face.... you may want to hug him, but I warn you, it is NOT SAFE!!!!

Ok some of you may or may not know what has been happening here lately - basically I don't want to say too much, but must vent my frustration somewhere!

Dogs are basically NOT man's best friend when they cost you an arm and a leg:

**Problem 1 - Leo had a bout of the runs since last Wed, which after a bit of chick and rice cleared up a little, then went back downhill to icky poops again. Trotted off to the vets Monay morning and now he's on antibiotics and a easy digestible diet which seems to have cleared things up.... including my bank balance....

** Problem 2 - Kinta has had some suspicious discharge from her girly bits and so, just to be safe, I was back at the vets to get this checked too. Bacterial infection/ vaginitis, swab sent off to pathology and antibiotics too!!!

Soo.... hopefully this clears up for both dogs and they are both fine with no serious issues. Leo's scare was a possible bowel obstruction and kinta's is possible (albeit very slim) Pyo.... even the word scares me :P.

I have asked the vets if they just want me to fwd my pay check to them since I have been there so often lately :)

Will let you know how the critters go.

Now.... since I have been told that every 'email' should have something POSITIVE in it...

why dogs ARE man's best friend:

** A certain pretty doggy won Bitch Challenge on the weekend cleaning up with another 11pts!!!! WOOT WOOT! Considering I was contemplating stopping for good 6mths ago, this is very happy news indeed :D

** Another certain doggy was absolutely awesome at the pet expo on the weekend - I think he has suckered quite a few people in on the Aussies that's for sure :D

Apparently this is the only appropriate way to greet people:
'manning' the stand:

Monday, February 09, 2009

Victorian Fires

Please think of those who are affected by the Victorian fires from Saturday. It is hard to fathom what has happened in a matter of hours... towns completely lost, lives lost and families left devastated having lost everything. A lot of us are still absolutely shell shocked either by what has happened to our friends and/ or family or simply by the fact that it has come so close to home, and so quick.

After experiencing extreme temperatures on Saturday (reaching above 46deg C) and with winds of up to 70-100kms/hr... you can imagine the devastation. Fires throughout Yarra Glen, Healesville, Whittlesea and Gippsland to name a few are still blazing. Kinglake and Marysville are the worst affected with absolutely nothing left.

Please spare a thought for those that have lost.

On to brighter notes... Have a look at the house I'm looking after this week:

oh and the dogs -

and some random photos (see I told ya you will regret me getting a new camera!)