It’s been almost 2 weeks since my last post. It’s gone by quickly and I’ve been busy but nothing major has really happened. Not a bad thing!
I brought Seven and Letty to obedience class the last 2 weeks. It’s been crazy hot out so I left the others at home. Letty did well and is relaxing in the group class. Last week she only woofed once and it was at a flatcoat. The Newfie who is normally there is black and freaks her out. Class last week was small which helped too. Seven is doing really well in Nancy’s class. Here I thought we were not doing well and not really progressing. I should have moved him up in classes long ago. This is a push that we needed! Last week did not go as well heeling wise. I feel like we regressed since the seminar but I was really tired and my mechanics were off and I wasn’t feeling so enthusiastic about doing anything. Hopefully this week will be better.
I’ve started teaching Vada scent articles with the Around the Clock method. I’ve modified it though so I’m hands off but for my hand holding the article down so she can lick the cheese off of it. We did about 4 days of it last week. I got out of the routine over the weekend so I’ll have to get back at it! It’s a 7 week program and at this rate it’ll take us 7 months! I think she is getting it. She is having trouble with the retrieve part and she gets frantic when she gets confused and that irritates me. So I just have to practice staying calm and helping her. Once she gets it then she’s awesome.
Seven and Vada are rotating the weekly agility class. Seven went last week and Vada the week before. They are staying sound but it doesn’t seem like enough to work them every other week. Last night I worked Vada for about 10 minutes out in the yard. It was a really good session. They need alot more of that! Short sessions more often. And really Vada could use some going back to the basics. She can’t even do a 180 at 26″ without dropping bars. Sigh.
Now that the nasty humidity broke I’ve been trying to get Letty, Copper and Vada out more for walks around the pond. Letty needs to build up her tolerance to the heat. Copper needs to build up his rear end strength. Vada needs to get in better shape so she can quit getting hurt and to keep bars up in agility. There is never a shortage of things to do with the dogs between training and conditioning!
On the 15th I had the day off to setup for the annual UKC show at the Washington County Fairgrounds. Denise decided to not meet at the storage locker til 2pm so I had the morning open. It worked out well as I got Copper, Vada and Seven in to see Dr. Heather for checkups. Copper was out alot all over. Sigh. I wish he would act his age and respect his body more! Vada’s right hip was still sore. Also her left wrist was sore. Dr. Heather called it a sprain. Vada showed her quite clearly that it hurt. I freaked a little bit after having to take all last summer off from agility when her other wrist was injured. But Dr. Heather did not think I needed to take her to Dr. Julia. Whew! Later I remembered that she had caught that paw in her crate in the van after punching it at one of the dogs and she was stuck and thrashing around and screaming while trying to get her paw free. She got it free on her own as I was going into the crate to help (and fending off Letty who wanted to jump her). Seven was also sore down by his tail. Copper got an adjustment and acupuncture. Seven and Vada got light adjustments. Most of their issues were not chiropractic issues. They also both got acupuncture. Seven only got a few needles. He reacted to the first one as it was in the blocked part. The other 2 that were below it slipped in with no problems and he didn’t react. After a few minutes into the treatment the block cleared and he was able to feel the other 2 needles. Pretty neat! Vada does ok with acupuncture. She’s not crazy about it though. I was very happy that we were able to get in to see where they were all at. Sadly, I think Copper could use another adjustment again already.
I had time after our appointment so I took the dogs home and then headed down to the MMBC storage facility. I ran a few MMBC errands on the way too. We got the stuff loaded up and then headed to the fairgrounds to unload. I was able to help unload and give them some guidance as to how we had setup the rings in the past. Then it was time for me to leave to go to SoccerBlast for the MAC General Membership Meeting. It was a very good meeting with LOTS of feedback from the membership in attendance. Most meetings are just the board reading about what they’ve done. This one was interactive. And the board (which includes me) got some take away items.
That Saturday was my Schutzhund club’s trial. I went to help out and be part of the group in obedience. It was hot out and they weren’t needed so I left my dogs at home. The dogs did ok. 2 failed obedience. 1 failed protection. The back transport was giving all of the dogs trouble that day. All of the 1s failed tracking. A few teams passed. It is not an easy sport! I went home for a bit and made grape salad for the judge’s dinner. Karl went to the grocery store earlier in the day and kindly picked up the ingredients for me. ❤ 🙂 There were a few people at the dinner and we had some interesting conversations.
Sunday I took Vada, Letty and Copper to the Washington County Fairgrounds for the UKC show to help out and to trial Vada in rally. She ended up with 2 legs to finish her URO1 title. The first leg was High in Trial and the 2nd leg was a 2nd place! We might have to give AKC rally a try next. It was super hot and super humid. I was walking Letty around to socialize her a bit. On the way back to the van her rear started to go out from under her. I freaked and picked her up and carried her to the other end of the show site and put her in the kiddie pool. Then I hosed her off with the hose. I hosed down all of the dogs again later in the day before we left. That is not something to mess with! I was getting pretty sick feeling by the time I left too. I helped pack up as much as I could and then went home. There were so many more volunteers this year. It was so nice. For so many years it was just me and Karl and Denise and Al. Sadly, me and Karl and Al had to step down in order for others to step up. But they did a great job!
Karl’s niece and her husband (Alana and Nick) had their first baby on the 19th – a girl they named Macie.
Saturday Karl and I drove up to Duluth for a USDAA agility trial. Fringe, Seven and Vada were entered. I did not sleep well Friday night and we had to get up super early to get on the road. That definitely showed in my handling! The first class was Masters Gamblers. I read the gamble correctly on the course map. But then I went out and totally walked it wrong. It was HARD but I figured it was Masters so I accepted it. Sigh. I ran it the way I thought it was suppose to be run and I ran it wrong. Stupid. Sigh. But my main goal was to work on contacts since my criteria in the ring gets very lax. Vada’s contacts are getting worse and she pushes me hard so I can’t even twitch in the ring without her releasing. Not good! But also not our main issue. Luckily Karl was there to tape my runs so I could see how off my handling was. We had 2 bars down in Pairs on a serp where I was in her way but my partner was perfect so we squeaked out a dirty Q. We had a few bars down in Steeplechase and she pulled off the broadjump. She also missed her weave entry. She did in Masters too. It was the same entry and I forgot to support it in Steeplechase. Seven would not send out to the dogwalk in Gamblers. In Standard he did well. He missed the weave entry even though I went in deep to help set the line to the poles (same entry as Vada). I restarted him and he popped at 10 so I just went on. I’ve learned to not stress him on poles. He’ll get it eventually under trial stress. In Pairs I ran him second and wasn’t sure about my setup and he backjumped a jump that was not ours while I was trying to set him up. So no Q with the off course. Plus, he pulled off a jump in a 180. BUT both dogs stayed sound all day! Karl and Fringe did well. She flies off her aframe and dogwalk contacts still but otherwise they’ve really come together well as a team. We were not able to do Snooker as we had to get home to the dogs and the trial had been delayed for 2 hours from a downpour. They ended up moving it to Sunday but we were not driving back up there for that. I was able to get Letty out and walk her around all the people in raincoats and doing a great training session with her. Copper got to get out and walk around the ring while they were course building too. Those are some of the things that I love about outdoor trials.
Sunday I got up and took Letty to train with Warren’s group. She did well. We’re starting to teach her the bark and hold. On one send after I released her I felt the leash wrapping around my leg. It pulled my leg from under me and I was airborne! I have a nice rash on my ankle too. Luckily it didn’t stick and drag me or hurt Letty. There were not alot of people there even though the weather was awesome so it was a short day. I drove back home and napped off and on for 4 hours. I was exhausted! I still haven’t caught up on my sleep.
Monday I stayed home, walked the dogs in the yard and worked Vada and Letty on jumping skills.
Last night I drove to a park in Brooklyn Center to train with a few MVSV club members. The park was busy with tons of ball games going on but we were able to use a soccer field for obedience. Letty did great! There was alot going on but she was focused on me. Narc did great too. He started out sniffing alot but then focused on me. I decided to try food to lure him down for the down in motion. The lighbulb came on finally!!!!! I did that a few times then he was able to do the exercise without handler help!!! Then I worked Vada, also with more food, and she got the stand stay on the signal exercise right away. She was a bit questioning/slow on the down but we worked thru it. Then I took Copper for a walk around the park to sniff and pee on trees. They were all pretty happy. I need to get a handle on their barking in their crates though. Everyone else is using bark collars or e-collars so the dogs don’t bark. Mine are terrible and that makes it stand out even worse. I can close the doors but that’s not an option if it’s hot out. I know it’s an issue since the guy was complaining about dogs barking on the training field so the club is edgy about it. And I know it’s coming from all the reactivity in the house and in their crates in the house. I’m just not sure how to fix it.
Not sure what to do tonight – stay home, go to obedience class or go train with Warren. It looks kind of hot out so I might go to class since Letty doesn’t last long with Warren in the heat. I only have a few more Wednesdays free til my SQL Admin class starts. The great news is that the road to my class is finally open again! So it should be a shorter drive. 🙂