Friday, May 20, 2011

Doing things at a Snails Pace...doing things slowly

LOL, lately I feel a lot of pressure with my progress toward my goal with Cricket. No one else is putting the pressure on me, but gosh I feel like a Loser with a capital L because we are not trialing yet. We could in all honesty do some jumpers runs...I think it would go pretty well, probably much better then I imagine. My Aframe is taking FOREVER, we are marching forward and progressing but definitely at a snails pace. I am happy with what we have but boy I know I have not put that on the fast track. Crickets brothers are trialing and doing fantastic, but we crawling around at our own pace.

WHY? Why does it always feel like we are a bit behind? Hey we are really making some hugely amazing progress with LOTS of tricks, and lots of foundation exercise, I really am loving the Sylvia Trkman puppy class even though we are a bit behind even with that,... I am working on all three dogs and working on quite a few easy things and it seems like a lot of hard things. Some tricks surprise me when we can get them in one session and some tricks look so easy to me....but then it takes us forever to get them done, LOL.

None of this bothers me so much that I shifted into the fast track, I still just really want to savor our training and our relationship and have fun. It is the pace I am enjoying, but I still feel guilt, guilt for not being more driven. It is almost summer and to start trialing right now....most likely I will end up at trials in the middle of the summer sun....I remember one of the last trials I did with Breeze, the one she was injured in--it was 118 degree heat wave and we ran at 1:30 pm three days in a row,it was not fun.

So I LOVED reading this from the daily OM that was in my email today--such appropriate timing. Anyway, you can call me slow, you can call me lazy, but I feel like I am in hyperdrive toward some other goals, feels like my goal SHOULD be to hurry and get trialing with the AMAZING CRICKSTER...but guess I really want to explore a lot of other training and that has sort of taken over -but I really hate that I feel guilty about how time seems to be flying by.. ;-) .. is so silly because who besides me even cares what we are up to? LOL. So I am sure not cutting down any of the people out there that are working hard and will have their dogs trialing the day they are eligible,....I am envious of those people and maybe with my next puppy ;-), but for now -guess we have our own little pace and as long as we are having fun....guess that is the whole point of dog training as a hobby...having a good time with your dog.

Take time to slow down, rushing never gets you anywhere but on to the next activity or goal.

Life can often feel like it’s zipping by in fast forward. We feel obliged to accelerate our own speed along with it, until our productivity turns into frenzied accomplishment. We find ourselves cramming as much activity as possible into the shortest periods of time. We disregard our natural rhythms because it seems we have to just to keep up. In truth, rushing never gets you anywhere but on to the next activity or goal.

Slowing down allows you to disconnect from the frenzied pace buzzing around you so you can begin moving at your own pace. The moments we choose to live in fast forward motion then become a conscious choice rather than an involuntary action. Learning to slow down in our fast-moving world can take practice, but if you slow down long enough to try it, you may surprise yourself with how natural and organic living at this pace can be.
I am sure the rest of the article can be read at the link-but you get the idea of what they were saying



CAVALETTIS: Sylvia Trkman said she included Cavalettis because the dog needs to step over the obstacle one leg by one thinking about where his feet are in relation to the object. Jumping would be very easy but your goal is stepping over obstacles of different heights and different distances. A nice rear leg exercise and is especially good for dogs who run with their hind feet close together-which helps with running contacts if you are teaching those. Cavalettis teach the dog to move more efficiently and smoother.

Cavalettis are one of the things Breeze should work on, it was on her list of rehab exercises. I like Sylvia's idea of using boxes or bowls, or what ever, it makes it very portable and easy to change the spacing. Just a quick video of Cricket working on hers. ;-)

Liz and Breeze are also working on Cavalettis but they are sort of a mess--but that brings me back to the start of this post--I will embrace the journey :-)!


Priscilla said...

I think it doesn't matter how slow your pace is if you make progress in each of the step.
Those foundation exercises and tricks sound great, as long as your dogs and you are happy, it's alright to follow your heart and your own pace.
I use cavelettis for Eva to strengthen her hind legs too. She doesn't mind doing it as she loves treats!

Ricky the Sheltie said...

None of us should really feel any pressure to progress with training based on what other people are doing but it is hard not to think about that. I had people asking me when I would start trialing with Ricky - I had no idea what I was doing (still don't) and people were making me feel bad for waiting. I have gotten better at ignoring them. Foundation stuff and your bond with your dog are the most important things and I would rather spend the rest of my life doing the things that promote a fantastic relationship than trial one day.

I never thought of using boxes for cavalettis - that is a great idea and Cricket is looking good!

Sara said...

Cricket's trial days will be worth the wait! The training is WAY more enjoyable than the trialing.

Jules said...

I think there is a lot of unintentional pressure from the agility community and ourselves to get trialing. After all trialing is such a fun, social, rewarding thing for us (the humans) to do - it makes sense there is pressure to get there as fast as possible!

It's funny, I am doing rally with Bug now and was supposed to be at a Show n Go today. I decided to bail because truly he won't be ready to trial until the fall. The woman I am training with has a great perspective. She wants us to be ready to go onto Advance immediately. She doesn't feel you should be trialing until you are absolutely 100% ready to compete at the higher levels.

In the past I would trial (in agility) before the skill set was complete. I would do Tunnelers and Jumpers, but skip Regular and keep working those skills at home.

I feel like this caused me to be trial focused versus task/training focused and actually degraded the forward momentum of my training.

I think you and Cricket are making awesome progress and when you are ready to trial with her I think you will fly through Novice, Open and Excellent because of the foundation you have laid (sp?).

Diana said...

I think you have to do what is right for you. Even if you never trial, thats ok . Its your dog and you are having fun. I did trail Miley once when she was 15 months to see where the holes were. Then once at 18 months , again to see the wholes. I cant remember when we really started trialing but look how hard it has been. But I also know, that some of becoming a team can only happen in the ring. There is stress at a trial ( not in a bad way) at trials. And you and your dogs response to it and learning to deal with it are another training issue is itself. But if you are not ready, then you are not ready. Becuase even when you feel ready, Im sure you know, things fall apart at a trial. So the better foundations you have, the better off you will be. Go at your own pace and enjoy it!

LiveWiredAG said...

Kathy, you have to remember YOU AND CRICKET ARE DOING AWESOME!!!!

Da Vipe and I are in the same boat as you guys :D Lately I too have been feeling the pressure to "start trialing RIGHT NOW" but I know that Viper and I are not at that point. I have his first entry filled out for June, 2 Novice JWW runs at an AKC trial 20 minutes from home, does that mean he will run? Absolutely NOT, if the course isn't something I think he can handle I'll scratch.

Some of his siblings are also starting to show and I am SOOOO happy that they are able to start their agility careers, but at the end of the day you have to do what is best for you and Cricket!

At the Daisy Peel seminar I went to last month she said something that has shaped how I am training Da Vipe. "Being competitive does not mean getting 1st place in Novice or even Open, NO ONE is competitive until they are in Excellent B. That is when you are given your first shot at even becoming competitive." That quote sums it all up for me. You are doing an amazing job with Cricket and looking towards the end result just makes the journey all the sweeter! Enjoy her and enjoy the time you've spent teaching her all the great skills that will help your guy's career 3, 4, 5 years down the road!

Sagira said...

You might feel like you're going slow but just from updates on here I think you guys are doing awesome. Take things at your own pace. You're doing it the right way and you will have the rest of your life to trial and will be awesome at it because you're taking the time to do it correctly now instead of rushing into it.