Saturday, November 30, 2013

Silly Pet Tricks!

TRICKS, TRICKS, TRICKS, most of our foundation work was simply tricks, they were all about body awareness and learning to work together. One thing I loved about the foundation work Cricket and I did as she was growing up, was all the body awareness work we did.  I can say now that it really paid off.  We have done a bit of herding, a bit of obedience, a bit of rally, some agility, some nose work, and there is nothing we have done that I did not feel we had a bit of a heads up because of the foundation we had thanks to online lessons mostly from Sylvia Trkman but also Susan Ainsly, Susan Garrett, Denise Fenzi and a tiny bit of the Michael Ellis DVDs. The best thing about our foundation was that we could work at our own pace and in really short sessions-homeschooling the Crickster turned out great for us.

In the desert we don't do stairs.  When I wanted to teach Cricket to back up the stairs I had to wait until this real estate office was closed so I could go use their stairs.  They have stairs all around the building and they are all a little different sizes and slopes.  I was driving by the office and since it was black Friday the office was closed, and there was a break in the rain, so I stopped to see if Cricket remembered how to back up the stairs.  SHE DID!

Have I said before how much I love this dog?

Friday, November 29, 2013


HAPPY THANKSGIVING! I hope everyone had a great day.   We had a quiet day, I went to the gym-YIPPIE ME! We had a delicious FAUX turkey, yummy- and some pumpkin pie.  If there are any aspiring vegetarians out there the meat substitutes by Quorn are delicious and we can get them at our Target Super center, they are in an orange and white box and I think have a very good texture.

Because it is Thanksgiving I will share a few things I am thankful for this evening-I am thankful I do not have to make websites/edit websites/or in any way touch websites in my daily life-I know now I could make one but one is about as many as I feel compelled to make in my lifetime....although as soon one of my friends saw the site I was working on she was hinting she would like me to help her do one..sigh...good thing she's an awesome friend.  I am also very thankful that Agility Blogger day is only a couple of times a year,--it is coming up again and the topic will be the mental game I believe....and.....I plain can not get my head into the game to think of what to blog about ....  thirdly I am thankful that our floor is tile so it can be easily cleaned--naughty Skyler who has been plain peeing-not leaking on the floor.  Thank heavens the holiday is over so I can get him back into my holistic vet. Can we tell I am tired tonight, hahahah!

So now that Cricks and I are finally really doing a little agility again, WHOOT!  it is AMAZING how much that has improved my mood.  What I can do now really isn't running, LOL, but hey it is getting there.

So with our new found freedom, it was time to take stock of our training and see what we can work on while I am getting up to running full courses... that pretty much means short sequence and drills, and obstacles.  Check out the picture of Crickets pretty 2020, well that was before, and in my recovery period that pretty sight is gone.  It was pretty funny, Ive let a few people play around with Cricket and she runs so beautifully for others, she is just happy to do her 'gilities and who cares who it is with---however, if someone can run, she is keeping up and there is no time for stopping on that dog walk.  The teeter was just fair before the injury and it is pretty much where it was before I still have work to do on that-I'm using some Wendy Pape exercises on that.  The running Aframe I was so proud of-its really not up to the criteria with some odd scampering going on, but just some running over it seems to be fixing that, it is getting better with each session so I am not worried about that.  Cricket ran across the long jump, working carefully to step on each board, LOL, we worked through the whole Mary Ellen Barry Long jump program, so that was sort of freaky to me that she really doesn't recognize it at all, silly girl!!!  But all is not lost, OMG her weaves are awesome,  her jumping is looking so nice, and all of a sudden she works really nice at a distance and has so much more obstacle commitment then she has ever had before.  I think all the Sylvia Trkman cik/cap around trees in the park has paid off.  Now that we have taken stock, and I know what we need to work on, guess its time to get to work!

Sunday, November 24, 2013

The Future is Wide Open......


Its almost the holidays again!  How did this happen?

Poor Skyler, my older tri colored sheltie-- it is suspected he has some type of bladder cancer ;-(.  We ruled out most everything that could be causing his leaking and the blood that is in his urine.  Anyway, that is the thought right now.  He got a round of antibiotics and started some Chinese herbs....Suprisingly after the antibiotics he stopped all leaking, but now he's been off the antibiotics for a few weeks and it has come back.  The thing is to make a definitive diagnosis we would have to do an ultrasound ..the vet asked if we would do radiation to treat it if that is what we found.  The poor guy is not in the best of health, he's comfortable and with how much time that would give him, I do not want to put him through something like that for the short extra time that would give him even if it was successful.  So we enjoy the time we have with Skyler, and he is stubborn enough he will probably live several more years. ;-)

Other then Skyler things have been going good. Lizzie has stayed out of the gummy vitamins, Breeze is feeling better and moving better,  Chloe my sable sheltie has lost a little weight and is in much better shape-although she has as much attitude as ever and that is what gets her in trouble with the other dogs.   I am really excited, the last few days I have been able to do a little jog, just a little and some running on the treadmill.  WHOOT!  My bionic knee with the total knee replacement is amazing, still stiff at times but it really works well, but the other non replaced knee has been a bad knee lately, until the last two or three days.  My hope is that the knee holds up long enough I can do some trailing with Cricket and have some fun before I have to get it replaced and go through rehab again.  I also am going to the gym most days and doing a LOT of lower body weights so hopefully the next recovery will go faster.

But for the fun stuff, Cricket and I have been practicing on small sequences for agility.  The good news is that Cricket loves agility and will run for anyone.  Anyone want to run Cricket for me in a few trials????  LOL.

Everyone is doing nose work-  we did an online class with Margaret Simek -that was pretty awesome and all the dogs were able to do that.  We also did an online rally...with Deborah Jones-we were sort of slackers on that class-but hey we got the basics and will continue working.  Then Cricket and I did the jump foundation online class Level 1 with Linda M, that was one intense course.

SOOOOOOO what should we take this semester.,,,humm,  I am a real lover of online classes, and everyone has sign ups right about now. The front runners are two Denise Fenzi classes, Bridging the Gap about how to wean out some reinforcers, and Denise's Play class, and maybe Stacy Goudy's Front Cross/rear cross class, or maybe auditing Linda M/Mary Ellen Barry's Fancy Cues-because that sounds so interesting and I am going to a One Mind Dog training/handling seminar next month and that class will cover the similarities and differences in Linda's Awesome Paws Handling and the One Mind Dog system.  But geese, looking at that list there is no way I can possibly keep up with all of that, esp over the holidays, so some hard choices will have to be made, very quickly ;-).

OK THE BEST NEWS-I FOUND MY VIDEO CAMERA-so I am going to kick myself in the butt and start videoing some of the things we are working on so I can make things more interesting and post some of the things we have been up to.