Monday, 28 September 2009

Dashin Dogs

What a brill weekend. Gorgeous weather, lovely venue, great people.

Tia - 4 runs, 4 eliminations, but they were just the best eliminations, I was as happy as if we had won! We had sooo much fun. She was crazy, she got more mad with each run (I think there were several "cripes, I'm actually doing agility" moments for her) so by the last run, my timing just got totally fuddudled, I handled her wrong and she was just bark-bark-bark so I did let out a TIA! but then we got back on track and she was just super after that, so much fun, wild, was giving it her all, loving every minute of it, and I am so grateful to my lovely little dog for trusting me enough to come back to doing agility even though 18 months ago it was so painful for her. I have really missed running her, we have a UKA show next month and then I will give her the rest of the year off, and start building her up again in Jan/Feb time, I am hopeful she will be able to do one or two classes at a couple of shows a month, maybe even a couple of champ classes, I get such a buzz from running her, just loved this weekend, although my handling is mega ropey, timing is all out, Tia is Miss Fizzy Beans! If we are able to do a bit more practising, maybe this will improve!

Rix was uber naughty on Saturday and leapt off his aframe in anysize agility, however he made up for it Sunday by coming 1st in Veteran Jumping with Lee, they totally stormed it, probably one of the best Veterans courses Rix (and Lee!) has ever worked, he was stunning! I ran him in anysize jumping first thing in the morning and came 2nd, this was despite me almost crashing into a jump, I could see I was running straight towards this jump but just didn't get out the way until I literally had to stop, what an idiot, I blame any alcohol still in my system!! Luckily Rix was oblivious to his stupid handler pratting about and carried on doing his stuff, what a good boy.

Imogen and Honey were ssssuper, and got 1st in Gr 1-3 Agility, 1st in Gr 1-2 Agility, and two thirds and a 5th in agility and jumping. I am so proud of them, still have only been training for 9 months and have won out of grade 1 and qualified for YKC ADOTY at Crufts.

I am still amazed that I have just done Tia's first grade 7 classes, when only 6 months ago it looked as if it would stay a distant dream. I am on such a high, all the patience, endless trips to SMART, the physio exercises, and building her up to be super fit, has been worth it, the guilt I had from making Tia train and compete when she was in pain has now gone, as I realise that everyone in life makes mistakes, we had tried our best to get Tia treated, but had failed to get correct diagnosis, until going to SMART, and I have done everything in my power to get Tia's health and fitness back up to a level where I know she is strong enough to do agility. Tia will always be my "drives me nuts" dog, she is a pain to live with and is a strange little dog at the best of times, however I do feel that when she does agility, she loses all the fears that she has when she's at home or out on walks, and becomes a confident, happy dog who just loves to run.

Here is a video of 3 of our runs. Thanks Garth for filming. Not bad ;-) Tia's 4th run was juniors which I didn't get on film, but Tia and Imogen definitely had fun!

Thursday, 24 September 2009

Sleeping Scandal

This always makes me laugh. Scandal decides at about 9pm that she is going to bed, and she buries into the curtains by the patio doors, spins around several times and lies down, recently she has perfected this so she is now completely surrounded by curtain. Here is her attempt last night. Soooo cute!

Monday, 21 September 2009

Scandal - the video

Well here is the video of Scandal, training at 9 half months old!

Sunday, 20 September 2009

Ric Roc

I have done hardly any training with the dogs this week. We have walked lots, but the only training I did was on Friday when Jess brought Copper over, worked him round on the equipment while I had Scandal (off lead :)) in her crate, with the door open. We then moved on to having her sat next to the crate and being able to hold a wait, with no barking. She was a good girl :)

I took all the dogs down to Exmouth yesterday, Steve took some lovely pics of Rix, these are my favourite. I can't believe Ricky will be 11 in February, it doesn't feel like I have had him that long!

Wednesday, 16 September 2009

Thank you

I would just like to say a massive thank you, to everyone who has been so lovely, kind and generous, when someone decided to turn my life upside down this week. I am truely humbled, and amazed, by everyone being so wonderful. Thank you, to every one of you, it means so much to me, agility people really are the best :)

Saturday, 12 September 2009

Bandles training

I have been really lazy with Scandal's training, so this week managed to get up the field 3 times to do some training. Dog walk is looking fab and couple days ago did a low full length one, eeek very exciting! She was lovely. Did another yesterday and again she was great. Will carry on sending her from the middle plank until she is a bit older, I can send her from any part of the dog walk and she will correct her stride to hit the end. Have been sending her from the last part of the down plank and clicking for her 2 back feet hitting the contact, she likes that, hopefully it is reinforcing to her that this is the part of the contact i really really want her in. I do sometimes wonder when she isnt perfect and I call her back to re-do, whether she actually knows why I'm calling her back, ie which part of the dw I was unhappy with, so hopefully doing a bit of clicker work will reinforce which part. I am only clicking if I am playing about with the last plank, as otherwise she is too fast and timing goes a bit haywire!!

Other parts of her training are going great... except... Helen is going to do a big *sigh* when she reads this as Scandal ran off again on our walk a couple of days ago, I blame Lee, as he was down, and I was busy telling him how wonderful Scandal was with her recall nowadays, and then it was "Char, wheres your puppy" and bad brat had totally disappeared, for far too long, and was vvv pleased with herself when she eventually came back. Went for a long walk with a friend today and she was super, stayed close all the time, checking in all the time, just sooo naughty on Thursday. I think it was because I wasn't keeping an eye on her so didnt call her as soon as I noticed she'd gone out of sight, then she got a bit further away, then out of earshot. The good thing though is now even if she spots something to chase, if I call her, she will always come back, rather than chasing anyway. So a bit good and a bit bad! Love her sooooo much, very easy going, most of the time!

Monday, 7 September 2009


I think we made some progress with Scandal's bad behaviour this weekend... despite Saturday at Prestbury Park Scandal managed to chew through her headcollar/lead and run into the ring chasing Lorna's Fleet - I am so sorry Lorna!!! However on the bright side, she did come back as soon as I called her, which is better than the first time she did it, when I couldn't catch her. I am seriously thinking about getting her a chain lead now, she has chewed through 5 or 6 this year and puts the lead in the back of her mouth and chews through in seconds. Same with toys, I need a reinforced steel toy! She breaks em like there is no tomorrow.

So Saturday (P.Park) wasn't so much progress, I had her out, however wanted to chat to people at the same time and you really have to give her your full attention or she is straight back wanting to bark and lunge at the other dogs. She can cope with standing by 1 ring, however 2 rings just blows her mind at present. So went to Tarka show in Devon on Sunday, lovely show, only 3 rings as it was a grade 1-3 show. Tried a new one with Scandal, gave her a rawhide chew as she is food mad so wanted to see if she'd be too busy munching chew to bark... this was not the case and as soon as the dogs were moving about (even dogs outside the ring tugging) she was lunging and barking. So got the big food tub, she is going to be a fat girl soon with all the sweeties she is getting. Worked on her for a few minutes getting her attention back and then asked her to do the v small bit of obedience she knows, i.e. starting heelwork position, teeny bits of slow pace, and sit/down waits. She was fabby, she finds it harder to do what I ask when the dog is on the start line, and doing tunnels, as these are the things we can do, so she sees great excitement in this! Watching the jumping I can just about manage to keep a lid on, we get the occasional yap and shuffle however in the main she was able to hold a wait for a good 20 secs or so, anyone who knows Scandal around the rings will know this is mega progress! She is also holding her starting heelwork position until I give her her 'clicker word' which is good as at one point I couldn't even get attention for more than a second, so we are winning the war on barking!

Only downside was I was talking to a friend afterwards (which already I know I shouldn't do when I have her out... have to concentrate on her only) and Scandal went back to screaming, and the judge asked me to move... earache/putting the dogs off I guess, although I was stood where I thought it wouldn't bother any dogs. Whoops. Embarrassing. Must try harder! Omg, this doglet is hard work, way way way harder than Rix or Tia, for this part anyway, she is vvvv determined, lucky she is such a good girl away from agility! Went for a lovely walk on the Mendips in the evening and Scandal was great, no running off at all, stayed nice and close, got lots of sweeties for coming back without me even calling her, this is great for me as at one time she just wanted to go off exploring. Did get zapped by the elecy fence, trying to chase/herd the chickens along the fence, and stuck her nose a little too close, ouch. Was a tired girl in the evening thats for sure!

Thursday, 3 September 2009

Well dones

Seems like everyone is doing real good at the moment, so well done to

Itty and Robbie winning out of grade 1 at Dashin, by 5 seconds :D
Lee and RicRoc for winning anysize jumping at Dordale :D
Imogen and Honey for winning grade 1 jumping at Dashin :D
Katie and Jet for being real CONSISTENT, although by Katie's standards 2nds just aren't good enough almost up to G3 but not quite :P
Dad and little Bex at Dogs in Need for qualifying top for the champ finals, and although it didn't quite go to plan in the final, I think at 2 years old Bex has still got a lot more to give :D
And of course big congrats to Gibson and Scott, for their 7 wins over the weekend, what a good lad Scott is... and Lee... hehe.

I had my first lesson at Elaine's with Tia today, in about 18 months. She was lush! I am so pleased with her. We trained her on medium height. She was flying. Generally in a different direction to the one I wanted her in, but hey it was a lot of fun. My handling has got real lazy, I guess having no-one to nag me in the last year has just made it easier to not try very hard! When I tried a bit harder, Tia was even better, still not in the right direction, but more fast! The trouble is after a while of doing anysize she has just learnt to go like a bat out of hell in a straight line... her consensus is if there is a jump in front of you, just go for it, no matter what the mumma is yellin! Was cooly training her though. Hopefully next year she will be good to do the odd show... and what with Scandal hopefully coming out, (a lot of hopefullys!) maybe I'll even have 2 dogs to run, eeek!!

Scandal did a few nice dog walks on Elaine's plank, going from the table. I was pleased as Scandal has only ever been on the dog walk at home. Then she did some nice waits and demonstrated a couple of physio exercises too :) she is doing real good, has been great on walks this week and has met lots of dogs, I was very pleased when we met a Leonberger as sometimes if the dog is mahoosive she is a little nervous and submissive, however she was much more confident this time and went straight up to sniff her, good girlie. The only "group" she doesn't like is someone who has a St Bernard and 2 Bassetts, I just can't get Scandal to approach them, she doesn't appear to think either of those breeds resemble dogs, and as a result she should keep nice and far away to remain safe. Bless her, the joys of a pup!