Sunday, May 25, 2008

A Great Weekend! Tessa = Canine Good Citizen

We have been a bit quiet on the blog front lately. Things have been busy and I will save the most exciting news for the end of this post!

We had an excellent weave pole class on Thursday. Makin was great and although Lael and I have a long way to go in terms of being considered decent handlers I think we did a good job with Makin this week. I think we both did a better job at being upbeat and keeping her happy. We have to work a bit this week on not having the cages on the poles at the end of the set. Makin has an easier time with the beginning without the cages than the finish. Because the week had been very busy we had not practiced the poles as much as we would have liked. We will continue to practice the poles. We have one week left in the weave pole class but practicing them will be ongoing! Makin's next class is called "the five directions" in which Lael and I will hopefully learn to be better handlers.

On Saturday we went for a wonderful walk in the woods with a bunch of other v's and a lab that thinks she is a v! Tessa loves these walks but Makin is a little more hesitant with all of the craziness. We were out for almost 2 hours and the girls were zonked for the rest of the day.

The v with orange collar is a wonderfully sweet 72 pound v who is 11 months old. YIKES!

Makin looking sedate!

A bumper stuck in a tree with a sad v trying to free it. Only a bumper with quail scent would get that kind of attention!

The freeing of the bumper!

Tessa checking in!

And finally the all exciting news. Tessa passed her Canine Good Citizen test today. She is such a good little girl. Next step, her agility career!

Tuesday, May 13, 2008

A Good Day

There are many things the girls love. Today, they got to do a few of them- it was a good day.

First, they got to go to their favorite park. Neil got up extra early because he's so good to his girls. They ran like mad- and they got to go for a swim (another favorite!). Tessa loves to do belly flops- we'll have to get some pictures next time. And it's a nice small sized pond so you don't have to worry about Makin chasing the bird and never coming back. (At the beach is the only place were we have to keep Makin on a leash.)

Then, in the afternoon, I was able to take them to a nearby field where Tessa chased her favorite toy (see above) and Makin chased her favorite toy (Tessa). It is totally comical. Makin usually walks around the field totally chill, then out of nowhere she'll dive bomb Tessa. They love it. I'm sure Makin was this playful up at Widdershins, but she's generally pretty mellow around other dogs, so it makes me so happy to see her romping with her little sis.

So, a good day- and a few favorites for the girls!

Monday, May 12, 2008

Ohhh, the crazy dogs...

Neil's only been at his new job about one week and Makin & Tessa are wondering what's going on! Neil (sometimes with me) has been able to take them to some local trails in the morning for some good off lease romping, but then lunch time is just a potty-break in our teeny back yard & maybe a short leased walk, instead of the sprints around Mimi & Papa's yard- and Tessa & Makin are having none of it!

So, I took them for a longer off-leash walk after work- thought it would be a good chance to practice Tessa's Canine Good Citizen loose-leash walking... not so great. It was a "who's walking who" sort of day.

Then, after we came back to the house, I thought I'd practice some weave poles with Makin... another struggle. She loves it and wants those treats so bad, but we've regressed to luring her- not sure why.

And Tessa's got a case of the barks. Very bizarre- and I'm not sure if this is the best way to address it, but I find the only cure is distraction with positive rewards for whatever new thing she does. Probably she needs more exercise too. Still, I hope this is just a phase!

On a positive note, here is a picture of Neil: the way life should be- two snuggling puppies as he works on the blog.

Monday, May 5, 2008

CGC and Agility

We had CGC yesterday; actually Lael had CGC yesterday. I was feeling a little under the weather. Norm Peterson from the TV show Cheers would have said I had the flu. Regardless, class happened. We have a lot of work to do on the loose leash walking and I think reacting to the loud noise could present some problems. We would like to pass the test but the class is mostly about us learning how to teach the girls better. I think the change in jobs is actually going to help us with training. I am closer to home and have more time in the evening to do the fun work.

We have been having a blast with the weave poles. Makin has slowly started adding some speed. For the class we received a handout with days listed and when we should be moving cages. We have not fallen behind yet! We had a fun class last week. We had one run with a number of different obstacles. It was definitely a week were the handler learned more than the dog. I was a little stressed but learned a lot and I think that it has helped a great deal with working in the yard this week. I think I need to focus on my speed to not getting to amped up. I need to slow down and think about Makin and what she needs from me.

Tomorrow we have our second class on canine stretching and massage. We enjoyed the first week and look forward to the second class. More updates to come after Thursday's weave pole class!