Roxy training diary month 15
August 2004

Aug 28. Dylan is apparently trying for a career as an alert dog. We can't be sure, but it seems like he is barking when Roxy needs to go out. As Roxy has rather intractable housebreaking issues, we are glad for any help we can get. Roxy and Jim spent some time today taking a nap together.

Aug 25. Dylan's 7th Birthday was an event shared by all, including Roxy. Roxy, of course, since she has gone into heat, has become Dylan's Very Best Friend. We ordered a cake from a local bakery, Doggielicious Pet Bakery and it was yummy (so we are told) and the price was quite reasonable. They were a dream to work with and I even got it delivered at work. It's a peanut butter cake with carob frosting.

After a few pictures, Dylan had had enough of posing with the cake so he brutally attacked it. Then he got first crack at cake for dinner while the other dogs had to wait in their crates – after all it was his birthday, dammit.

Aug 20. Roxy quit bleeding about mid-week so she is released from her Sexy Elmo Panties for the time being. The guys don't seem to be unduly interested in her; we don't know if this is the estrus, or The End.

Meanwhile, with Roxy's wings clipped, Annie and Dylan and I went down to Hattiesburg for the AKC three-day trial. We had three of four good runs. Annie got her first MX leg with a 9th place (out of 30 dogs) and 4 MACH points, so now she is 7/750ths MACH, if my math is correct. We missed a double-Q because Annie missed her weave pole entry, took it to be my fault, and started with The Biting Thing. So we left. Dylan and I got a leg in Open Jumpers with Weaves (his second), even though he was one second over, and a first place and a Q in Open Standard. He already has his OA so he didn't need the standard leg but it's good practice for him.

Free toys for ribbons, so I got Annie a Hideous Green Squirrel to match her green ribbon. I figured the squirrel toy would last about as long as the run which won it for her. Surprisingly, it lasted just slightly longer than her qualifying run. I timed its life at about 4 minutes before a stitch broke and the stuffing started to ooch out. Dylan coveted Annie's squirrel so he got one of his own, but in a normal brown color instead of Hideous Green. We need to see how long his lasts.

Aug 14. Lots of "down time" because of Roxy's heat. Obviously, no walking through the neighborhood. I've worked a bit on the jump chute in the backyard, and her weaves are fairly tremendous for a girl her age, but she's not fit to be seen in public. If only we could do this with hormonal teenage girls...

We spent the morning of Sat Aug 14 doing a rescue transport leg. "Lady" (7 months) and "Lacy" (13 weeks) needed to get from the Tangipahoa shelter in Louisiana to a new home in Michigan. So we drove down to McComb, had breakfast at the Huddle House because we were early, and then drove the girls back to Jackson where we handed them off to Chaffin Bozeman and her mom. I had not met Chaffin – except for seeing her posts on the ACD-L email list – and the description I had of her was 5'2" and blonde, in a red Ford F150 pickup. Rosemary and I accosted an African-American woman, middle aged, with blonde hair who parked near our van, but it was not Chaffin, as the picture at right makes apparent. Didja know that Ford F150 pickups are the best selling automobile model in America?

Aug 7-8. We spent some time doing agility practice with the Cox sisters both weekend days at 7 am. That's awfully early, but it's the only time when we have weather cool enough to do agility in a Mississippi August – usually. It happens that this weekend was especially cool, thanks to an unseasonable cold front that came through Friday, so it was even nicer than usual both mornings. Roxy has really begun to understand off-lead heeling and while it's not beautiful, I have some heads-up attention and I can really see it working out. We are aiming for our first C match in Mobile on Sept 10. We had to pull her entries for the AKC trial Aug 20-22 since she is likely to be in standing heat at that time.

Every once in awhile, we get our signals crossed and I go down like a tree. Luckily the sand is soft and quite comfy and it's like falling into bed. No animals were harmed in the making of this RoxyLog.

Her weave poles are coming along nicely. Rosemary and I are seeing the first glimmer of a happy attitude towards the weaves and there are signs that she "gets" it and is beginning to enjoy it. Always before, she was concentrating so hard on doing it right that she didn't seem to feel it was "fun". Now, I think her muscle memory is telling her what to do and she can relax a bit and feel the rhythm of the weaves. She is doing a fine job with them.

Aug 5. Did some jump chute work in the backyard. I'm still trying to decide whether Roxy will be safe out in the wider world; I would hate to see some young stud take advantage of her in this delicate state. She is just now getting flirty and cheeky. She started a discharge last night (Aug 4) which was mostly straw-colored, with just a touch of blood. We'll keep track of how long this lasts. Rosemary and I went shopping for diapers, which is pretty funny for two non-child-bearing people; we were mystified by the array of choices, particularly since none of the packages is marked for "40 lb dog in season; ideal for cutting a hole for her tail and keeping her from dripping".

Aug 2. It's finally happened: our little girl is going into season. We think she may have had a light or silent season when she was up at Chris Moore's between Christmas and Jan 18. Her vulva is swelling like it's beestung and she's become interesting even to Kodiak. Normally, she bugs Kodi and he tries to get away from her; now he is following her around trying to figure out what that je ne sais quoi quality is to her pee. It's like Chanel No. 5 for dogs. Rosemary and I are trying to figure out whether the neighbor's spaniel is an intact male. I guess we'll know soon enough. No discharge as yet but I suppose that's only a matter of time.

This is actually a not-bad time for her to go in; we have to cancel one trial in Hattiesburg Aug 20-22 but it could be much worse. August is a relatively slow month agility-trial-wise. I really need to work with her on obedience, though, and I don't know whether her hormone-soaked brain is capable of learning anything. I guess we'll see.

I filled out Roxy's first-ever USDAA trial entry. We'll be going to Huntsville Sept 25-26. To keep myself sane and ease the strain on our checkbook, I'm planning to run Annie in Masters Pairs, Masters Snooker (double snooker!) and PIII Jumpers, because we are only two legs away from a title in each. (Relay Masters, Snooker Champion and PIII Jumpers, respectively.) Roxy is probably too young for Snooker, so she will do PI Standard (two days), PI Jumpers, and PI Gamblers. Roxy's strengths and Annie's nicely compliment each other.

Aug 1. We closed out a three-day trial weekend. This was a USDAA trial at Hattiesburg. New site, wonderful facility. Roxy did not get to run because she is still too young for USDAA but we did some practice measuring. Annie had a good day Friday but things just went wrong Saturday and Sunday. I got to run with Dylan, which is always fun, but we didn't achieve anything special.

Roxy and Jim Take a Nap

Hideous Green Squirrel

Lacy, Chaffin, Rosemary, Jim and Lady Meet at the Mall-Wart

I'm Too Sexy for My Elmo Diapers
Click on the picture for audio enhancement

Roxy's Heeling Practice

Roxy Weaves for Jim

Jim Goes Down

Roxy Weaves for Rosemary

Roxy and the Jump Chute

Roxy and Jim Have a Talk About the Facts of Life
Roxy, All Grown Up
Roxy and Dylan Play Hide and Seek

RoxyLog July 2004 (month 14)

RoxyLog May and June 2004 (weeks 47-52; month 13)

RoxyLog March and April 2004 (weeks 39-46)

RoxyLog February 2004 (weeks 35-38)

RoxyLog December 2003 and January 2004 (weeks 26-34)

RoxyLog November 2003 (weeks 22-25)

RoxyLog October 2003 (weeks 17-21)

RoxyLog September 2003 (weeks 13-16)

RoxyLog August 2003 (weeks 9-12)

RoxyLog July 2003 (days 25-54)

RoxyLog June 2003 (days 1-24)