Roxy training diary month 14
Not for the squeamish!
Dylan's Backfield in Motion
You Want Me To Do What?!?
Good Dogs in a Different Order
Forest of Weaves
Roxy Tries Out the New Tire
Dylan Manages Inflation
July 25: Even though it is hot and humid, the cattlekids want Boomer Ball so it is Boomer Ball they
will have. A fun time was had by all (see top row above), especially the two red dogs who collaborated
on the yellow Boomer Ball. Annie had a blue Egg that she worked on by herself. Everyone was having a
great time, until Roxy bit the back of her tongue. She didn't care still doesn't show any signs
of caring a half-hour later as I write this but when she went in to get a drink of water afterwards,
it made a holy mess in the water bowl. You can click on the link above, but warning: it's not for the
July 24: I loaded the girls in the van and went to The Dog Wash to do some practice early of a
Saturday morning. Annie and I did some signal exercise tuneup, and she was brilliant. If only, if only.
She has forgotten the concept of go-outs but I think we can get those back, and it has been a long time
since we worked on the other pieces of Utility. Her agility was brilliant, it almost made me cry. We did
some jump box work and she was spot-on. Her weave poles, as always, were beautiful.
Roxy and I did some off-lead heeling for the first time I can remember. She did pretty well. We had
some trouble on about-turns when she faced the boarding area (she wanted to go visit) but it was a good
distraction to work with. I started teaching her a "place" command (scoot into heel position). Then, on
to the agility field. Weave poles are still a bit rough but getting there; she seems mystified by being
on my right so we need to work on that. She did some run-bys, and so I need to get her to work out a bit
and run the parallel path. Tire looks good from all angles and I threw in some 24" and 20" jumps in the
jump box and she didn't take down any bars. We did a very brief stay entering the box and her RFPs (or maybe
my RFPs) went very smoothly. All in all, a good practice session.
Night of July 23: Another Epic Battle between Good and Evil broke out. Dylan, his eyes glowing,
vanquished The Evil Red Teenage Girl. Another victory for the King of All Things Chewable.
July 18: We took time to go out and practice agility and some obedience. The three cattle dogs
did a pretty good sit-stay; Roxy will generally let me get about 10-15 feet away and will allow
me to circle around her coming back, so we are making progress towards her Novice obedience stays.
Not there yet, but progress. It looks like October might be a good bet for when she gets her first
trial experience. If only we can find some matches or practices between now and then. Otherwise, I'll
just have to wing it.
We also did some work on Annie's Utility signals. You would think
she knows this stuff from how she looked. If only I could get this performance in the ring.
Roxy got lots of agility practice. After about 10 minutes, her brain got full and she wandered off and
would not pay attention to me, which is new for her. I couldn't get her back. Very frustrating. I
need to learn to stop before we get to that point, but you know how it is you're having fun and
all of a sudden it's shutdown time.
Her weave poles are making some progress. She's finding the entrance on her own more often than
not, as long as we keep a straight-ahead approach. Once we get that nailed down, we need to get the
angled approach. She's also skipping a pole around #6 or so from time to time. We're deliberately
practicing sets of 12 even though we will only see 6 in the ring, because I want her to be ready. I
might go back to the channel weaves for a time until she gets it all back again. Looking at the picture
at right, you can see how confusing the weave poles must be.
I need to make a commitment to work with her in the mornings before I go to work, but I hate mornings.
Somehow, it has to get done.
I also need to remember how much further she is than Annie was at this point. Annie started in May 1995
when she was 2 years, 2 months. Our training methods and techniques were so primitive then! It's hard to
imagine how far we've all come, and the bar just keeps getting set higher and higher. It was 17 months after
that when Annie got her NA. (There was no Jumpers class back in those days.) Now Roxy is 2/3 NAJ after
12 runs in 3 months, and she's not even old enough to do USDAA. I'm so proud of my little obstacle-focused
girl. She still sucks to tables! Who would've thought.
I re-wrapped our smaller USDAA tire, and now I start the work of getting Roxy ready for her first
USDAA trial. She turns 18 months on Sept 23, and it will be sometime in late September or early October when
we take her to her first USDAA trial. She'll have a blast. I know she'll love the games and even though
it will be more of a challenge, I think she will likely excel at Gamblers.
After our training session, Roxy and Dylan took a break to play tug with their inflations. Annie sat
in her crate and screamed at them, because they weren't doing it right.
Work on Roxy's agility and obedience proceeds. I've got her to the point where she can sit-stay
or down-stay while I take about three or four steps away from her, or make a complete circle around
her, while in the kitchen. I've done a little bit of work outdoors but it's Too Darn Hot to do much
outside work right now.
July 15, I started working with her on the stand-stay and actually made some progress. Her stand
is not too bad (thanks, Chris!) but she can move forward so easily, why shouldn't she?
Wednesday night, July 14, I was talking to Aunt Amanda on the phone and the dogs wanted to hear her
voice. They miss her. So we decided to see how each of the dogs would react. Annie said, "It's not
right" and promptly went to her crate. Roxy wasn't at all sure what to make of it. And Dylan got mad,
roared at it, and tried to bite the phone. I think he's mad because he misses his Aunt Amanda. She used
to let him throw his little red body against the kitchen door repeatedly while she watched through the
window panel. He enjoyed that game and no one else wants to play it with him. He does it with the UPS
man, but the stupid man in the brown shorts just runs away.
Annie has another appointment to do pet therapy
Case in point: the morning of July 3, I got up early to let the dogs out to go potty. I went away for
a bit, and returned to find Roxy posed at the top of the dogwalk, reviewing her domain with a very regal
air. Among her subjects was Kodiak. She looked around as though she were enjoying the view immensely.
It seemed like a good time for the camera, so I went inside to get it, and a few seconds later there
she was: "Hey, Pops! What's up?!?"
Saturday night, July 3, was fireworks night in our neighborhood. Roxy really got worked up about a
screaming Roman candle, so I took her out to watch from a safe distance, and she had a good time barking
and raising a ruckus while the fireworks went wild.
She had a breakthrough the other day; while we were training stays in the kitchen, she actually let
me walk in a complete circle around her. I'm not expecting that consistently for a while; if I can get
her to hold that steady by the end of this week, it'll be a victory.
Roxy is proud of Head Princess Annie, who is continuing her dog therapy career with her first visit to
Children's Hospital. Roxy is a long, long way
from doing therapy, but maybe like Annie she will mellow into her retirement years.
Annie is an INTJ, if you are curious.
This isn't really Annie's, Dylan's or Kodiak's blog, but as you know, they make guest appearances.
Dylan got into something the morning of July 4; by mid-morning his muzzle was all swollen on the left side
even with some Benadryl on board. It doesn't seem to be causing him too much pain, and he is more groggy
from the Benadryl than anything else. I checked as best I could and there's no stinger or hole that I can
find, so our best guess is that he encountered one of the red wasps that like to nest in the ground. The
dogs spend much of the morning sniffing in the grass for bunny crap and I guess he found an angry wasp
instead of the bunny pellets.
Epic Battle between Good and Evil
Roxy Does Not Want To Talk
Dylan Wants to Give Amanda a Piece of His Mind
Oh, Say Can You See / by Dawn's Early Light / Roxy Proudly on the Dog Walk
Dylan Gets Stung