Tuesday, June 28, 2011

You've Been Acting Aweful Tough Lately

Good lord, I don't know if I used the word "really" enough in my last blog post. That is officially the last time I post around midnight after just four hours of sleep the day before. Yikes. I apologize for putting you through the agony of reading that.

So, here's what's going down. Lilly might have lymes again. She slipped and bumped her leg in the pool last Wednesday, so when she was limping a bit right afterwards I thought it was just bruised and would heal with some rest. Friday was crazy, I got off work at 6, home by 6:30, and had to run and get the papmobile.

The plan was to have the mechanic lock my keys in the papmobile so my mom would drop me off with my spare and I'd drive home. Simple enough plan, right?  Funny how simple plans tend to crash into insanity. I couldn't find my spare key. Long story short, after an hour and a half of tearing apart the house we decided to go to the dealer and see if they left it unlocked by any chance. You have to lock the papmobile twice to lock all the doors,  Cue triumphant music. Thankfully they just locked it once which only locks the drivers door. So I was in, got myself a victory sandwich, and went home to pick up the dogs.

I thought I noticed a bit of a limp when I was loading Lilly up, but she wasn't showing any signs of a limp while running so I didn't think twice about it. By this Monday I was certain that Lilly was indeed limping, naturally I felt like a villain for asking her to run at Friday's class. I called my vet only to find out they've officially closed for good. So the hunt for a new vet began.

With the help of some fantastic local dog nerds, I found a new vet and have an appointment to get Lilly tested for lymes on Thursday.  The secretary was very nice on the phone, and I've heard great things about their staff, so fingers crossed all goes well.

And a bit of a Knight-man update, his weaves are looking BRILLIANT! ahhhh! I'm so happy with them! He was nailing 90 degree entries today on both the left and right. He's really driving for the entries and keeping up that speed all the way through.

On Thursday I'll be bringing my thinner board up from the basement to start working on his RCs again. I love earning some income, but my training time has been hacked away a bit. Our walks and playtime comes first, after working all day and putting up with Knight's intense fetch time I'm usually too tired to drag around agility equipment. So I've been goofing off with some shaping and working on recalls.

We have a trial this Friday, funny how the one day I have off this week I'm waking up even earlier haha. I'm not complaining though, I was starting to go through some trial withdraw. I feel like Knight and I are really starting to sync now, and I'm itching to see how his weavepoles hold up at the trial site. Abby and Skye are coming up so videos on Friday are going to happen!

As for the title of this blog post, I've been listening to wayyyyy too much Hoodie Allen to and from work haha

Friday, June 24, 2011

Friday Nights

  I love our Friday night agility classes. Tonight was one of those nights when everything really felt like it was coming together.

 I could really see Lilly listening tonight, at our last few trials we've had some hiccups where Lil was going off on her own and doing a course of her own creation for a bit. Tonight she was really listening to my cues, thinking about what I was saying, then following through with what I was directing her to do. We still have some smoothing out to do, but this was a huge leap in the right direction.  I couldn't be more happy with how she ran. She was fast and she was really listening!

 Then there was Knight-man. Wow, running him felt absolutely fantastic. His tunnel sends were awesome, he was listening to me while he was in the tunnel so he had tight turns coming out, brilliant wraps, simply amazing. The only thing I wasn't happy with was his jumping, the bars are set at 8" and he was easily clearing the 12/16" markers. Denise promised to pass on articles by Suzanne Clothier on jumping that she highly recommends, so we'll be working on that this summer/fall as well.

 All in all, an absolutely fantastic class with the paps.  I had so much fun running both of my insane goof balls.

 It's nearly midnight and I have to work tomorrow so I'm going to stop there. I promise more blog posts later this week.

Wednesday, June 15, 2011

Summer Goals

"Something here doesn't make sense. Let's go and poke it with a stick." -The Doctor

  I'm still alive! I was working Thursday-Monday this past week and was way too beat when I came home to do any semi-intelligent blogging. I had yesterday off, but I ended up taking the paps on a 3 hour hike and just goofed off instead of doing anything productive haha. 

And back to the topic of this post, since most of my time at work is spent walking dogs and cleaning I've had plenty of time to think about what I want to work on with the paps this summer. Now It's time to set some realistic goals! 

Running Contacts
 Knight of course has nothing done yet on his RCs, I got some great tips from Devi (check her out, she's pretty awesome) for his flat board jumping. I just need to corner my mother and ask if I can grab some of the extra carpeting downstairs to use. 

Miss Lilly also still has a fair bit of RC work to go. She has running while it's at lower levels down pretty well now, but there's a gap between where we last worked on it and regulation height. I've gotten a bit of jumping here and there at trials (still hit the yellow,but that's not what I'm looking for) so I want to smooth that out. Since Leap knocked out one of my Dog-walk bases last time she was here... I have an opportunity to make sure my dog-walk is regulation height still. Where was I going with this? Oh yes, So she needs a bit more work on the actual running part, and GAH her ENTRIES to the dog-walk and just plain scary. I won't always be there to guide her to a correct entry, so I want her to be able to get herself to the point where she has a straight and safe entry onto that dog-walk. 

Get Outs
 Or "Away" as I'll be calling it. Basically it's when there are two obsticals next to each other. I'm standing to one side of them, "Away + Obstical Cue" along with a raised arm = take the farther obstical, "This +Obstical Cue" with a lowered arm for the closer obstical. This is something I really need to work on properly signaling with my body language, and should prove to be quite useful. 

Double Jump
This is mostly a Knight thing. Lately Knight has been making the double bars rain down at trials. I think this is a) because of the way he jumps and b) because he has really only seen doubles at trials, maybe twice at class, never at home. So when my next paycheck comes in I'm going to order a double jump from MAD Agility so we can start working on that at home. 

Since I'm home this summer I hope to get them out to the park doing a lot of hiking and swimming this summer too. Big focus on just having fun and getting in shape for the fall trialing season. I'd like to toss in some trick training in there too, still waiting to see what my work schedule will be like this summer so I don't know what I can realistically label as a "goal" .

First time home during the summer in 7 years, this is going to be interesting :)

Monday, June 6, 2011

To The Papmobile!

 I drive a grayish blue mini van that has been deemed "The Papmobile". Most teenagers getting their first car would cringe at the idea of having to drive their friends around in their mom's old mini van... I'm not exactly "most teenagers" though.

 I personally love The Papmobile, it's got enough space for both of my crates along with extra room if I'm traveling to a trial with some friends. The best thing about it is also one of the worst things... it's very spacious. I spend most of my time driving alone, or rather as the only human in the van, so I can very easily toss trash in the middle seats and ignore it until it reaches the point where it starts to smell funny and look just plain scary. This week it reached that point.



It's all organized and you can actually see the floor now! Yay! I also put on the sticker Abby got me back when I was watching Leap.

All the cool kids drive mini vans and got papillons. 'Nuff said

Saturday, June 4, 2011

First Step To Assistant Instructor

 "Has anyone ever told you that you're a bit weird?" -Craig
"They never really stop." -The Doctor

  Today I went to the club-  the dog club for those who were mistaken into to thinking that I have a "real" social life- for the assistant instructor training/meeting event. 

  Overall it was a very well put together meeting. Denise did a great job and I'm so excited to be welcomed into the program. As of right now I don't know when the first class I'll be helping out with, but here's how it works. All of the assistant instructors e-mail the times they're available to help out, then the list gets e-mailed to the instructors so they can see who's available when and go from there. Looks like most of the "Family pet" classes, so puppy and basic manners classes, are Tues-Thursday. I should be getting my official work schedule this week so hopefully I'll make sure to note that I'd like one of those evenings off. 

 I can't wait to get started, between this and working at the kennel I feel like I should be able to get a pretty well rounded foundation working with your average pet dog owner along with improved "dog reading" skills.  Add in some better people skills and I just might make a trainer out of myself haha. 

Thursday, June 2, 2011

Dreamer of Improbable Dreams

"I am and always will be the optimist. The hoper of far-flung hopes and the dreamer of improbable dreams." 
-The Doctor