Weim Trial 4/10/2016

So as I wrote on my facebook, on the way to the trial a weird thing happened.  I was going down Green Valley Road and there were some pigeons and starlings flying around.  They were having some kind of altercation, I wonder if the starlings may have raided the pigeons nests?  Anyway, one of the starlings flew straight into my car.  I heard and felt a big THUMP.  I looked back and didn’t see any birds laying on the road so I was worried that the bird was stuck on the front of my car.

And it was.  When I got out of my car at Argus, the poor bird was just hanging off my grill, which had been bent back.  Crap.  I cleaned it up as best I could, but I will have to take the car to the dealer to see if they can hopefully re-attach the grill.

Anyway.  First up was T2B.  Tally seemed pretty relaxed, it was a fun course and he did well, with just one bar and an off course.  I watched the video after, and the off course was so my fault.  Next up was Standard.  Tally got it!!!!  So so awesome.  He was so good.  Came off the table, but it was just too much momentum and it occurred to me we haven’t practiced table stuff in a while.  Next was JWW.  Well, we tried.  There was one part where I was trying to get his head right out of the tunnel and I didn’t quite get to where I wanted to be and we really collided.  After that he had the next couple bars.  Understandable.  But he was really listening good, we had a couple of nice rear crosses and he was so fast!

Now for the best part.  In each of the three runs, going to the last jump, I said “get your leash”, and he jumped then ran right to his leash and didn’t even try to jump up at me or growl or bite.  I cried.  Such a big deal.  I have to say — I had so many people try to discourage me from going the “get your leash” route, saying that it leads to problems with the dog trying to run to the leash if you pass it during the run.  So when Heather suggested it, I was dubious. But Tally has pretty good focus and is pretty intense while running, I don’t think he even sees the leash until I say something.  Anyway, so far it seems to be working.






Class 4/6

So we had an excellent class last night with Tally!  Heather set up a jumpers course modified from WTT.  Tally nailed it. First time thru.  No bars down, no refusals, perfect. No biting.  Please let this brilliance continue into this weekend!  On a side note, after class I tried it with Hannah. Nope.  She still does not read rear crosses into tunnels at all.  And it was pretty near impossible with no start line stay to get the first line right.



Argus Workshop 3/31


I thought I posted this earlier but…

Anyway, the first sequence I thought Tally did well.  I am thinking that the exercises we are working at home are helping his jumping.  I am beginning to think it is a conditioning issue.  Because he kept the bars up so much better at first, but he was starting to get real tired by the end of the workshop (it was 3 hours), plus he had a romp with a couple whippets before it started.  He was kind of shocked by the whippets. First time he ever ran with dogs that he could not catch up to.

Anyway, I thought we did okay, except I cannot get it into my head that I don’t have to escort Tally around to the backside of the jump.  He knows the cue, I just need to give it correctly.  I keep feeling like I have to shape it.

It was a great workshop, I got a lot out of it and hey, it was so so much better than being at work!


Birthday post.  It was a good one.  We did a little family time on Saturday, well after the “fun” part – Dan said he would do anything I wanted to do on Saturday and I told him I wanted to clean the roof. Now that was fun.  At least the roof is clean and the gutters are clear.  Never again will I live in a house that has trees nearby.  Big trees that drop crap into gutters must be at least 20 – 30 feet from the house.

So later in the afternoon, Kaylee and Tyler came over.  I chose to go bowling.  When the kids were younger we all went bowling together a lot.  So I thought it would be fun to revisit that.  We had a blast.  After bowling, we went out to a nice Italian dinner.  So much fun.  I love that the 4 of us can have so much fun together now.  They are so fun to hang out with!

On my actual birthday, yesterday, after work Dan and I went to our favorite Mexican place.  It was nice.  The fun continues next week when my mom is taking my sister and I out for our birthdays to a dim sum brunch.  So I think we have all the food ethnicities covered!  Mom has been pretty confused lately.  She called me one night, late, and said she was on a ship and sailing away and no one would talk to her.  I am pretty sure that she can’t tell the difference between dreams and awake. It must be so scary.


Seattle Kennel Club 2016

I have been feeling really well for the past week or so.  My doctor took me off my RA meds due to liver issues, and I feel so much more energetic.  I just am dreading the joint pain coming back.  But for now I am just enjoying feeling good.

This trial was so much fun.  Still a lot of walking, up and down stairs and about 1/2 mile to go to the only grass.  But at least the rain stopped for a while and although it was windy and chilly we didn’t get soaked walking out to potty.

Paula Ratozzi was the judge.  She loves the serp.  Luckily so does Hannah.  We got to show off our mad serp skills in both standard and JWW.  There was a huge crowd at the show yesterday.  I know I say this every year, but it never ceases to amaze me that Hannah is so fearful of just about everything, put her in front of an audience and she just lights up.  You can tell she loves it.  The hardest part for me is hearing the audience gasp, like when she was in the weaves, I thought that Hannah popped out or we missed a pole, but it was just that they were amazed with her weaving!  The surface slows Hannah down just a bit, but it sure does make it a lot easier to run her.  We Q’d with first place in both runs.

They are calling for 60-70 mph winds this afternoon so I am going to go out and drag all my agility stuff under cover so it won’t get smashed by falling branches.  ugh.



Some good and some really bad.  The good was that he was clearing jumps.  The bad was when we were doing a jump drill, he got bored and started looking around and ran into the next ring where a young border collie was working.  I blame myself, when we went to Reber ranch this past weekend, I let him into the dog park area for a bit.  It seemed to make him really want to run with other dogs again. Argh.  So embarrassing.  Tally is not good at drills, he gets frustrated or bored so quick.

But we were running a masters course in the other ring and I was freaking amazed at how well he handled it.  Of course it helps to have an instructor there giving you advice as you run, but still.   AND with good end of run behavior as well!  Things are looking up.

I brought Hannah too, so she could get some dusting off prior to Seattle Kennel Club this weekend.  So looking forward to that!

Sheltie trial

I entered this one on Sunday only.  Kind of sad about that because on Saturday there was over 50 shelties at the trial, including Tally’s sister, who we haven’t seen in forever.  Plus Saturday was beautiful, where Sunday pretty much was rain and wind.

Anyway, started out early in the morning with Time to Beat.  Tally didn’t stay even for a second, so I walked him off.  He was very confused, and tried very hard to get back into the ring as was passed by the entry gate.

Then a long wait for open JWW.  I was nervous, Tally’s breeders were there and I wanted them to at least be able to see him run.  He did stay and allow me a short lead out, so we ran.  And he did great!  Perfect up until the last bar.  I totally saw it coming.  He saw how excited I was and it just sent him over the top I think he actually tried to one stride between the second to the last and the last jump.  Dang.  Then he did jump up at me at the end, but he wasn’t biting or growling, just happy.  I told him to get his leash and he went right to it!!! That is huge for me.  I don’t like the feeling of being afraid of my dog(!)

Standard I again was able to get in a short lead out.  But it was a really difficult course and not good for us.  The opening line was so weird, we had a couple bars and then Tally missed the DW contact, so I just walked him off.

But it was a super fun day, and I have a new found hope that we can do this. That JWW run was just so connected and he worked so hard to keep the jumps up.  Feeling good. Oh and also I got a ton of nice comments on my weight loss.  Positive reinforcement is always good!

Next weekend Hannah and I are entered in Seattle Kennel Club.  I know, I know, I said I wasn’t going to do that anymore, but I have a plan to make it easier this year and I am feeling pretty good lately.  I just need to get her out to class this week, dust her off a bit.  She does love the excitement of the big show.




Okay, so I am a little tense about this weekend’s trial.  Being the sheltie club and all.  Plus Tally’s breeder is coming over.  So I was a little nervous in class last night.  We started out on the contact drill side.  He knocked every single bar twice.  Sigh.  Not off to a great start.  The second time it was so bad I just took him out of the ring.  He wasn’t even trying to clear the jump, he was chesting it.  So I took him out, walked him around a minute to give us both time to settle.  It seemed to work, as the rest of our turn in the contact drill, he kept the bars up.

Not so much on the JWW course.  The fist time we just ran thru and he knocked 3 bars?  So my instructor had us break it down into 3 jump increments and mark every knocked bar and try the section over again.  It took forever.  Every section it took him 3-4 tries to get thru without knocking a bar.  It was so frustrating.  But you could tell by the end, he was really trying.  His barking was softer, his whole demeanor was a bit changed, as if he was thinking it was time to really get down to work.

The last part was the jumping drill.  The first time thru I was not sure how to handle it, so that caused a few issues.  But he kept the bars up.  Then he did it perfectly twice in a row.  Sigh.  We will see how it goes this weekend.

We have also been really working on the end of the run behavior.  Putting treats by his leash.  Cross fingers, it seems to be totally extinguishing his desire to bite me at the end.  He is so excited to get to the food, it also gives him a change in demeanor from “must bite something” to “happy boy looking for treats”  Pray that it carries over to the trial environment.

No stay, no play

Since Tally has been steadily losing his startline stay, I decided to pull him if he wouldn’t stay this weekend.  We had JWW first and for a second I thought he was going to stay.  But no.  So we walked off.  Then in standard darn if it didn’t start with a tunnel.  I decided if he met my criteria for that we would play.  I just needed him to stay long enough to step away to the side a bit. Nope.  Kind of a long drive to do this nonsense, I thought.  Then, T2B.  He stayed!  So progress and we got to run. After the run, where he just knocked one bar (on the double), he tried to bite me.  I grabbed his collar and was walking him over to his leash when the judge started yelling at me.  I guess she thought I was being too rough.  I was just holding him out at arm’s length while he twisted and jumped around.  I was like, “sorry”.  I was a little worried, I mean I don’t think I am ever mean to my dogs, but everyone watching came up to me and was like “what was she yelling at you for?”  So I am not too worried about it.

A reminder to myself

Heather has been working really hard to try to get me to recognize the reasons Tally is knocking bars.  She showed me last night that if I telegraph, say, a decel – nice and early and very clearly, he will not knock a bar.  If I get to the spot I need to be in time to cue him effectively, he will not knock a bar.

I am kind of thinking that maybe part of the problem is that I am so used to running Hannah who has figured me out as far as when I am going to cue and where I am going to be, that I am being too lazy with Tally.  I need to be clearer and faster with him, I don’t mean run fast, although that might help, I mean cue faster.

Just had a really good class last night and I don’t want the lesson to be lost.