Posted by: allstaragility | September 28, 2009

A productive weekend

It was so nice to have a few days where I didn’t have to get up and hurry to do something (I have NEVER been a morning person)!  Thankfully, Solei and the rest of the pack were more than happy to catch some extra ZZZ’s with me.

With such beautiful weather this weekend, I was able to get quite a bit done.  Yesterday, Mom and I loaded up her van with some jumps and a tunnel and headed to the fairgrounds to work some jumping exercises in dirt.  The arena was too wet from rain the night before, but the sandy parking lot was perfect with a chance to practice on decent surface that had some give-away as the dog’s were getting ready to take off.  Somewhat similar, but still better than the footing in Lawrence (not sure where I will find it THAT bad).  It was decided this was necessary after Bode had a perfect weekend jumping in Omaha on grass just to turn around and knock a bar in every class in Des Moines… ARGH!  At least I have narrowed it down to surface and thank heavens USDAA is outdoors on nice grass!

I was easily able to replicate some of the confidence issues taking off for the triple out of tunnels and really pushing him hard.  Hopefully, he gained some better understanding and confidence in that situation.  I could see it improve over the training session.  I think it also means I have a lot more conditioning work to do as he tired fairly easily jumping in the deeper dirt.  Grass and turf are just too nice versus uneven, unpredictable dirt!

Solei played more games with the MannersMinder such as running off a board to the reward (building up drive for when we can really start plank work), hopping onto the table (top is on the ground), teeter banging (her favorite) and foot targeting with the balance disc.  I played some using it with her skate board, but I was lazy and worked on some luring.  She loves getting on it and will have her front feet on the board and push with her hind feet for about 5-10′.

We also played more recall games.  I had her out in the field while Mom was working Breeze.  Solei would get distracted and want to herd Breeze.  When I called her, if she chose to ignore me (she always looked and contemplated returning to me) I just said wrong and started to walk away.  This quickly got her attention and she always came running.  Only once did I have to hide and I barely made it out of her vision before she started to hunt for me.

I took her by herself for a long walk this evening.  Again the manure was a huge distraction, but she came to me every time!  What a good girl!  Since it was warm, I also let her play with Zoom chasing the water hose (she was intrigued, but more interested in chasing  Zoom).  When I filled up a small pool, she was all in digging and playing with her ball!

Afterwards, all of the dogs got to go for a walk.  As all the dogs were running wild, Caper and I did some fun obedience exercises (I know, “fun obedience” is usually an oxymoron in my vocabulary).  I am convinced that if I had gotten Caper before Derby, I would probably not be doing agility now- boy he missed his calling as an obedience dog and it is too bad that I hate it so much that I never had the desire to compete with him.  He loves that kind of mind-work and has such a heart.  Too bad his poor body never really allowed him to show what an awesome agility dog he was!

Well, pups are snoozing and I am ready (or not) for another busy week!  Hope to get some more pictures added soon.  Gotta charge the battery for my camera…


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