Friday, January 29, 2010

6 words

Jenny girl, keeper of my heart.
Magic, always willing, by my side.
Grace, Lucille Ball with a tail.

Someday I will post a picture of Jenny. Someday when the thought of Jenny doesnt bring me to tears. Its been ten years and still i sob.

Thursday, January 28, 2010

3 girls in season

All three of my girls are in season.  Peace is nearing the end, Siren is in the middle and Grace is just starting.  My 2 neutered boys are both becoming humping champions.  Its making me crazy. The funny thing is that my yard must positively reek of GIRL!  We had 2 loose male dogs appear just outside our yard yesterday alone. I know where the one lives- a very pretty Akita who walks by regularly.(A really nice dog)  He got away from his Dad during thier evening walk last night and hightailed it right to our house, dragging his leash.  His owner laughed when I told him why he was suddenly making 53 pee stops along our short little fence. The other male - not sure where he came from, or where he went.  He was hanging around when I went to bed, but gone this morning.  I tried to catch him, as I hate to see loose dogs in the city, but he wasnt having anything to do with me. 

Fortunately we never have our dogs outside unsupervised. Even in the cold, we are always right there, so I dont feel like I have to worry about any unplanned pregnacies-even though both the brindle girls are really being hussies these days.

Wednesday, January 27, 2010

Training update

Magic is such a food hound.  He heels wonderfully when I have treats.

Tuesday, January 26, 2010

Training Magic

Crystal at Reactive Champion came up with a really good training plan to work on her issues with Maisy. And she has inspired me to put together a similar plan for Magic. We have 2 weeks to get tuned up prior to the APDT trial. Magic earned the APDT award of excellence with his level 1 title, that means his first 3 runs were all qualifying with scores over 190.  (Grace did not manage this by the way)  I would really like Magic to earn this for his level 2 as well. So on that note there are several things I need to do. 

1-we are going to work on happy heeling. Leaving with me head up and happy. Rewards after 1 step, 2 steps etc. both food and the ball.  including keeping up on a fast station, me leaving running and reward for staying with me.  Working the driving forward aspect of turns too.

2- we are going to work on heel position. Closeness. Since agility, heel position has become rather sloppy.

3-we are going to work on pivots. I have never understood well enough to help Magic understand how to move his back end to get in close and straight.  I need to figure out a plan for this that I can work today.

4 fronts.  Our fronts are not bad, but Magic has started to sit (and down to really) sloppily. On a hip, legs tucked under.  I think we are going to try to really reward correct fronts.

5. Moving downs- Because Magic always wants to tuck that front paw under and slowly go down, I think we are going to work downs too.

All of these issues really are because I stopped working on the obedience skills when we started doing agility. I didnt ask for the correctness of heeling or fronts and they have sort of slipped away. When I think about it I understand that easily.  After all, I call all the dogs in, ask for a sit and reward a sit. Didnt really care if the sit wasnt correct, as long as we were sitting not jumping etc.  Same with position, Magic would try for a correct front, someone would jostle him out of the way and he still got the treat.  I wasnt thinking about how this would affect his overall performances when we again did obedience. (DUH, I just really noticed last night that he does try but with 4 corgis all trying, noone gets the "right" spot.)  Same thing with heeling. When I walk down the hallway, I have sometimes 3 dogs trying to fit at my left side. 2 of them, Magic and Siren try really hard to be in heel position. Is this possibly eroding the picture for both of them? Not sure, but I guess I can see where it might.

So its a lot to work on. But I am committed to a schedule where I take 5 minutes 3  times a day to work these issues. Hopefully I wont further muck anything up!

Sunday, January 24, 2010

Agility Seminar with Magic

Todays seminar was distance work.  I get pretty good distance with Magic, but his criteria for contacts is gone.  He leaped off every a frame from about a foot above the yellow.   I don;t know what to do with him. We had a good running contact before- its gone completely. I dont want to do 2 on 2 off I think its too hard of an angle. Maybe I need to re-train a down on the ground, or a sit at the bottom.  Thoughts anyone?

On the positive side, I can work almost 20 feet away and we can layer obstacles fairly well.  The problem is that I didnt do enough foundation work. He was my first agility dog, and well, we did not get enough of the basics.  Our classes were pretty much obstacles from the beginning.  Which is probably OK for a dog that works beside you (like Grace) but not so good away. And I dont have enough understanding to be able to do it alone, so maybe if I can get Grace into the beginners class I can learn more and know what to teach better?  At least that is my goal.  So since I really wanted to earn Magics ARCH this year I think we will focus on that. (While I learn more hopefully)  So now I am planning on the APDT here in February and hopefully I can afford the one in Des Moines too.

I kind of feel like I am giving up, but I don't want to make our issues worse either.

Saturday, January 23, 2010

350th post and todays UKC show

Holly (Visions Cardigans) will get her choice of either of these 2 quilted picture frames.  Holly requested green, so there is either the all green one, or the green and brown one.

The other one will be available as well.  We will have another random draw once I know which Holly prefers.

Today at the UKC show, Magic earned his first leg toward his URO2 rally title.  We also decided to go for broke and try open again as well.  Remember last time we ran open, Magic failed every exercise except the retrieve on the flat. Today, he only failed at the broad jump.  YEAH. His heeling was still not great, and it must get better, but his stays were perfect, his retreives were perfect. His DOR I had to second command the drop, but that was my fault as I only gave him the hand signal and I should have given both the verbal and the hand signal. So if we can just make heeling fun some day we might actualy earn that CDX.

Friday, January 22, 2010

UKC Rally tomorrow - Maybe

I like that UKC has day of show entries. It has been a horrible week workwise, and if I can manage to get up and out of the house tomorrow Magic and I might just head out to do some rally. We could alos try again for a leg towards his CDX, but after the last attempt, really why waste the money?  Then again, I might just veg in the house and bury my head in the blankets and pretend the world does not exist.  Sunday we have a mini agility distance seminar at Agile Canines. So if I do both Magic will get his weekend with mom.  And thank goodness, the agility seminar is over in time for the game.

Tomorrow I will be posting the 350th blog, so check in.

Thursday, January 21, 2010


Last weekend I bought a treadmill.  Mostly for me, but tonight I decided to get the corgis on it.  Grace was the first one up on it. She did walk a bit, but no amount of bribery was getting her back on there. Instead she went and lay on the chair to watch the show. Peace seems to say that no amount of food will get her to go near it.  Not surprising, it took months to get her to try the tunnel. So really I had the 2 very food motivated corgis to work with. First Magic. I think everyone knows that Magic will do anything for food. Anything. In about 2 minutes I have Magic trained to hop on and walk.  So far I think his longest walk before hopping off was about a minute with several food rewards while walking.  Rinnie has been the funny one. She is the most uncoordinated dog I have ever known.  It takes her 3 tries to get on the couch. She spent most of the time Magic was on the treadmill, with her front feet on it sideways walking.  Then I got her to go to the bottom and walk her front end on the moving belt, but the back end stays static on the floor. OK so far so good. But then I ask her to step onto the treadmill with her back side, and poor girl, she cant seem to figure out how to move the back end up while moving the front on the belt.  Oh she tried. She tried hard, but everytime she tried to take that 43 inch step onto the belt, she somehow would stop her front and fall face first onto the treadmill, then slide off the moving belt.   But she is a game little girl. She did keep trying. I think all told she managed about 7 steps on the moving belt when we ended the session.  And to think, as a pup I had plans of her in agility!  Not anymore!

Question for the seasoned breeders

Those of you with multiple intact girls, do you have difficulties with them?  I have 3 intact girls. so far I have not had any issues with top dog status or anything like that.  This is the first time that the girls all coming into season at the same time.  Peace started last week, Siren started yesterday and Grace looks like she could be coming in as well, although she hasn't started yet.  What has been your experience. The young girls will be 2 in May and Grace is 4. Any thoughts?

Another note I found interesting.  Grace has always been really clean with her cycles. You rarely if ever see any sign of blood with her.  Peace is a very girly girl  too, she keeps herself pretty clean also. Siren though, wow-her crate pad yesterday looked like she had been injured, blood smeared everywhere and little droplets across the floor.   Sure am glad I picked up the little panty at the show a couple of weeks ago! Although I have to admit Rinnie is none to pleased with it.

Busy, Busy and oh so tired

Lately it seems as though I am so busy that I can't get anything accomplished.  Ever felt that way?  I have work issues, family issues,, work issues, car issues, work issues-oh did I already say that one?  Oh well, let it go. (imagine deep breathing here)

Magic and I are scheduled for a Sunday agility workshop.  I kind of wished I had signed up Grace instead, but then I think about how unrelaxing she can be and maybe Magic is a better option. I havent done one lick of dog training in 2 weeks.  Not one thing. In fact last night I asked Magic to heel out of his crate and he pretty much blew me off.  I was debating about a day of show rally entry on Saturday, but I dont know. 

Oh well. I guess I will just have to see what happens next! One thing that I have been able to do is a bit of sewing. I have Holly's green picture frame almost done-it will definately be ready to post in the 350th post coming up. And I may have a second one to give as well....

Monday, January 18, 2010

NSHGC Banquet

Today was the clusb annual meeting and banquet.  What a fun time. We had some really interesting white elephant gifts in the gift exchange, some wonderful items for the silent auction and a nice dinner with great company.  Peace Grace and Magic got their awards for this year. What could be better?  Oh yeah, the Vikings won. Good day!

Friday, January 15, 2010

Baby Grace

Laura posted some pictures of Grace and her siblings as pups. I hadnt seen these pictures before.  I asked David to look at them and tell me which one is Grace.  He was able to pick her out right away-any idea what her defining feature is?  Its the eyebrows. Gotta laugh at Miss Grace.  Take a look, its a lovely litter.My Favorite People are Dogs

Thursday, January 14, 2010

NSHGC Obedience and Rally trial

Now that the clubs conformation show is over, its time for me to start working on the workers schedule for the Obedience trial on January 30th and 31st.  Anyone in the Minneapolis area that would like to really get inside a ring and see what is going on, let me know. Its not a great big trial and we usually have lots of fun.

I debated entering a couple of the dogs, but ha, here I am co-chair and I totally missed the close date!  Yes I knew it was yesterday, I knew it was coming, but I kept waffling about whether I should or shouldn't, could I work and show blah blah blah.  Then early in the week I decided I could hande showing the 2 in pre-novice and promptly forgot to actually enter.  Ah well, there will be other times.

Sunday, January 10, 2010

Day 3 of the dog show

Today I did tours at the dog show.  I really enjoy talking to others about what it is and how it works.  Met a nice lady who wants to do this whole thing, but doesnt know how to get started.  Had a verbally chalenged young man in another group. He had a hard time expressing his questions, but his love for the dogs came out really clearly. 

There wasnt a huge cardigan entry this weekend, and due to weather a couple did not make it.  A couple pulled today as well, so there was only a few dogs entered.  But Music did well again, going best of winners.  Now we will need to look for that last major.

I have to say, his person, Joyce has done such a good job with him. You can tell that he just adores her and win or lose, I know that dog is loved.  It makes me so happy to know that they are together.  

Saturday, January 9, 2010

Yeah for Music

I just got a message from Joyce that Music went Best of Winners today! One point closer.  Yeah Music.  Here is his picture from his major win in August.  I just got some pictures of the boy from Joyce, so I can do his page on the website. 

I didnt go to the show today.  This show is one of the more expensive local shows, with $10.00 parking and an $8.00 spectator entry, I thought it was prudent to use the money for groceries.   Since I didnt have a dog entered, I stayed home.  I wil lbe going to watch tomorrow though as I am doing dog show tours for the club. I really enjoy showing spectators around and answering questions.  Its really fun.

Friday, January 8, 2010

Giveaway Winner

The winner of the Giveaway, by draw from a hat was commenter 1, Holly!  I will post a photo of the completed picture frame for the 350th post in a few days.  Holly, green it will be.  Thanks for commenting everyone.

Home from the show

It was a fun day today at the show.  I am a member of the herding group club, so I entered today to support the club. Spent the first part of the morning stewarding, which I really enjoy.  I was stwerading today for Bev Capstick, who is one of the founding members of the club.  It was also a good day for several of my friends and I really enjoyed watching them show.  I will et them all post their own brags.  Peace was best of opposite today, and earned herself a pretty rosette and a new chair.  I really have no intention of showing Peace as a special, but it was fun for the day, and maybe we will do it again later this year. 

Thursday, January 7, 2010

GIveaway ends tomorrow!

Dont forget to comment on the post if you want to!

Wednesday, January 6, 2010

Bath Night for Peace

Peace had her pre-show bath tonight.  She is such a goober.  She insists on biting the air from the forced air dryer. Her whole face puffs out as she grabs mouthfuls of the wicked air.  I wish I could get a picture of that, but its a bit to hard to wield the hose and snap a picture. The doesnt mind being dried, loves the grooming, all except toes. She would rather we never trimmed those nails.  But she sure looks pretty tonight.

Then I look at the other 3- wow are they filthy! Oh well.  I might take all three out and use the grooming facilities at On the Run, Michelles new place.  She has a wonderful bathing set up. Much easier than bending over the bathtub!

Friday is the North Star Herding Group Clubs show.  I am stewarding before the cardi's show. It should be a fun day, at least its one away from work. I am really looking forward to it.  

Tuesday, January 5, 2010

Ladies Only

The other day I had come up from the basement after doing laundry, when I walked into the living room, the dogs were playing.  Ok, pretty normal, there is stuffing all around the livingroom.  What did you destuff guys?  No toy carcass, but some paper and oh.. cardboard, and cotton fluff.  OK, who was in my totebag?  Mom cleans up the mess.  A few hours later, here comes Grace, tossing her toy in the air and chasing it, what do you have Grace?  A white cardboard tube.  I thought she just had part of the prior "toy".  Nope- what do I find a few hours later when I happen into the dog room?  In Magics crate, a whole box of shredded tampons.  Cotton and cardboard tubes everywhere.  The new carditoy??
No photo evidence taken, to protect the innocent. 

Monday, January 4, 2010

thinking again darn it

So I am at the dentist this morning, trying to ignore what they are doing, and I start thinking about the dogs.  I am so glad I went to play agility yesterday, it really gave me a lot to think about.  It confirmed that I definately need to get Graciegirl into the foundations class.  I need to find a way to really get her to retain her focus on me.  She has really good attention, very sporadically.  But like a kidlet with ADD she often goes off into Gracieland.  And apparently there is a lot of things much more fun than listening to mom in Gracieland. 

And I think maybe more foundation work will help me with better body language. Poor Magic he has to run with me and usually I dont know what I am doing so how is he supposed to?   Agility puts me out of my comfort zone, I do enjoy it, but its really hard for me. So maybe I will just back off of agility, and focus on obedience again.  And hope that by starting over with Grace I will get better and then be a better partner for both of them. But, pushing the comfort zone is good too, so not really sure all my thoughts resolved anything....

Sunday, January 3, 2010

Run N Done

This afternoon Magic, Grace, Darryl and I went out to Michelles new agility center and played a little agility.  What  a nice place she has. Grace was a bit wild and a little unsure, but darn did she have fun. She never stopped smiling or wagging, exxcept the first time on the dog walk, she pretty much shook her way across, but she did it.  Magic was a really good boy too.  We worked on wait, weaves and the teeter and had a pretty good time, well except for the waiting part. That is not Magics favorite. When we went to leave though, we had a totally flat tire.  So the dogs also got to spend a couple of hours sitting in tires plus waiting for the tire repair.  Nto sure they were to excited about that, but they were very well behaved.  And although we probably would have been a bit more comfortable watching football at home, it was OK to do in the store. Fortunately it was just a broken seal on the tire, so minimal problem really.  And it wasnt nearly as cold as yesterday, so that was OK too.

Saturday, January 2, 2010

350th post Giveaway

Its really cold here in Minnesota.  I think the state average is about 20 below, so in light of that we are staying in!  Since I will soon be reaching my 350th post, I am having a giveaway.  I will randomly select 1 commenter to win a custom quilted picture frame, in the colors of the winners choice.  They look similar these.  The wallhanging design allows you to add pop in new pictures anytime you like.  

 Just comment to enter, being sure to tell me your color choice and how to contact you if you win  Drawing for winner will be Friday January 8th after I get home from the dog show.