Monday, October 22, 2012

Random musings on my life with my dogs

Yesterday I had several small, odd, things happen while spending time with my dogs.

First.  I found a dead blue jay while poop scooping the back yard.  This was odd because usually Trophy finds dead birds before me and they had been running around for almost 45 minutes before I started poop scooping.  So I loaded the bird (it was much bigger than I thought!) onto my scoop and walked it over to the bucket and dumped it in with the rest of the poop.  As I'm walking away, THAT's when Trophy decides to take notice of said bird, and tried to crawl into the poop bucket to pull the bird out.  Yuck!

Second, Baxter is obsessed with light reflections.  Trophy, Pan and Koda all have mirror finished tags on their collars they wear to work (which they were all wearing yesterday outside).  The shiny tags are VERY good at reflecting the sun.  Baxter spend most of the time outside following Trophy and trying to catch the light as it bounced on the grass.

Finally, once we were all back inside, one moment Pan is chewing on a Nylabone and the next she's chowing down on poop.  I have no idea where the poop came from.  It was not from the litterbox.  Eww!

Yep. my dogs are really weird. :)

Sunday, October 21, 2012

I can't decide!

Photos just went up from the official photographer at CanAm.  I can't decide which 3 to buy and frame.

The problem is that the only photo that works for Demo is the SAME for each of the selections.  The first (Vertical option) features all 3 dogs in the exact same pose (which also happens to be the same pose I have Trophy and Pan in from last year).  Pan is in the middle facing the opposite way of the boys.  Second (Horizontal option) features the 3 dogs in different poses with Trophy facing the camera in the middle and the other dogs running towards the center.

I have no photos of Pan facing the opposite direction and ALL of Demo's face in the other direction.

So... which of these two options would you choose?

Photo proofs pulled from copyright 2012 Fur-Fetched Photography

Tuesday, October 16, 2012

CanAm2012 - It was everything I wanted it to be!

I'm still in recovery mode after this weekend.

Last year, for CanAm2011 I was so, so, so, so sick.  Picture the worst cold you've ever had complete with sinus pressure, sore throat, the works.  Now mix that death cold with the plague.... and you've just about got the picture of my suffering.  Last year we also ran 4 teams on Saturday and Sunday (3 on Friday), and it's a long hike from our crating area to the entrance side of the rings...

Needless to say I was pretty miserable feeling last year running 2 dogs on two teams and boxloading a third... and CanAm2011 was still one of the best experiences of my life.  Trophy's team won the Division 8 Championship race.  I have the trophy (not Trophy) sitting on my shelf.  Coming from a team who really doesn't care about placements and running very fast (we rarely run under 20 seconds. We make time, we earn points, we are happy), it was totally unexpected and amazing!

Lori and Bandi, Me and Trophy, Melissa and Harley, Deb and Cruz, Carol and Rhona

I begged to go back this year (this is, of course, after I had infected my team with said plague that everyone else was suffering with for 2 months after CanAm... whoops, sorry guys!).  Begged.  Literally. I believe I got down on my hands and knees and/or threatened to go on several different Open teams if they didn't take me to CanAm again.

Fast forward.  This year we only ran 3 teams on Saturday and Sunday (2 Friday).  I was not sick.  Our Sunday schedule was rather enjoyable.  We once again made it to the Division 8 regular finals and against a team from our region, a team we race against all.the.time we went to 5 heats and we defended out title!  This time Pan was on the winning team. It was an amazing feeling.

Front: Me and Pan, Melissa and Harley, Carol and Rhona, Kris and Dodger, Kandice and Hershey. Back: Sharon (boxloader) Deb and Cruz.
And Video!

Other major accomplishments for the weekend:

  • Trophy ran his personal best time in start of 4.761
  • I greatly improved my starting split times. I'm still no where near good, but i went from a .9 to consistent .1's so i'm pretty proud of myself.
  • Demo earned his FD and FDX titles!!
  • Demo ran a 4.33 in start
  • Demo never crossed over and for running with 5 other simultaneous rings of flyball around him I am REALLY proud of him.
  • Trophy also earned his FDCh-G title officially, since there was a snafu where he lost 100 points at an earlier tournament this year... so it's kind of a hollow victory, but we did it.
  • Pan has stopped scaring me to death and didn't try to cross over to the left lane all weekend.
  • Pan has backed up to 50+ feet for passing.

Now I have to sit back, relax, continue to recover, and wait for the photographer to get all the photos posted online!

Sunday, October 7, 2012

Lots of Updates

I was going to split these up and do several smaller updates, but I don't care anymore.  My desktop computer is not connecting to the internet, and my netbook is a total P.O.S. and makes typing difficult to say the least as the cursor likes to jump around randomly when I'm not touching the touchpad AT ALL.  So that is why updates have not been happening. Because, trust me, the dog sporting goodness has been fantastic lately.

September 22-23 Flyball Tournament in Monroe (U-FLI)

So this tournament was slated to be Demo's big debut in Flyball.  I was going to run him in singles and pairs and then have him on a warm up spot so if he warmed up well I could pull Pan and put him in a race or two.

Only problem was that he was still *totally* not getting his boxturn down, more on this in a moment.  So I pulled him from everything except the warm spot.  Trophy and Pan did their usual awesomeness.  Trophy was on two teams, full time on one and part time on the other.  By Sunday night he was pretty tired.  I watched his boxturn get pretty sucktacular by the end of the last race, but he had to fill in a lot more than we had planned.

Both dogs earned their next titles.  Trophy now has his TFE-I (4,000points) and Pan earned her TFE (2,500points).

Agility Practice September 25.

I didn't get Trophy in to the Chiropractor on Monday like I had wanted (he went the day after agility) but honestly, I couldn't tell. He was on fire tonight.  The ring had two big pinwheels, and our course had 5 different pinwheel sections in it as well as weaves and two tunnels.  Did I mention Trophy totally rocked this course?  My handling is the only thing slowing him down, but we're working on staying positive and having fun.  Since this course was so jump-centered, and since a classmate's dog is having jump-phobia issues, I let her run Trophy at the end of class. It was amazing.  I wish I had been videoing it.  His weaves were FAST - the fastest I've ever seen him weave.  It was like watching a high end sports car traverse a race track watching him go around the pinwheels.  Beautiful.  I invited her to show Trophy any time she wanted that didn't conflict with flyball. :)

Flyball Practice September 28 and 29.

Ok, back to Demo's box turn issues.  In the flyball tournament the prior week, I took Dem out to warm up twice on Sunday.  Both times with no props he was doing PERFECT turns off the box and coming back for his tug.  It was amazing.

However, in practice he would not turn on the box if there was a ball in the box.  After some major brainstorming with friends we figured that since he will take a ball off the practice board, the ball shooting at him was the problem.  So we devised a way to make the box not trigger so Demo had to manually get the ball.  Then it was a small matter of backing up and re-luring him through the turn for a few days and BINGO.  he got it.

After two days of practicing with a "dead" ball his hang time on the box was getting worse, so i switched him to a live ball and we've never looked back.

Flyball Practice October 6.

Last practice before CANAM!  And Demo rocked it!  I did a few full runs with him by himself with a live ball and he didn't hesitate.  His turn is a bit lower than I would like, but he was also on a new box, so I believe that had something to do with it as well.

Then we practiced passing with Trophy and Pan.  He didn't care at all.  He didn't even look at them.  So we brought out the dogs that would be running on his team at CanAm if I pulled Pan to run Demo. Again, no hesitation.  In fact, he started watching the dog tun off the box and get into his playbow "ready" position all on his own in anticipation of my signal!  It was awesome!  So Demo is going to run at CanAm, and my dream is going to come true!

.... Well provided he stops trying to eat the cats, because I just might have to drown him in the bathtub if he touches the cat again.