About Me

My photo
My name is Penny & I'm an agility addict

Monday, November 24, 2008


We did our last outreach weekend of the year. I think I enjoyed it the best of all three.

Since I had all 3 paps there, I did a little with each, but mostly worked with Blast.

Some of what we did reinforced what I'd learned earlier, but needed reminders on - i.e. reward more often.... I have a better plan now for Blast to prevent his "blasting off" - note to self -be careful what you name your dog!

We did some acceleration/deceleration drills, rear cross drills, etc. which were all good.

We really only did 1 course, which I did with Boo, who was happy to run - it wasn't perfect, but when he really runs I"m pretty happy.

I now have some more ideas for training & proofing weave poles, since both Blast & Bizzie are still learning this skill.

It was a fun group of people & we had a nice time staying with friends Jan & Dave, who were wonderful hosts!

Thursday, November 20, 2008

Cactus is a bad girl....

I actually slept in this morning & when I got up what did I find but Cactus with a package of grapes on the floor, well, actually most of the grapes were missing... fortunately, the other dogs were still in bed sleeping with me, so they didn't get any grapes.

I called the emergency clinic & they told me to give her hydrogen peroxide to induce vomiting, so I did that twice & up came about 40 green grapes, still whole. No one really seems to know the effect of grapes on dogs, but my vet thinks the seeds are the toxic part. The emerg people said that grapes are only toxic to some dogs & they really don't know a lot about amount & the resulting damage that can be done to kidneys & liver. Pretty scary stuff. Hopefully she won't have suffered any damage.

Tuesday, November 18, 2008

I Was Right! (for once)

I suspected something was going on with Bizzie - she just didn't seem herself.

We went to the vet today & sure enough, she has a urinary tract infection, so she's on antibiotics. I need to find ways to get her to drink more water... I'm thinking low sodium broth ice cubes... she's such a little girl, just a couple of laps of water & she's had enough - guess I'll just try to keep an eye on her.
I also put water on her kibble & give her some moist food. Hopefully she'll feel better soon.
I think that's a lesson in trusting your gut, when you think something's a little off with your fur kids, you're probably right!

Saturday, November 15, 2008

Watch too much TV?

Well, Boo does. He loves the Telus commercials - the new one with the lemurs is his current favorite! I'm not sure why, but he sees every animal that appears on the screen - it's not the sound, it's the actual animal that gets him barking. Even if I'm watching TV in bed & he's sleeping, he must recognize the commercial music, cause he'll start growling right away. Oh, & he thinks Santa is some kind of hairy animal, likes to bark at him too.

Cactus notices the sounds if any animal barks on TV, but not the picture & Blast just barks at any babies crying - in real life or on TV. Bizzie notices nothing....

Thursday, November 13, 2008


well, just came back from a practice at the barn. There was no one there but us, which means lots of practice time... however, I'm finding that practice when no one's around is generally wonderful, but add in a few distractions & it's a whole new world! Now I have to figure out a way to add distractions gradually so that Blast doesn't lose his mind. Even Boo runs differently when no one else is around.

I tried a few new things today. For Blast, I used his ball as a reward & no treats, & it worked really well. He can really move through those weaves when he's focused. I did some work with deceleration & he followed me really well. Did all his contacts... in other words, he was great - now to bridge the gap between that & a real trial!

Bizzie really doesn't seem to be herself these days - not sure if she's still "hormonal" from her last heat - I remember it took a long time for her to get back to normal the last time she was in heat - she really wants to sleep a lot & she doesn't want to play as much. Maybe a trip to the vet is in order.

Wednesday, November 12, 2008


Blast & I went to class last night - i'ts been a little while since we did a class at the Spectrum...
Blast was so high, he just cannot control himself when dogs are running around. I tied him up while I walked a sequence & he barked his head off...

He tries really hard when he's focused, but talk about ADD! The only way I can keep him engaged when others are running is to constantly work on tricks & talk to him. He's an exhausting little fella to work with!

Bizzie did a class too, but I found that if I do more than a few obstacles without a treat, she just stops & looks at me, like - didn't you forget something? Hopefully we can work through this since she really loves to play agility, but she really loves her treats... maybe we'll try playing tug as a reward instead of treats all the time.

Monday, November 10, 2008

CAA trial & tribulations

We entered the CAA trial this weekend, Boo in 2 Gambles, a standard & a jumpers & Blast in Gamblers on Sat & Jumpers on Sunday.

Boo had a good weekend. The first gamble he ran really well in the opening, getting 14 obstacles, which is a lot for him... unfortunately, he pulled out of the last weave pole in the gamble ( I probably moved out a bit in anticipation of sending him to the tunnel) so we didn't get the gamble, but really should have! He Q'd in the Standard round, which was a fun course with a few little traps, but he did well. Sunday's Gamble was a very awkward run - there was a teeter in the final gamble, so I thought well, we won't get this one... our opening was really ugly, Boo wasn't moving really well, & our plan fell apart, so we were 1 point short, & wouldn't you know it, the little guy did the final gamble, teeter & all perfectly! I was proud of him for doing the teeter at distance since he really hates it! The final class for us was jumpers, which we Q'd - it was a bit of a tricky course, we started off slow, but sped up, he really followed well & it was a good run to end the day.

Blast ran Gamblers on Sat, but he ran around distracted so only got 12 points & the gamble, but I wouldn't want him to move on anyways! It's not the Q I'm wanting so much, it's just for him to pay attention through an entire run! He didn't really zoom, but he just couldn't keep it together... On Sunday, he was in Jumpers, which was the last run of the day, so he was pretty excited to get out & run, so run he did... major zoomies after the first line - very frustrating! I really need to find a way to get him out every day where he can run full out for a while... unfortunately, our off leash parks are not fenced & I can't trust him enough...

Bizzie wasn't entered in this trial, so she stayed home. She's been scratching a lot, so I have her on some antihistamines for a few days, hopefully that will clear up the itching.

Cactus had a better weekend, although she did manage to do one of her signature fly-off's on the teeter! She Q'd in gamblers (after a re-run) & also in Standard.

Thursday, November 6, 2008

Being sick Sucks!

Well, I've been sick all week, so not much practice happening around here, but the dogs have been playing lots!

I've been trying to do a few tricks with the dogs just to keep their little minds busy.

Blast loves tricks - he just loves to learn new things - he can now roll over both ways, weave between my legs, is learning left & right (I think he just guesses which is which!)

I can't for the life of me get Boo or Bizzie to lie on their side so I can get them to roll over... they're so little & quick, but we're still persevering...

Sunday, November 2, 2008

ASCA trial Saturday

We entered the ASCA trial this weekend, just for the Saturday - I entered Boo in Standard & Jumpers - no Q's for either one. I have been running from the startline with him & decided to try a lead out, which didn't work too well... in standard he ran right onto the dogwalk when he should have followed my cue to turn to the right to the jump, but I probably didn't support him enough, and in jumpers, he didn't run very fast (probably because I made him wait at the startline) and I actually called him off a jump - also my fault. I think we need to start practicing more again, since our timing is off & we didn't have any "feel good" runs.

Blast was entered in Gamblers - first run of the day - where he zoomed off once & came back eventually, so it wasn't our best run. Next was Standard, where he zoomed a little but came back, blew his contact on the DW, but did some good stuff - the courses I thought (& I wasn't the only one) were quite difficult for starter level dogs i.e. discriminations, & having to take the other end of the tunnel from a line of jumps, etc. Then he did 2 jumpers rounds, which are his favorite, & did well, had a couple of off courses, where he wasn't sure which obstacle to take, so he just chooses, but tried very hard & I was happy with those rounds.

Bizzie, Bizzie, Bizzie - what a naughty girl. Her first round she came into the ring, went back to bark at someone on the startline area, came back, ran around to bark at the judge (bad idea), anyhow it was quite embarrassing. The Judge came to speak to me after that & said if she does it again, I'm kicking her out - which I could agree with - people think it's cute when it's a little dog, but if she was a doberman doing that it wouldn't be so funny... I was not impressed with her. I thought about why she was doing this since the trial was at Wet Ck where she regularly practices, etc. so I didn't think that should upset her, but I only had a couple of dogs between Blast's run & hers so I rushed her from her kennel to the startline & I think she needed "a moment" to see what was going on. The next run, Standard, I gave her way more time out & about to see everyone, etc. & her run went much better, & although she didn't bark at the judge, she really gave her a look. Her first jumpers round was much the same, took an off course tunnel, which several dogs did, but didn't do too badly. Her last jumpers round was bad again, ran back to visit the timer, wouldn't come when I called her, so I raised my voice a little & the little brat barked at me! I'm glad she's not entered in the CAA trial, since we have work to do!

Cactus actually got a Q in the gamble, but in her other rounds, she blew a few contacts, as usual, & crashed through about 3 jumps, didn't even try to jump, but I think she couldn't stand the big leadout Wayne gave her & she just ran when he released her & didn't even take notice of the jump.

It was a fun weekend, quite relaxed, & with each dog I gathered more information about what we need to work on, and what doesn't work very well.