Thursday, February 24, 2011

tRicky T-Day!

You all know how obsessed mom is with the RETRIEVE - holy cow my life sure has changed since I learned how to retrieve that dumbbell. She just won't stop! I am learning two new tricks at the moment and even though neither one is ready, we decided to give you a sneak peek!

Mom is making me go and get her slippers for her! But her feet are so big that I have trouble carrying that huge slipper all the way back to her while she lounges on the couch!

And if that isn't bad enough, I am also learning how to bring her the tv remote! I am good at holding it and I can walk with it (LOL) but I am having a really tough time picking it up if it is laying on the ground.

What's next? Dinner and a glass of wine, mom?

Soon Oreo and I will be able to go out and get jobs helping lazy humans - we are already both highly skilled at alerting our moms and dads to danger (both real and imagined), and we can sort of open and close doors, Oreo turns off the lights and loads the dishwasher, and I bring slippers and remotes. If he and I put all of our skills together, I think we can make lots of money and buy all the Orbees and treats we want!

Gotta zoom!


Wednesday, February 23, 2011

Tuesday's class

We were on our way out the door yesterday when we got the call that our class had been canceled due to weather! No, not again! We had freezing rain and some snow the day/night before but although our neighborhood streets were very icy, we assumed the main roads would be fine. Guess not.

Any way, back to those few nice days from last week (before everything was covered in snow yet again). We made a video of the 180 exercise from last week's class. It didn't go all that great - I was not very fast and mom's handling was not very good - but at least you can kind of see what the exercise was and we can remember it for practicing in the future.

Mom and I don't make fancy edited videos much any more - we just stick it up on YouTube - so here is what we tried to show you -

First we did the 180 with a backy uppy a couple times (mom didn't mean to do the rear cross or anything before the 180 but due to poor planning she was on the wrong side of me).

Then we tried the serpentine version.

Then we did a couple with double front crosses (my favorite).

In class we did a curved tunnel to the DW and then into the 180. At home we just used that straight tunnel but it didn't propel me forward like it should have.

Gotta zoom!


Monday, February 21, 2011

Moving my Dumbbell Work Outside

Today is cold and raining. I haven't even been out for a walk around my neighborhood and it's already after lunch time. I am soooooo bored. We got spoiled by a few really nice days last week when it looked like winter was over and spring was here to stay. But this rain is supposed to turn to snow later. Yuck.

When we did have those nice days, I got to do lots of stuff outside. Mom finally got to try me on a dumbbell retrieve out in the yard and here is a quick video of my first attempt. I am pretty cute and do a good job even if I drop it too early - but I do pick it up on my own!

I have class tomorrow - the last one of the session - so we will run a course. Not usually my forte, but we'll see. And then I have two weeks off until the next session starts.

Gotta zoom (unfortunately it's really gotta go lie on the couch some more)!


Saturday, February 19, 2011

Reilly and his Mom's Dog Blog Giveaway!

I don't know if you all read Reilly the Cowspotdog's Blog (you should if you don't!) but they are having a cool contest right now! Reilly's mom is a really talented crafter (is that a word?) - artist - and she made some awesome cards and she's going to give them to the winner of the sleeping dog contest! As you probably all realize, I am not much of a sleeper and prefer to be known as a zoomer. But we went through lots of photos and found this one (I don't think we have ever shared it before) of me exhausted from passing out candy on Halloween last year! Seriously it was a grueling job and I had to nap right at the door in between trick or treaters!

When we were looking for pictures of me sleeping, mom came across some photos of her cat Madeleine. Madeleine would've been my kitty sister but she died at the age of 7 just two months before I was born. Mom says I would've liked her but I am not so sure about that! I have to give her credit though - that kitty knew how to sleep!

Gotta zoom!


Thursday, February 17, 2011

tRicky T-Day! (agility-style)

Because the weather was so nice today (64 degrees!) and because my new tricks aren't ready for prime time yet, we decided to do an agility tricky t-day!

Tunnel vs table, the double jump, and me being responsive to my name! Since I love the tunnel so much (that's my 6 ft tunnel in the video even though it looks like 1 foot), mom concentrated more on the table. We edited the video to get rid of the in between parts to make the whole thing a little shorter but we didn't edit out mistakes - I didn't make any!

I am happy to report that the ice in my backyard is completely gone! We are loving this spring preview but aren't naive enough to think it will last!

Gotta zoom!


Wednesday, February 16, 2011

Tuesday's class

I went to class yesterday even though it was my birthday and I would've rather just been out chasing squirrels or something. Mom says I am still young enough to learn new things so off to class we went.

Class was about backy uppys, serpentine recalls to heel, foundation recalls, and double fronts with some obstacle discrimination thrown in. We warmed up at one jump with the BU, SR, and FRTH. (abbreviations by me). Mom chose to use the triple and double jumps for me just to get me more exposure to them. I did fine and did knock any bars or anything.

Then we had to do sequences that included those handling skills. The first one was jump to aframe but there was a straight tunnel next to the right side of the aframe. Mom knew I would want to take the tunnel and while most people started with a lead out and the dog on their right and just said, "Frame" and the dog went up the aframe, mom ran with me on her left and tried her hardest to block my access to the tunnel (planning to rear cross me as I went up the aframe as there was no room for her to get around the right side of the tunnel). Well I could not be thwarted and took the tunnel any way! Yay for me! I love tunnels! And it WAS my birthday. Then I did double, triple and I was supposed to look at mom and run by the big gaping obvious right end of a curved tunnel and follow her around to the far-away left end of the tunnel. Mom called my name and I blew past her and into the wrong end. But I was very happy about it - I had a huge grin on my face (and I have to say again it was my birthday)! Jenn was NOT happy about it and she said to mom (and I quote) "He is extremely unresponsive to his name!" Well. So there.

I also ignored mom on a serpentine recall involving a 180 and preferred to go and do the chute! Yes, somehow the chute and I have become good friends!

At the end of class we did a timed experiment to see what would be the fastest way for each of us teams to handle a 180 - backy uppy was first, then serpentine, then the double front. It was fun and of course I was fastest with the double front. This will be a good exercise to try again in our yard and to video for you guys some day! We will try to remember.

After class I got to go to my favorite pet store and they gave me lots of treats and I got a new bully stick - I love to chew on them and they are really helping to clean my teeth! Also they had a Nino Ottosson Dog Magic game out on the floor of the store and I got to play with it -

I had it figured out in no time and had a blast moving those silly bones out of the way and getting the FOOD underneath. Mom was glad she didn't have to bother to buy me a new toy!

It has finally warmed up around here - today was 59! So most of the snow is gone and we just have a little ice in the grass where the sun never shines on it to melt it. Our yard is all soupy muddy puddley now. But in the very back of the backyard the ground is drier so mom set up my table with a straight tunnel right next to it and we practiced jump to either table or tunnel and sometimes mom called me off - and guess what? I was responsive to my name! Ha! It felt so great to be outside doing agility again. AND our daffodils are starting to peek up out of the ground. We know winter is not completely over but this is such a nice and welcome break from all that snow and cold!

Gotta zoom!


Tuesday, February 15, 2011

Friday, February 11, 2011

Being Silly

Yesterday was a very cold day and I was bored again! So mom put one of my favorite toys - a cardboard toilet paper roll - into the hide-a-squirrel (that Ludo sent to me a long time ago) and I had a blast getting it out of that log! I had already been playing for awhile when mom thought to video me so she didn't get the best stuff but she still thought I was cute (and I was/am cute)!

It's sunny and 19 this morning and I think we're going for a walk! This time next week our highs are supposed to be in the 50s! But it's going to rain. Guess you can't have it all.....

Gotta zoom!


Wednesday, February 9, 2011

Tuesday's class!!!!!

We went to class yesterday!!! Finally after three weeks of missed classes in a row. I was surprised they remembered us!

Class was about straight tunnels as turning obstacles - the straight tunnel is a turning obstacle because the dog can get information on which way to turn before he enters the tunnel. With a curved tunnel (a non-turning obstacle) the dog completes the obstacle independently and then learns which way to go (like with DW, AF, teeter and weaves). The chute is also a turning obstacle.

Any way, we started out with an exercise where we performed most of the skills you would do with one jump with the one straight tunnel - so we did forward send, rear cross, FMFC, foundation RTH - I think I forgot one but you get the idea. It was important with the forward send for the handler to decel and keep shoulders toward the tunnel opening, with the rear cross there needed to be some lateral motion into the dog's path before the dog went into the tunnel so the dog could turn in the correct direction when exiting, and with the FMFC the handler had to show the dog the outside arm before he went in the tunnel also to show that there would be a turn coming up. I read mom's body language well!

Then we did several sequences that incorporated straight tunnels. I had a good time and was quite fast. I like classes better when they start with some kind of drill - it gets me warmed up and then I run the sequences faster. Mom concentrated on being confident herself and on giving me early commands so that I knew what was the next obstacle before or as I was doing the one I was on.

All in all it was a great class and we were very happy to be there!

At home mom chipped my table out of the snow and ice and thawed it out and brought it into our living room/agility training room! So I have been working on faster downs on the table. The table is hard and I would prefer to do my fast down on a rug or pillow. Think they might change the table in USDAA to be a cushioney one? :)

Today I think we are going to practice at our club. It is super cold out (10 degrees) with a wind chill minus zero. So we won't be outside much today. But the weather forecast says it should be in the 40s on Sunday! Wow. I'll believe it when I see it! After practice we're going to visit grandma and grandpa. Should be a fun day!

Gotta zoom!


Sunday, February 6, 2011

Life These Days

Yep, this is pretty much what I do all day long these days! LOL - just kidding. Actually I got to walk on Friday and yesterday and today! Finally! And I was BAD on Friday - barking and spinning when cars would go by and pulling mom. Well, what can you expect after being cooped up in the house for three days. Mom does what she can to entertain me - we do agility in the living room, do recalls from all over the house, work on tricks, get on the ball, and play find it (mom hides tiny pieces of treats and I have to smell and smell to find them - I love that game!). But there is just no substitute for getting outside.

Guess what? It's supposed to snow tomorrow!

Gotta zoom (if only, sigh!)!


Thursday, February 3, 2011

tRicky T-Day!

Wow - we got lots of freezing rain yesterday and all last night. Tree branches were falling and making loud crashing noises all night long - I had to bark and let mom and dad know about every single one! And electric transformers were arcing and blowing out. Some how we were lucky and we still have power today. Boy when you realize your electricity may go out at any moment, you start being super grateful when it doesn't!

The ice on top of our left-over snow has made it nearly impossible for me to walk outside to potty. Mom tried to let me go out on my own yesterday but I was silly and tried to run on the slippery snow. (well, there was a car going by). I fell really hard on my side. And I didn't learn from that and fell again later. So mom has been taking me out on a leash to potty. I haven't been able to run (except for when I almost killed myself) since Monday. No walks around the neighborhood either. The temperatures are going to drop drastically tonight and the ice won't be melting for a long, long time. I don't know when my life is going to get back to normal!

Enough about that - on to tRicky T-Day! Now that I know how to retrieve my dumbbell, mom is making me learn how to retrieve other stuff (typical, why did I learn the dumbbell retrieve?). Remember when Oreo was learning to carry his trick or treat bucket? Mom stole that idea from Sara only I am getting ready for Easter!

Gotta zoom!


Tuesday, February 1, 2011

Is there a conspiracy against us?

Class was cancelled today due to freezing rain!! No way, come on!

Yesterday was the calm before the storm. We actually saw the SUN for a little while. And we went walking at the park because mom knew it might be our last walk in a long time. She was right - this morning it is so icy I can barely get in position to potty!

We practiced weave entries in the living room yesterday too. The darn sun (LOL) made it hard for me to see the poles. Mom should've closed the blinds to make it easier on me.

Mom wants to take all the furniture out of the living room/dining room and put in rubber matting - what do you all think? ;)

Gotta zoom!