Sunday, May 30, 2010

mish mash

this will be a mish mash sorta update!!!

first, now that berlin is off 100% crate rest she will need a refresher on what it means to listen to mom and not bark all the time :) bad bad girl! shes still not allowed to be a normal somjen dog, so shes separated from the rest of the household most of the time and isn't allowed to jump or wrestle yet...

last night she worked the full article pile!!!!! yay good for her!!! which means i guess that i have to do full ATC now and work this daily with her for the next 9 weeks or whatever it is - but she made the right decisions in ignoring the leather articles when the one i had scented/cheesed was a metal. what a very brave and smart girl. whats that, 9 or 10 finds the first week????

we had agility class this wednesday - clearly berlin is not allowed to be doing agility yet, and ive already paid for this class so i ended up running a modified course for rah since i wont put him over this dog walk.

rah was crazy but awesome - super fast, read all the crosses extremely well and gave it his all - managed to not bite me even ONCE!!! now if i could only teach this dog to weave on anything smaller than 24 inch weaves we'd be set :) it just takes him 2-3 tries to get his body into the weaves before he gets it... and if i could decide if i want to trial him or not with his heart disease... i think i might trial him in NADAC and only indoors... low jump heights, very low key, and i can train in the ring, and he already has a jumpers leg, and he can do that beloved tunnelers course. he was so crazy that he was jumping the 36 inch wing jump standards on the rear crosses with room to spare - this dog is amazing and crazy at the same time - but handled like a dream. he was so excited to be back at agility...

hung out for a long time wednesday for his utility class. don't think we did signals that day - we did do them on thursday though and he was pretty good. had a lot of distraction that day (th) including terry stomping her feet next to him, kris behind me giving my signals as well, and gene next to him waving his hands around. rah handled it well but he wasnt sure what to do with the stomping feet so he froze halfway up on the sit, so i verbally told him yes, he was doing it right and we kept going. all in all it was good.

moving stand - both days he didn't do such a bad job but i need to keep remembering that i need to really focus on maintaining his eyes drilling into me - he's not moving but hes not maintaining 100% focus on me, he's staring at the judge as they approach. at least he didnt anticipate the forward there :) i think im going to use a signal for that forward too.

articles - on wednesday there was a glove out in between him and the article pile - he kept going to the glove first, but once he got past that (with a little help from me, ha) his article pile was set within one square foot and on top of each other - but he managed to find his just fine!! on thursday we had no problems with the articles and he even ran in for a straight front!!!! nice job!!!!

go outs - we're still tweaking things because rah now feels that he has theright to go out and check out his go out toy no matter what (on the "ill get to you in a minute" plan) - so i followed him out and butt pinched him to remind him that when i say his name, he needs to turn immediately and ignore the toy behind him (whether or not its there) and sit immediately. the next night kathy had me turn and sit him very early and call him off at 20 feet or so and he did nicely. of course, then on directed jumping rah ran chest first into the jump - we got him over it and he was stutter jumping a bit but had he been paying attention instead of staring at the gloves that were on the ground by the jump he wouldnt have had such a problem :)

gloves gloves gloves - really need to work on these pivots with him keeping his head up and looking at me and not staring at the glove instead. which is going to be his downfall. i also need to make sure i dont keep pushing him backwards by staring at him.

ugh. time to work on these things. our next trial is 2 weeks from today.

Wednesday, May 26, 2010

id really like to find outdoor agility classes for berlin.

thats provided she ever heals enough to do agility again. we've got at least 2-4 more weeks off i believe :(

(you know you're a dog sports dork when you write "she ever heels" and you have to look at that and wonder what you did wrong)

Monday, May 24, 2010

household stats

someone else started, ill continue...

Ears: 1 cropped and standing, 1 cropped with one floppy, and 2 natural button ears
Tails: nubs!!!
Dewclaws: no rear dews, 2 sets of front dews.
Colors: black, white, blue, and blue tri merle
Coats: smooth and one fuzzy
Breeds: dobermans and one aussie
Sizes: 1 that is 38 lbs, 1 that is 55 lbs, and the boys are 75-85 lbs
Ages: 2, 2.5, 5 and 6.5
Testicles: none
Ovaries: none
Barkers: all to some degree. berlin MOST OF ALL.

Friday, May 21, 2010


so wednesday - no agility.
decided to put rah in open and utility because 1) he's been ridiculous since he has no playmate and 2) open broke at the match too thanks to stupid decisions on my part and poor run through procedure

we didnt do heeling in open (on hindsight) just the individuals... his fig8 wasnt bad at all - a little pushy, but he was with me and never took his eyes off me. we worked this more last night too, so ill bring it up there...

worked broad jump - did a pretty nice job. heads up working his fronts hard core even though he was sliding away from me, did a nice job so i didnt make him do more than 3 - just played some set up games and attention games there.

worked ROF, ROH and DOR - worked his trying to take the jump during the DOR when the DOR was done close to the jump, hopefully got that out of his system (for now) - clarified that. when he's within 3-4 feet of the jump he just thinks he needs to take it :) he was hitting nice fronts on the ROH and we were working some on the flat. all in all a nice class...

utility -
go outs is what we started with - rah because he's biggest. had gloves and toys out in the ring, someone doing heeling/signals in the ring with him on the side and behind him, and someone doing articles behind the ring gates that he was doing go outs to. rah handled it just fine, but he kept touching the stanchion and trying to get his ball - but he went out straight and sat when i told him to (After trying to get The Go Out Toy Of Wonder - hereby referred to as TGOTOW). Took the right jumps when i indicated them, even when simon and karin were heeling behind me and had perfectly straight fronts. last week terry had me using a calm voice for go outs and it makes a difference for him (instead of yelling the command to him) and it really has him in a smoother frame of mind.

moved to articles - he brought back the cheese article (his teaching article) - somehow it made it into the pile- ignored it, and he found the other two just fine. ill just ignore that one for now. went to signals and the slight anticipation i saw last week on the come, which turned into straight anticipation at the match now resulted in no come at all wed night. worked that - it was clearly me because he did it just fine for kathy, the person in the world he is most intimidated by because she is THE ENFORCER!!! so it was me that was the problem. tried to work through it (probably made it worse) and then just decided to ignore it...

gloves - he's NOT allowed to get his glove unless he looks at me. his pivots are still ugly. im at a loss. i give up. but he's bringing them back, albeit sometimes slow. kathy said that still looks like a dog trying to figure out what i want. i thought it looked like a dog not wanting to come near me.

fast forward to thursday -
started with heeling, he was crazy. signals- much better - did them with heavy distraction - he was able to do all the parts and even came when i signaled him to come. NICE JOB!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

worked the moving stand- not anticipating the stand on the judges command to stand (or in rahs case, not anticipating the FORWARD on the judges command to move!) and then the stand itself. rah did a nice job.

articles - nice job on his part - even though he almost killed himself by tripping on the pile. on articles he did a better job. need to work fronts with his distraction of things he loves next to him.

go outs - worked on him trying to get his ball before he turns - started pinching his butt and now he turns on his name :) he needs to run out with an ear on me waiting for him to turn, not run out ignoring me!!!!

all in all much better...

Thursday, May 20, 2010

i havent posted yet about last night

i will though... but it brings up some interesting thoughts i have, especially after reading some posts from some of the email lists, and some posts from other peoples blogs...

how much responsibility do you take for your dogs reactions to things, and how he acts?
if your dog blows you off, do you say - oh that was my fault! or do you go after the dog and say "should have known better!"... does it depend on the dog? level of training? where you are? the situation? do you always give the dog the benefit of the doubt? do you always blame the handler? are there certain exercises where you always give the handler the blame? are there certain things you know you do poorly and are your fault? are there certain times where you thought it was the dog, and it ended up being you and you felt badly?


dog is called for the DOR, but takes the jump on its way to you at a match. you stop him, set him up and next time you call him, he flinches and starts, but wont come at all. now what? what happened? whose fault?

you're running a course in agility and all of a sudden your dog goes off course and takes a few extra jumps. what happens now?

a dog refuses to retrieve a db thrown - will go out to where it is, sees it, but will not pick it up.

a dog does a go out, but after the turn and sit isn't taking any jump, despite repeated signals...

after an agility run, the dog wanders away, sniffing...

the dog, seasoned at scent articles, comes back with the wrong article. lets say the dog was taught using around the clock and it brought back your cheese article. lets say the dog brought back the entirely wrong article.

during an agility course (this would be better if i had a course map) a dog repeatedly misses a push out to the tire... runs around the tire, but doesn't take it (goes PAST the tire)...

whats going on here? what do you do to evaluate whats going on? whose fault is it here? do you blame the dog? do you punish the dog? what does it depend on?

Wednesday, May 19, 2010

no agility today - debbie got called into trial unexpectedly. which is ok, because i technically have no dog to take to agility anyway- i havent decided if im putting rah back in class yet.

so ill probably nap until i get to obedience class.

but lets discuss one thing --

ALL BREED LURE COURSING???????????????????

risk of heart attack or not, rah may have to do this.

Sunday, May 16, 2010

the match show

had a match today... didn't go as well as i would have wanted it to go, for a variety of reasons.

rah and i weren't communicating well, and he got hectic - we worked through a lot of it, but it was frustrating. combined with him biting me about 1126092349 times, i wasnt pleased with that.

dont know if its worth getting into...
berlin says dog jail killing her.

Friday, May 14, 2010

stealing this...

from lori drouin ---
the end of a very lovely message -

The lesson for me is that none of our training tools should be used
without conscious choice and pointed intention. Physical corrections
cannot be exaggerated in force and used for the purpose of expressing
anger about a technical point. Food should not be used to apologize for
a lack of information, nor to distract the dog from the point of a
corrective interaction. If either a correction or a reward is to be
useful for progress, the dog has to be clear on what it was applied to,
and allowed to discover what he needs to repeat or to stop doing to get
the trainer's approval. Too much focus on "behaviors" and "exercises"
can blind us to the importance of teamwork development and two-way

Thursday, May 13, 2010

updating both blogs right now... ive been remiss with both of them. had lots of time to think about both of them in the past week or so :)

berlin is currently at animerge getting her spay and gatropexy on :) actually, she's already out of surgery and recovering- i already saw her post-op and she did fine, already standing and drooling her head off.

the recovery is going to be KILLER - she's on FOUR WEEKS of rest. four weeks because my dogs are friggin psychos and too active for the normal beast so it will need to be twice as long as the average dog to make sure she heals well (the pexy, not the spay) to make sure it takes. the surgeon was very glad i was pexying her because she said her chest was very deep for her petite size, so i was right to be concerned for bloat - especially for her activity :)

rah is doing great - more about that in his cardio blog. no adverse side effects right now from the stem cells, he's chipper and as annoying as ever.

training training training....

agility last night was our first time back at class in 2 weeks or so. ive done some work outside working serpentines, weaves and weave entrances (ignoring off sides since its been a problem for us lately - my new theory - ignore it if its not working!) and outs. she did awesome!!!! and i was really happy, but entrances need some work - so i spoke to my trainer and she made that something we worked on in class.

class this week we first started with entrances and shaping them - gave it a new word (i used "get in" for my memorys sake - but i can change this to "weave" i think since technically i tell her "go weave" and then have her continue with a "go go go go go " ... think that over kim) and the biggest change was i put three poles up instead of two, to make it clear she was to continue forward instead of curling back to me once she got the click and that worked like a charm to continue her forward momentum. VERY clear for her - then we had a short sequence with a jumptunnel to JUST a weave entrance - did onside and off side and she was very nice - NAILED off side!!!!!

then we did sequences - the one i remember is where i did a lead out pivot past two, then sent her through the tunnel and after the tunnel i did a nice rear cross over 4, sent her to the weaves - it worked well. she never thought about going into the weaves past two, or going straight to the jump instead of into the weaves after 4. i was also afraid she would miss the first tire since she actually was staring at me NOT through the tire because of where i had to be for the pivot... but it worked perfectly. very nice.

she did awesome - read the lead out pivot perfectly, read the rear cross just right and nailed the weaves great and was fast and accurate - i need to stop waiting and watching her though!!! and RUN PAST THE LAST JUMP!!!!!!!!!

worked her in open too since she will be out of class for so long - did some heeling and she was nice, but then i got tired - and then the cough came (bronchitis is cleared but i had a rattle come back by the end - im so out of shape!) and when i stop pushing she stops giving) - but its me, not her) but she tried and i do understand that if she's not going to bring it, i need to be the one to bring it. i really do. i just need to be the one to be able to bring it.

did some work with the broad jump, and then we broke...
started retrieves, and the db landed near annette's kids. and berlin said no. and i said yes. and she said no. and i said yes.

and then my trained came over and said YES. so berlin learned an ear pinch last night. and she got what we meant immediately - she clearly understands what a retrieve is, and i understand she doesn't love kids - but they were no threat and i wasnt putting her in danger, i wasnt asking of her anything she doesn't understand or wasn't physically capable of. i was asking her to pick up a db from within 3 feet of a child that she's MET before. and she said no. that, to me, is unacceptable. so she is now going to be force fetched to make it clear that this isn't an option, to say no to me.

rah - worked on his SFE and moving stand - he also did the SFE in novice class :) ha ha just popped him in there. never did signals with him because he did go outs so long. nothing spectacular nothing hugely wrong. gloves showing small steady progress. brought his stand back to basics - staying close, rewarding basic attention on me and not looking at the judge - had all the kids, lydia, ellen, hope, and many others touch him and rewarded STARING at me (allowed a tiny bit of foot motion) and want his eyes drilled into me - the more he looks at me, the less he will ever notice the judge coming up.

he's entered in a match this weekend - has two utility entries in june.
berlin is on four weeks of rest - this will kill me.