Wednesday, February 27, 2008

could you be serious, for once in your life?

These are Kaleb's photos we got taken with Judge Kirsten Locke the day he got his SATCHC, he also got his AGX under her in November, you think he could be serious just once??

Nope, that's just not his style, and I love him even more for it!

Monday, February 25, 2008

eeeew, boy germs ...

eeeew, boy germs ...
Originally uploaded by sarah ...

Gyp looking rather disgusted as Kaleb tries his best to shove his tongue in her face, his favourite signature move.

Friday, February 22, 2008

food for thought

(Jane 2005 AAC Nationals, over jumping, just a bit ...)

One of the best things I took from a seminar was:

"Speed disguises understanding" so just because your dog is fast doesn't mean it understands perhaps the pattern of a pinwheel, 270 or even a simple straight line, sometimes if you take speed out of the equation for a fast dog, and the fact that usually their momentum carries them - ie stop you motion completely with a fast dog, will they still take that pattern and go with out you on a verbal?? So a slower dog might have a better understanding, because the handler can't just depend on the fact that their dog is fast, sometimes that isn't enough, and you can't rely on speed alone.

Thursday, February 21, 2008

third time's a charm :)

Sorry Gyp, the spotlight got taken away from you while Kaleb basked in the glory. I love this photo of her and my cousin Sami, one of my favs.

Funny how the importance of things change, and goals change as you get more dogs, learn more, and become a better trainer.

When I started running Agility with Jane, the allusive "ATCHC" seemed like something unattainable, something that only the "big dogs and handlers" got. I never thought that far ahead. She got her Starters title in 1.5 trials. But got stuck in Advanced for 1.5 years. Got her Masters Jumpers title before any other in Advanced. Finally by the time we were ready for Masters, everything somehow fell into place smoothly and we learned as we went what we needed to train and what skills were needed, thank goodness she is such a forgiving dog. She got her ATCHC in 2005, and that same year placed 6th in the 10" division at Nationals, in a class of 24. I've learned the most from her, because she taught me everything I know about dogs and training, and she got me into Agility, and at 8.5 is still givin' er!

Then along came Kaleb ...Pete did about 95% of the training with K in the first 2.5 years of his life, he became a certified Search And Rescue Dog, one month after his second birthday, one of the youngest dogs to ever certify. I still say he is "Certifiable" but that is another story. Kaleb did his first Agility Trial at 3, and only entered him in a couple runs a day, as physically he could do the equipment and had the skills to do so, but mentally ... not so much. It took him roughly 4 full trials to get his Starters title, and then another year to get his Advanced title. Then he got his Masters title in one Trial, in ONE day, two weeks after his Advanced title. I am still amazed by that, and his MAD title is still one of my most memorable! This past year was the "Year of the Kaleb" I think he finished around 14 titles in 2007. He was the #1 Flat-coat in Canada, and just finished his SATCHC and Bronze Award in the Same day, which took Jane 1 year later to get her bronze.

Then along came Gyppie, the underdog. The dog that nobody seemed to be interested in through the emails Amanda sent about her (thankfully). So I took her as a favour over a weekend, and she never left (thankfully). Funny how people are NOW interested in her ... Gyp is the perfect balance for me, drivey, but not crazy, a little soft, biddable and loves to learn and has taught me alot about timing, patience and perseverance, and the bonus is she has an off switch (unlike another dog I have). She'll lay fast asleep until it is time to work. She has made "non-Border Collie people" learn to like Border Collies, unless they are just saying that to be nice :), but really she is a great fun loving, but equally serious dog.
In 6 trials she now competes at the Masters level, I'm not even sure how that happened and its funny how expectations change as the years go on, I'm really excited about it, but it is a lot to absorb, I was thinking of how I was going to get a better "Table" in competition, and now we will rarely see one in Masters. I try to run her full out, no holding back, something I've had to learn to do, and so far so good. She has taught me to do that with the others, what do I have to lose! I am still amazed how we clicked so fast, she is like an old pair of jeans or a pair of comfy shoes. Hard to believe we've only had her a year and a half.

I have learned that for Jane and her ATCHC that seemed like the biggest thing in the world, and that was the highest point we could reach - which it wasn't, now the allusive ATCHC seems like more of a beginning for the dogs ... and something not too far away for Gyp ... and that any dog can accomplish big things, these three dogs have taught me more than I ever learned in College!

Sunday, February 17, 2008

labradoodles and a cha-hoola-hoola

so today we were in the coulees for a walk, and we came upon three kids who were discussing what kinds of dogs I had, they asked if Kaleb and Gyp were labradoodles - the one boy was pretty sure they were.

The youngest boy asked if Jane was a "cha-hoola-hoola"

I said what they really were, but the kids looked at me like I was nuts.

Agility Trial Champion of Canada

Well Kaleb has finally done it! He earned his last gamble leg to earn his Specials Agility Trial Champion of Canada title!

In doing this he also finished three more titles in one run. His Masters Gamblers Title, Masters Game Dog Title, and to top if off he has all of the runs needed for his BRONZE Award of Merit (10 Masters Standard runs, and 25 Masters Games).

This sounds mushy but we have ALOT of people to thank for helping us to achieve this goal!

Kaleb - for always making me laugh, and on occasion cry. And for sometimes making my blood boil, but I love this dog sooo much, he have the biggest heart, and happliy works for me, for a treat and tug toy ...

Pete - for putting up with me trialing and being gone so much for lessons, seminars and everything else. For letting me run your dog :). And giving him a NEW job after his SAR days ended.

Rowdy Jane - for getting me addicted to agility and proving that ANY dog can accomplish BIG things!

Amanda - for listening to all that barking on the way to training, and the encouragement, and that fact that you secretly want a flat-coat. And you are more than welcome to run K as often as you want :).

All of our training friends and students (you know who you are - FAR too many to mention) - for laughing at Kaleb, and then being amazed when he gets it all together! And for all of the support and help with the ups and downs with my boy. I have learned soooo much from you guys!!!!!

Out Team Partners: BB and Jan and Dave who got us through Advanced in two trials! And to Lynda and Cavall for those 2 Masters legs, and Donna and Repeat for that first one!

Everyone I have taken a seminar from with Kaleb: Kim Collins, Terry Simons, Kathy Keats, Shannen Jorgensen, Stew MacKenzie

Susan Sutcliffe - for keeping Kaleb in top form over the last 6 months, it has made a world of difference.

Last but not least: his breeders Hans and Margereta, and our friend Liz Saunders

As the saying goes "It takes a village to raise a child" and in Kaleb's case it is true

... otherwise he may have ended up the Village Idiot!!!!!

Overshadowed by her bro's achievement, Gyp also earned her Advanced Agility Title this weekend!!!! YAY for Gyppie!! More about that later!!!!

Friday, February 15, 2008

Tag along

Tag along
Originally uploaded by sarah ...

This is Tag. AKA Gyppies boyfriend. I took him to daycare today for my friend, and since he is a V.I.P. (Very Important Pooch), he got to ride in the front seat.

P.S. Don't tell my dogs as they have to ride in their crates :)

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

for amanda

Here is what Jane was doing today ....

wait until you see G & K's video ....


Monday, February 11, 2008

the "grammys"

Well last night I got back from our second Outreach with Kim Collins, it was great, another post later about that.

It was nice to come home and relax and watch the "Grammys"

I said to Pete " Oh, the "Grammys are on, lets watch that",

Well that was it, I didn't realize what I had said, and wondered why Jane started whining and staring down to the front door, incessantly ...

"Grammy" ..... one of her 2 favourite people, the other being, her other "Grammy"

poor Jane, it was the wrong kind of "Grammy" ....

such a smart little bugger.

Wednesday, February 6, 2008

oh great, now I have 2 princesses ...

So I work at home, and downstairs there are 2 dog beds, the floor :) , the comfy red couch, and a kennel with a fluffy sleeping bag in it (the zipper is broken, it is now a dog bed). So there are more than enough places for the three dogs to lay.

Kaleb likes the big dog bed or sometimes the red couch, or to lay under my feet.

Jane likes to be on my lap, or in the kennel on the big fluffy sleeping bag.

Gyp is almost always on the red couch sprawled out in all directions.

Gyp has decided she loves new kennel blanket, Jane isn't sure what she thinks about that ...

Jane was whining and trying to pull the sleeping bag out of the kennel to try and get on it, sharing the kennel is above her, she tried to go in with Gyp but she just couldn't do it. ewwwwww dog germs ...

So Gyp didn't budge, and after whining at me to do something about, Jane eventually gave up, and ended up on the red couch.

RIGHT NOW: Jane is in the kennel, Kaleb is at my feet, and Gyp is sprawled out in all directions on the couch ....

Tuesday, February 5, 2008

with love from the bottom of my (heart-shaped) chin.

Gyp wishes all of her friends a happy love day,
from the tip of her tail, to the bottom of her heart-shaped chin.

I'm not sure when we noticed this, but it is cute and I had to get a picture of it.