Friday, October 31, 2008

toto, i have a funny feeling we're not in Kansas anymore.

Happy Halloween

jane - the Tin Man, who needs a heart.
kaleb - the Scarecrow, who needs a brain.
and ... Gyp - the cowardly lion.

and me Dorothy.

Thursday, October 30, 2008


It's official.

Jane has been de-throned, she lost the wiener dunking contest, i wonder if she'll ever recover. It took nearly a week to post this, as she was so depressed she wouldn't even get out of bed.

She won't even look at a wiener, all she can think about is Wicca winning and the fact that she never got to take on Sadie. It's just too much for her deal with right now.

Come on Jane, just a little nibble

Finally after some coaxing she took a bite, I told her to pretend it was Wicca, it made her feel better.

Jane will be back next year, better than ever, ready to win. For now she is figuring out her strategy, and still coming to terms with her loss.

Wednesday, October 29, 2008

her highness

her highness, originally uploaded by sarah ....

halloween costume made easy.

Jane is a vampire bat.

Monday, October 27, 2008

Kaleb, doing his thing ...

Kaleb bringing a pheasant in.

Gyppie and I went along for the day on Sunday for a full day of tag-along, while K and Pete and friends were hunting. We enjoyed our time in the outdoors, walking in the fields and coulees, picking burrs, falling in badger holes, and bracing ourselves for gun shots. Jane stayed home as the terrain would have been tough in some spots, and she wouldn't have been keen on sharing the thousands of acres with the 2 goldens, there just wouldn't have been enough room for all them according to Jane.

This is Annie, who could resist a face like that! She is a great huntin' dog, and Kaleb's older girlfriend, but he's not picky, he likes her daughter CJ just as much :)

Gyp was starting to get suspicious, she figures she's safe hiding in the bushes. Because she was so gun shy last year, I kept her on her flexi-lead, tied to my backpack waistband for most of the time, I didn't want her to get too scared, she did great. She was much better with the noise than last year, so she'll be able to come along again. Her favourite part of the day was the Jack Rabbit than ran by us. She is curious of deer too, but won't chase them. She dreams the deer and bunnies are sheep, and she is one of those Border Collies that gets to run through the fields all day, rounding them up.

Kaleb saying hi to Jeff and getting some love after a long day. ohh ya that's K's favourite spot!

K-man looking rather serious, he can be serious, really.

The bird dog, now a burred dog.

Bring the Grouse in.

Bringing in the grouse to dad like a good boy.

does your lip hang low?

does your lip hang low?, originally uploaded by sarah ....

AKA "grizzly chin" or "bubba gump lip"

it cracks me up, the more tired he is, the lower the lip hangs.

it's pretty much my favourite Kaleb feature.

Saturday, October 25, 2008

Toto, I have a funny feeling were not in Kansas any more ...

The resemblance is uncanny! 
Just in case you need a reminder ...
Scarecrow (needs a brain), starring Kaleb.
Tin Man (needs a heart), featuring Jane.
Cowardly Lion (needs courage), introducing, Gyp.

However, no Toto - no basket. 
Boone would have made a GREAT Toto, but getting him in the basket would have been interesting ......

In the history of all costumes, I am not sure I'll ever find more suitable costumes, seriously it is more than fitting...

There is an impostor among us. One of those dogs is not who you think it is!!
(our friend Jazmin was posing as Kaleb -  posing as the Scarecrow (Kaleb was busy hunting pheasant today), Jazzy did great and loved her costume! Thanks jazzy, you're the best!

Cowardly Lion: [crying] You're right, I am a coward! I haven't any courage at all. I even scare myself.
Cowardly Lion: Look at the circles under my eyes. I haven't slept in weeks.
Tin Woodsman: Why don't you try counting sheep?
Cowardly Lion: That doesn't do any good. I'm afraid of them.
[sobs loud]

Wizard of Oz: As for you, my galvanized friend, you want a heart. You don't know how lucky you are not to have one. Hearts will never be practical until they can be made unbreakable.
Tin Woodsman: But I still want one.

Photos of Kaleb as the scarecrow to come ...
in the meantime, this is what he was up to all weekend ... more photos to come.

Go! Dog! Go! hosted our halloween party today, it was a blast, check out more photos here ...

Up at the crack of dawn.

I laugh every Saturday morning (when I am home), I get out of bed (happily) much before my alarm goes off. On a week day - its really hard to get up for that damn alarm - I must hit it atleast 3 times.

Come the weekend ... I'll gladly pop out of bed at the crack of dawn (or earlier), with out a second thought for Agility or whichever dog sport is calling ... or just to curl up on the couch and watch cartoons with the dogs.

Today Pete was up at 6 - and out the door just after 7 with Kaleb - its hunting season afterall. I've never seen Pete so excited in the morning :) Apparently he is the same way, as he was up half an hour before he set the alarm.

ahhh weekends, gotta love 'em.

Friday, October 24, 2008

Posing and Training...

Finally! A nice portrait of "The Three".

Even though Jane is secretly wishing she could throw Kaleb infront of the train, and in the same breath, wishing Gyp would hop the next train to "get-the hell-outta-here-ville, so I can have my mom to myself"

Kaleb replies with "Bite me"

- - - - - - - - - - - - - - -

We went out to "train" yesterday, the Agility kind, not the "push-Kaleb-infront of it kind".

We kept it simple and individual obstacles. Weaves. Teeter. Directionals.

Weaves - proofing:
Gyp rarely, rarely, misses a weave entry, even really hard entries. But if she does anything she'll pop the last pole in anticipation, so we have been proofing for this, sometimes I hover close, and sometimes we do this from a distance of 10 - 20' - with lots of reinforcement - off my body - I throw her toy as she comes out of the last pole or last two poles to keep her forward focus, so she isn't looking at me - sometimes I swing the toy as she is weaving to make sure she is still on the job, and not focused on the toy to be sure.

what we proofed:
- Racing Gyp through as fast as I can (both sides) - I got to the end while she was around 8th pole. She is pretty good at this one, so we moved on.
- Then I raced her and switched sides from the left the right  (not a front cross, just running around the end pole to the other side) - at the end of the poles and vice versa at a really hard angle - while she is in around poles 6 - 8. She did great from L - R, but from R - L she popped the last pole as I was high tailing it around the poles to get to the other side. The second time through she was great.
- Then I would abruptly stop around pole 8 - 10 to see if she was paying attention to me or doing her job, she did good the first time, so we tried again until I was able to make her look at me, it took ALOT for her to pop, which is really good, she is getting better at this!! As this was a big weakness a few weeks ago.
- Lastly sending her ahead of me while I stood at the first poles - me NOT moving, she did really good with this too, we ended one last set with her sitting at the beginning and me going to the end and recalling her through.

We didn't do this all in one shot - I did each one at a separate time - in between playing with Jane in the field and trying the same things with K - which he did really well with too.

We also tested our directional cues with some great and not-so-great success with G & K. That will come in a separate post, as this one is already long!!!

Thursday, October 23, 2008

Who's Bad?

Jane, Jane, Jane, you could really use some lessons in your technique. You've been living in the city too long.

I forgot we'd taken this video of Jane, when Gyppie was at her last herding lesson. 

Pure entertainment.

And I think this song is pretty perfect for Jane's theme song don't you??

More on dog theme songs to come ....

Wednesday, October 22, 2008

his true love. fetch it.

I don't know what it is, but it was like Kaleb was bred to do this ....

I love watching all of my dogs doing what they are bred for. 
And I've been so lucky to be able to help them with that.
 ... Jane going to ground, or chasing that fox tail around a course ...
 ... Gyp trying to be all Border Collie-like, when she sees sheep ... or cats ...

And of course the K-man, out in the field searching for birds, like everything he does, he never gives up, and keeps going and going. You'll never see a dog happier, than when they are doing what they are bred for. This is the only "sport" he does where the reward is just being there ... no cookies, no clickers, no toys. Just a dog and his boy. 

Monday, October 20, 2008

An eventful weekend ...

We had a great time at Training Troop this weekend!
Jane was entered in 5 runs and she Qd in all of her 3 Masters Standard runs. She got freaked out by something in Steeplechase at about the 6th obstacle she just stopped and looked at me (her warm up was fine) and I didn't know at the time if it was physical so we left the ring, and it took a while to get her back to normal, she seemed fine physically from what I could tell. I was really worried about her and friend came and gave her a once over checked her gums and gut (she said she had to poop :) ) but other that that she was OK. I was going to pull her from her last run, it was a Standard, I couldn't even get he in the ring area. So Amanda and I did some motivational recalls over jumps and she bounced back and was happy, so I sat her on the start line (withthe intention of leaving after a couple of obstacles) - and THEN she broke her start line!!!! (a good sign!!!) she ended on a good note and ran her last Standard, clean and in her normal jane style!!! So I was glad whatever bothered her she was able to overcome. UGHHH!

My next thought after Jane's Steeplechase run ....
I was rather shaken by the whole Steeplechase ordeal and I had to run Gyp in about 20 minutes. I have gotten better at letting go of the past runs, but I was worried she was really sick or hurt. So my way of dealing with getting a clean slate to run the next dog after a bad run, is to put my headphones on, find a fun upbeat song, sing along, and visualize my run with the next dog a few times. It paid off, as Gyp had a stellar Steeplechase run with 1st place and she had one of the fastest times.

Kaleb started off his weekend with a Treatment and Adjustment from Susan, who has been working on him for the past year, and he was raring to go after his pelvis was re-aligned and he got the excess gas out he felt he needed to while Susan was adjusting his tail bones, a first for her (sorry Susan) ..... K was entered in 6 runs and brought home 4Qs. He Qd in Masters Standard x 2 and got another Team Q with our SUPER TEAM partners - Lynda and Cavall and a Snooker Q, he was spunky all weekend and handled well too!! 

Gyppie had fun too! She also got treated and adjusted by Susan, who found the same lesions (tightness) on Gyps back as Andrea who worked on her at Nationals, but worked them out and Gyppie was good to go! Gyp didn't lose confidence all weekend - even when I had a couple BAD BAD handling moments UGHHH! Gyp just went with it. She brought home 3Qs and firsts places: Masters Standard, Steeplechase and Jumpers. She had some other great runs and I was able to challenge and test our skills and I was thrilled about that! Screwed up runs are great opportunities for training, I felt better about our one "BAD" Standard because I was able to reinforce Gyp by petting her, and we got a lot out of it. I raced her past the end of the contact and she stayed in place, something she blew in her first run. so again she got lots of praise and pets. We have lots to work on!!!! Like keeping my damn arm down when i'm using a verbal for instance ...

The devil made me do it.

Please, please, for the love of dog, make the voices stop ...

"I've come to suck your blood. I've come to suck your blood."

"The devil made me do it. The devil made me do it hahahaha"

"HA HA HAHA cackle cackle HA HA HAHA"
Jane has tried to destroy the witch already, but the cackling continues. I woke up this morning to "the Devil made it do it, the Devil made it do it hahahahaha" at 6:30 this morning, and it continues ......

Why the voices you ask?? 
We won the Halloween Costume contest at our Agility Trial this weekend - and the prizes were these "fun" toys. I love dressing up and this was the third year we have won! I gave them the toys last night when we got home, and they've continued to play with them all day. They worked hard this weekend playing Agility, and tolerated their costumes like pros, so it was the least I could do for them - even if the toys are driving me SLIGHTLY nuts!!

We have one more Halloween Party this weekend at Go Dog Go, our costumes will be revealed then!

I'll talk about our Agility weekend in another bloggity dog blog post tomorrow.

Thank dog, the dogs are sleeping right now, the voices have stopped!!

Thursday, October 16, 2008

Wieners: 101

Jane in champion form, focused, with her eyes on the prize.

Its that time of year again, the Wiener Dunking Championships. The competition is getting fierce. Jane better not get too comfortable, there are some up and comers she needs to be aware of. Though she doesn't seem worried and we've been doing our pep talks and cross training, you can never be too sure. The other dogs know she is good, she is a terrier, and terriers rule. 

Last year she got beat by Sadie a Smooth Fox Terrier,
 Jane says:
"That little you know what, has an advantage because her nose is so long. Why is her nose so long anyway, who does she think she is. She's not bad for a rookie I guess", oh jane be nice, she's a Terrier too.

Sadie using the brace on the leg technique, for more power, again all focus.

There are many techniques to this intense and sometimes messy sport:

There are the the "you've-gotta-be-kidding-me" and "you-want-me-to-do-what?" dogs, they never have a chance, Jane says "You either have it, or you don't. And what's with the costume on that dog, it is so not flattering."
See the wieners, they are right here!

Then there are the OTHERS, the Retrievers and Retriever-mixes. They have had some success over the years too, they tend to have great technique and are fast, but sometimes they tend to get too excited and fling water everywhere and forget about the wieners.

Coulee, all business, serious leg brace going on there, but she should be looking at the bowl, not the competitors, that could lose valuable time.

THEN ... 
there are those dogs that talk the talk, but can they walk the walk, 
well can ya SKID! You know who you are ....

Jane says "Just because you are as cute as me, and cute for a boy, and have charisma like no other, doesn't win you extra points buddy, we'll see you at the wiener-filled-plastic-bucket, and don't even think about looking in my direction!"

All photos from Paws on the Run

Wednesday, October 15, 2008

Age is just a number.

Jane is nearly 9.5 years old. People are always surprised by that. She saves a lot on hair dye since she is already white, so she hides her age well.
open wide Jane ...

check out the toys expression "ouch, that hurt"



She has recently taken to playing fetch more than she ever has, and even loves toys that she has never shown any interest in: stinky socks, Kaleb's bumpers, you name it.

There is just something about a terrier, I love the feistiness, nothing can beat that. nothing.

Monday, October 13, 2008

Giving Thanks.

We had a great weekend at "Grammy's" this Thanksgiving weekend, 
we have lots to be thankful for ...

1. Gramma Pat. She brings the dogs each a new toy with every visit

2.  Grammy Carol gives the dogs a cookie each morning.  
I Say "Jane you had your cookie, get off the damn chair."
Jane replies with "But I'm cute, make me."

3. The "Toy". Jane ONLY wanted the yellow one. 
G & K weren't so picky.

4. Kaleb was thankful for lots of used dish rags in the laundry room.
Though somehow, he managed to get out of actually doing the dishes.

5. Gyp is thankful that Gramma smokes,
so she gets to go in the yard and gets unlimited toy tosses. 
And the fact that Grammy Carol's yard is the size of a city park.

6. Jane is thankful that she was in her Kennel when Auntie 
was playing Guitar Hero to Metallica, on the way to Grammas. 
She might have had to take things into her own paws otherwise ....

7. I am not thankful for the fact that Kaleb didn't stop moving for 4 days, and he now has xylophone ribs again, sigh. He'll appreciate all the raw beef this week. On the upside, he's really tired this morning!