Tuesday, May 21, 2013

Chapter 1: New beginnings new adventures.

This past weekend was a big memorable weekend of firsts, I've opened the book for a new Chapter in my life to begin ... and so it starts. It was the first time back in the ring with Gyp since losing Kaleb. It was Fitz's first time tagging along at the busy Agility environment. It was my best friends first time in the ring with her boy, her 6 year old daughter ran Gyp for the first time at an outdoor trial - they have been training for the last month and are really making great strides - they earned their first Jumpers Q. It was the first time traveling with this "New Crew" ... it's OK, I'm OK with it. It's different, and it's just the beginning.
BFFs Acey and Gyp - they earned their first Jumpers Q!

So you know how people say "they are always with you in spirit" apparently that is true ... and seriously Gyp ... you weaved a numbered cone a full 360? And then you circled me twice herding me over a jump? I am pretty sure that is the first time a crowd of spectators ever laughed at US on course and twice in one day. It was totally fantastic. People commented "that was a K-man move", and it sure was. He was there to remind me to let go, and have some fun. We got our poop in a group on day 2 and we ran 3/3 and were back to clicking as we always do. The first day was hard for me to really focus. I cried a couple times for K over the weekend, and it was nice that people had nice memories about the boy. I know Gyp misses her sidekick too. I walked a course thinking about how I would handle for him. And seeing the end gamble, I knew it was one he would get. I'm sure that will happen for a while. It makes me smile and gives me a gut ache at the same time. My challenge is to remained focus on Gyp, and love every minute of it as I always have with her.
Fitz enjoying his first agility trial
But having Mr Fitz at the trial kept me just as busy as Kaleb would ... he was always my most high maintenance dog! It's funny, people that met Fitz asked if he reminded me of Jane - and really besides that he is white and recognized as a JRT by breed, that's pretty much where it ends. Jane was so driven by fear, she only had eyes for me, I always had my guard up around her, she couldn't be trusted, and she was fiercely loyal to me. With all of that she was my greatest teacher. Then there is Fitz. He is the picture of confidence, friendly with everyone, funny, silly, full of himself and then some, driven to go, and he does not take NO for answer. So yes, it's true, he is more like Kaleb :) This puppy is perfect for us.We had no idea when we name him Fitz - just how much that would really mean!!

He is 15 weeks old now, and wow we have learned so much together already!  We are registered for 2 puppy seminars this summer. One a one day seminar, and another a 3 day Puppy Camp in BC. I'm also working with Loretta Mueller via cyberspace, and she's helping me stay on track with a program to help me build the best working relationship with this guy.  I respect her training style and the results she gets in her own, and students dogs. I'm venturing into some new training territory with him - running contacts among other things, and having her one-on-one guidance is awesome. It is not only helping my relationship with him, but will benefit my training and teaching overall. 

I was going to list the things we are working on, but honestly, there is just so much ... for instance, I lost count at over 100 people and 70 dogs met. And apparently, none of them are strangers - they are all his best friends. It is a challenge having a dog so friendly, but it has always been important for me to have an outgoing dog (atleast socialized to the point of being able to handle almost any situation in public etc) - so we are working on the balance and so far, so good. He is recalling off of playing with other dogs and learning focusing on me as the giver of all things great and glorious. I love his drive, and we are working on creating a sold work ethic. This puppy is a shining light, a total joy, and he also has very sharp teeth ... and he knows how to use them.
Mr. Fitz 14.5 weeks old


manymuddypaws said...

I thought of you this weekend- the first trial without K. I am glad it had more goodness than sadness.

And you and Fitz are going to rock. He's perfect for you.

Breanna said...

Loved this post. Fitz is going to be a rockstar and that picture of Gyp is to die for. It's hard to move forward with trials after such a life-changing event but sounds like it was full of good stuff!

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furricane said...

i miss my 6 yr old flattie(lost to cancer, last yr) everytime i go to agility trials, but i still have my 4 yr old to run, cant let him down. that's what gets me thru. glad to hear your out there doint it again, its good for the heart.

Taryn said...

Loretta is the perfect teacher for you and Fitz. Just look what she accomplished with Andy and Crackers!

How Sam Sees It said...

K would be proud of you! ...and I'm glad Gyp realized a little laughter would go a long way. Congratulations!


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