Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Monday, Bloody Monday

Kirk had a very traumatic experience last night. There was lots of paw flailing and blood involved.

I did finally manage to save her by removing the tooth.  She recovered really quick.  Me... not so much.

Thursday, July 17, 2014

What has Kirk been up to?

Oops, where does the time go?  It's been quite a while since my last blog post and... well whatever.

Kirk found a brand of beer that fits her.
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(although she thinks it should be for Icon, who is admittedly one of the bitchiest males I know)
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We haven't hiked too much lately, but she did get to go on her first off-leash hike and was very good!

"I'm all growed up!"
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We had a very scary moment on the hike where Rampage came within inches of impaling himself on a branch.  He impaled his water container instead.  It was the left fork of the branch that got him.

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If you look closely you can see the huge, gaping hole that the branch left.  If that had been his chest....  Yikes.
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Kirk turned 4 months old!
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And Rampage tried to send her back where she came from.  It didn't work.
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She got to do a hike with horses.  Horse butts = OK.  Horse faces = MUST KILL!
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We made a fort for Rampage leading up to July 4th so he wouldn't be so worried about the fireworks.  Rammy loved his fort!
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We spent July 4th at a trial where we didn't hear any fireworks at all!  It was very nice :)  There were more puppies than adult dogs at the trial.  It's definitely puppy season.
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And then after July 4th Kirk (and my other dogs) spent a lot of time being BORED because I had to work a LOT.
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She spent a lot of time in a crate in my car.  Too much time.  Now she balks going back to the car after I take her out :(.
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I do always manage to get her out for walks and play, but it's not enough when you work 15-17 hours a day.
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Some of that is at home, of course.  But still BORING.
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She got to defend me against evil flowers.
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And watch airplanes fly over the wind harp (why flowers are evil and airplanes are fine, I have no clue).
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She learned to pee laying down??  Uhm, whatever.
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And pose around an empty office building
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I even got to sneak her inside over the weekend.
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But now, my project has rolled out and I'm just dealing with some minor issues and follow up items.  Still working more than I should but definitely less than the last few weeks!  And.... one more week of work before 6 weeks off!  I'm looking forward to visiting my family, backpacking in Oregon with Tammy, doing some agility trials during the week  (gasp!) and lots of other things!

Wednesday, June 25, 2014

Tic Tok

I love Silvia Trkman.  Her training methods are inspiring and I just love the bond she builds with her dogs.  I've always felt that 90% of agility is having a great bond with your dog and the rest just falls into place (I realize that it is possible to have a great relationship with your dog and not do well in agility too, but those are outliers).

I've been working on her Cik/Cap the last week or two and boy I sure progress a lot slower than Silvia!  Not that it really matters aside from trying to see how I can improve.  And  I definitely see some reasons for it.  Mainly 1) I don't reward frequently enough (especially when I'm so tired that I'm training to tire her out more than trying to teach her anything and 2) my placement of reward to encourage offering behavior can quickly turn into luring when I'm not paying attention (or tired).

Unfortunately I'm unable to say Cik/Cap so I've translated to Tic Tok.  Kirk's Tic direction is significantly better than her Tok so I see more Tok's in our future.

We're going to continue to work on Tic Tok but I think my next focus will be heeling and our lineup behavior.  I'm a bit tired or luring to face the correct direction I want her to go.  We've played with pivoting with her front feet on an object but I haven't really progressed from there.

TicTok from Agility Dogs on Vimeo.

Tuesday, June 24, 2014

What a good brother Icon is...

He plays the hose game with Kirk.

Hose Play from Agility Dogs on Vimeo.

Tuesday, June 17, 2014

Kirk's newest BFF is Bansky.  Banksy is 3 weeks older than Kirk, but she is not all that much bigger.  Their butts are around the same height, but Banksy's shoulders are higher.  This is a good thing because it gives me hope that Kirk will be a normal size border collie and not a midget.  Of course Banksy is supposed to be REALLY small so maybe Kirk will still be a midget and Banksy will be an extra midget.
Kirk looks up to Banksy, and I'm worried she might be a bad influence on Kirk.  Doesn't she look a bit devious?  Kirk is so innocent. 


 Vicious Banksy!

Ok, Kirk has a vicious side too...

Tuesday, June 10, 2014

Growing up

My little girl is growing up and starting to look like a dog :(.

An ass-high dog!  Two days later she looked way more balanced.  Gotta love puppy growing.

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She is still really cute though!

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Although perhaps a bit stalky

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She likes to chase the other dogs and they put up with her.  Kinda.

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But Rampage would like her to go away.  Now.
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Wednesday, June 4, 2014


Kirk made LOTS of new friends at the BayTeam UDSAA trial in Palo Alto.

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True, Bisou and Kirk!  photo IMG_3967_zpsbb517814.jpg

With all my complaining about her food possessiveness you'd think she would be snarky with food around other dogs, but she isn't at all. At least with the lower value treats. I'm not sure what she would do with a lamb shank...  photo IMG_3965_zpsaf3ba758.jpg

There's no doubt she loves her food though.   "What about mine??" photo IMG_3963_zpsfbd5f202.jpg

She loves to lure Bisou under chairs and have her way with him.  Our poor neighbor had to put up with puppies wresting under his chair at random points during the weekend.

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She grew A LOT over the last few days. The orange harness no longer fits her.  photo IMG_3994_zps2b7535b9.jpg

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On Sunday she met Banksy for the first time. She was noticeably smaller when they played first thing in the morning. When they played again at the end of the day, they looked about the same height! Whaaaaaaat? (no photos of the dramatic differece. Just take my word for it).  photo IMG_4128b_zps5cbde731.jpg

Oh yeah we did agility too. The boys did great! They both won pMCS and pMCJ and both rounds of PSJ. Rampage won PGP (phew, I needed that bye) but Icon was asking for a new handler after that run. They were not really impressed with how much attention Kirk got over the weekend, though. Agility trials are supposed to be about THEM!

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Friday, May 30, 2014

The Babysitter

After an extremely frustrating day at work I just have no energy for a puppy.  I have struggled a bit with trying to manage work, my dogs, a puppy and a modicum of fitness (the fitness usually suffers) and sometimes I wonder how other people do it.

So tonight I say, "Screw you, puppy.  I'm not doing anything with you."  Ok, not really.  We did play for a while when we got home from work but after dinner I cannot rouse myself to entertain her.

So I brought in "The Babysitter."

(sorry, crappy dark cell phone photos, but I refer you to the "lack of energy" statement above).

One thing my precious girl and I are still working on is food aggression.  We have had major improvement since she was 8 weeks old and latched herself onto my face, but she still growls when I approach her as she's chewing on bones.  All of my dogs have shown some level of food aggression as a puppy, but they have gotten over it by this age.  I'm not worried about it with people, but I am conscious that this could be an issue with dogs in the future.  Unfortunately I can't judge the possibility of this from her interaction with my boys because they wouldn't DARE try to take anything from her or correct her in any way.

Kirk says, "Get the F*ck away from my lamb shank."

Why did you take it from me???

I actually do have some good photos and videos of her and will post soon.  She's so smart and lots of fun to play with and train... when I have energy...

Monday, May 19, 2014

Kirk's first hike!

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Kirk went on her very first hike this weekend.  We went 10.5 miles, but of course she didn't walk the whole way.  I'm really not sure how much she walked, maybe 2 miles in total.  Mostly at the start and finish where it was relatively flat.  She was such a trooper!  She took everything in stride, including the big boxers who she wasn't so sure about when she met them the previous weekend at the AKC trial.  Well, everything except when Reacher tried to hump her and she told him, "BACK OFF, DUDE."  Feisty little thing.

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My photos totally suck from this hike.  I brought my 'good' camera but it died 2 miles in (and then I had to lug it the rest of the way!) but even the ones I got weren't very good.  Most of the hikes were under heavy tree cover.  Great for summer hiking.  Bad for photos.

I mostly lagged behind this time...
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This may have been an cute photo if Rammy hadn't tried to photobomb.
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Reacher, Keen and Dasher!
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And then my camera died so I moved on to the iphone...

And what did Kirk do when she wasn't being the Little Engine that Could?  She was packing!

She looks pretty stuffed in the photo, but that's just an optical illusion.  She had enough room in there.  I won't be able to pack her much longer though.

The trail we were on was unfinished for years and years and years (and they are still putting the finishing touches on it).  It was our 'super secret' trail where you could hike up to where the stones are in the photo below (we are on our way down in the photo) and then either have to turn around and go back (for an 8 mi hike) or bushwack a while to get up the rest of the trail.  We would NEVER see people on this trail but we saw 2 groups of people this time.  Boo.

I think this photo is funny.  It looks like the dogs don't know which way they are going.

And then we were to the part where there are tons of people so we put the dogs back on leash.  2 miles left to go.  It was a fun trip, but it would have been nice if Kirk was a bit more tired when I got home!