Sunday, 25 October 2009

Nope - I Just Don't Get It?

I really just don’t get it. I have thought about it, re read theories on behaviour and learning and “nope, I still don’t get it”. So what I am not getting? The growing custom if your dog goes wrong on a contact point, putting it back on and then walking out the ring. Surely the fault has arisen due to inconsistent criteria? And then by putting the dog back on the contact, however nicely and then walking out the ring, surely the only thing you are teaching the dog is “you do that contact, touch that zone and it ends”. "Yep, that is correct you get it right - we walk out”. Which I just don't get, where is the reward for the correct/corrected desired behaviour?

Still that is one of the interesting elements of training agility, the reason why people and dogs do what they do. The training methods, the outcomes, the scenarios, the reasoning, the approaches, the relationships, the cooperation, the team work, the attitude, the spirit etc,. It is all ‘food for thought’ and Rivi clearly thinks it worth chewing over ;-)

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Stage 2 continued and Mr Big's Rite of Passage

The Hunt is on….This is hard going and entirely self inflicted, I know. I am now in the world of chases and searches, and then that darn elusive prey – ideal house and job. Have some tantalisingly close. Ultimately they will be caught. But with something as fundamental as house and job close does not cut it, it needs to be pretty much perfect. And really, where do we want to live. The harder we think and research the more confusing it becomes. On the bright side, it is entertaining talking to the new people I meet estate agents, recruiters and home sellers.

Then I have looked at large gardens and thought b-gg-r these would be to hard to maintain, during the summer, but I don’t want a small garden. What I want is a 'tardis' garden. All petite and then when you need it – you open a door and magic a big garden appears. Hmmm……may need more astro turf. Maybe will just go for a garden of around 100ft. More practical, methinks. Buying your house with your dogs in mind too, makes house hunting a whole different ball game. Perhaps what I think I want and actually want are two different things?

Big has now progressed to ‘adult weaves’ and he it looking good, he is trying to go so fast he practically skids!!!!!!!!!! The 2x2 have been packed away. He has now hit teenage hood well and truly. It was real funny yesterday, after a particularly good riot with Zev and Rivi round the house and garden, he charged into the lounge, leapt on to the footstool and started to pee, I was shocked in a bemused way. I said ‘Mr Bigs, excuse me” and he promptly jumped off and cocked his leg against it. Ha ha, the rite of passage, he has cocked his leg for the first time and Marc missed it. I have nicknamed the youngsters the Gusto Kids – because everything they do is with such gusto - like this photo of Zev, about to destroy one of his tuggy toys.

Aren’t they funny and fun, at the same time?

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

Changes are a coming - Stage 2 -SOLD

Well, stage two has arrived, the on going plan to restore the yin and yang i.e be less crazy busy has evolved to the next stage. Yep, we have sold the house. Woohoooooooo :-)

Now I have spotted the potential gap in the market for an estate agent who specialises in the non-standard i.e not interested in school catchment or sought after areas. Want a large garden and small house/bungalow, with parking for several vehicles. There must be others who need that type of property seeking service too.

Can someone please take up the challenge and source us agility people the ideal property - double quick. I wish, I wish. The sheer irony I was offered a job that I had been trying to get for a long while up here, but its to too late. We are off to pastures new!!!!!!!!!!!!yahoooooooooooo. No I don't want a big house - they need to much maintenance - lesson learnt - a wee house with a large garden and lots of parking for the van and caravan. Oh yes, that is what we need. Hopefully I don't sound like an ungrateful brat, but rather as someone who is on the journey of making life as good as it can be for all my guys. After all your only here once, or are we? ;-)
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Sunday, 11 October 2009

Really, really the end of the Season or Start of the New?

Crazy really, we agreed to do this weekend of shows, as Beacon had not qualified a team for Crufts which is really unusual. So off we headed up to the north, and which I really enjoy. Due to Zev’s and Rivi’s wins last week these shows would be “freebies”. And they did some great stuff and I tried to ‘push’ my handling and so a mixture of rosettes and trophies and off courses. But I nearly lost Zev in the soft tunnel in one run, rather than driving through the middle, he took to the edge nearest to the side he would be turning and as a result, he was struggling to move in the rather narrow funnel he created – a bit of a sideways scrabble! Phew a few seconds later he came out ok, bit of a worry at the time.

All season I have not done teams apart a team run at Burridge – zero expectation of Rivi and a great outcome an awesome run. Two reasons really I was not ready to put our partnership under the agility spotlight in that sense and because my main focus with Rivi this year was been to build the game of agility and create the hype and confidence that no matter what else is happening her focus is on the agility and me. This has progressed well enough to make me think, yeah we are ok to step up now. Its taken from last November 08 to September 09 to get to this stage. At Bromsgrove she qualified for the Adams Derby, so thought “ok, game on”. Nuts was a great team dog, and I use to luv running forth, the need to get it right especially if the other 3 had gone clear. However, now days it’s a relay rather than four individual runs, I have become rather ambivalent about it, as it is just not the same, don’t know why. I digress, after all the travel, Rivi’s team was 'scratched' so we did not end up running, so me and Rivi are now on the transfer listing and looking for a team to join ;-) ha ha……or not as the case may be. Can’t quite make up my mind about it all!