Thursday, 30 April 2009

Rivi and Raz at WBSDs April 09

Rivi's jumping run win at the WBSD last weekend., as mentioned in the previous post I was so proud of my Babyoli. And a couple of nice runs from Raz with Marc. Now going off at a tangent I am finding it hard to fit the bloging in now the agility season is here. But I determined to keep it going, as it gives me a lovely record of our journey with my guys. I also braved into the world of having a counter on my blog and have had it for a couple of weeks, and it is ok and it is in a way interesting. What I like with the Neo one is that it has to start at zero. Now I wish I had done it from the start. Have not got my head around the following element of blogging yet, and how it is different from the blog feed/updates. That already shows you follow blogs. But I must confess some blogs I follow but don't have them on mine simply because I use someone's else blog to click on them. Hmmm perhaps I need to update my blog list or join in with following? The jury is out ;-)

Finally, its Zev's momma birthday today, and I just want to wish her a happy birthday. As not only is she is a wonderful sheltie, but with Taz's assistance produced my darling Zev :-)

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Babyoli does it again

Well at the WBSDs what can I say? Rivi did me so proud and won her 3rd jumping win. It was extra special as I had bestest friend watching, along with Nanna Nicki who helps whelps the Nedlo litters and Aunty Claire. It was a great course set by Mr Chandler, something that when you walked it, it was like game on, so felt the need to try an put in a good run for that reason too. There were many exciting courses at the weekend, set by fab people who give up their time to judge.

Got no idea why they call the the runs that dont count 'freebies', as you have to wait a certain time before your moved up to the next grade. Really they are expensive runs, they don't count for progression and you have already paid your entry, your camping and petrol. But what the heck I am just loving running with Rivi, and we went majorly off course on another round, as Babyoli decided she too was gaining confidence and went up a gear in terms of speed, caught me off guard. I was well chuffed. Raz, did some really nice rounds with Marc, in prep for Vyne next week, but Wings is being rested as she is not quite right, and it is a concern. But not at the worry stage.

Zev Update - he has taken to the see-saw with great aplomb, Zev reckons he is super dog and super dogs are fearless and bold. Go the super zev. And his weaves are progressing real nice, although must admit to using the channels, whilst Rivi is enjoying the 2 x 2 as just a thing to do. As you can see from the photo, the guys have a great time at base camp :-) p.s video of runs to follow

Sunday, 19 April 2009

Weekend at Home - discovering Clothier

After an intense 4 days of competing last weekend, we had this weekend at home. Yesterday was sunny and cold, but as the guys enjoy chilling in the garden, I snuckled into my ski wear, took out the deck chair and braved the elements. Apart from the chill it was one of the those perfect evenings, the sun slowly retiring for the night, the spring flowers and cherry blossom in their prime. The guys contentedly chomping on their chews or following the dance of a bumble bee through the flower bed. At last, I had a chance to start reading 'Bones Would Rain from the Sky' by Suzanne Clothier. I had come across this book from the OBay blog and was intrigued - but it was out of print - however a search on Amazon, sourced me my copy as it was back in print. Bernadette -Thank you for the reading tip
I only read 40 pages, and it was profound to me, there on page 12 and I quote directly from the book:-
'Most of all, this book is for those who would journey through life with dogs and other animals as their fellow travelers, and in doing so, perhaps discover themselves'
I was not sure about the word pray, so I subsituted that in my mind with hope and that worked for me. I totally got the journey and about the training and trying to do it a better way. Her benchmark (my interpretation) that she evolved was to see in the animal's eyes:-
'' find the clear light of understanding and being understood, the light of joy and confidence and trust"
So often people seek to critize or blame the dog which is always stems from poor training or lack of understanding, and a lack of compassion. Why dogs are expected to be so perfect, and get everything right, and we humans rarely are makes no sense at all?! I look forward to reading the rest of the book.

Friday, 17 April 2009

Rivi's 2nd Birthday - a snapshot

What can I say about Rivi? So earnest, pretty and fine. I always say she is more like a gazelle than a border collie, however make no mistake she has border collie traits well and truly especially herding, ask Nuts. She has so many cute moments, of which one is this sort of endearing chuck herself at you and roll over thing that she does when she fancies a cuddle. She adores being groomed and really running with Zev chasing her. No ambling around for Rivi, for sure. I think of how she has blossomed and how our bond has developed, it confirms somehow I am doing the right thing for her. I really hope so. To me she is my Rivioli, and she is the one and only. Happy Birthday, beautiful girl and ♥uxxx

p.s Marc asked if I was doing one of these compilations for his birthday, and then rather remiss we realised, that we have rather neglected taking photos of the humans!!!

p.p.s Happy birthday to all her Nedlo brothers and sisters x

Wednesday, 15 April 2009

Groovey Weekend at Dog Vegas Easter 2009

Funny Vegas, conjures up images of sunshine and bohemian times. The reality chilly, drizzly but despite the lack of promised sunshine, a lovely show. The showground layout means that you can take your young 'uns around the ring and sit on the surrounding grass banks without them getting over awed. And with the oldies to chomp on cool kongs and chilling socially, it is totally great, especially with waterproofs and doggy rain coats. Four days of competing with three runs a day, I was really excited about this as it would be an excellent experience for me and the Rivi to gain much needed experience outside on grass. And it is so exciting to run a dog that is up to 3 runs a day, Rivi my gazelle in disguise!

Friday was an 'if only' day we did a storming round until the last hurdle and then she turned around to look for me, and my affirmation to her came to late and we had a run by. Which meant faults. But she did so much else, there was so much I was so proud of. Great turns, weaves, contacts and responses to handling. Saturday we were placed, but the start ups were hard, her eyes being all over the place. Was I losing connexion? How can i help her and how can I help me help her, as we continue this critical start to our agility career? Friday and Saturday, I tossed and turned thru' the night as I tried to think it through. Then LB came to my rescue, fortunately I had packed the book, and I had planned to re-read it over Easter thinking it would be a good thing to do. And there he said in Chapter 1, about going in with the attitude and belief to win. And that is what I had lost sight of, going in with the view to giving it our best shot. It does not mean that it will necessarily happen every time, but what is does do is maximise performance in terms of attitude, focus and belief. I was so busy worrying about courses, I had detoured from my core attitude which is to savour and tackle every run, and at the same time having a great time with my bestest team mate. Sunday morning, we went in to win and the fantastic Babyoli, won the agility and jumping, we are now grade 4.

I have the jumping win on twice as in the first run the timing failed! I was really proud of us both doing again a second time, we both remained cool ;-) and composed and did it all again. Then would you believe it the agility run is not on vid, my camera man was on other duties!!!! Rivi's total tally was for a couple of places, 2 x 2nds and 2 x 1sts. Way to go Babyoli, thank you xxx

Many congratulations to the OBay sheltie gang for having a very successful weekend along with many others, including Rivi's sisters Be-Bop and Dolly. Well dones to all.

Wednesday, 8 April 2009

Mr Big leads Christine on a merry dance!!!!!!!!!!!!

Mr Big, caused me a right merry dance this afternoon. I had opened the kitchen door so that they could all play and chill in the garden due - making the most of the lovely sunny weather. Tesco man arrived with the food, great all the guys were intrigued, but soon realised I was being 'boring' and doing housey stuff, they disappeared into the garden. Some 20 minutes later it was all cleared, so I called them in to give them a chew and no Bigs! S--t, where can he be? I checked every knook and cranny in the garden and searched the house calling all the while. The other guys were getting bothered, clearly realising that I was getting frantic. 20 minutes in desperation I went out the front of the house, checking the gates were locked etc.,. then I noticed the traffic had slowed. Oh big f--k, I was really starting to panic thinking perhaps he had been run over and that is why the traffic had slowed. In desperation I phoned Marc, "Can't find Bigs". Then Marc said "on way, don't panic" . Don't panic, I was having a 'mental'. I madly dashed around again and their he was, wagging his tail in the bathroom in the frigging bath!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!. Text Marc, found Bigs or actually the words were 'found the little pr--k!' I could not speak so relieved that Mr Bigs was not lost, I cried tears of relief. The little pesky varmit, has clearly woven himselves into our hearts, well and truely.

And as they say the highest form of flattery is imitation, as Susan Garrett says 'I am grateful'. I have to say I am truely thankful that Bigs was just leading me a merry dance and not lost. And yes, I am also thank ful for rose wine, as it it now relieving my tension along with cuddles from the guys. Have a great easter everybody, and my one and only appreciation of religion is that it gives us extra holidays ;-) wooohooooo

Monday, 6 April 2009

Take out agility moment ;-)

You have had the take out training video from me now it is time for the take out competitive run. What a doughnut, walking into the frigging jump, why was it in my way? Gosh the judge and I laughed so much….blinking heck all that travel just to achieve that. Actually it followed for the following two runs. Our first show with no trophy or rosette, felt weird and frustrating for me. Not for Rivi of course – she is none the wiser and that is how I want it. We have much to learn as a team outside, she had her first grown up outside session last weds – yay Beacon back on grass and it was not raining. Last summer it seemed to rain all the time and I don’t like to train experienced dogs in such conditions let alone and inexperience one. So hopefully this year we can get some good training in on grass in the great outdoors, as it changes the context and feel for jumping for the dog - totally. And of course I can run faster as I am not sinking into the sand and getting sort of stuck on turns.

But the great news is that Jane and Dolly (Rivi’s sister) won their agility grade 3, way to go guys. And I will hold you both to the celebration drink next weekend.

p.s inspired by Lian’s recent blog on Sizzle’s a-frame and tempted to use the garden and not worry about it should look like a garden. Lian, thank you.

Saturday, 4 April 2009

Hampshire Weekend - March 2009

Great girlie time last weekend, started with going to see Marley & Me with Caroline, laughed so much at the send up of a dog trainer, smiled at the journey through life and then had tears streaming down my face for the last 15 minutes. What a doh moment when arranging to see that film, of course it is about his whole life!!!!! Still well worth seeing, on par with (and yes showing my age, ‘Old Yeller’ ‘101 Dalmatians, ‘Lady and the Tramp’ and ‘Escape From the Dark’) I know, I know it is only make believe.
The next day we hired LO’s fabulous shed Caroline kindly filmed a short bit of training. The trouble with not having access to my own full set of equipment and then at the mercy of the weather is that my guys and I have to sometimes grab the opportunity to do something. I end up in a bit of a rush. It is all very well saying infinite patience produces greatness. Who said it must have had all the time in the week and/or access to what ever they needed when ever they wanted hmmmm. So there was the a-frame, was it time to set Zev loose on it. It totally was - the Zev is fab, despite the crappiest attempt at training he still got the basics within two five minutes sessions, of which most is playing tuggy. Thank you, Zev. Rivi was just lovely. And the fun with Caroline it is about ‘showing off the guys’, enjoying and celebrating achievements, as well as some good natured ribbing. I guess you could say the trust is there and we just get where each other are coming from. The initial a-frame with Zev was a crack-up; I guess you had to be there ;-)
Then lunch, then a nice walk at Canada Common, then pre season agility check for Rivi and a check for Zev, as I was concerned he might be ‘out of line’ due to having the two teeth out, and he was but now all sorted. Phew, glad I do these checks as routine.
Then time catch up with LO, take the champ for her walk (Loopie, Waggerland Whoosh of Nedlo, now 15 years old, and to me she is simply the Champ) have takeaway and hit the garden centres. Oh it was sure good to be in Hampshire for a lovely weekend, even if it was a bit of a blur.