Monday, October 31, 2011

Sunflowers, for naught?

See, the trouble is the ground is FAR too wet to get in with the carbine. For naught, nah.............the rodents and crows and songbirds and other wildlife are having a lovely meal.

They are simply falling off the stalks.

I mean, seriously!!! How the heck was this thing going to get in there to harvest them?? It is ENORMOUS!!!

At this point I don't think a harvest is possible. Simple too much rain. This sure has been one wet October!!!If I had thought to bring my camera today I could have shown the water these are basically sitting in. Darn it!!! Sure was a pretty scene. Now, just brown and kind of sad. Well, not so sad for the little birds, crows and other critters. It is a rodent's buffet out there!! The dogs enjoy it, nosing deep into the grass, sniffing out tiny mice and moles.

Friday, October 28, 2011

This year's costume!

Seemed appropriate this year!!! :D My Little Sunflower!!!!

Surely no one thinks I made him do all those costumes in ONE DAY??? Those go WAY back. I think the clown ones were about 9 years ago. Notice no grey on his muzzle??

I had more, but I guess they never made it to this "new" computer. He wore a Harley Davidson skull cap and sat on my scooter one year. Then he was in a cowboy outfit and sat on a saddle on Gabe. That one was awesome!!!!!

And, yes, Laura, Lance and Vito - he owes me this. But, seriously, he is more uptight each and every day, lately (snow last night and in our near future!!!), when I have to put his coat on to go for a walk. He hates wearing clothing. So, ultimately he is dressed up in a "costume" every single day come cold weather. At least for Halloween costumes he gets a pile of cookies!!!!

Thursday, October 27, 2011

Halloween season!

Is that really a season? YEP!! Or a holiday? YEP!!! Around here it is!! And it is really fun. Especially if you live in Cape Elizabeth. There is a scare crow contest going on. I MUST get photos! Some of them are really awesome!

Roscoe spent many years entering Fetch's Howlaween costume contest and winning many times. It was a great way to practice his sit-stays and self control. For those who think dressing your dogs up in costumes is mean and unfair, um.........think of all we do for our dogs day in and day out!! We pick up their shit, clean up their barf, vacuum up their hair and dirt they track in our houses, pay hundreds and thousands of dollars in food and vet bills, provide them comfy cushions and beds and toys and treats................excuse ME???? Mean and unfair???? We love these dogs every day and provide them safe homes and awesome lives. I think for our silly and warped amusement they can deal with a silly costume or two for all of a few minutes. Certain ROSCOE can!!! For all the times he has caused us trouble and anxiety and embarrassment over his rotten behavior I think it is a very small thing for him to do............dress up in a costume and get some cookies. I promise you he knows the drill now and sits still and waits for his cookies and it is ALL worth it to him!!!! The only thing Roscoe will not do for me for cookies is swim. Dress up for a few minutes in a silly costume, piece of cake!!! He's got that one down!

Sure, there are some dogs out there (my sweet Jess was SO embarrassed, she was horrified!) who should not have to do it. However, I firmly believe that most dogs don't think it is the worst thing they ever have to do, no matter how sad they look. I think most dogs feel worse every day we walk out the door and leave them behind. Dress up in a costume? Not so bad, really. For most, it's attention and they get cookies and made a big fuss over. For some, maybe more attention than they usually get in a day - just saying.
It's just not that horrible a thing. It just isn't, so no more "Poor Roscoe"'s! Roscoe he would rather dress up in a silly costume than get his nails done and I have to do his nails many times through out the year. Dress up? Once a year. He can handle it, it is sure not the worst thing in the world! And handle it he does!!!

So, I don't want to hear another word about how mean I am and how sad Roscoe looks. Whatevaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaaa......................he owes me this and he gets his cookies!!!!!.............The clown saw Marge Simpson's hair dresser -

Harry Potter -

Ba-Roscoe-bama -

Spidey Man -
I'll post more. I have been posting these on Facebook, too.

Monday, October 24, 2011

Cows took over!!! And a sunflower update.

We call him Pin Head. Not like the Pin Heads in our house, though. He IS a Pin Head. Just look at him!! He's ENORMOUS and yet, his head is so little. The cows have bigger heads and are probably half his size.

I'll have to try to get a photo of him side by side with a cow. I did have one, but his "lipstick" needed to be put back. :O NOT appropriate for a blog. Ick!
I mean, really, he has enough hanging out. We don't need to see his "lipstick", too.
They took over the back pasture. They are happy cows! The dogs? They can't quite get the new route. Years of passing through this pasture and not we have to go around??? It's a nice, new path, but old patterns are hard to break. I am NOT going into that pasture with Pin Head. He sure seems mild and gentle, but..............did you look at him, he's HUGE???? Plus, there is now another line, the fence is doubled, so not as easy to just walk under it....zap!!!. I'm OK with that, not getting zapped. Walk around, that's just fine!!!! Roscoe isn't so keen on the new path in spots. The woody stalky bits left after mowing it hurt his tender little toes. It will get better, but right now it is a little sharp for him on one section.
We are all curious about the sunflowers. The carbine has arrived, but it's FAR too wet to get in and harvest. Some of them seem a little moldy? But, really, many of them look perfectly fine and just as you would expect a sunflower seed to look. I'll try to get a close up shot.

Saturday, October 22, 2011

Two more runs, but they are pretty blurry.

My crappy camera can't really do well from way up in the stands. Not sure if she had zoomed in if that would have been any better. It was hard because the only other person I knew in my group was Laura, my teammate, and she and I often ran back to back. So, we would find someone to film us, but that wasn't easy for that person to do going from camera to camera immediately.

This was his PGP quarters and he placed 10 and they advanced 12. Very proud of that, even with his trotting into the weaves!! He was definitely over-whelmed, but he sure holds it together nicely for 10th place!!!!

This run looks pretty good, but definitely too slow. It might have been in the placements at home, but at Nationals it sure wasn't enough. We were 17th after this run and they took 10 to finals. I am still so very proud of him!!!! Such a good little buddy!!!! This was PGP semis and in this class were all the dogs with "byes", which means all the dogs who qualified at a regional event to automatically make it to this round, so the competition was much stiffer. Basically, all the REALLY fast and competitive dogs ran this class.

We made it to the beach yesterday and even Colby got to run. Her back seems much better and she seems OK for that run on the beach. Nice, flat footing for her there. It was a great way to shake off the cobwebs from the week.

That trip seemed to take a lot more out of me than I had thought. As I come out of the fog I realise how hard that was. Long trip, lots of personalities to deal with, noise and crowds, all things I am NOT used to. I work outside and alone most of the time, so that trip was definitely out of my comfort zone. I think I did pretty well and tried REALLY hard to stay positive and happy and not complain.

And honestly I DID have a really great time!!! I was SO thrilled to just BE there with little Spur. Just him and me, that was very special!!!

However, I did hear a lot of complaining from top competitors and that stinks. It's supposed to be a FUN hobby, but some make it such a serious thing. I know, some make a living out of it and have to take it that seriously, but when you are dealing with animals one must have patience and a sense of humor, I think. Otherwise, I see no point in it. Some really poor sportsmanship occured there and some not so nice behavior from very experienced people. At big things like this there will always been some stuff I am not so happy with, since it involves animals I can get pretty critical. I AM opinionated. Those who know me know how very true that is and holding my tongue isn't my strong point. You want my opinion, just ask. You will get it! And sometimes you'll get it without asking.

I also saw some really great sportsmanship and some really incredible agility from people who are very kind to their dogs, so it was a roller coaster ride at times. I guess in any big sport this is just how it goes. The good, the bad and the ugly. I SO very much enjoyed the good. Hard to block out the bad and the ugly, though.

Will I go again? Maybe if it comes a little closer. Next year, outside in CO. Nope, won't be doing that. WAY too far and outside could be nasty in October in CO. Maybe I can qualify Spur for AKC Nationals and maybe in 2013 it will be in the North East. Who knows............what I do know is that event made me a better handler and taught me a lot. If I can implement what I learned I will be even better!!!! :D LOL!!!

Thursday, October 20, 2011

Slowly getting back to "normal"

Boy that trip just took it out of me!!!!! You have to forgive me if I am repeating myself. The days are blending together.

I sure wish I had taken more photos. But, here are a few more -
The crate area. Not exactly sure how many dogs, but on average with 1000 runs per/day and most people had 1-3 runs/dog, that equals 600 dogs maybe? Does that sound right? There were a LOT!!! It was a very big event. I do believe it is the biggest dog show event in the world, as far as how many dogs come. And this year there were 400 less runs. WOW!!!

I was surprised at how early it was done on the first few days. We were able to get back to the hotel and have a beer or shower before heading out to dinner. Lots of restaurant possibilities from the room, which was nice. Of course, Friday and Saturday nights were a lot later. Saturday we didn't get in until nearly 11:00, which stinks because we were SO exhausted no one wanted to get up for our "fun runs" on Sunday morning at 7:00 AM. Ugh. We just slept in that morning.

One night we headed into Louisville and ate at Joe's Crab Shack on the river. That was SO fun!!!! I have never been to a Joe's Crab Shack and it was an experience!!! Bought Rich a t-shirt, tie dyed orange and yellow "Peace, Love, Crabs" and unfortunately left it in the room. They might be able to send it to me, though, so I left the top housekeeper a voice message and she returns back to work this morning and hopefully has it.

Then after that dinner we took the dogs for a walk along the Ohio river walk. It was LOVELY!!!!! Warm and a big, bright moon!!! Very fun!

Never made it to Churchill Downs, though. I hear it isn't the big deal you might think. A green expanse among the cement. Louisville really just looks like any other city. Mall after mall after mall of the same stores.

We did drive past the Kentucky Horse Park on our way home and THAT was amazing!!!!! Hundreds of acres of white double fencing and neatly mowed pastures. A magnificent sight, for sure!!!!

Why didn't I take pictures???? ME??? I take pictures of my dogs eating grasshoppers, but do I take pictures of my trip to KY????

No, I take a picture of little Spur yawning in his "penthouse" crate in the car next to me after hour maybe, on our 13 hour last day heading home. I can't say he was physically tired, but mentally, YES.
Would I go again? Hmmm..........maybe. There were people who went just to volunteer or just to watch. Not sure I would do that???? I mean, it was a great experience and I know Spur and I both learned a ton, but it was not an easy trip. It was a lot of work, a lot of noise, a lot of dust and dirt and a lot of cement. I work outside walking dogs on the beach and sleepy little neighborhoods, I am not used to such bustle and buzz. And all that sitting!!!!

Wednesday, October 19, 2011

Two of Spur's runs

We definitely lost a lot of speed on our starts. I think the lack of fans at the in gate made a difference and I must figure out how to work through that and keep him happier by myself at the start. He sure was fine in the crowds and walking the grounds, always pulling to get back in the building, never looking worried walking around, but we sure showed a lack of speed and a bit of a melt down during the first few obstacles as the week progressed. I know he never looks real happy when I hold him for our starts, so I want to get HAPPY on the start lines. My winter project, for sure.

His dog walks were PERFECT all weekend!! Absolutely perfect! In fact, I think he was happiest doing tunnels and DW's. I just need to get him happy like that during his starts and at other sections of the course. I am still VERY PROUD of how well he held it together at such a HUGE event. Over 1000 runs some days!!! Five rings going from 7 AM to well into the evening some nights. He sure did well, good Little Monkey Pants!!!

He was National Champion of Cuteness, that was for sure. I had more people stop us and ask about him and exclaim about his cuteness!!!! Of course, he LOVED that!!!! :D

This was PTeam Standard I think -

This was PSJ semis. Not good enough for finals, for sure, but a respectable run. -

Must get better about instructing my videographers to zooming in. It's hard to just grab anyone and toss them a camera. Most of the other videos are SO blurry and SO far away they are not worth posting. One run was simply never even filmed because I didn't set it right, doi!!!

I wish I could post here my teammates winning video, but she posted it to facebook not youtube and I can't capture it. She was 10 seconds faster than us for one of our runs. Usually we were about 4-5 seconds slower. That's a LOT of time. His PGP quarters we were 7 seconds slower and I thought that was one of his better runs, LOL!!! They are just out of our league, or we are just out of THEIR league!!! :O

Honestly, her dog is too good for Performance and really should be in Championship. He is brilliant and SO fast and she is a very experienced handler, a past World Team member. They really don't belong in Performance. Her dog is a brilliant jumper and can easily jump the higher jumps. I don't usually say that as I feel most dogs have to work too hard in their heights, but not this one. I believe she is going to move him up now. Now that she cleaned up in Performance Nationals, LOL!!!

Tuesday, October 18, 2011


Wow, epic driving trip!!! 13 hours in the car yesterday and my ASS hurt! But, home now and re-living it all. WHAT a BLAST!!! Definitely not as hard as I thought it would be. I hear the dust and walking between rings on cement was really hard last year, but it didn't seem to bother me like I thought it might! :D

I suppose since I walk a lot of dogs on pavement every day I am used to that. They watered the rings each night/morning so the dust wasn't as bad, I hear. I SO wish I had taken more photos. What was I thinking? I had my camera every day, but you know, it was SUCH a HUGE event I was just taking it all in and kept forgetting to get photos.

Nearly and sometimes over 1000 runs each day made it quite an event. SO glad I had my "ass pad". I have a gel cushion seat I bought earlier this year for bringing to dog shows to sit on and it was SO nice to have. I am not used to all that sitting and my ass/leg/hip starts to hurt. My ass pad helped SO much.

I do have some more photos and some videos to post later. Right now I need to bathe Spur. The dirt was really nice to run on, was dirty. :O He needs a bath. And I have a bunch of laundry to do.

Internet at the hotel was a bummer. I managed to check email and weather, and then tried to post here, but would get shut down, damn it! And there was unfortunately no wifi at the facility. They didn't want to clog up the server at the site because of the live-feed. Oh well. My iPad doesn't have satellite capacity, so I depend on wifi.

Spur did SO freakin' well I am bursting with pride!!!

Baby Spur (hmmm, he's four, but with 12 year old housemates, that makes him the "baby"!) really held it together at Nationals in KY!!!! Such a good Little Monkey Pants shelter dog!! Held it together to make it to semis in both PSJ and PGP and miss finals by only 6 dogs in PGP!!! With nearly 1000 runs every day it was a little over-whelming for us, but we had a BLAST!!! He ran clean in every run!!!

He was 10th in quarter finals, 17th in semis (they took the first 12!!), so we didn't make finals. But, what a good little buddy!!

Friday, October 14, 2011


I tried to post videos yesterday, but I guess it didn't work!!

Spur ran GREAT yesterday and just out of the PGP finals by five dogs!!!

Then he was a little overwhelmed by the long day and no where near finals for PSJ, but still he ran clean in everything so far!!! Good little Monkey Pants.

My team mate has won everything and is making me feel WAY out of my league!!!!

Photos are of the shopping and our crate area. I have been good and only bought Spur a nice harness.

so, since we didn't advance only one run tomorrow. Booooooring, but this is such a HUGE trial that and that is how it goes!!!

Tuesday, October 11, 2011

Great first day!!!

we went to a lovely farm in Indiana and used an indoor arena to practice. spur did great. Then had our practice run at the site. Spur ran clean!! A little overwhelmed by the whole scene, but he did so well. I bet he just runs better and better!!! I am so proud!!!

Monday, October 10, 2011

Had a lovely walk in a state park just down the street. So pretty and the dogs loved it!!! felt great after our 18 hour drive!!!

No longer a Waffle House virgin!!

Notice how Spur got the Penthouse suite in the car!!!

- Posted using BlogPress from my iPad

Saturday, October 8, 2011

He is ready!!!

Is this our next National Champion!?

Yep, he's a Champion, for sure.

Champion of Cuteness!!!!
Are we ready? Ready as we will ever be!

Stay tuned, I hope I can keep updating while I am in KY.

Friday, October 7, 2011

Test again

Trying a video, which required...... Yep, another app!!!!

YouTube Video

Thursday, October 6, 2011

Doing a test

OK, so I am trying configure out if I can post here on my iPad while I am at Nationals.

Looks like I can, but I will need to load photos to Shutterfly first, which is a pain.

Maybe I can figure out an easier way.

these are my test photos.

Tuesday, October 4, 2011

Spur's RDW videos

Yesterday I made a bunch of videos. I found that Movie Maker locks up only once a day, so if I make more movies after the first lock up it works great!!! Go figure?

Spur's runnings into nothing are when he is going left. Towards the course and a jump is going to the right -

Silvia says I just need to be up ahead with him for now. Not sure I see where I am any different during the leaps, but maybe?

At home he isn't as fast. He sure likes an audience!!! LOL!!! Plus, my dog walk is wooden and only 10" wide, so it's like a highway on a rubber 12" dog walk at Anne's.

This time going left is into a tunnel, going right is into nothing -

This video he is a little faster. Can you tell why? A friend (Hi Lisa!!!) is videoing! He likes his fans to watch!!!! :D

The first part of this video going right is into nothing, left going into a tunnel. At 1:25 I switch to curved tunnels either direction since we need to practice good hits before Nationals next week. :O Yikes!!!

**Laura, Lance and Vito!!! I watched Lance's Utility run and it was AWESOME!!!! Very impressive!!! He sure looks happy!!!! Congrats, well done!!!!!

Monday, October 3, 2011

Weekend trial report!

Did one day USDAA. Spur was AWESOME!!! He loves this sight now. He won his jumpers with a really nice run first thing! Then won Snooker for his third Super Q, which was nice. Only one other dog got as many points. Good little Monkey Pants! Then I totally messed up in Standard and........gasp......he missed his contact!! :O

Good GRIEF, I feel like that is just falling apart! It was from a stop, so no speed with a naked single jump after. Oi.

So, I did it in his gamble class and he was good, ran it great and hit it fine, but then I totally turn into a Gambletard!!! Messed up his approach to the a-frame, which didn't matter, I just then sent him to a tunnel, but then my plan was all messed up and we ended up in a very bad position for a VERY easy gamble and didn't get it. I had plenty of time to regroup and reposition to get the gamble, but do I? NO, I fucking fall apart and just keep going and good little man did what he was supposed to for how I was positioned, but that wasn't part of the gamble. This was an EASY gamble we should have gotten. And that's all we need for his P-ADCH - four more gambles!!! OMG - it's like a curse. A gamble curse.

We won pairs, but gamble was the last class so I drove home cursing myself. He was a good boy, though, but DAMN IT!!!! That makes two easy gambles we haven't gotten. ACK!!!!! Glad the Nationals will only have a time gamble. Much easier. Sigh........

Yesterday rained all day, but during a mild break I put a tunnel at each end of the DW and ran him back and forth. Six reps with success each time. I will practice that set up all week to get some good reps in and MY confidence back that he can do that nicely. After Nationals I will challenge him again, but not before!!!!!