Tuesday, January 31, 2012

I see the good in amongst the flapping statue

That's what happens in the Gamble class. It turns us humans into flapping statues. I'll explain to all my non-agility friends. Agility friends all know what I am talking about. In Gamble you go out and run a bunch of obstacles of your own choice, getting points for each. That's what the judge is yelling and waving her fingers about. Points. You need lots of points. In this course the Dog Walk was 7 points. YAY, Spur can do that twice for 14 points!!!

Then after so many seconds this OBNOXIOUS and worrisome buzzer will buzz. At this point you have like 18 seconds to send the dog across a line to like four obstacles. You can't cross that line!! The sound sends chills through me. I turn into a flapper girl immediately and can't think, my mental state starts to flap. My brain flaps! Seriously, Gambles make my brain turn to scrambled eggs. I stop thinking!!!! And then I make all these stupid decisions because I have no brain left.

I GOT the Gamble on Saturday, but of course I don't have THAT one on film. It was our first one in a YEAR!! We need five for Spur's Championship, so at this rate he will be seven. Whatevaahhhhhh.........it's just a title. I want it.......I want it BAD. So bad I scramble my brain.

After Saturday I breathed a little easier and tried like HECK to stick with that momentum. I did, I held it together after that obnoxious buzzer. Enough to make sure I sent him to the approach properly and as I planned. That meant taking the jump he didn't need to take, but it set him up for the tunnel nicely. Then my brain scrambled and I turned into that flapping statue I am SO good at. Oh well, the good thing is my brain didn't scramble immediately!!! That's PROGRESS!!!! That is worthy of a huge celebration!!! PARTY FOR ME!!!! And I do feel better because like three only people got this gamble. Didn't seem THAT hard, but I guess it was.

And, notice how he bolts off his start line?? YAY for that!!! That work is paying off!!! PARTY FOR SPUR!!! PARTY FOR ME!!! I am celebrating the little things here........

Oh and by the way.......I guess we are now that "cute couple".

Roscoe - he was good at gambles. He and I were Gamble King and Queen. So, it's not like I don't know HOW to do this sort of thing. I just scramble my brain with Spur for some stupid and unexplained reason. Scrambled Gamble Brain.

Monday, January 30, 2012

Too cold for the Pin Heads? Not so sure and now I feel bad.

There was a pretty stiff wind, like 20 mph, so I decided to leave the Pin Heads home. Hmmm........it was out of the north, so maybe they would have been fine? Now I feel bad. Well, we had a GREAT time and since they are calling for crappy, snowy, rainy weather the rest of the week we lingered for nearly two hours. I am sorry Pin Heads, you probably would have been OK.

Beach debris......

A strange rock?......

Just rocks. I thought they looked cool with the long winter shadows.....

We found an beached lobster trap and made the dogs pose on it......Spur wasn't impressed.....or maybe he barfed up a cookie?

"Sure, we'll pose pretty!!".....

"NOT FUNNY".....

Finally swallowed that cookie.....

Is this my good side?.........

Funny, his nose looks crooked? And he has no neck. OK, so he doesn't have much neck, but it isn't THAT short and his back isn't THAT long. And what's with the toes on his right foot? Inverted!! Funny photos.
Yeah, funny photos alright!!! LOL!.........I am pretty sure this is Spur's Happy Face. Yep, pretty sure about that.......Shih Tzu's rarely pant in the winter, so they always look so serious.......Spur's serious look......Huh, just noticed he is balancing on this log.............Happy.........It was a happy day at the beach!!! Sorry Pin Heads. I really am.

Friday, January 27, 2012

Tricks again

Last Saturday it was too cold. Never got above 18 here. Oi!! I stoked the woodstove all day and rearranged my wall photos and pictures. Useless day, rearranging pictures. I didn't do my newsletter, organize my files and clean up my desk. I rearranged pictures on my walls. For what??? Did I feel better after doing that? It took ALL DAY!!!!

OK, so maybe I do have a different vantage point on each item, but WHY???? Why did I need to do that? It was like an obsession. I couldn't stop. You know, when you start to clean out one closet and that leads to the junk drawer? Like that. Only it was my walls. Then I noticed the 18 years of dust on my curtains. The curtains I NO LONGER LIKE. I thought about tearing them down and buying fresh, new curtains. Then I ran the numbers. I rearranged more things on the walls, instead.

Then I trained the dogs, some trick training. They were bored of my wall arrangement. They always are up for tricks. Especially........Rotten Roscoe. We are working on his "Frog" trick. He's kind of nutty about it because of his "rev yer engines" trick where he kicks his back feet. So, it's a little frantic, but we managed to get some understanding. He's a NUT CASE!!!!

We'll keep at it next time it's too cold for anything else but wall arrangement.

Wednesday, January 25, 2012

Winter is hard. Did I already say that this week?

Colby is totally unimpressed with this January thaw. That's WATER running over the farm road. It was just a river in places. Yeah, nice to have 50 degrees, but it sure made our walks icky. We made it to the hill and she got to hunt awakened rodents, but still it was hardly worth it.
Spur works on his core. Those hind legs and stomach muscles needed to be............all buff and strong and........Spur!!! He's in pretty good shape, regardless of the tough going on the farm. HE still manages to run through the snow and slush, no picking HIS way. He just plows through.

This is a small stump we are working on his balance with. It has taken a few sessions, but he did SO well!!!! That's some great balance!!!!

It's a small stump.
What a MAN!!! That takes strength and concentration, good Monkey Pants!!!

Monday, January 23, 2012

Spur's standard from yesterday

I am starting to get good at learning from my videos. For example, I HATE, HATE, HATE how much I clap at him in this run!! Yes, he goes to sniff the cone set away from the weaves, so I had to clap there, but goodness all the other times???? NO!!! I don't do that in class, so why at trials. Poor buggar!!

He was the very first dog to run and after his run like the next ten dogs all went to sniff the cone! The judge didn't call refusals because the dogs all came back and did their weaves, but she then moved the cone to the wall. Oi!!!

I love in this run his start. He BOLTS off!! YAY!!!! I don't love how I grab him for his start, but he seems unfazed. Good Little Monkey Pants!!! And I VERY much love his DW!! No speed on entry and boy did I have to run to get ahead for that 90 degree turn to that jump. That bit a lot of dogs, especially those with running dog walks. He was really running well and I was a little surprised how I had to kick in another gear to get up there.

I also love how his table probably only cost us one second!! YAY!!! All my kitchen agility training his table has helped!!! :D Brought my table inside and have been working it a lot!!!

Sunday, January 22, 2012

We have managed a few snowy walks in this cold

I guess winter can be pretty. Or just cold?.........

Roscoe is NOT impressed.........

Spur, he LOVES it, cold or not, especially if he can latch on to George's head. Poor George.......
Stella loves it especially if she can BITE GEORGE'S ASS.......

We manages this walk Friday and today. Thanks NATE for making out path so nice!! Saturday we hibernated. The Pin Heads could barely go pee without freezing!! I spent the day stoking the woodstove. January is cold in Maine.

We make the best of it. I am ready for summer.

Friday, January 20, 2012

Winter is hard

Doing Spur's Daily Teeter takes some effort now. He has to crunch through the snow. I'm just tired of shoveling. As you see, he does it anyway, good little man!

The light in the afternoon draws LONGGGGGG shadows. Love this photo, if only Spur was in focus.
Roscoe was just plain cold, but look at his LONG shadow. Too long even for the camera!!

Colby struggles to see. Poor thing had to be returned from our walk as I just felt it was too hard on her. No fun and just not worth it.

She's extra careful when it's slippery and that's good, but it makes it a bummer for her. The day before was warmer and less hard/slippery and she did great. We take what we can get, but yesterday sucked for her.

I do as much shoveling as I can. It uses muscles I don't use much. You know what that means. I have a massage on Saturday.......THANK GOODNESS!!!! I only shoveled a run way around the garden. Then I slapped on my snow shoes and crunched the crust down enough for them to walk on it. Both Spur and Roscoe slip the whole way to the fence on their first attempts. :O

Winter is hard. It's just plain hard. Today is going to be interesting as the small snow cover we got overnight has covered up the ice. I carefully dodged it on my walks all week. Now I can't even see it to dodge it. May be a day for the Stabilicers. They suck to wear, just hard to move in and heavy, but they sure keep me from slipping on the ice.

Spring is on it's way, right? Not that I am looking forward to mud season, but I am really no longer a fan of the snow. It's always too much work and keeps me from getting my dogs the exercise they need. Next week the tide will be low in the afternoon, so we may get some beach walks in. This week it was high tide in the afternoon. Just not enough beach to make the drive there worth it.

Monday, January 16, 2012

Yay, the cold spell is over

This was after the snow fall. They rolled and rolled and rolled and ran around and bucked and carried on. So, she was wet from that. I think this photo shows her in fine condition. Plenty of fat on her now! :D She really isn't sickle hocked, she just looks that way in these. There is a slope in the lean-to that makes her stand like that. And being an Arab she does have an extra short back.

The cold and the snow present a whole different scene for poor little Colby. With only one eye, suffering from retinal atrophy, she just can't see well in the glare of the snow. So, she hasn't been on a walk for any length since this snow arrived. Damn it. She is pictured here snuggled next to the woodstove and basking in the sun. -4 degrees out this morning, so NO one had a morning walk.
Spur managed to get out this afternoon on the snowmobile trails. And he managed to run on top of the crust, but that is always scary. A break through could really hurt him. He did once and must have whacked his mouth, but he recovered and was more careful after that.
My barn kitties never left their beds for two days. I warm up "Snuggle Safe" disks in the microwave and put them under their beds every 8 hours or so. They LOVE those. Amazing little things that keep their beds warm in frigid weather. I can put them there before bed and in the morning they still have some warmth!!!

I am always SO thankful for my hot water in the barn this time of year. The horses really love warmed water. And it keeps the water from freezing solid over night even at -4 degrees!! :D Today nearly 25 and tomorrow in the 30's. Then Thursday they are saying in the 40's. I'm OK with that!!!

We are working on our tricks. The Pin Heads need to DO something, so we are working on tricks. The ONE good thing about winter and cold. We do more trick training and they are SO fun to train. Roscoe is INSANE!!! I am going to try to teach him to catch a toy and hold it. The hardest part might be teaching him to sit up and be still. Being still for ANYTHING isn't his favorite trick. LOL!!!!

Sunday, January 15, 2012

Winter has arrived.

And I am not that happy about it. The Pin Heads struggle so in the snow. Colby can't see well, the glare and low definition is just too hard for her failing one eye. Sucks. Very sad to have to leave her home. The ice was too much for Roscoe. He just couldn't get a grip on it and would slip and slide. Following our path from our snowshoes wasn't much fun for him, so he stayed home, too. Spur did great, managing the ice and the path, but I was WORN out yesterday trying to figure out how to get them exercised before TODAY.

Why before TODAY........It's FREAKIN' 11 degrees at 2:00???? That's too damn cold. My barn kitties didn't even sunbath, they stayed snuggled in their beds on top of their warmed up "Snuggle Safe" disks I microwave for them. LOVE those things. I warmed them up last night before doing to bed and this morning they STILL had some warmth!!

LOVE my hot water in the barn. That makes life SO much easier. The water for the horses was not frozen solid this morning. That's AWESOME!! Two buckets of hot water added before bed did the trick!

The horses enjoyed the snow when it first arrived, but now.......they are hovered by the barn in the warmth of the sun. However, here is another video of Jewel being Jewel. She sure seems to feel good! I think she is a little sore from that exercise, but not terribly. It may just be that it's SO damn cold today.

Watch the hooves fly -

And another video from Wednesday night's agility class. Watch Spur nail his contact even going nearly into nothing AND starting with NO speed. Good little Monkey Pants!!!

Friday, January 13, 2012

Damn snow!

Are we going to have to resort to this?......... Poor Roscoe! He's just starting to feel better with the doxy for his lyme. Now we have 10" of snow to deal with. CRAP!!!

Gone are THESE days for a while, I think. Racing through the clear, snow free woods and climbing on rocks and logs......

And Spur flying around the open fields with George on his heels. Hahaha, LOVE this photo!!!........
I was trying to free up hard disk space. Not sure why I need to, last I knew I had a TON, so it's odd but when I tried to sync my iPad it had trouble because of "not enough disk space". What???? Must get tech help soon. But, it was good to clean up and delete old photos I don't need. Found this one........... It reminds me of Robert Vavra photos. Did I just compare myself to Robert Vavra????? NO, I am just saying it reminds me of his photos. He is master of making his subjects the ONLY thing in focus, with everything around a blur. Me? I make the WRONG thing in focus and my subject a blur. Oh well, it's still kind of a cool photo. Nice to see the grass green and tall and clear. Spur looks very serious and he is, he is hunting rodents. Serious work, for sure!!

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

I am an idiot!

Yeah, you read that right.

Poor Roscoe. Here I am convinced he has a bulging disk only higher up than Colby had. He looks that way. Sore neck, shoulder area. Doing similar things that Colby did. (BTW - She is MUCH better!!!) Hesitant to bring him to the vet and hoping it's just sore muscles. He's old, he does crazy things, he gets sore. NO!! He has LYME!!!!

Geesus, what an idiot. I ALWAYS tell people with a lame dog in Cape Elizabeth Maine to TEST FOR LYME FIRST THING. Do I????? Poor little guy has probably been lyme positive now for over a month. What WAS I thinking??? He has had two doses of doxy and already looks better.

Maybe he can get back to doing some tricks and play time agility and even going on hikes before we get snow. Oi!! What WAS I thinking? Or NOT thinking!!!!!

Managed to load my videos from my iPad to youtube. I am SO technosavvy these days and pretty darn proud of that. Hahahaha!!!! Now I just need to figure out how to type well on the new iPad keyboard I got. That's muscle memory. I know.......Daisy Peel would get all snippy and say "muscles don't have memories, brains have memories and they are in your skull, just like your dog!!!". Oi, she is so unpleasant sometimes. Um........just to clue you in Miss Daisy, that's just an EXPRESSION!!!! When she said a dog was "flying" I wanted to say......"dogs don't have wings, birds have wings". I chickened out.

It's SO cool how I walk out all relaxed and not trying to make him stay connected to me, hardly even looking at him and what is he doing??? Barking at me!!! LOVE that. I don't even have to ask him and he's barking at me!!!!

These were good starts to practice my new start line. Tunnel starts are happy starts, usually.

Notice in this standard he misses the jump after the table. I should have put in a front cross maybe? I know, very hard for YOU to see it was not zoomed in, but whatever. He missed it I think because he knew/could feel I wasn't all that happy about him not going down on his table. I try not to get all stressy about it at trials and just carry on. But, that's very hard to do. I am not an actress. I know he feels everything. Why he didn't go down on his table? Maybe he was still thinking about his teeter two obstacles before? I don't know. The table is an issue for us. I need to try something new in training it. He's not even that fast going down at home, so it will not be fast at trials. Must figure that one out.

Monday, January 9, 2012

Fun trial and our starts were good!

I wouldn't say we are there, yet, but of course WAY too early. However, I sure FELT better. I walked out all relaxed and not caring if he sniffed or looked away at the ring crew or whatever. Funny thing was he started to bark at me. Hahahaha, like........."Hey!! You are not the tense, nervous nelly I remember!! You're all relaxed!! I.......BARK......like......BARK.......the......BARK........new........BARK........you!!!!!" LOL!!!

I made a little video. Shows our threadle work and then a pin wheel start. One of our least favorite starts. Not really how it would be in a trial, but sort of. That first turn would be a major bummer for him at a trial. This weekend's starts were all straight lines, which he loves.

I put Saturday's jumpers start in this video. Haven't loaded the other runs, yet.

He double Q'd Saturday with some really nice runs. Not super duper fast, but fast enough!!!! And I felt really good. Relaxed and pleased with our work. NICE fast table, maybe only one second to his down on Saturday. Sunday, nope.......not even an attempt to go down on the table. It was second obstacle after the teeter and I think that was the issue. I don't know. Our table needs work. We NQ'd that run because he could feel it was wrong and then even though I cued the next jump, he missed it. Still, all in all it was a very nice run. I'll load videos later. He got second in jumpers on a course that ate up most everyone else. Very few people ran it clean. He did GREAT!!!! Feeling a LOT better about everything, but our table!

Friday, January 6, 2012


A time for couch lounging, right? Yep, the dogs are bored, BUT without any snow we are managing to get out and walk almost as much as usual. I am LOVING the lack of snow. But, the dogs are a little bored. I have been SO busy lately we haven't done any trick training. I have gotten Spur out doing some agility, though, and even set up my tunnel with my little sand bags yesterday instead of putting it away. What's it doing this morning? Snowing!!! Crap! Hopefully just a dusting.
I was going to wait longer for updated photos of Jewel, but I couldn't help myself. I think it's so funny how these photos are all on the same day and she looks so different. The first two are the same side/angle pretty much. Amazing how the sunlight can alter appearance. She looks brighter and healthier and less ribby in the sun.

And this angle makes her look........well..........dull and pregnant and ribby. I had just taken her night time blanket off, so her coat was smushed down and dandruffy. The blanket kind of packs the dust down into her coat. I hate blanketing, but she is an Arab, a desert horse and doesn't grow a thick coat. Compared to Jazz and Precious who grow two inches of coat!!!!
It's been one month since the vet was here telling me she was WAY too thin. I think she's fine. Winter is boring and fattening to my horses. We don't get enough frigid air here along the coast to make it hard on them, but with no grass to eat they are bored and eat really good hay all day. That makes for fat horses. So many people worry about their horses getting thin in the winter. Not mine. I was actually happy with Jewel's weight before, but here we are plumping her up so I don't get raised eyebrows from the vet. Geez!!!! Now I am worried she will keep this gaining and get TOO fat again!!! Damn it!!!!

Thursday, January 5, 2012

I LOVE slow motion!!

This is SO cool!!

**Update on my start line. I think I might have something here!! OK, I know I said that before, but the other day I did my session and he had a weenie attack. He SCREAMED like I just broke his leg because I maybe pulled his hair when I held him. Oh my!! So, then he looked like he wanted to kill himself, doing agility with me was THAT bad, but I was just like........"hey, dude, you can do this, stop being a weenie!!" And, you know, he did.

Rewarding with a tossed ball after a tunnel is his favorite game. So, he was willing to weenie it out and keep going. The next day I set up a two jump threadle to the tunnel. He couldn't do it. He couldn't bear to come in, oh the pressure of it all he just had to go wide and serp it, but I insisted. Down to a trot he went. I worked through it some, then quit.

At class last night our starts worked!!! I am trying to be VERY programmed......two times "ready".......a pause and "GO". Every time. "Ready, ready.......GO". Every single time, so he has something he can count on. Same thing, every time. That's taking a little training on MY part. Sometimes I add a "ready". Oops. NO, I need it to be clear and consistent....."Ready, ready.....GO".

Our session today with the two jump threadle was better. I made it easier by angling the jumps more. But, he was really FLYING by the last time and I had moved one jump in a little more each time so it was pretty hard for him. I am pretty pleased. I need to figure out a few more hard jump sets before the tunnel now. Like a pinwheel or something where I have to get in and front cross in front of him or something. I did film yesterday, but it's on my iPad and I need to figure out editing in the stupid little iMovie app that's as basic as can be.

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

My plan

I get all sorts of advice, like pick a trick and stick with it. Make him happy, keep him focused, try heeling out to the line, etc. I watch my videos and see he isn’t connected and wanders away, distracted, even on leash, he’s not connected. I work hard at keeping that connection.

Howeverrrrrrrrrrr………….THAT is stressing us out. I am stressed about the lack of connection from the minute we enter the ring to removing his leash. ACK!!! So, I have thought and thought and thought about it. I need to LET GO of that stress. I want to just walk out there, relaxed and not worry about what he is thinking, doing or our fucking “connection”. I need to let that GO! And I think I can do that. Just let it GO and not worry about it until it’s time to take off the leash. Then I connect.

Here is my plan – I need something I can practice at home. Something set, solid and repetitive and something I can build on. He needs to have a pattern. Something he can count on happening every time we step to the line. So, holding him I can count on a connection. It forces him to stay with me, connected. He doesn’t much like it, but I am hoping I can train him to get good at it in the very same way people train dogs to sit stay even when they don’t like it and just want to GO. I tried it today. -

What does he like to train most? His DW. He can’t wait to go train his DW. So, I set up a straight tunnel parallel to his DW. I got his ball and his treats. Just like I would when training the DW and he was pretty pumped. I got him to “the line” as if to start in front of the tunnel and put one hand under his belly and another at his chest, holding him and said “ready, ready….”, and in a moment I was quiet and still, and his ears popped up and I said GO and tossed his ball after the tunnel. He bolted after it, through the tunnel, grabbed it and brought it back to me for his treats, just like we do training his DW. He was happy, happy, happy. I did it again. He avoided me, cringing a little even, not wanting to be held, but I insisted and again…..”ready, ready…..” and then a moment of quiet and the ears went up and again….”GO” and tossed the ball after the tunnel. I then added a jump and did the same thing. He isn’t that happy about being held, but I get him to focus forward, ears up and repeat the performance. I think in time he will be fine with being held as it means he can play that wicked fun game!!!

What’s cool about it is he IS practicing something stressful, even though it is at home and not a trail. (All the other things I tried he would do happily at home, but at a trial the behavior would slowly erode.) I can practice something that is hard for him and he works through it and gets to play. Holding him like that is “stressful”, but then he gets rewarded by his ball after the tunnel. It is something I can practice a lot because he is having fun, he’s learning a pattern of behavior and hopefully conditioning a response to bolt off the start line even when there is some stress. Will it work? I don’t know, but so far everything I have tried has not worked and just erodes as times goes by. I have worked on holding him and releasing to a tossed ball or treats and such plenty, but not exactly the same way as this with the tunnel to ball, which is a favorite activity.

Eventually, I can add more difficulty, like demotivating starts with pin wheels or back sides or threadles, all hard things that we are seeing more and more of that bum him out at the start. Because I can add the tunnel and ball after as reward I think I can get him bolting off the start, practicing those sucky, twisty, turny, demovitating starts at home. And holding him can become rewarding because he then gets to do his tunnel to ball, every single time and back chain the jumps before it.

My goal would be to walk to the line with him on leash and LET him sniff and wander mentally, checking out the ring, the ring crew, whateverrrrrrrr!!! Of course, I wouldn’t let him go up to the ring crew, but I would not insist on total focus on ME. That relieves ME of the whole pattern of “MUST HAVE CONNECTION ALL THE WAY TO THE LINE” shit/stress. Then I remove the leash and do our PRACTICED start. We’ll see. I have tried so many different things that so many different people suggest and all of them slowly erode with time. And the whole thing about must have focus and complete attention all the way to the line is freaking me out and he knows it and it’s just a snow ball becoming an avalanche. LOL!!! NOT working for us! :P

Silvia trained her RDW with Bu using tunnels as reward. I think of so many people who think if you do that you get a tunnel sucker. Not if you train the dog that they need to do something else first, THEN they get the tunnel, right.

I tried it at class last night and it worked fine. He's extra high at class, though. I have to remember to say my "ready, ready" and pause, then "GO". I forgot the first time. I do think he needs that clear, set pattern of behavior before the start because often now I just drop the leash and go and it's a little variable for him.

Monday, January 2, 2012

We go from top dog to major melt down.

It happens so fast. I make some majorly stupid mistakes and, BAM, we suck........again. He's such a happy little guy it makes me sad when we suck. I was handed his first place ribbon with 25 speed points Saturday morning that my friend picked up from the trial two weeks ago. Damn, was I proud! I am feeling really good. First class, FAST, we need practice, I can do it and I need this.
I make the STOOOOOOOOOOOOpidest choices. What is his worst obstacle? Yeah, right. FUCKING TEETER. What do I do, ask him to do it TWICE!!!! He starts to worry and wring his tiny little papillon paws. Yeah, they are pap paws, not aussie paws, that is for sure. He worries, I suck, he worries, I suck, we are in a major toilet bowl flush spinning down, down, down.

OK, no worries, he has forgiven me stupid decisions before. Um, not this weekend he didn't. His standard and jumpers were pretty much a mess. Moments, yes, he did his "flat" on his table in standard in only about 1.5 seconds and that's something to celebrate, but he wasn't all that happen and we NQ'd somewhere. I don't even remember, I just know that all the precious blind crosses I did sucked and were late and he was confused and we looked really disconnected. :(

Jumpers was the same way........disconnected, poorly executed blind crosses.

So, Sunday I determine to be a better handler. Work every obstacle, talk to him constantly. We q'd in standard. Yay, but it wasn't fast. 46 seconds. My goal after last trial was sub-40. Hardly near that, but at least he held it together and we did it. Jumpers course sucked, I knew it and I sucked at it, so because I am a STOOOOOOOOOOOOpid handler he gets down to a trot after jump three and I finished out with a big out run, speed circle and left happy.

I am wondering if I should be doing Daisy Peel's Mental Management class. Probably!! I sure have Mental Management issues. Poor little Spur. But, if I can get a running dog walk on him and work for two years to do that I can sure fix this issue. It all begins at the start line, I am convinced. I lose him, I know it, I see it on video. Our start lines suck. Yeah, sometimes he charges off. I don't know what I do differently. I know I worry our starts and that doesn't help him. Catch 22. How can I not worry, our starts suck. We are in a pattern of sucky starts and it's SO hard to break that.

Must fix our starts. I am determined. I am tenacious. I WILL get this. He deserves it. He deserves to head to the line feeling GOOD and HAPPY, not stressing and avoiding me.

And since this blog is really supposed to be about Roscoe, here is HIS weekend story.........he is more sore than ever. His neck has been sore for a while, but this morning it's really bad. A call to the vet is in order. Damn IT. Poking and prodding Roscoe to find where it hurts is not easy. He is grumpy no matter if he hurts or not when you poke and prod him. Oi. Wish me luck on that one. And how the heck does one keep Roscoe from boinging??? ACK!!