Monday, April 28, 2014

So sad....

Last night we head to bed. I am reading and suddenly hear crying down stairs. Very sad, and kind of panicked. I run down and find poor sweet Colby in the middle of the kitchen.........lost. We leave a light on for her, but I don't know how much that helps her? She can't see much, period. And this has happened before. Last time I found her in the bathroom. She zigged when she should have zagged and ended up lost. We never move furniture, we never leave things on the floor, the house is always the same, but on occasion she gets "lost". I felt SO bad and put her back on her recliner and sat with her, snuggling for a while. She rested and I left her. She always sleeps downstairs now. Only coming upstairs if we are with her and she isn't at all comfortable on the bed any more. Not for the night, she will hang out some while we are changing, but that's about it. Probably afraid Spur will try to play with her and knock her off. Going blind SUCKS SO BAD!!!!!

She is getting out and seems to be OK about it and relatively happy. She is very slow and we keep some tension on her leash, keeping her from straying off course. It just sucks so bad.

Roscoe on the other hand is as feisty and happy as ever! Damn dog is going to live forever!!!! :D

His latest trick is progressing nicely. Sometimes the "Little Drummer Boy" appears and I have to take a step back to break the drumming habit, but then he gets back on track for the job. Silvia suggests finding an object now that he has to the shape doesn't fit unless a certain way. Hmmmm, I have to think on that one.

Friday, April 25, 2014

Is it really spring????

It has been SO cold and windy, I just get annoyed!!!! Which has become the most popular word for teenagers, it seems. Everything is ANNOYING!!! Rich spent a week with two and he said if he never hears that word again, he would be happy!!! I spent one day with one and found MYSELF using that word too much!!!!

OK, so the cold and wind are IRRITATING!!!!! frustrating!!!, Maddening!!!! Disappointining!!!! Most of all, though, annoying.  really, really annoying!!! such a tough winter, we SO deserve a nice spring and it isn't happening. I know I should be happy it isn't snowing, but I am not. I am not happy we have had only ONE warm day in weeks!!!!

I guess flickers have a third eyelid, I get many shots 
Ike this one......

The swallows are already here!!!!

such a classic Maine photo!!!

The phoebes tried to nest in the barn again!!! My plan was to stop them before laying eggs, but damn it in ONE week is appeared!!! I couldn't believe it!!! I I knocked the nest work down and there it was. But, I am still glad, they can lay more eggs, but NOT in the dangerous barn!!! last year watching the babies leave was horrifying as the barn cats stalked them. 

Jewel is slowly shedding her winter coat. Soon enough she will be shiney and sleek, but right now a bit bedraggled.

Wednesday, April 23, 2014

Death is hard!

Gritty died Monday. Well, actually the vet helped him along, but it was his time and we sure feel like it was the right time and he wanted to go. He had a strength to live and a zest for life like no other! His ancient body struggled so, but he rarely showed disappointment about that and put on a brave face and powered on even in the middle of this past horrible winter. I would greet him each week day (five days/week for the past ten years) and he would greet me with joy, every time! 
We walked the Oakhurst neighborhood. A VERY dog friendly neighborhood. It was not uncommon to walk along and meet 5 to 10 different dogs out walking. And several other wonderful dog walkers, too. Diana has a treat jar for "all the good dogs" duck taped to a post. Right next to the fire hydrant. Sometimes the dogs would meet there and us humans would chat like we were taking an office break at the water cooler. Everyone knew Gritty by name and he knew them all by smell. He knew their dogs. They knew him. Jack and Molly and Bailey and Denali and Jake and Shirley and Brownie and Douglas and Winnie and Ellie and Tucker and Roscoe and Monte and Bisbee and Piper and Brady and Mya and Hawk and Myra and Zeke and Sophie and Tootsie and I know I am leaving someone out. Gritty knew them all. 
I don't even know all the people, but they all knew him. He was an icon. He would have been 15 yesterday. The last of his siblings, they all died long ago. But, Gritty, given 6 months to live 3 years ago had that will, that zest, that presence to be who he was...........the most amazing dog! His people loved him to great ends. Their life revolved around him. So wonderful to be Gritty!!!

He lived the most amazing life! He had strength and courage and tenacity like no other. I remember walking off one day and suddenly the skies opened up. I mean like a monsoon!!! The roads flooded almost instantly. I had my rain gear and was dry and looked at Gritty to see if he was upset of uncomfortable. Nah........he never batted an eye, he just powered through the water like it was a fun event!
I looked forward to my daily visits with Gritty and our walks around the hood. The most amazing dog friendly hood. I feel empty and strange now that he is gone. He was such a force. His walks came in the middle of my day. Like a refresher! A visit with Gritty could re-charge me.
 Such an amazing dog!

 He was beautiful and regal and owned the world for a day shy of 15 years.
 The world lost a wonderful dog, but we will have these memories forever..................

Friday, April 18, 2014

More videos

Sorry again I seem to run out of time in the day to post a blog update. These were from last weekend.

Spur finally got a smaller ball and boy, is this one going to be easy for him. He'll be rolling it across the room in no time!!! He LOVES it!!

Some training with Spur. Still not that comfortable with the tight twisty stuff. That is going to take SO much time and practice, I think. But, we will keep at it. You might think I practice a lot, but I don't really. If I set up some more exercises for him I think we could work this out, but lately he has had a bit of a break while friends come train or I train Jones.

I figured out super slow motion editing the other day. COOL!!!

Latest session with Jones. Lowered the second apex about 15 links. Got some perfect footwork, but he does seem slower. Timed it and, yes, he is slower. We know now that maybe his back hurt? He is on prednisone and rest. Poor buggar. Who knows when his back started hurting, he seemed fine during this session. We had a nice walk after and he seemed his normal self, but this session he was on average .1 seconds slower, sometimes .15 seconds slower. Curious thing. You can tell, he looks slower, but his rear feet separation is GREAT. Curious thing.

He sure knows his job and I would say his project is finished. Yeah, we could train some more, for sure, always since it is just plain fun, but I think he fully understands his job and should only get better and better.

Sunday, April 13, 2014

Rainy day tricks

I am trying to get more duration with Spur's limp. My goal is to stand up and get him to limp along beside me. But, I need more duration, so I am trying to click for more steps, then click for holding it up even longer. Not sure if that is the right thing to do or not, but it seems that every time I clicked he put the foot down, so I want more duration so I am continuing to ask him to "limp", which ultimately should mean hold it up even if you are not walking along?

Then Roscoe worked on putting the object in a small container. The put a coin in a piggy bank, but I need to GET a piggy bank first. I wonder if they have Spongebob piggy banks? That would match his Spongebob drum set!!!

Thursday, April 10, 2014

Spring is here, which means MORE time outside!

And, of course, not as much time for this blog. Plus, it just seems to take "forever" to recover from time away. Not sure why that is, but I am STILL trying to catch up! Finally managing to connect with the book I am reading......."The birth of wings" or some such name. See? I can't even remember the name! By Sue Monk Kidd, who wrote Secret Life of Bees, which is sitting on my desk to be read. Never saw the movie either. Not sure why I chose this book. Another slave story. Last year I read about the Lincoln's dressmaker and very much enjoyed it. Enjoyed The Secret Life Of Henrietta Lacks, too, but enough slave books! Slaves, slaves, slaves, why all the slave history?? Rich is heading to the bahamas with his niece and nephew for their graduation. I look up the history of the bahamas and it is ALL about slaves. It was a slave colony for years. A safe heaven for them. The history is rich!!!!

What took me so long to get into this new book was my annoying inability to follow a story line sometimes. We watch TV or movies and I am constantly having to ask Rich what the hell is going on!!! Once I figure it out, who belongs to who, or where or what, I am fine, but until I am totally clear I find myself wandering and thinking about dog agility or gardening or hiking. So, this book as chapters that are each main character. I then learn that one of the characters has two names. So, Hetty is Handful. What?????? They are the SAME person???? OK, that took me 100 pages, damn it! But, now it is more clear. At least, for now. I am halfway done and liking it more.

My other excuse is my computer and iPad are not functioning well. Computer is antiquated and SO slow. iPad is having an irritating issue of dumping me. Meaning I will be making a post or working on editing a movie or whatever and boom..............back to the home screen, all my work gone. :O THAT is annoying!

Electronics are SO awesome and wonderful, until they are no longer awesome and wonderful! We will look back some day and wonder how did we ever get along without them?????? Now I sometimes wish I never had them, life would be easier? Less complicated? Less annoying??? I might stop and smell the roses more???

Well, I must live in the moment and the moment means WITH electronics! And I very much enjoy my electronics, so..........sigh..............annoyed I will be, until they no longer annoy me. Huh, when will that be?????

I leave here the video of three of Spur's runs from Nationals. He ran fine, mostly happy, mostly fast. Not his fastest or happiest, but he was SO happy outside the ring. Prancing and leading the way down the halls and saying HI to anyone who would stop. Such a happy boy in crowds and noise and chaos!!!! The footing bothered him some, he jumps a little odd and too big at times. He VERY much worried about the DW, you will see him zoom up it then come down at a trot and look back at it as he leaves it as if maybe he thought it was a teeter and was going to recoil? It was VERY bouncy. Too bad they had to use crappy equipment, but when a company sponsors them, well, they use the equipment. Too bad the company didn't suck it up and admit their crappy equipment and DO something about it, but maybe they will now. Buzz all over after was how crappy their equipment was.

Thursday, April 3, 2014

More Nationals

OK, so I am having trouble loading Spur's video. Damn cyberspace!!! So, all I have are Chip and Trudy's video. The thing to watch here is...............well..........of course, super awesome Trudy, but Chip has only been doing agility for ONE YEAR!!!! Trudy is barely three! Chip's handling needs some work, but OMG, how well he manages for being so green. Damn, most people are all thumbs at that stage. It takes years to get good at handling and especially handling such a fast dog. Really impressive.

The other thing which you may not see is how damn wobbly that dogwalk is. Really bad. It scared many dogs. Very disappointing that AKC used such bad equipment. I mean, they spend hundreds on public awareness and advertising and use such bad equipment at Nationals???? Yes, J&J was a sponsor, so I get it. Use their DW. Funny thing, they used Max 200 supports for the J&J dogwalk during finals. Did anyone else notice that???? I have no idea why J&J did not figure out how to fix their bouncy dogwalks during the event. I can be quite sure they heard the buzz and complaints about it??? If you are advertising your company at a huge event, wouldn't you make the changes needed to keep your name in good standing? I am now reading on facebook about their bouncy dogwalks and someone just wrote asking what type to buy. They did not attend Nationals, but people are responding.........."no J&J". :O Dudes, time to fix your dogwalk!!! I mean, seriously, how about a public apology and some design change????? Maybe because I am married to a media marketing guy I think about these things?? NO, this is advertising 1O1!!!

Tuesday, April 1, 2014


well, that was sure a long event!  Mostly because the last day brought heavy rain, sideways hail and ice. NOT fun for packing the cars and getting the dogs out to potty on cement. but, we hung in there, Spur had a kind of slow and worried last run, but over all was SO happy being there!!! He loves big, crowded events and leads the way through the crowds. such a funny little guy!!!

Spur's first three runs were much nicer and I will load those videos later. He must have worried some about the footing and equipment, but he had some respectable runs and looked pretty happy for the most part. the equipment sucked, really. VERY bouncy DW and some crappy teeters, really uneven dirt, but we were at least indoors and dry and warm!!!!!

 My roommates were awesome, wish I had taken a photo of our stall. You could rent a stall if you were a lucky draw and we were. which mean crates and pads and chairs could be set up so we had a "home base" closed off from the caos. THAT was AWESOME!!!! The dogs could get out of their crates and stretch and be with us and we could relax and have some peace. It was SUPER nice! Thanks Joy!!!!!

I met the future mother of my puppy this weekend!!!!! OK, so I have no idea if she is spayed, but she is FABULOUS!!! Meet Trudy!!!!

Trudey is a mini Aussie run by a guy brand new to agility!!!! She is LIGHTNING fast and super sweet. Perfect size!!! 22lbs of solid bone and muscle!!!!  Her breeder is form CA unfortunately. I am NOT ready for a puppy, but I sure will be watching this dog and her line!!!! I hope to have video soon, but back to reality and a regular work day today!!!

And, when I got home my amazing husband had the house SPOTLESS!!!! and that, after being away skiing for the weekend, so he had to manage the house sitter and dirt from a weekend of rain and mud and dirt with the Pin Heads in and out and changing sheets on the bed!!! He ROCKS!!!!! Plus, Friday he texted me a photo of the Pin Heads walking at the park!!! LOVE!!!!!