Always Training. Always Learning.

Thursday, July 26, 2012

New AKC Title

I heard the announcement today that starting January 13th 2013 that the AKC will be recognizing the CGC as an official title. The only difference between the certificate and the title is price.

I'm not sure how I feel about the CGC being a title. CGC tests seem so unformal and just about any one can qualify to be an evaluator. Still it might just be enough to get new people addicted to earning titles and progressing in the world of dog sports.

Feel free to comment about your feelings on the change. Be it good or bad I am curious to see what others think.

Full Details From the AKC

Wednesday, July 25, 2012


Well here it is my very first blogging award! Thank you Samantha and Rugby for thinking of me and my pups.

Spiffy aint it.

1. Thank the giver(s) and link back to the blogger who gave it to you.
I did if you remember what you read up top. Thanks again! 

2. Reveal your five picks (with less than 200 readers) and let them know by leaving a comment on their blog.  

1.Multibulls I enjoy reading about their exploits in UKC Obedience, Conformation, Agility and Rally. Cute foster puppies and beautiful pit bulls keep me coming back for more. Go check them out.

2. Proudest pug Who doesn't love a puglet? especially one with a talent for Rally and Agility. So what if they are from Canada give them a try!

3. Two Dogs One Camera How could I forget my friend Trish. One dog does Rally, one is getting ready to fly onto the agility field and I will some day convince her to do Obedience.

4. Exercise finished Not sure how many followers she has but I know many people would enjoy this blog. I see a lot of my dog in her dogs struggles and I am always excited to read a new post.

3. Copy and paste the award on your blog.
See above image :)

Monday, July 23, 2012

New Title and Lessons Learned

This last weekend was long and exhausting but well worth it.

On Friday Violet debuted in Utility. I was bracing myself for the utter humiliation of showing a dog that had not had enough training. I could picture her on the articles just sitting there staring at me too afraid to move or deciding that she didn't know what a go out was.
Despite my fears Violet did a wonderful job. In fact the only thing we didn't qualify on was the first article(Brought back the wrong one). Even then she only hesitated for a second before going to the pile. It wasn't a perfect performance but to my great relief I was in no way humiliated. 
It helped that I kept a genuinely upbeat attitude the entire time.

On Saturday I showed Charlie in Novice. He hadn't been to a dog show since this time last year so I wanted to get there an hour early. A little before 10am I walked in and went to get my number. The steward informed me that I was next. Chuck and I went in cold.
This heel pattern was the result
I could not have been happier. He usually shuts down at shows and his heel falls apart. I think that fact that I didn't have time to warm up and stress him out helped a lot. He did blow the recall when he got to me though. No front sit and he tried to check out the people behind me.

I spent the duration of the stays holding my breath and praying to what ever god would listen. I just knew that after a year off he wouldn't hold it. To ad to my fears there was a small boy throwing a tantrum right out side the ring not even 3 feet from Charlie.
He held both stays and qualified with a 191 1/2. I lack the words to express just how proud of him I am.
He is now
Plake's Sir Charles of Allston CD RN CGC

On Sunday Violet showed in Utility again. It was a much worse run but still not totally humiliating seeing as most of the other Utility A exhibitors where having just as hard a time. The judge loved V though and kept saying "Look how cute she is. Look at that face. She just absolutely loves you!". 
My friend Trish and her dog Grace also earned their RA on Sunday with a first place! Now I'm hoping to get her into regular obedience too ;-)

All through out the weekend I also got to see Phlox's siblings Dot and Dylan and their owners. I enjoyed getting together and talking about our dogs and the breed in general. His siblings are both beautiful and I hope to see more of them in the future. 

Looking back at the weekend gives me renewed hope that Violet is still young enough and enjoying Obedience enough to continue. I made huge improvements on my attitude and have a new commitment to train year round and not just right before a show.

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

Wednesday. Not Wordless But Plenty Of Pictures

Some pictures of Phlox hanging out at a show and go.

Here Violet is at a show and go last weekend. Every exercise we did was qualifying however I opted not to do the scent exercise because I am still building up her confidence. It's going pretty well she is now heading to the pile with out hesitation.

Not too shabby for an old lady. We have training tonight, a C match tomorrow and then the show on Friday. I'm trying not to be nervous but it feels like I am getting ready to enter the ring for the first time again.
I will try my hardest to get some video but no guarantees since I will have the kids with me all three days.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

Upcoming Show

After reviewing all of the utility exercises yesterday I decided to enter Violet in Utility at the upcoming shows.  The exercises still need some work but everything has seemed to come together. 
The most exciting part of last nights run through was the sent exercises. Violet was slightly hesitant to go to the pile but after she got there she worked it until she found the right article. I also did not use any scent on the dumbbells other than my own. 

I do not think that we will Q but I feel like Violet and I are running out of time. I want to at least go out trying  instead of spending the time we have left attempting to fix every little thing. We will be there to party in the ring :)

I also entered Charlie one day to finish his CD title. He hasn't been shown since this show last year so he is a little rusty. Luckily he loves to please mommy and he only needs work on his recall and stays. 
His stays are solid but last year I lined him up with his front feet on the matting and his butt on the very slick floor. I could see the panic in his eyes as he tried to stay up. In the end his fluffyness won out and with his back feet scrambling he slid back into a down. Since that was his last experience in the ring I want to make sure he doesn't think thats how it's suppose to be. 
His recall is fantastic until the end when he comes crashing into me. I did some work on this a little while ago and it did improve so I just need to make sure he remembers.  

Now for two weeks of show and gos and training!

Monday, July 2, 2012

Show And Go

My courses were a hit! Well, not exactly but at least no one had any complaints. I had wanted to post the course maps but, having absolutely no computer skills, I can't figure out how.

I took Phlox with me just to work on being quiet and relaxed in his crate. I wasn't planning on running him through anything but since we were there any way I took him onto the novice rally course.

I released him often and tried to make sure he just enjoyed himself. He lost focus every now and then but I was pretty happy with his performance.

Notice that at the end even though there is a dog right on the other side of the gate he doesn't take his eyes off of me.
The reliant show closes on Wednesday and I haven't signed up yet. Charlie and Violet will be competing. Charlie will finish up his CD and I'm hoping to enter V in Utility or wildcard utility. I will be doing a run through tomorrow to determine what to show her in. I'm hoping some one can video it for me because there has not been enough Violet on the blog lately.