Sunday, July 01, 2007

Progress and some super sessions

Coming off two straight weeks of oncall and MS updates to my critical customer servers, a major datacenter move of one of my customers which was an all-nighter, my primary work laptop napping with the fishes and scrambling to get myself connected again - just makes life really crazy all around. It was a relief to get Friday over with, sleep in on Saturday morning and just spend a peaceful weekend with my boys - interruptions - for sure - but they were my decision, not the pager's. There's a big difference!

Murphy had two days of agility this weekend - I backed off the obedience a little and he was just AWESOME both days - great contact equipment, table, weave entries - and he was fast and totally tuned in - I love it. It's such a joy to run with him when he's on like that. There was no hunting, no sniffing, no rolling - just a "lets bust this out". He put down 5 runs at waggles yesterday and 4 at Ruthies today. I'm thrilled - and I don't feel quite so bad putting him back to work in obedience tomorrow and upping the ante to see what I have.

It's humbling to have to go backwards and work basics. I mean c'mon we've been doing this for how many years? He should know how to reliably do X Y and Z. I used to believe that - not that he was failing to spite me - there are a lot of people who DO seem to believe their dogs are naughty or stressed to get back at them - I just don't believe that dogs think that way. Manipulative - yes, vindictive? No.

Anyway, I'm seeing the basics really paying off - but the proof is in the pudding and the pudding needs to cook a couple more weeks before we know how the recipe is going to turn out.

Now for the Teller-man. He's still hot and cold - and such a baby still. It's hard to see the consistancy go back and forth. I don't want to compare him to Murphy - but when Murph was his age he was getting ready for the rally ring - I know it's not the same - but it's really sort of shocking to me to think about it. Teller is getting a puppy-hood. I'm probably not working him as much as I should - but I'm not feeling guilty about that. He's got lots and lots of time. What he has gotten boat-loads of is mileage at trials - he just doesn't see a show as anything other than where we go on weekends. Indoors, outdoors - he's seen it before.

Going into the ring will be interesting - I'm not entirely sure what to expect there. He goes from being somewhat composed to being a wiggly puppy who is SO EXCITED that someone is going to come pat him! It's a matter of exposure - and I just hope that judges will be able to see past the silly puppy antics and see him for what he really is. In talking to someone with Aussies today I was reminded that it's a whole lot easier to bring a social butterfly down a bit in terms of zealousness than it is to bring a fearful dog out of his shell and let strange people touch him. That is wise advice, and the wiggles are something I likely created - all those people he met those first few weeks - he just loves everyone,I need to come to grips with the fact that he's Ok that way. I guess I just need a dose of Auntie Linda - leave him alone he's the perfect Woo.

The numbers are in for the Essex cluster - and they're way down. The Canadian national specialty for goldens is right over the border (that doesn't help) and with gas prices jumping all over the place I can understand why people wouldn't want to travel so much. We're in the single points for dogs and two pointers for bitches. That's OK - it'd be nice if we were majors up here and I don't think Woo is going to take points, but we don't need our butts handed to us either. It's interesting, the sponsored sweeps class appears to be mainly Kara's dogs - we'll keep it in the family for sure.

Obedience entries seem to be pretty level - that I don't understand - perhaps its the indoor shows? There aren't that many indoor shows around here this time of year and I can understand not wanting to go for OTCH points in 90 degree July weather...

Anyhow, onward and upward. We've got a short week this week - Monday in the office, Tuesday at a customer site, Wednesday off, Thursday in the office and Friday traveling for Teller's first show - Murph has the weekend off still - the first time he's traveled to a show and not gone in the ring - I wonder if he'll notice the change in routine...I might try to take Thursday off too - wouldn't that be just sinful!!

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