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APRIL 2007

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29th

After church Rich and I headed over to the property we own next to ours and measured out a 90 ft by 90 ft area where I will one day have my own agility field. Rich spent a couple of hours out there working on cutting out some of the smaller trees and I worked on burning up some left over stumps and such. It'll be great some day to have me a nice agility practice field in the middle of the woods. While I was inside on a break Rich came in holding something and he was a bit upset. It was a cute little baby bunny. He was using the push mower in the open areas of the 90 ft by 90 ft area to whack down some of the overgrown stuff. He mowed up on a large clump of grass and one baby bunny skittered off and one got a little cut on his head from the mower blades. He was frozen with fear and Rich picked him up to see how bad he was hurt. He never expected a bunny nest above ground in high grass. The cut was superficial and I packed it with Neosporin and we returned him to his clump of grass. He skittered over to the next clump that wasn't mowed and hid there. He seemed OK and we hope his momma comes back. I tossed bunny food around the nest to give him something to eat without having to forage in case he is on his own now. I'll likely try and check on him tomorrow and see if he's still around there.

Lego met up with John and Khay this evening to run an aged track. John laid them earlier in the day. Lego's was 4.5 hours old. It was only a one turn track maybe 100 yards long. He seemed to struggle a lot with that old of a scent especially around the two shallow dips (ditches) that he had to cross. He did manage to struggle through to the end glove. I was pleased with his efforts and his ability to work through his apparent confusion and lost track issues. I think maybe he's not ready for a track that old and we should back off the age some to maybe 2.5 to 3 hours. After tracking I threw some bumpers for Khay to retrieve. Watching her do that was like watching Sparkle track. Definitely 'born to do it'.

28th

I met up with Cheryl for a quick tracking session Saturday morning. She brought along the "trial" dog now named Grace. Shelby showed some definite potential. I still drop food on her tracks every 10 steps or so to keep her going and we only do one turn, but she may get this game even at her age. Sparkle was just plain awesome. It was her first time to track someone other than me without food on the track. She had a two turn track maybe a total of 100 yards aged about 30 minutes. She was anxious at the start while I hooked up her tracking harness. Then off down the trail with great enthusiasm. At the first turn, our biggest problem to date, she paused briefly and swept her head from one side to the other and then took off around the turn. I had the same great response on the second turn. WOW! She has finally gotten the concept of turns. She even laid down on the finish glove without any prompting from me. I was just floored at her performance. I saw the 'born to do this' genes clearly. She may be getting that TD later this year at this rate.

I went home and switched dogs. Maverick and I were headed to the nursing home for our visit. He's such a good ole boy. On the way there I stopped to give blood. They've been closed on Saturdays for several months, so I haven't been able to make it by. After the visit I went home and Rich and I got out the new roll of wire to restring the electric fence. We bought a slightly larger gauge wire for a better current and hopefully it's harder to snap. It didn't take too long with two people. I made sure and got the current tester out and we checked the juice all the way around. Then Rich got out the mower and clipped all the yards up. We met up with Cheryl and Tom for dinner and had a nice meal.

26th

Sparkle's beginner agility class was cancelled last night for the nice storm front passing through, so Rich and I went to eat at Chili's. We came home to quite a scare. Sparkle didn't come to the door to get in the house. I called and no answer. When I went out back to see if I could find what she was doing I saw her by the 'doggy jungle gym' wagging her tail. 'Well, come on!' , I say. She tried to move and it looked like she was limping badly on a rear leg (like maybe broken). She wasn't crying or freaking out so I jogged out there to see what was up. She had wire wrapped all around her chest and rear legs and couldn't move. Somehow she managed to snap the electric wire around the bottom of the fence and get tangled in it. We were just saying that this weekend we needed to buy fresh wire and re-string the yard because the signal was getting very weak and there were rusty places. Luckily she snapped it such that she interrupted the current and wasn't getting zapped and she was completely unhurt. Not even a rub mark on her legs from being wrapped in the wire. I didn't sleep well that night just thinking of all the ways that could have been so much worse. I never imagined this as a problem. All the other dogs stay away from the evil wire. Guess the signals been so bad it doesn't zap and so she gleefully bounds around it. Hopefully she's learned not to bounce around the wire anymore and we'll be more sure in the future that the wire actually has a good signal so that any contact will give he a mild jolt keeping her off of it.

Our last beginner obedience class was tonight. Sparkle has come amazingly close to the concept of heeling over the last couple of months. I am thrilled to death with her progress and I have every reason to believe she'll do great in Rally next month. Cheryl and Tom and Bernie also took home a 'test' dog for the weekend. It's a pretty little female blue merle Aussie that showed up at a lady's house. She works with Noel in rescue and so she brought the girl out to class a couple of times to be seen. They have tried everything to find her owners, but no one has come forward. It's obvious she was owned before as she knows sit and shake and has some decent manners. She gets on well with all dogs big and small and has good toy motivation. So, if she works out, Bernie may have a sister at home.

23rd

I cancelled my agility class tonight. I was so tired and one of my students was also at the show and expressed he wouldn't be upset if class didn't meet. I did work a bit with the dogs. I finally took John's advice and laid Sparkle a serpentine track. She got a bit lost at the first turn, but after that she stuck on the track well, even without any food on it. She was very enthusiastic. Then after everyone ate I got out the articles for Shelby. If you remember our last article experience didn't go well and we both got discouraged. The plan was to do the two articles and have a party and do nothing else. I even brought cheese out with me just in case she looked like she couldn't do it. I tried the leather first without cheese. I sent her and she walk hesitantly to the pile. She sniffed a couple and came back discouraged. I told her it was OK and sent her again. She sniffed again and this time hit on the right one and picked it up. As soon as she had it in her mouth I started cheering and giving her a 'good girl'. She trotted back all happy. Then I sent her for the metal one and she was much less nervous. She found the right on the first time! I once again made a huge deal about it and gave her lots of praise and treats and we went inside all happy with ourselves. Then I got out Nikita with the same intent. She does better if the metal one is first though (go figure?!). She went out and started sniffing immediately. She picked the right one and got her treats. Then the leather with the same positive result. She got to quit too and go in her yard to play.

In the mail today was Lego's collage from Mobile/Baton Rouge shows. It's just great! You'll have to take my word for it because I can't scan it in because it's an 11X14 and I only have a standard page (8.5X11) scanner. 

This weekend I got a call from my husky breeder. There is a bitch in South Carolina that had puppies last Tuesday. She's a daughter of Kasper, my breeders top winning husky. She emailed me some photos of the 4 pups. There are 3 girls and a boy. Two of the girls are grey and one is red. The boy is silver. I emailed the owner of the bitch and she says she'll send me a pedigree to look over since I didn't have any info on the sire.

Hopefully soon I'll have photos from the show. I forgot my camera and had to borrow the Coxes digital one. I took Sniper ADCH pictures and my guy's with their title ribbons. 

22nd

Exhausted! A four day show was a lot for all of us I think. Sparkle was done with crates by Sunday and Josie and Jedi's brains started to fry. I was actually sore in the legs by the time it was all over. I am throwing out those shoes and using another pair for agility. Not only did my feet and legs hurt, but the shoes were cracked so that all the morning dew leaked in when I walked the dogs and gave me wet miserable feet. Sparkle did get a couple of great play sessions with her friend, Brassy the beagle, that seemed to help both of them cope with all the crate time.

OK, Ok on with the news of the show. Jedi only managed one Q all weekend, but it was one that mattered the most! He actually came out of his crate and listened the first run on Friday. He stuck with me in Advanced Gamblers until right as the horn blew then he took off for the other side of nowhere. Once I got him to look up (a couple of seconds) I took off sprinting to the gamble line. He ran like a bat out of hell to not get left and that helped save our gamble. It was a send out to a jump. He was going so fast I never could've stopped him from going that far out and he wrapped the jump like a champ to come back to the last two jumps in the sequence. GOOD BOY! So now he finally got his AAD. I was over the moon. He actually ran fairly well all weekend. He still had his moments of running to ring corners, but he came back each time with gusto. When he's into it he turns on a dime, if not, he's a freight train.

Josie ran mostly well all weekend. We still had a few runs that started out pokey and picked up with enthusiasm as we went. She didn't miss any dogwalk contacts, but she still is unwilling to happily lay on the table for some reason. She only popped out of the weave poles once and she hit every entry. In TEAM on Thursday she held up her end of the deal like a champ until relay. I was so worried about the excitable Golden handing off to us that I was too far behind to keep her off the dogwalk at obstacle two. At least we E'd early in our part of the run and were able to hand off quickly to the Border Collie. We'd been barely clinging to the Q line all day, so I was upset with myself for ruining everyone's chances. As luck should have it, the first and third place team also E'd relay, so our young team squeaked in to the last Q'ing spot! That gives Josie all the tournament legs she needs for her ADCH. That's a weight off the mind. Then Thursday afternoon in Snooker she was next to last 16. There were 2 Super Q's and to that point NO Q'ing dogs. All we had to do was Q to get one. Of all the times to miss the weaves! We had to get through number 5 and it had 6 poles in it. She hit the entry so much at a right angle she couldn't wrap her body to weave. DANG! We did Q in Snooker on Friday, but so did everyone else. Josie also got her first Advanced Standard leg (finally) on Friday. It was a bit of a pokey run, but not bad. I feel that we've broken through some invisible barrier now and those last 2 legs might come quicker than the first. To cap off Friday, Josie ran pairs with Sonic, a super fast poodle, and we Q'd for Josie's Relay Master title! Friday was a great day!! Saturday we managed another Q in Snooker, along with all the fast shelties. But the capper for Saturday was Master Jumper Q #10 for her Jumper Champion. She's the first of mine to get any of the Champion titles! Sunday didn't go well for either dog, although Josie had a nice Advanced Standard run going until she slid off the table. She's never done that. Then she flat refused to lay down. Her snooker run was gorgeous and fast, but her stupid handler was in a bad spot in the closing and sent her over an off course.

Here's the quick scoop on my friends. Cheryl and Bernie showed up Friday and Saturday. He ran fast and happy and well his two days and she even got to go home with a Starters Standard Q last thing on Saturday. Rosey showed up for Sat and Sunday. First run out was Gamblers and Sniper looked wild, but he came together in the closing seconds to do the most disgustingly awful gamble all weekend. ADCH!!!! Rosey's worked hard for this one and we're so happy for her. To make the weekend even better Red ran like an agility dog mostly all weekend and was just shy of a Q more than once. The Coxes were also there Sat and Sunday. Galadriel ran well and only knocked a couple of bars. Gandalf Q'd in Starters Snooker both days. He's really looking good. Dawna ran Lily once run in Jumpers and they could've Q'd if she had remembered the course. She also ran Galadriel once and they looked like a team. Cheryl and Emily had some nice runs and Q's, but we need to work on her Snooker skills. John and Khay were great and had a wonderful time. She's a Q machine in Starters. 

17th

It's been a fast week so far. The agility class I'm teaching on Monday went well, but I discovered Josie thinks it's her job to keep unruly Goldens in line. This is not a good sign considering we are on a team with a wild Golden on Thursday. Sparkle got to play some on contact obstacles before class and she's offering to do the teeter now. She's still a bit slow on it and the dogwalk, but her A frame is pretty good. We also worked on the sit on the table from her auto down since we discovered last week that sitting was an issue.

Tonight my brother stopped in to stay the night on his way to Tulane. They have offered him a fellowship to do his doctorate work there. I think Tulane's a nice school and all, but it is in New Orleans. So, I was frantically trying to gather dog show stuff and get it loaded since tomorrow is Sparkle's beginner agility class. I got the camping stuff and dog stuff loaded, but now I need to fold clothes to pack my stuff. I am hoping to finish before Sparkle's class for two reasons. First I have to get up early to go to the show Thursday morning and second Cheryl wants me to haul some of her stuff. since I got her into giving Blake a ride, I get to stow her tent and such :) Here's hoping for a swell agility weekend with Josie and Jedi!

15th

Nikita got to visit the nursing home Saturday morning. She was happy to be out and handled all the walking fine. Then Rich and I made it to the movies to see a comedy. That's probably the first time in 6 months or so we've been to a movie. What with all the rainy, windy weather it seemed like the thing to do.

Sunday after church I buzzed over the the local city park to lay short one turn tracks for Khay and Lego. Then headed home to do other things while they aged about 5 hours. It seems the most common flunks in a TDX test is the dog refusing to start the track at all. I guess most of us get lazy about practicing tracks aged that long. Up until now Lego's oldest track was 3 hours, uncontaminated, in our yard, straight line. 

While I waited for the aging track I practiced Utility with Shelby. She had great signals, but it went down hill from there. She appears to have 'forgotten' how to sniff each article in the pile and is just trotting out, sniffing a couple and then picking one. Stuff like this seems to always happen after you've just mailed in money to enter them in a show. I got frustrated and consequently, so did she and then she didn't want to play with me at all. I took a deep breath and got the cheese out and smudged it on the correct article. This seems to have refreshed her memory some, but by the time we worked through this issue she was tired of working. She then kept wanting to retrieve to middle glove. Her go-outs were much nicer than last practice session and she seemed to follow the jump signals well. After I put her up I decided to give Nikita a whirl at Utility. It was the first real practice session for her since knee surgery. I put the jumps at 12 inches (a step over for her). She was so enthusiastic to start out with. She was anticipating the signal game, but it was so happy and confident I almost laughed out loud. As soon as I'd turn towards her she'd lay down. Then if I twitched at all she'd sit and start swishing her tail happy side to side. Oh my, I've created a monster! We worked on the signals a couple of times until she was at least waiting for my arm to move before she guessed the next signal. She then did extremely well on articles considering her dislike for the game and the long time that has passed since we practiced. She actually went out and started deliberately sniffing each one, and picked the right one the first try. Gloves were about identical to Shelby with her always wanting to bring the middle one in. She was very happy on the go-out run, but absolutely stared stupidly at me when I gave her the jump signal and command. I had to walk out and take her collar and  walk her to the 12 inch jump and say, "you can step over it". Then she was like "OH OK, I thought you expected me to actually jump". She still refused her left side jump several times. Maybe going that way put more pressure on her knee. Maybe she was just stubborn.

Now, off to meet John and Khay to track. I got there about 15 minutes early to check and be sure the start flags were still in place. They were, but there were lots of people out too and Khay's track most assuredly had cross tracks on it. I laid Sparkle a U shape track with bits of treats at the turns. After a 15-20 minute aging period I took her over to see how she'd do since it was fairly windy. I also put her on the 30 foot line for the first time to give her more space to choose her own way. She started with great gusto, but once again got confused when the track turned. She did work it out on her own eventually and it was obvious by her body language when she discovered where it had gone. Same story at the next turn. She did her down at the end article and got her treat. I really must do a serpentine track with her to get her used to turning. Lego started his track well and even hit the turn OK, but somewhere after the turn he got lost a bit and if I hadn't have known where the track went we would've gotten off. Still, not bad for his first turn at 5 hours old in the windy conditions.

Now to start gathering all my camping stuff for my 4 day agility adventure in Tylertown, MS this next weekend.

 

12th

Sparkle did pretty good in agility class Wednesday. We were able to do 4 obstacle sequences off  leash without her wandering off to sniff. She isn't driving ahead of moving super fast, but that may come with confidence. She also is about to master the full height A frame at a decent speed. She has a beautiful touch at the bottom. She still walks across the full height dogwalk, but she's not scared of it. I have a couple of things to work on now. I have shaped the auto down on the table much better than I thought. At the agility show I couldn't hardly get her to stand on the table to measure her (just for practice). She would drop on the table as soon as I set her on it and would NOT get up. Even when I put my hand under her belly she'd go limp all over. At class I couldn't get her to sit on the table from her down even with food without helping her by lifting up on her collar. I am thrilled with her auto down, now I need to train the sit from a down is OK on the table. Also we need to work on teeters that drop later on the board than the nice aluminum ones. She doesn't get why the wooden one doesn't fall at the right time.

At obedience tonight she was a bit less focused than the last few class, but still good. We did two different Rally courses with chicken as the reward and she looked good on those. Her stays have come a long way and to my great surprise when she breaks the stay it hasn't been to wander off, but to come to me. I'm thrilled! I just knew she was too independent to stick with me in a new place, and the last couple of classes are starting to prove that theory wrong. Maybe I'm a better trainer than I gave myself credit for with her.

9th

Sparkle had another quick two turn track today with food bits at the turns. She tracked like a champ and even crossed the gravel driveway. Then it was time to plan for my agility class. I agreed to teach this six weeks. It turned out I only had one student show up and then a couple of drop ins. 

The photographer from this weekend has pictures up. There were enough of Lego, combined with the Mobile ones, to order a collage!
Run with WILD abandon (I love this one because it shows his personality)
Aframe
WHEE CHUTE
Teeter
TableIt's a yawn... not a bark.. but ya can't tell that
Jump

8th

Well, we're done with our agility show for the Easter weekend. Lego ran Excellent Jumpers on Friday. He's not eligible yet (he needs one more Open Jumpers leg), but we only offered Excellent on Friday. I figured it might be worth my 20 bucks to give him a chance to get loose on the course Friday in the hopes that we'd work out any environment kinks for Sat and Sunday. I packed up and left after his jumpers run. It was nothing short of a disaster. It started jump, weave. Not a good start for us. He did jump and hit the weave pole entrance, but never even slowed to weave. He ran straight to the back and started sniffing. I called him and he came. So, I tried weave again with a similar result, except this time he sprinted to the back and just kept sprinting in a circle around the ring. I gave up and walked to the finish jump. He came running to me and did the last jump on the way out. I was pretty bummed for a while for that nasty performance. 

Got there early Sat. to work. It was a bit chilly. Our runs were much improved today. He wouldn't weave in Standard at all. Every time I said weave he would walk off sniffing. Obviously stressing. Once I gave up on the weaves he did great. We missed a couple of jumps for bad handler moves, but he looked like he'd done this before. For jumpers I had a new plan. The weaves were about half way through the course. If there was no chance of a Q by the time I got to them and he actually weaves I'm leaving and partying for the weaving. In true Lego form, he took the first couple of jumps and then headed to the back to sniff. I trotted after him and picked him up at the back and sent him in the tunnel back there to get back on course (missing a couple of jumps). He was handling like a dream. He came around to the weaves and when I said 'Weave', he trotted past them. I called him back and he bounced on me and then weaved. ALL the poles and fast too. 'YES, GOOD boy, EXCELLENT job' I say as we sprint to the exit to get a big juicy treat.

Sunday was even colder. I didn't set an alarm to get there. Too cold! Even without one I was still there half through Excellent Standard. Lego's Standard run felt pretty good today. He started well with his listening skills turned on. He did the weaves again with gusto on the second try. Thankfully they were near the end. There were only three obstacles after them. So we partied through the last ones and got us another juicy treat. He was just one refusal shy of a Q. It really was a pretty run! Then in the evil, smelly Jumpers ring he held it together much nicer. He did go to the back to sniff but only when a straight line of jumps aimed him there. He just didn't turn to the next jump. He came back on the first call and picked up the course without missing any obstacles. He was handling like a sports car. It was so nice. He was even focused on agility. He did all the weaves again on the second try. He even handled some 180s like a pro. What a sweet run. Just shy of a Q again, but oh so fun.

Now for my friends' accomplishments... the Coxes were only there for Sat. Galadriel didn't knock any bars! Gandalf and Bob pulled out a 100 in Novice Standard for his NA title! Nice Run! Erin and Gandalf had that one run by  in jumpers where he back jumped it to come back to her or they would've Q'd. Lily and Jessie had a nice start to the Novice Standard run with Lily actually running. She even did 2 of the contact obstacles before stress overtook her and Jessie made the smart decision to leave on a happy note with her. Cheryl and Bernie were only there Sat. too and had a couple of decent runs just not quite Q's, but Bernie was hauling it around the course. They did manage his second Q in Novice Fast. Cheryl and Emily had some decent showings in their first real show in Excellent. They even pulled a Q on Friday. Rosey and Red had an OK Sat., but Sunday she was pleased as punch with his Standard run. He didn't seem to stress in the ring or do the freeze and stare. He had a nice Jumpers run Sunday too. Now if the boy would just do those weaves at a show!     

5th

Sparkle did another track today with two turns. I put a miniscule drop of food before and after the turns to keep her on the right track. It worked like a charm. I don't even think she knew she'd turned at all. Then in obedience class tonight we did very well. Her stays are improving. I was able to bounce like a bunny in circles around her without her moving. Then a little girl was able to walk around her clapping and she stayed. I cut class a bit short for Sparkle. We moseyed off after about 45 minutes and just took it easy. Then I got out the chicken bits and we tried rally again. What an improvement! She did awesome. She got her nice chicken feast and we headed home.

Nikita has been faring well outside and I don't see that it's making her limp any worse. She's even attempting to bounce at the gate at dinner time.      

3rd

Nikita had her another checkup this afternoon on the knee. On the way to the vet I stopped and laid a short one 45 degree turn track for Sparkle. I have been a bit disappointed in Nikita's progress over the last 4 weeks, but the vet said she's coming along as expected. She almost never holds it up completely, but she still favors it when she stands and there's still a limp. Her biggest problem now is the muscles in that leg have atrophied fairly badly so now she must build muscle again. He says everything still feels solid and she's showing no discomfort so we should start letting her do whatever she wants to for the most part. So she will be kicked back outdoors this week to help encourage using the leg more since I know all she does in the house when we're gone is sleep. He'll see her again in June as long as I don't see any set backs.

When I got home I took Sparkle down the road to her track. It had aged almost 90 minutes. She started all enthusiastically, but lost the scent at the turn again and gave up. I had to help her a bit to get her going again. She laid down at the glove very nicely and got her yummy treat. After I fed the dogs I decided it was consistently hot enough now to pull out the kiddie pools and fill them up. I found we do have enough hose in the front to go into the 'retirement village' to fill a pool.

2nd

This morning started well when I awoke at 6:25 to realize I had forgotten to turn my alarm on and was an hour late getting up. Thankfully that was the only irritating thing all day. I was just sure it was going to be the beginning of a disastrous day.

When I got home I laid a 'U' track for Sparkle with no food on it (for the first time). I only aged it 15 minutes not knowing how she'd handle the 'no food' aspect. When we got to the start flag and I had her sit to put on her harness she was pulling at the leash to start her track. I got the harness snapped and off she went. Enthusiastically, nose down, straight line. She didn't handle the first turn too well though and I had to reel her in a bit (she's only on a 6 foot line for now) and kinda give her a tug in the right direction. She picked up the scent and took off again. The last turn she quit and sat down next to me. The covering wasn't the greatest, kinda scrubby with lots of bare patches. I got her sniffing again and led her down the trail a bit. Then she seemed to catch the scent again and found the glove and laid down. (there was a container with pork chop under the glove) She got the yummy treat, lots of praise and we went inside for her dinner. So, we're not ready for turns yet without a bit of food to get her head in the right direction. And, she needs work on casting for the track on her own. But, I was very pleased with the excitement and willingness and the straight lines. 

Lego and I worked on weaves. I'd like him to hit a weave entrance or two this weekend at our club's AKC agility trial. I put a container with tuna at the end of the weaves and he got a nibble each time he entered and weaved all the way through. Then Sparkle worked on tunnels and jumps. It was a bit warm at 5:30 and she was hot and not too motivated, but we got in about 10 jumps and 5 tunnels with tuna for a reward.

Sparkle and Josie had a nice play session after agility practice.

The azaleas are about done blooming, but we had some pretty ones this year.

 

1st

Well, another month gone. WOW! How time flies. I got my collages of Jedi and Josie in the mail yesterday. They are posted on the agility page if you want to see them. Also there's the new Lego jumping picture.

Yesterday Lego, Sparkle, Shelby, and I went tracking again with Cheryl and Bernie and John and Khayenne. John laid Lego a TDX style track but shorter. We let it age a good hour and a half before we ran it. In the mean time, Cheryl and Bernie ran a couple of motivational short tracks with good treats. Bernie seemed much more enthused when he figured out there was steak bits. The Sparkle ran a 'Z' track with bits of food dropped every 10 steps or so. She is just spectacular, but has no concept of the glove being the end. She wants to keep tracking because she can still smell the persons scent past the glove. We need to work on making her understand the glove is the food dispenser. Shelby actually did much better this time in a short 'L' track with food dropped every 5 steps or so. She kept her nose down and kept moving the whole way. She took the turn like a pro. We haven't introduced articles to her yet, but she seems to have a willingness and aptitude for this game. I laid Khay a straight line in the back 40 and John was going to let it age 4 hours and come back to it. I don't know how that went. Now for Lego's track, it went through the woods, across a ditch,  and out into the field. Lego was casting a lot in the woods finding other great scents, but each time he came back to the track. Annoying as that is, at least he still finishes the track. Wish I could break him of it though. He tracked right over the two articles dropped in the woods, but since he went right over them I was able to pick them up anyway. I was shocked at how determinedly he went right down the side of the ditch. He didn't seemed phased at all. He was a bit unsure at the bottom how to get across without getting his princely toes wet. He found a couple of high rocks and a small log to hop across and started up the other side with intent. I had to slow him down so I could get myself across safely. When we popped out in the field he was better about staying on the track and not casting for interesting scents. He then remembered how to alert to articles and even stopped for a shiny metal mini-bowl. We finished up the track and he got a hunk of leftover Quizno's Prime Rib sandwich. So, it seems he is TDX capable, but we need to work on the woods and alerting to articles there. John suggested we need to work on age.

Today I laid a 50 yard straight line track  after church. So, while we aged the track, Sparkle and I napped on the couch. Lego ran it at about 3.5 hours old. He did fine. Didn't seem to bother him at all. He got a leftover roast hunk for his treat. Now I have a happy, napping dog. I am cooking a London Broil roast from Sam's tonight for dinner.