2013 training goals

November 2013

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It was a relaxing holiday here at home. Rich is having to take some pain killers, but not too bad. We got out and saw a movie, but otherwise hung around the house for the most part. I threw a roast in the Crock Pot Thursday morning. So we had some mixed veggies, roast and baked potatoes for Thanksgiving. The temps have been chilly again. VERY CHILLY for us in November. 

Codex worked his 'touch' today on the front porch.

I got Codex and Sprigs out to track yesterday. I picked a close mowed field around a church. Both dogs did excellent. So, I emailed the tracking judge to see if she could do a certification track for Sprigs sometime before the end of December. She got back with me today and said she'd do it after work. ACK! Of course, for today , the temps rose to almost 70 by the time it was time to track. Sprigs did OK at the beginning, but started getting very hot on the last two legs. And the grass got thick and taller and she was hopping through it and snooting in the thick stuff for bugs. The end was not pretty or fast, but she has come home with her tracking certification. Now to mail entries for the shows in Jan.

 The dogs LOVE groups naps. They even had their own group nap today. Yes, there was room for me down by Codex and Xanadu.

Lego found one of Codex's toys today when I let Codex out. He carried it EVERYWHERE! So cute to see the old man so taken with it.


Rich has determined he has shingles. UGH! Because of this we'll be spending the Thanksgiving time here at home instead of traveling to AR to see his family. 

I found a craigslist add for a 'like new' Vari Kennel in just Codex's size for only $40. We met in the Longhorn parking lot this afternoon. It is in GREAT shape.

I got a great shot of Codex and Mom squished together too!


Well, USDAA Q rate was BAD all around this weekend. The only Q was Josie in Master Snooker, her only run. She only entered to make sure there was someone to beat for a Super Q. Once again, she ended up with the super Q after all. The Siberians both lost their dogwalk contacts at least once. Kamikaze hit the double in both Jumpers runs. Both Siberians lost their 'go tunnel ' command in gamblers. Kayak tried Master Jumpers for the first time though. A very nice run that was just a breath over time for a couple of wide turns. He was still the only large dog that ran that course clean.

Cheryl and I enjoyed the empty house. The pot roast was great, and then we ordered Corky's BBQ to go after the show Saturday. It was a quick trip though. We were on our way home Sunday by 1pm.



Cheryl and I are off this afternoon to Memphis for some USDAA agility. Mom and Dad will be gone already to head up north to see my brother, Todd, for Thanksgiving. So Cheryl and I will be crashing at an empty house. There IS supposed to be a pot roast waiting on us when we get there though.

Codex figured out how to jump on a log outside today

Here's the big brother, Ridge, at the park today. And....   Ridge the puppy ornament. 



The warmer temps are cycling back. Today I got this shot of the hounds.

I went tracking with Sprigs and Codex yesterday. Codex has started spooking at the start flag. Is it the flag? The article? I don't know. Then he proceeded to be spooked by a dug up mail box laying on its side. Other than those strange spooks he actually did very well. Sprigs, well, I was not too pleased with her. Lots of crittering and frittering. 

The mail Saturday did bring Kayak's pretty keepsake of his track though

Ridge started his puppy agility class this week too. He thinks it's the bomb.


It's been too cold out recently to just turn Codex out to play, so he's been playing in the house. Here's what happens after he rampages around the living room about 15 minutes. 

You see Codex still can't jump ON the couch although he's learned to jump off. This concept hasn't been lost on the adults. 

I drug myself out to obedience class tonight. I was NOT really interested in going, but knew I should. Cheryl and I have been attending puppy class with the boys, but after discussion we've both decided to drop out of it. It's more like JR. Obedience class and less like Puppy class this time. We were hoping for more interactions, introductions to different (odd) objects. Basically we were out for more 'fun' and less formal. My last straw was last week when they are trying to get puppies to HEEL for more than two steps (more like 50 steps.. .WHAT?) and then adding in turns and such. SO, Cheryl and I took older dogs to Adv. Beginner class hoping to help get them ready for upcoming obedience shows next year. I got out there about 45 minutes early and worked with Kamikaze, Kayak and Sprigs.  Kayak worked on his article skills since he's been stressing on them after the 4 month break from obedience (while I raised the boys). I made it easier at first and only put out 4 metal ones. He got it right. I added 4 leathers and he got it right for both articles. Then I got out Kamikaze and did articles. Cheryl got there with a go-out gate. Kamikaze did fairly nice go-outs. Kayak forgot his 'sit' the first several times, but went away with intent to the gate. I was thrilled that Sprigs remembered her retrieve! Even the retrieve over the jump. She even made a really nice effort at a drop on recall even though I haven't finished training it yet. Then Spirit attended class. I was absolutely THRILLED with her. She did awesome attentive heeling, even in pandemonium. Her stays were still her weakest thing, but she stuck a 3 minute sit stay after only one wilt and correction. I got Codex out to play during recalls. I was SHOCKED he held a stay for me to go 8 feet with the class in a line on each side of him and the teacher talking standing right next to him. Then I managed 16 foot stay. I had no idea he quite 'got' the concept yet. I guess he's doing better than I thought. The most unfortunate thing is the two shows in January don't have RALLY as an option. GRRRR... That means he'd need to be ready for some real obedience. Even more irritating is the show at the end of January doesn't even offer Beginner Novice, so it's Novice or nothing.


I took Codex and Sprigs out tracking Monday. It did NOT go well. Left feeling empty. Thought they were both doing so well. YES, I KNOW things just don't got as well some days as others. SO, I tried again Tuesday. They both did very well. Still holding out hope to have Sprigs certified before January shows. I stretched Codex a bit too far and got puppy brain right at the end of his track. That was a tad frustrating, but glad it was only the last half of the last leg. We did get the glove after some visual scanning on my part. 

Diane's home internet has been down. UGH! Today finally got some of the pics we took of the boys and parents last weekend.

we started with boys separated! Ridge, Timber, Xan, Codex

got brave and put boys together. Timber, Ridge, Codex, Xan

LOVE THIS. Looks like the boys are plotting their escape and Mom's giving them the evil eye while Dad stays out of it

LOL! Dex's stay is a work in progress :)

The photo session eventually fell apart. This is Dex on Ridge

Xan just had to join them too! Ridge is the one with the ears going on

And here's how close to Xanadu size Ridge is already. He measured 12" and weighs 17.5lbs. So he's an inch shorter than her, but practically the same weight as her already. (Codex is only 11" and 13.5 lbs)


Cheryl and I drove to a USDAA show in Birmingham, AL this weekend. I convinced Diane that Timber (the puppy daddy) needed to play USDAA long enough to get an ADCH. SO, I got to see Ridge (aka Double) again. He's a big boy. Measured in at 12" or so and weighed 17.5 lbs at 4 months. Codex is measuring around 11" and weighs about 13.5 lbs.  Apparently Diane's puppy is taking MiracleGro and my puppy is on slow grow. 

Codex on the left in this picture of the boys together.
Timber had an outstanding weekend and is now in Master Standard and Advanced everything else. I made Diane a course to get Timber around Snooker TWICE this weekend too. My guys didn't do so bad either. Kayak came home with two Adv. snooker Q's and and Adv. Pairs Q (with Cheryl and Spice) and an Adv. Standard Q. He was OH SO CLOSE in the other two Adv. Standard runs too. Hopefully we can finish off those Standard Q's in a couple of weeks in Mississippi. 
Kamikaze had mixed results. Some of those Standard courses were just ICK. She  missed the standard Q Friday by stepping over the dogwalk contact, but did come home with Master Gamble and Jumper Q. 

Diane even got home in time to make Ridge's CGC test. AND THEY PASSED. So, now there are TWO pups with the CGC before 4 months old. I'm feeling like a slacker now.


Today I got to pick up a dead mole with my bare hands. ACK! I got the beagles to drop it and when  I turned to go for the shovel I saw Codex hone in on it. NO WAY was I letting him get it. I'd have to chase him around forever to get it back. So, I grabbed a slimy foot and carried it the 10 feet to toss over the fence into the woods. If you'd have told me when I was younger I'd pick up dead animals with my bare hands I'd have told you" NO WAY".

I took Xanadu in to get spayed yesterday. It was a tough choice, but since her siblings all were having reproductive issues and I know I won't breed her again because of her age it seemed like a good choice. When she got home she was still all doped up and I put her in a crate to keep everyone off her. She still managed to eat her dinner though. Gotta love a beagle. 

On Monday I did a little tracking with Codex again.  Here's a video of today's little track up at the old high school. I also laid out a short track across the street for Sprigs to see if she remembered any of her intro to tracking stuff. She was GREAT. She's only lacking her TD title to be a VCD dog. Time to work on her tracking skills. Maybe in January she could enter a test?

The pictures from Cynosports are now up. Anyone thinking on a Christmas/birthday present for me... I'd love to have a jump/weave/tire collage with the Cynosports logo on it. They were offering them for sale at the event, but LORD, I couldn't bring myself to pay THAT price after the expense of entering and driving and such.

Here's a shot of Watson (aka Dot) in Florida with his daddy

Cheryl and I played agility in Crosby, TX yesterday. It was a pretty good day for me. Kayak really had an awesome standard run first thing in the morning. He took off like a bullet and maintained speed while listening. His only fault was falling out of the weaves trying to go faster than his body is used to. I'll take that. We got disconnected in jumpers and it all went bad at the opening so when he hit the weaves and flew through them we left for treats. Open FAST was last and it was a great reward at the end of the day since the course just BEGGED to be run in one big circle. Here's his two really nice runs. Kamikaze had a great run in Standard as well. Then I sent her off course in jumpers. Her Master FAST run was fun too. I did the same lead out into the bonus area as all the FlashPaws people. Feeling awesome! ;) Sprigs FOUND HER TEETER again in Standard. YIPPIE! Then proceeded to miss the weave entrance. ARGH. Hoping the teeter stays put this time. She did Q in jumpers though. Here's her runs. 

After agility Saturday it was off to the west side of Houston to meet up with the tracking people for dinner. Sat next to a beagle lady , Pat, that had stalked the boys on facebook. She had to snorgle all over Codex before dinner too. I found out one of the judges had also stalked the boys growing up on facebook. She loved the intro to tracking video they did.  TOO FUNNY! Pat also said she got to meet Cork at the Tracking  Invitational. She knew IMMEDIATELY when she saw him  there who he was. I had posted a tracking judge in KY was taking him so I'm sure the hint there helped. She also thinks Cork will take the conformation ring by storm. We had a nice dinner with the tracking people and went on to the Red Roof Inn for the night. BTW, it's the most convoluted hotel to find EVER. One of those you can see it and not get to it kind of places. Cheryl and I stay there every time we track in Houston, so we are good at finding it now. Our biggest lost moment was this morning when we tried to go to the Waffle House up on the corner that we always go to before tracking. We had to do a big square and come back because they moved the entrance to it when they made the main road overpass the interstate there. ACK! Last time we were in Houston tracking was last year at this test. Cheryl and Bern gave it a valiant effort, yet fell short.  It was not more than three weeks later that Bern passed away very suddenly. In his honor I wore, for the first time, a shirt I bought that has a heart in the middle with wings on it and 4 toe marks at the top that says "Forever in my heart". It seem ed appropriate for the occasion. We showed up for the draw in the morning just to find 3 of the 4 TD dogs are from South Louisiana and we know the other two ladies! In the draw for track order I drew #4, the last TD track. UGH! I was hoping to go early since the temps were nice for Siberians early in the morning. I didn't want it to get to 60 or over on him. I tried to think positive though. Kamikaze did the last track there and passed it just fine. When they described where each of the 4 tracks were it sounded like Kayak would be tracking where Spirit tracked  and passed 2 years ago. That was a nice field! It's a slow kind of torture watching the other TD dogs track and trying to not get more and more stressed about your turn. I HAVE learned to channel energy into taking pics of the other dogs tracking  and focusing on other conversations. It works to keep you calm, to a degree. Dog #1, a Rottie, got whistled off at turn two. On to dog  #2, a mini wire Dachshund, from near New Orleans that we run agility with a lot. It was a bad draw for them as there was standing water in places up to the dog's belly at the beginning and later over her head. They got whistled missing turn #2. On to dog #3, a yellow lab from the New Orleans area. Their track was at the same place as ours. The field is big enough for two TD tracks. At least I know which direction turn #1 will be! (away from track #3 start) They also got whistled for missing turn #2. We're up! Kayak was NOT giving off his best working vibes at the start flag. Spent a few seconds staring at me like "Do What?". Did I mention tracking is NOT his favorite game. It requires WAY TOO MUCH focus for WAY TOO LONG a time. He's kinda funny. He tracks for about 3-4 minutes then stops and stares at the sky, looks over his shoulder, whines and such and then he'll track for another little bit. The test was no exception to his normal tracking style. He also had to investigate two or three pieces of trash close to the track that MIGHT have been an article he could indicate and get done with this game. Let's just say we're glad tracking in AKC is a pass/fail event. He was not careful to be 'in the footsteps'. He was generally 5 feet or so off to one side or the other. He even went down the opposite  side of a cedar tree. On the last leg, and I've done enough tracking to know we've been out there long enough for it to be the last leg, I kept a roving eye out since I know he's typically off to a side. Sure enough I catch sight of the glove and we're about 5-8 feet to the right of it. I know he's good about investigating stuff on the ground so I'm feeling the pass coming even though we're off a bit. Sure enough with about 8 feet to go he starts angling in to the glove. WE DID IT! Kayak is a VCD (Versatile Companion Dog) now. WOOT! Two more CDX legs and he'll be a VCD2 like Kamikaze.

Headed down leg 4 (the tree in the corner is the one he went to the left of and track was on the right of it)

Headed down leg 5 and towards the glove

I FOUND it! (The glove raise party) The red on my back is the start article in my back pocket flying.

The obligatory pic with the judges and track layer at the end of the track. Judges on outside, tracklayer next to me. It was her first time to lay a track at a test.

1st -Happy Birthday JOSIE

How  is it that Josie got to be TEN already???  She  sure doesn't act old yet! She's my first Agility Champion and I can't imagine her as old just yet.