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October 2006

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31st

It was one of those days at work today. Then when I left, a bit later than I wanted, to pick up Misty from the vet, I discovered that the DOT guys decided that 3-5 pm was a perfect time to have to bridge squeezed down to one lane of traffic. That's only one lane not one lane each way. So, I spent 30 minutes in traffic lines waiting to cross. I managed to make it to the vet right at closing time to pick her up. She did fine in surgery and now has 5 stitches in a most awful spot. The vet wanted to send an e-collar home. I said no thanks that I'd be sure she left it alone. She's not usually one to bother stitches anyway, but she'll be at work with me the rest of the week.

When I had Sparkle out to run in the yard she and Squirt, the bunny, discovered each other today. Squirt charged the fencing fussing up a storm at the 'intruder'. He smacked the fence with his back foot. Sparkle was not intimidated. I wish I'd had the video camera. Sparkle was running the outside of the cage chasing Squirt who was running the inside fence line just squawking at her. Then Sparkle found her 'voice'. It was almost a 'beagle on the trail' baying but not quite. She's still so little it was a bit of a squeaky version of the beagle bay.

Nikita got to see the articles again today. She is doing them fine, but her confidence is still shaky. Now that I'm most likely done smushing food bits on them for training I decided it was time to clean the articles. I wiped them down with Clorox wipes and then a damp paper towel to remove the residue. I dried them well and put them all back in the bag to air out. Guess I'll wait a few days before trying them again.

 

30th - evening

I came home to find Rich and a hair dryer had resurrected the camera dock so you can scroll down to some pics now. 

Maverick ate his whole dinner this evening and played ball with me for a bit. We'll see how he does this evening and if all is normal he'll be back out to patrol his yard tomorrow. Misty is scheduled for that one mass removal tomorrow.

Sparkle and I went out front with a flexi-leash and some string cheese and played the 'what's my name' game. She's catching on fast. There was also a marvelous break through this evening with Lego. I had Sparkle out in the yard with us (Lego, Josie, Shelby) while I was picking up poop. Lego does well in the yard with her because he can stay away from her. But this time I caught him eyeing her with interest as she blew off some puppy energy by running full speed for no reason. He actually started playing with her. WOO HOO! That didn't take as long as I thought it might.

 

30th - morning

Most of Misty's lumps ended up being just fatty masses. Not unusual for a dog of her age. There is one mass in an awkward spot that is not of the same make up of the others. We will have it removed and sent off for analysis. We will not bother with the fatty masses as long as they don't bother her.

After checking the weekend weather Friday, we whipped by Wal-Mart to buy a sweater for Sparkle. The lows were going to be in the 40's in the mornings. I figured that might be a bit chilly for an 11 week old. Saturday I got up at 5:15 AM  to drive to Brandon, MS (Jackson) for the trial. Thankfully the pottying and loading of dogs was uneventful. I did not  feed Sparkle before we left as I still remembered the queasy puppy tummy as mentioned earlier. Sparkle did better on this ride and figured out to just curl up and sleep after about 15 minutes. She woke up and fussed after almost 2 hours, but the drive's only a little over two hours so I didn't have to hear the whining long. I got there in time to set up as the excellent dogs were walking the first course of the day. Cheryl was already there and had me a spot picked out. It took awhile to unload and set up as Sparkle attracted so much attention. I ended up handing her over to Megan, after dressing her in her sweater, so I could unload while Sparkle got to be passed around. After I got Lego and Shelby pottyed (and Lego dressed in his sweater) and in in their crates I had to hunt down Sparkle so I could feed her. She'd traveled around quite a bit. On this trip she ate much better than she's been eating at home. Hopefully this is a permanent improvement. She also did very well all weekend in her sweater and didn't try to chew it off.

Lego ran first in Open Standard. I was very excited that he didn't give me the finger. He did consider sniffing around a couple of times, but came back promptly and happily to run the course. He wasn't listening 100%, but it wasn't awful by any stretch. We skipped the weaves all together because when I said weave he ran off to sniff, a sure sign of stress, so I just kept running full blast past them and hollered "Let's go!" He quit sniffing and ran after me and we finished in fine style. Shelby was next in Novice Standard (preferred). She Q'd with a 100 and a second place. She did run off to visit the bar setter once, but not bad for Shelby. She even ran fairly quickly. Lego's Open Jumpers run was much more focused. He ran the path of the course the whole way. He even turned fairly well. We missed a few obstacles along the way but he looked awesome. Like a real agility dog.

The Coxes were at this trial and invited me over for dinner Saturday night. Turns out they live only a couple of minutes from the trial site. They actually even offered to let me stay there, but I figured with their 7 dogs already and Lego being non-social and a puppy that can't sleep through the night I'd be better off a a hotel. I did go over there to eat though. I passed up the MACH party to do it to. It just seemed so much easier given my puppy situation to go there. All the dogs were invited, but I just took Sparkle and left the big guys snoozing at the hotel. They have a great setup. 5 acres with a large kennel run and an underground fence around the whole place. Plenty of agility room and all their own equipment. Erin, the oldest, gave me the outdoor tour. The kitchen was pre-equipped with baby gates and they let Sparkle have run of it. There was a concrete floor and a big basket of toys. Gandalf, their aussie, spent his time hanging in the kitchen with us. He and Sparkle got along fine. She was unintimidated and he was relatively gentle. We had chicken fajitas (YUM YUM) for dinner. Jessie, the youngest, was irritated she missed hanging with me. She and Mandy, the middle kid, were at a Halloween party. I ended up excusing myself around 8:30 to go and take care of my other guys. THANKS for the dinner and great company! 

Sparkle only woke up once during the night. I was glad of that since I had a second floor room. Sunday Lego ran better. He even acknowledged that he knew what weaves poles looked like when I said 'weave!' He'd skid to a halt at them, but not actually enter them until I got there. We're still working on independent entrances. He looked good even though we ran past a jump here and there. We don't go back and fix jumps if we blow by them as long as we're running the path of the course. We focus on running happy and fast and having fun. The run bys will improve as he learns to turn better and I learn to speak faster. MAN! When we get it all together he's gonna be phenomenal. Shelby had another good Novice Standard run. She had 2 R's (one at the double and one to see a bar setter) but managed to Q with a 90 and a second place. That gives her the NAP title! She's now officially retired from competitive agility.

We also took this opportunity to practice stand for exams with Lego. I was very pleased with him. He did much better with strangers petting him. He even approached Jessie and let her pet his head. This is a big step out for him. He is scared of kids in general and not keen on strangers either. Later I witnessed Donna's Dalmatian, Smoke, have the same reaction to Jessie. Smoke has similar view of kids and strangers as Lego. I thought Donna's mouth was gonna fall open. So, maybe it wasn't as much an improvement on Lego's part as a compliment to Jessie's dog whispering skills.

Sparkle had a grand time. She never screamed in her crate when left alone. She was interested in watching dogs run some of the time. Her personality seems great. She's not really overly scared of anything so far. A bit unsure occasionally. She approached other dogs confidently and tried to engage them in play. She played with a lab and a golden and tried to entice many others. She was also very comfortable with strangers whisking her off. We discovered she likes to tug! Time to buy a good tug toy and encourage that tendency. Anything to keep a hound's attention focused on something other than sniffing. On Sunday we happened to be out at the grassy area when two young shelties showed up to play chase. She wasn't brave enough to join in, but was very interested as they whizzed by. Then a Chihuahua came out with a baby tug leash on. Sparkle grabbed the leash and was tugging, so the owner turned loose and let her walk the Chihuahua around. It was too cute. Wish I'd had the camera. Speaking of the camera... I have some pictures to post, but when I got home I discovered Rich had an oopsie with his drink on the computer desk and the camera dock is dead so I have no way to download the pictures just yet.  I'm not sure if it's salvageable, but I didn't have time to do more than dismantle the dock and see water droplets all in the circuits. Maybe if it dries out it'll be fine. I'll post them when I can. Sparkle road home better than the ride there and seems to understand now when the car's moving it's nap time.

The news from my friends there:
Cheryl and Bernie were only there Saturday and had two not quite runs. Kay and Zeke got their MACH on Saturday!! Erin and Gandalf managed his first Novice Standard Q. She didn't even know they'd Q'd I had to go tell her. A new club member, Cheryl with her sheltie Emily, managed their first ever Q. I was there to see it and cheer. I forget what that first ever Q feels like. Cheryl was beaming! She's hooked.

One more thing, sorry this is so long, but Maverick didn't eat at all while I was gone. He misses a meal here and there regularly, but not usually two in a row. He seems fine otherwise and still wants to play ball. He threw up twice last night though. I left him inside today. If he doesn't eat tonight we'll be at the vet trying to determine what's up.

26th

Misty went in to the vet this afternoon to have her lumps looked at. She's developed about 6 recently. It ended up the vet was behind schedule and after a quick look he asked if I could drop her off in the morning so he could take a closer look when he had more time. He wants to needle aspirate them all and check them on the slides. The one that concerns him most is the same one that concerned me when in appeared a couple of weeks ago. 

Sparkle weighs in at 7.7 lbs. He did a quick fecal to check for parasites and that was all negative. We are going to record and monitor her weight to be sure she gains. I have hit on a feeding regimen that seems to be working. I crush the kibble up with a hammer in a ziploc bag then add a spoonful or two of the Eukanuba canned puppy food and swirl it all up. Also, I added another feeding time. I usually feed puppies twice a day, morning and late afternoon. I added another opportunity to eat at bedtime. She's been eating much better over the last couple of days. She's also getting the hang of our schedule. She sleeps a couple of hours at a time during the night before waking up to potty. At least now after the trip outside I can put her right back in her kennel and she doesn't scream and cry. So other than getting up at midnight, 2 and 4 we're all sleeping better. I'm gonna try and stretch her potty times to three hours. That would be much nicer. I don't think she's always dying to go at two hours. It's just that she woke up and moved around some and thought she could scratch at the kennel a bit and see if there was a response. 

24th

Yesterday Nikita and Lego gave articles another try. Nikita is still progressing well and didn't even try to run off when she saw the utility bag. Lego is goofing off a bit. I'm not pushing him to do all this utility stuff perfectly anytime soon. He does know which one to bring if he sniffs them at all. Yesterday and today Shelby practiced pivots and gloves. Monday it was just plain bad, but today was much improved. I have come to the conclusion that I am crippling her on this exercise. I can't seem to find a way to pivot where my feet don't 'stick' to the concrete and cause me to stutter or stumble. If I do turn without stuttering I somehow keep my left foot wide from my body until I stop. This causes her to be ill aligned and wide. Poor girl. She's eager and wants to bring back the right glove.  

Sparkle is adjusting well and has figured out how to select a toy and take it to a dog pillow to chew. She also isn't intimidated at all by the big guys in the group. She seems to have a very independent personality. She may be a large challenge to train. It is becoming routine for her and Josie to have a rousing play session after their dinner. She still eats poorly, though it doesn't seem to be slowing her down any. I gave her an IAMS soft pack of food after dinner tonight which she ate heartily. Then she went along for a ride to the LCCOC meeting tonight. I forgot how sensitive puppies can be to car rides, so we saw the soft food come back during the ride. We stopped at PetsMart to buy some canned Eukanuba puppy. I am going to try mixing it in with the dry kibble and see if we get a better eating routine. Thanks to Cheryl I may even try smashing the kibbles up into smaller pieces before I mix in the canned stuff.

Misty is headed to the vet Thursday to have all her lumps checked out. She has developed several in the last 6 - 8 months. Maybe they're just old age setting in. She certainly doesn't feel bad. But on the other hand if something is very wrong I'd like to know if we're in the final stretch. I'll take Sparkle along to get a weight and make sure there's not some medical reason she doesn't eat.  It didn't help my worry any to hear that one of the LCCOC member's found out a couple of months ago that her older whippet (12) has cancer already in his lymph nodes. They are just in a waiting pattern now for him to  stop eating and start the downhill tumble.

This weekend I'll be in Jackson, MS for an agility show. Lego and Shelby are running and Sparkle will come along. It'll be interesting to see what Lego does. He has not been quite himself since Sparkle came. He actually seems to be scared of her. At best he doesn't know what to make of her. I may get the finger from him all weekend. Cheryl and Bernie will be there Saturday to hang with.

22nd

Sparkle got introduced to 6 of the guys today. Although they could smell and see her in the X-pen yesterday, we waited a day to try introductions. She seemed overwhelmed yesterday. Misty treats her like all puppies. She is gentle but firm about the rules and protects her from too much sniffing by the others. Shelby is fascinated and happy with her. Lego, Bandit and Maverick want to give her back. That's a fairly typical response from all of them. None of them have been ugly, they just pretend she doesn't exist. Lego is interested enough to sniff her as she walks by but doesn't want her to sniff him. He acted like this when Josie came and now they are best buddies. Josie is interested but unsure of what to do. She made an attempt to play with Sparkle because Sparkle started a pouncing game. It was too cute. I think they will be friends soon.

Sparkle is not eating as well as I'd like. She picks at the food. She didn't eat anything yesterday after we brought her home. She is interested in human food though. I tried some soft IAMS poured on top of the dry stuff tonight and that seemed to help. It's hard to remember how much a little pup should eat. If we continue poor eating habits and seem to get sluggish we'll be off to the vet. We'll be there soon anyway to have her spay stitches removed and get an official weight for a heartworm pill.

Rich hasn't felt well all day. So he napped some this evening.

21st

Lego and I went tracking this morning. He actually did pretty well. He let the wind get the best of him on the first turn, but recovered well and hit all the other turns like a pro. I hope I make it in the draw for the tracking test In Houston in November. I think it'll be a great site for him.

Meet the new Roth!
Pebblemist's Glitz N Glamour "SPARKLE"

OK, so I didn't say we weren't thinking about a puppy right? Just not the border collie. We got to talking puppies and then at PetsMart today was a whole litter of beagles. I am a beagle lover from childhood. Some dude bred his AKC beagles and was trying to sell the puppies at $500 a piece. When he didn't get any response from the public he decided he wasn't feeding those puppies anymore. It was costing him too much money (for OL ROY). Thus the rescue group ended up with them. Too bad they didn't take the papers too. They just have so much paperwork to keep up with they didn't want the hassle. As most of you know papers aren't at the top of my list anyway, but it would've been nice. Also a first here, Rich actually named this one. 

20th

Rich and I talked about the cute border collie puppy and decided that at this point it is probably not a good idea to get a border collie. We don't want to cause any more strife here and a herding dog is more likely to be annoying to rest of our gang. Maybe some day, but not this day. I took off work a bit early and Rich and I went to dinner at around 4pm. We missed all the bustle and got to sit on the patio in the pretty weather. The high was only 72 today.

17th


This is Shiver! Ok, so her mom has been calling her Jill, but Shiver ("Luzian Blue Ice")  is much more catchy. This is the border collie puppy that Linda Baron is trying to sucker me into taking off her hands. She's 6 weeks old. Her dad is Eagle, a tri color, and her mom is Mouse, a blue merle. She's really durn cute isn't she! So, do I need another dog? NO.  Would it be wise to have another herding dog around? Probably not. Does this puppy tempt me? YES. Please readers, beat my senses back into me!

Nikita did articles again today. She now seems to know immediately which one is the right one, but needs a little encouragement to trust herself and bring it on in to me. Her avoidance behaviors are improving. Although she still tries to trot off when she sees the utility article bag, once I put them out and get her to heel she goes straight to the pile when I send her. Shelby did gloves, and it was awful. She always brings back a glove,  just not the one she's facing. I have determined the problem is that she doesn't turn well. She turns wide and sloppy and that makes it hard for me to line her up nicely. She also turns looking around and not at me. This causes her to see the gloves as she is turning, and she's already picked one in her mind. We will work on pivots without the gloves now. Lego got to track for his dinner tonight. FINALLY he looked like a tracking dog again. He hit most of the turns the first try and he was sniffing most of the way instead of speed air scenting just above he ground. He seems to understand the concept of multiple scent articles now too. He doesn't look at me like I'm crazy when I tell him to track on after the first article. Maybe we'll look into the TDX if he ever gets the TD.

Tonight I met up with Meg to go over the paper work that needs to be sent in to USDAA to get our March show rolling. I had downloaded the forms and filled out most of them, but I needed some help on a few things. We had a nice meal at On the Border and got all the forms finished up. I'll mail them in the morning. The Overcome meeting is going to be the 2nd of November. We'll work out the rest of the upcoming trial details there.

15th

Well, this weekend didn't go as planned. Shelby didn't manage to Q at all. She walked the broad jump yesterday. Today she managed the broad jump fine, but knocked the panel jump wagging her tail at the ring crew. Her course times were good though and she had a great and happy time.

Nikita went along for the ride this weekend. She thought that was cool. Today we got a chance to practice signals and stand for exam in a new place. She did good, but forgot the down signal the first time. On one occasion I was extremely proud of the stand for exam. She was standing on the landing of the bleachers and a dog that had lunged at her (to investigate not attack) twice that morning walked by on leash trying to lunge and she held her stand stay and ignored them.

As for my friends, Bernie and Cheryl managed their first Jumpers Q and their first Standard Q this weekend. Both with first places!

13th

I turned the little guys loose to play this evening and got a couple of nice shots.
 

12th

I did manage to get out two jumps and make a double out of them for Shelby today. She didn't have any problem at all soaring over the 16 inch double. Since the two jumps were out, Shelby and I then worked on directed jumping and go-outs. She did beautiful. I also took Nikita out front to do the same. She still gets amnesia about jumping the jump to her right sometimes. I guess she's left -pawed. It only took one time of rattling the treats in my outstretched left hand to remind her to follow the hand. Then she did fine. She was even enthusiastic about it. I guess she's worn out on gloves and articles and was glad for something different. Lego got another whirl at articles. He does OK when he thinks, which is about one out of every 5 tries. We are still only at 2 leather/2 metal and the scented one. When he sniffs the right one I am still giving a verbal reward. Then he knows to bring it in to me. 

On a more personal note, I am still watching my calories and have lost a couple more pounds since I last spoke about it. That's about 6 overall. I'm hoping for another 10. The business continues to do well. Who knows when the building will actually be finished. I'm guessing for next year even though they said end of November. Rich has even paid off one of the debts he's been paying. That helps by freeing up the money to pay the difference in rent once the building is finished. We even got lucky last night and got a free dinner because of the business. We were at Chili's and about half way through our meal a couple walked by on their way out and stopped to say HI. It was one of Rich's patients and his wife. We chatted briefly and they left. A few minutes later the waiter comes by and tells us the couple that just left paid our bill. That was a nice surprise. 

It's off to an AKC agility show this weekend in New Iberia, LA. Rosey and Cheryl will both be there. Probably many of our club members will to. I'd love to see Bernie and/or Red get a Q this weekend! Hopefully Shelby will too.

10th

I think maybe some guys were irritated at being left behind. I tried articles with Nikita yesterday and even though her success rate was great she was playing the avoidance, abused dog game. Then there was Shelby. She did great heeling but forgot how to stand and what all those funny arm waving gestures were. And Lego just wouldn't track. I'd say lets go and he'd get in heel and wag his tail. I put him back in his crate (still without dinner) and got him out 15 minutes later and lo and behold he decided he'd track for his dinner. He even did OK on the turns. After everyone else's miserable showing in obedience practice I thought I'd work Lego on signals some. He's still learning and still gets a verbal cue with the hand motion. I figured it couldn't be all that bad since I wasn't expecting much. He did great at it and even seems to be understanding the stand signal while heeling.

This afternoon was my 6 month dentist check-up that was about 4 months late. My teeth are holding up fine thankfully. I got home relatively quickly so I decided to re-do Nikita and Shelby's obedience practice from yesterday. Their memories seem to have all been restored since yesterday. Nikita did great on articles (still 6 plus the scented one) and even did gloves, although a bit reluctantly. Shelby remembered signals and stand for exam too. I need to get out a double jump and work with Shelby on it. Those seem to stump her a bit a agility trials and she is going for those last 2 NAP legs this weekend in New Iberia.

8th

I am safely back from Pensacola. I caravanned with Kay to get there Friday afternoon. Unfortunately our 4 hour drive turned into 5 when we hit Mobile, AL at around 6 pm and got caught in an awful traffic jam caused by a wreck in the I-10 bay tunnel. Then, as luck would have it, I chose a hotel at the only exit in Pensacola with construction around it. This, of course, causes even more confusion in the dark when you are unfamiliar with you surroundings anyway. I did manage to shoot between the right gap in the barrels to get off on my street. Then there was the difficulty of actually getting to the hotel. It was one of those situation where you could see it from the interstate, but couldn't find the right little access road to take you there. As I am checking in the lady behind the desk asks if I only have one dog. "Uh, no." "How many do you have?" "A couple." She informs me that they had to ask a lady to leave Thursday because she had 3 dogs and a patron complained. Their policy is ONE dog per room. I was like look it's 8 pm I just want to sleep and we're leaving at 6 AM. As it turns out the dogs weren't barking or anything. It was just that this crotchety man happened to see her go in her room with three dogs and ran to tell on her. So, they let me check in, but warned me that if they saw more than one they'd probably ask me to leave. This was a Red Roof. How deranged is that? So Rosey and I spent the next couple of nights trying not to get kicked out of a Red Roof. There is a Motel 6 on that exit that some show people said was pretty nice. That will be my choice next time.

The show site was very nice. I would even take Lego to show there. Jedi ran very nice for me Saturday, though always just that one oopsie from a Q. He was so close to doing his gamble that I was actually getting excited. He was charging the A frame out there in the gamble. I was cheering him on. Then at the last second he swerved and didn't go up it. DARN IT! Bandit didn't do so well. He wasn't listening. Josie had a couple of scared, nervous runs, but most of them were acceptably quick and happy. She got her 6th Maters Snooker Q and she got a blessing of a pairs draw with Tsunami the sheltie. Josie ran her half clean and in a decent time frame and Tsu finished out easily giving us a second place Q in pairs. Sunday didn't go quite as well. Bandit had a very nice standard run but well over time. Josie had a great Snooker run with a bad handler move that pulled her out of a Q there. She made a valiant attempt at the Master Gamble and had her first clean Advanced Standard run. She ended up over time in standard because of some wide turns and a complete refusal to lay on the table for like 5 or more seconds, but this is progress. Jedi ran awful all Sunday until the last run, Jumpers. He ended up over time for going out wide on a turn and stopping at the ring's edge to sniff around, but it was a clean run and for the most part he was with me on it. Thankfully the drive home was much more uneventful and consequently much quicker.

As for my friends there... Rosey and Red had one standard run where he made it all the way around clean (though over time). He even did the weaves. Sniper somehow kinked his back Friday, so Saturday we were hunting down Rimadyl and massaging him. I think I got one of his vertebrae to re-align and he seemed good after that and ran without a hitch. Sadly he didn't manage a gamble Q this weekend. He only needs 2 for his ADCH.

Monica is trying hard to convince me and Rosey to come to her New Years show in Houston. I was refusing because of the amount of money. What with entry fees and gas and hotel, but then as I was leaving I said bye to Lucy Long. She asked when she'd see me again. I told her I was considering New Years in Houston. "Great!" She said. "You want to stay with me?" At first I thought she meant hotel sharing, then I remembered she lived in Houston. "Well, I may think on that." I tell her. So, now that eliminates the need for hotel money and I do have some money off coupons from Monica from past trials I could use for entry fees. hrrrmm....

4th

I took the day off from work today. There are server issues at work that basically make it impossible for me to do my job, so a vacation day seemed in order. I thought I'd get all this stuff done. Turns out all I got done was cleaning (inside and out) the Expedition and getting the oil changed. And then switching vehicles and doing the same with the truck. That plus three trips to Wal Mart to get oil and 5 hours was gone. The clean-up and maintenance of the Expedition was important because I'm heading to Pensacola, FL  Friday after work for a weekend of agility. I'll be loading up my stuff tomorrow after work so I'll be ready to roll ASAP. I want to get there before utter darkness since I have no idea where it is I'm going. Check back Monday for results.

I sent entries off for Lego to the November tracking test in Houston. We'll have to wait until the first week of November to see if we made it in. There is a limit of 4 TD tracks and they seem to think there will be more than 4 entries, so there will be a random draw to see who gets in.

The no show weekends for the summer have waned now so my show schedule is about to get a bit more hectic. I have 3 weekends of shows in October and 2 in December. November is only one or possibly 2. 

2nd

Lego tried tracking again this afternoon. It was just plain awful. I decided to demote him. He will now run tracks with food every 10 steps or so again. I set him up a little one with food in the front yard after dinner. He did splendidly on that one. He kept his head down and followed the path almost to the step. I guess he had just decided the only really important part was finding the end and not tracking carefully to get there. I even removed the glove aspect and just had a small jackpot on the ground for him. After the jackpot I told him how great he was and we ran inside for a special treat. I guess we will work from here this month and hopefully be back in good form for the trial in Texas in November. I can't stand NOT to enter since I know he's capable and his tracking certification runs out the end of January.

On a better note, Nikita did articles again today. The pile had 3 metal, 3 leather and the scented one. She raced out to the pile each time and sniffed for the right one. The avoidance behaviors seem to have waned. She was correct every time and it was obvious she knew what she was looking for. One time she even ended up having to sniff every one and she still stuck with it and didn't give it up.

1st

Yesterday was nice. Lego and I tracked in the morning and he was still a bit scatterbrained on his turns. Very disappointing. Then I ran around and did some errands. I dropped off a duffle bag for Rosey at her house so she can quit using the book bag for her dog stuff at shows. It doesn't close and so she keeps losing stuff or having to find where in the car it fell out. I've been harassing her to get a better "doggie equipment bag". Rich was running speaker wires at the new office before the sheet rock goes in. For dinner we were invited to Cheryl's (with Bernie). It was delicious. And what nice company!

Today was a busy day. I managed four loads of laundry a dishwasher full of dishes and mowing the back and side yard while Rich was finished running speaker wires. Then we relocated the pit bull that had wandered up to Rich's business last week and never left. He was very hungry and nervous when he showed up, but what a sweet heart . Naturally Rich has been feeding him. The nice young lady that's been working there part time was interested in keeping him. I know she'll feed him and love on him. We bought a dog house for him and loaded him up in a crate and delivered him to her place. It's got to be a better situation than he was in. Later this evening Lego started growling at the front windows while I was watching TV. I just figured some neighbor dog was moseying by. He doesn't like other dogs in his yard. I was wrong though. There were two does and their babies (about great dane sized) strolling down the road in front of the house. I got Lego hushed up and snuck out with the camera. Unfortunately it was around 7 pm and even though there was plenty of light for my eyes, there just wasn't enough for the pictures to come out.

I have been considering teaching an agility class next session. I have had several people approach me and want to know when I would teach again. I guess it's about that time. I am considering a class on "all that is wood with some weave pole practice".  I know one of my current problems is contact/table performance at shows, so maybe this class will be good for my discipline in teaching consistent contacts.

The business collected well last month too. It is sustaining itself well now and contributing consistently to the household bills as well.