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Cheryl and I ran agility this weekend (our home town club). It felt good to get back into it and I didn't screw up too bad. Meanwhile Ridge (aka Double) got to go to Florida and meet the beaches and wade in the water. What an awful life he must have.
On Friday Sprigs ran by the teeter in standard and we turned around and did it. I just figured she didn't see it or something, but she won jumpers. Kamikaze got a Standard Q and nothing for Kayak. Codex and Kirk got to play together at the show site though. Codex is even calling off play to come to me!
On Saturday Sprigs fingered the
teeter again, so apparently this is her old issue returning. GRRRRR... that's
what I get for not working her for 3 months I guess. We even blew jumpers today.
Kamikaze got another Standard Q. Big news of the day was Kayak's virtual QQ. He
needs one more in Standard now for QQs to start counting. There was also a
photographer guy doing still shots so I paid a nominal fee to get a picture of
Codex (aka Smudge) taken.
Today Kamikaze and I finally
got it all together for a Jumpers Q! That gives her the Master Jumper Century
title (100 lifetime Q's in Master Jumpers).
Even though I took Sprigs out to my teeter last night and she did fine, she still skipped the teeter in Standard. But she won Jumpers again! For this last day of the show I entered Spirit and Xanadu too. I tried entering Spirit in Performance this time (on jump height lower) to see if it helped her enthusiasm any. I was skeptical, but she seemed much happier. She came home with her first QQ towards PACH. Xanadu wasn't quite ready for a return to the ring, but did OK half way through Standard as she realized it wasn't so bad.
As an enriching puppy experience Codex and Kirk played on the kiddie playground some while we were at the show. By day three they were happily going down a kiddie slide!
24th - Happy Birthday Kayak
Kayak turned 2 today! WOW.. how is
that possible. He's still a young goofy, goober boy right now. I'm all good with
Yesterday I started Codex on some
tracking. He's a beagle, so right now he just goes from treat to treat as they
are very close together along the track. Then today Cheryl and I went out to the
club agility field to practice for the home town agility show this weekend. We took our
puppies along and did some intro to obstacle work. Codex wasn't scared of
anything! Sprigs, Kayak and Kamikaze all ran pretty well although Kayak
struggled to weave off the Aframe off a 90 degree turn.
Left 5am to head to FL. We made a
couple of stops on the way to potty the puppies. I took Xan and Spirit along so
Kyle, Dot's new Dad, could see them and the size difference. We got to his hotel
in Pensacola about 9:30am. He was anxiously waiting in the parking lot. It was a
quick exchange as he had another 5 hours or so to drive to get home. Kyle and
his wife have dubbed their new puppy "Watson".
We got home around 2 or 3 with just our one puppy left. His name is now Pebblemist's Ancient Tome aka "Codex". This has been a most exhausting, heart wrenching experience. I can't say I'd never breed and raise a litter again, but I can say I'll never do it unless I am in it for another puppy myself. I am amazed at both how fast the time seems to have gone looking back at it as well as how slow it seemed to move when I was in the middle of it all.
Leaving in the morning to take Dot
to Pensacola to meet up with his new Daddy. Then they'll be on to Orlando. It's
been an interesting four days around here with only two puppies to care for.
They moved back into the front half bath to be closer to us and the pack. Kind
of a deja vu feeling. The boys started in that bath with Mom in a varikennel
bottom and now two are back there again.
all in the bathroom Dot sleeping on Smudge in the same bathroom
They also got to move into the master bedroom to sleep in their crates now. Two is much easier to take outside to potty at night. We've had lots more free play in the house (dragging a leash) than I could ever do with four puppies. We've had lots more snuggles too. Monitoring free time outside was so much easier with only two to watch as well. We've also had lots of sad moments missing the other two.
15th - Part A (the show)
This was Kayak's first show in Advanced. We didn't do as well as I'd hoped, but we did come home with a Q in jumpers. He did actually run Standard clean on Sunday, but was over time for walking parts of it. Can't blame him as it WAS pretty darn hot. He also did everything I asked in Snooker, but we didn't make it far enough to get enough points to Q. I managed to mangle all of Kamikaze's runs this weekend all by myself. One of which was right after Diane left with the two puppies and I was struggling to just not cry.
15th -Part B (the puppies)
It wasn't a bad drive at all up to
Shreveport with SIX puppies in the car. We basically just planned stops along
the way to hopefully stave off any emergency shrieking from a puppy. It worked
for the most part. I had reserved a handicapped room at the hotel. That way I
knew we'd be downstairs and have a bathroom big enough to move a wheelchair
around in to trap the puppies in. Thankfully Cheryl's puppies came with a
30" inch x-pen that we were happy to drag along instead of my 48"
There's was lots of playing going on and it was a small chore to keep the barking out of it. We walked them a good distance into a neighborhood to wear them down. The first night went pretty well. Of course I was up a few times pottying the puppies and such, but I was thought all in all in went well. Then came mornings (5am). ACK! To keep them quiet for about 10 minutes I poured breakfast all over the bathroom floor for them to find and eat. After that it was just impossible to keep them all quiet. They just had to go out and sit in the car in their crates until Cheryl and I could get ourselves dressed and out the door. We made the show site early each day. The second night was a real chore and I'm glad it was only TWO nights.
They did very well in the x-pen at
the show site. We made sure there was someone around all the time to rescue
anyone getting picked on or put a wild child in timeout in a crate. We had a
poly mat over the dirt with soft mats on top and a zillion toys. They had plenty
of visitors and hugs. They even slept some during the show.
Dot on Double who's on Cork with Smudge next door
Double's new mommy was overjoyed to
be see him Saturday morning. She has named him Pebblemist Line of Timber aka
She spent lots of time bonding with him over the two days of the show and not as much time running the puppies' daddy, Timber. I got teary eyed watching him do all he's learned on her commands. He even did a recall to HER in the new place, on the smelly dirt. Made me beam with pride. She also has a really nice camera, so we had a family photo shoot.
Timber, Xanadu, Dot, Smudge, Double, Cork
Smudge, Xan, Timber
Double, Xan, Timber
Cork, Xan, Timber
Dot, Xan, Timber
I thought I did a good job not bursting into tears any this weekend. I was good even when we loaded Double (Ridge) and Cork (Diane was meeting Cork's mom in TN) into Diane's van on Sunday. Then she went and hugged me tight and said, "Thank you". That's when I lost it. The sobbing with the shaking and everything. Once it started, it was hard to get it back in check. It took Diane a good 10-11 hours to make her journey with two young ones in the car. She did as instructed once Cork left her and took me a picture of Cork with his new Mom, Terry, who I have yet to meet.
The day is upon us. The boys' last
morning together at home. Off to the vet for microchips where we had a tech take a
Cork, Smudge, Double, Dot
Then home to finish packing the last things for our trip. And then off to the show in Shreveport and my first goodbyes. (to Cork and Double). Hearts are heavy here.
Yesterday I got a shot of Xan with
three of the boys outside playing together
Cork, Smudge and Double up front
Sunday I gave the boys their first shot at 8 weeks old. I also spent a little time rewarding the boys for coming to a police whistle. Around here we train that as our emergency recall. Dogs think it means "Mom's got steak". Hopefully their new owners will find some emergency recall to keep working on them with. As I hear from all the new homes how excited they are and how they are anxiously awaiting their new puppy my sadness deepens. I am absolutely, 100% happy with all three homes, but it means they are leaving here. It doesn't help to know they will be well loved and cared for and that in the long run it's better to split them up so each gets more individual attention. Feelings are just that... feelings.
Today they got manis and pedis in
preparation for their trip this weekend. No one wants to play with puppies with
all sniff! Double, Dot, Smudge,Cork
Cork in my lap
Goofy sleeper Cork
PILE! Double, Dot, Cork with Smudge in background
Smudge goofy sleeper
Tonight I took the boys out to a friend's house for an agility fun run. We were met by Cheryl and the two pups she's just gotten in for evaluation. She's deciding if one of them might want to stay. They're Miniature American Shepherds. All six pups shared an x-pen. We're glad that went well since all 6 will be traveling together this weekend too.
As for the fun run... Well the dogs are not rusty at all. I am, however, very rusty. There were several times on Kamikaze's run I was caught NOT DOING ANYTHING helpful which to her means go straight. ARGH! Kayak did very well for all that time he's had off at such a young age.
I decided everyone could work on stays today. Dot needed a different approach. He just wasn't ready for stays the way the other boys were. I find myself doing less training and spending time enjoying them as the days tick by. It's only a week until the first ones leave.
It's now been decided that Smudge
will stay here. Double will go live with Diane in Atlanta. Cork will head to
Kentucky to be the next Champion Tracker for Terry, a tracking judge. Dot will
head to Orlando in 2 weeks to live with a long time friend, Kyle, and his wife, Katie.
He will have an older beagle brother there. I spent some time yesterday starting
to fill gift bags with puppy survival items to send home with each boy. MAN!
It's tough to think about saying goodbye.
Dot and Cork
Josie had a good time playing with
Smudge and Dot. Cork started working on his stays. Not bad for an almost 8
week old. Yesterday we worked some on voluntary down for treats while everyone
was outside in a big group. Got a lot of time from Cork and Double, not as much
from Dot and Smudge.
The boys took a car ride again
today. Smudge is still getting just a tad car sick. Cork started screeching
about 5 minutes from home. He managed to hold it until I got home and I took him
immediately to grass where he relieved himself!
Cork, Smudge, Double
I did retrieve session #3 with the puppies today. I am starting to get sad about them leaving in a couple of weeks. But, life will be much easier when I am only caring for one puppy.