Tuesday, September 30, 2008

Indoor/outdoor, no worries

Last night I took Fin to indoor agility at my friend Ann's place in woodside. Laura teaches there and she has volunteered to let me practice there on Mondays when I can get away from my bi-weekly staff meeting.

I wasn't sure how it would all go (with the noise and all), but I shouldn't have worried. Laura had taken her when I was on the cruise and she settled in like she'd been doing it all her life.

So the teeter. The teeter was so loud it scared me! Not Fin. I did a few bang games with her to start off the day and in no time she was running to the end and letting it bang. I think the people in palo alto heard that darn teeter.

Table, beautiful!

Dog walk: She definitely has a good dogwalk. Somehow, she knows what to do. It is amazing when you take clear criteria and practice practice practice.

Start line stay: Hmmmm. again, I can see this is gonna be a challenge. Lots of start line stays in our future.

Herding while jumping: Hmmm....tooo exciting ...weeeeee...Mom needs to be in the right place so that little Finnie doesn't go around jumps :)

A frame: Still working on transferring to a 2o2o and so didn't even attempt. Just did some targeting on the end.

Loads of fun.

Sunday, September 28, 2008

There is a Little More Gold in America Today

The US did very well in individual runs at the FCI World Agility Championships.

More pictures and some video can be seen at Erics site: http://fciagility2008.cleanrun.com/

Marcy and Wave won individual Gold!

Marcus and Juice won individual Gold!

Ashley and Luka had some great runs, but an off course put them out of the running.

All of the results can be seen: http://voittaja.kennelliitto.fi/EN/agilitywc2008/results/Agility+World+Championships+2008.htm

Exciting times!

Saturday, September 27, 2008

Tazzie Herding

A small little look at what herding is like. This is the last couple of minutes of a long session.
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Friday, September 26, 2008

"Move it" Recommendation

Ok, it is expensive.
Yes, it would be classified as a luxury by many
You only need it if you have an A frame

I'm thrilled to now be an owner of a "Move it"

http://www.nosetouch.com/move_it.htm

I have put off ordering this item I have felt was not necessary for me. I am strong and sturdy and can move my A frame all by myself.

Well, I learned a lesson this summer: I should not move the A frame by myself. The consequence of me not learning the lesson until it was too late was many sleepless nights, missed agility, pain, and finally vicoden.

So I had Kel help me. Even with his help, my back was bothering me again. I had my gardener move it for me (a big hassle as he doesn't always move it where I want it nor in the method I would like it moved).

I broke down and bought one. Of course I got the stainless steel as I'm learning quickly that things do not last long in my garden unless I protect them. I didn't want ONE more thing I needed to perform maintenance on.

Today is the day the gardener comes. I unpacked my move it and used it exactly as described in the video and wolaaa! Easy as anything. I might even start taking my A frame for a walk with me (it is that easy!). Love it, Love it, Love it.

Ask your spouses for one for christmas. You will not regret your decision.

Final T Shirt Design

Team Brazen Benja Warriors is off to the Agility National Championships the end of October. They will be sporting an official Whiz design on red T Shirts.



The front of the shirt will have the asian writing design sorta centered under the collar and the large image of the dogs and team name will be on the back. I hope they'll be proud to wear their team shirts. I can't wait to be there and take pictures of this great group of women together.

Thursday, September 25, 2008

Sheep Poo

It's been about 2.5 years since I worked Tazz on sheep. I quit sheep herding because:


  • It is time consuming
  • It involves driving long distances for a very short time in the ring
  • Many sheep instructors yell and hit their dogs
  • I felt like an idiot more times than not

I did sheep herding because Tazz really enjoyed it and it was fun to do while I was waiting for Tazz to mature so we could do agility.

My friend Laura said, why don't you go with me next week. I said, sure, why not.
Today we went and did some herding. I had zero expectations. One of the last times we herded, Tazz got yelled at and shut down completly, and Tazz has an incredible memory. The last time he was ever on sheep was two years ago and he was totally not into it at all.
But I figured, what the heck. Let's go for it.
I can not express the joy it is to watch your dog doing something they love. From the moment we arrived Tazz sniffed the air and his step had more bounce in it. When he watched another dog in a pen 1/4 mile away herd he got his happy little chirpy bark he sometimes gets, tail high and wagging and just alot of happy wiggle.

We had to wait for our turn and I was thinking that perhaps he might get hot and not want to work. That was not the case. He worked his little heart out. He was truly enjoying himself more than he has enjoyed himself in a LONG while. Heat, no problem. He ran a full steam when needed and never once gave any indication of "slo moe."

Tazz got two times in the pen with the sheep and we are definately going back. Tazz does agility for me. Herding, thats for him.

Wednesday, September 24, 2008

Surprize!


Well, I'm going to admit. I've been feeling down about Tazzies runs. I know I'm usually a pretty positive person, but this last weekend was somewhat disappointing. Even I need to take a sanity break and ask myself, "why?"

So I go to the USDAA website to see whether results have been posted and what do I find? I find that Tazz actually Super Q'd in July! That's TWO super Q's ...only one more to go. For those of you who don't know what a super q is, keep reading...for those of you that do, skip a paragraph.

A super Q is something you get for a fun game called Snooker. If Tazz is in the top percent of the scores he gets a super q. I can qualify in Snooker with only 38 points, but I need alot more than that usually to be in the top percent. To get a Snooker championship I need three super q's.

So lesson learned. No matter how bad I think we are doing, I should go look at those darn score sheets. I might find surprisingly good news!

Tuesday, September 23, 2008

Creativity

My friends are on an agility team together. "Ben," "Manja," and "Brazen." They want team shirts and their team name is "Benja Brazen Warriors." A friend of Karens did some cartoon drawings that were really cute and Laura had asked me what I would do. So I took some time today to be creative and taking inspiration from ninja turtles, I did headshots with Ninja masks.



This is the first time that I've done any drawing with the computer programs and I'm really happy with it. I actually drew the heads and scanned the image in as a JPEG. I opened the JPEG up in Fireworks8 and added the color. Brazen (the merle dog) was the easiest as I had a picture of her, but the others I had to do from memory or a small pic I found on the web.


It was a fun project and worth the time whether they use it or not. I've forgotten how much fun my art can be and I've really got to do more.

Updated: Here is another version. This one looks a little more finished.

Monday, September 22, 2008

Sept 22 Statistics

September 22

September 22 is the 265th day of the year . There are 100 days remaining until the end of the year.

-FIVE DAYS to WORLDS (http://fciagility2008.cleanrun.com/)
-Christmas is in 94 days!
-Change the clocks in 41 days
-Today is OneWebday (http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/OneWebDay)
-74 days to TG!
-only 21 days before I leave for the USDAA Nationals
-182 days until the longest day of the year
-Kel turns 50 in 20 days (Yikes!)
-One day in the many for my fitness goals. How many days until I loose 30 pounds? Hopefully in 3 months as I made a committment to not show Fin until I lost 30 pounds. A good goal. So will I make the 3 day AKC show between Christmas and New Years? Only time will tell.

Saturday, September 20, 2008

Team Slow Dog

Today found Laura and her three and me and my one on the lonely stretches of highway heading to the wonderful land of Woodland about 2.25 hours north of Morgan Hill.

Tazzie's heart was not in it today. He was out there supporting the team, but he was hot and tired and just couldn't get outta 2nd gear. The first run was pretty good. It was still in the low 80's at that point. Later, no speed. I did what I could, but it wasn't his day. He did nothing wrong, just did everything at low speed. I really think it was the heat.

Laura had some really nice runs. A couple bobbles, but all in all a good day for Team Pryse.

Havoc and I had a GREAT run in Standard. If only she had stayed on the table, we would have Q'd for sure.

No video today, I left the house at 5am and the video camera was forgotten on my desk.

No shows tomorrow. Just a little fun match close by. Tazz may get to stay home if he is still has the mopes.

Thursday, September 18, 2008

Monday, September 15, 2008

A Good Weekend - A Tazzy Weekend


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I feel like an agility person today. I'm tired, but in a good way. Tazz acted like a real agility dog for TWO whole days. Ok, no it wasn't like a FAST agility dog, that would be asking for too much. But he did act like he was enjoying himself.

Sat

Masters standard A good start. No Q, but definitely a good run. A missed contact and a weave pop out, but happy happy happy.

Master pairs. Q and 1st place! Thanks world team member Marcy for being my pairs partner :)

Master Gamblers. No Q. No distance work. Mama's boy.

Master Snooker. Q, happy dog. Happy mom.

Steeplechase. I didn't even check the scores. He did a nice job, but missed an A frame contact. No way we q'd...WAY!!! Next morning I'm walking Standard and I think, maybe I should go check and Whoala there is Tazzies name on the running order. Q!!!!!!

Sunday

Steeplechase. 1st place $15.89. Ok, Ok, there were no other dogs in the class. But hey. In 3 weeks no one is gonna remember that Tazzie was a lone wolf, I still have bragging rights

Standard. What an excellent run he had. If he hadn't taken 4 seconds to lie down, it would have been a RIGHTOUS Q...but no matter. We are getting closer and closer and I feel a MAD coming our way.

Grand Prix: Q!!!! 2nd place! nothing more to say to that.

Ok, here is where I started to loose it. Gamble and snooker, no q, my fault, but I could tell that Tazzie's enthusiasm was starting to wain as well. Skipped Jumpers and headed home.

A great weekend by any ones standards.

A few comments from this weekend I thought especially funny:

In reference to Tazz, "He actually cantered!"

In reference to a dropped bar, "I had the wrong shoes on."

In reference to an owner and her dogs name, "She is either an alcoholic, gay, or a stalker."

Dirt Dogs

And lastly, my friends dog was a little hot this weekend and dug herself a nice hole in the ground. While she was making herself comfortable, a little Papillon was buried in her crate and her pen mate Hobbes was covered in dirt much of the day.





Tuesday, September 9, 2008

A total Redo

So I got my hair colored today. (I have my own colorist...actually she is Laura's colorist and I have wiggled my way into her colorist heart in hopes that my hair one day will look like Lauras...not likely, but a girl can dream).

I get my hair done every six weeks. I've been coloring my hair since I was 30, so I don't actually know what color my hair is supposed to be except that I peek at the roots and they are grey.

Today She asks me what color I'd like. This is a question of the ages isn't it. I actually don't think it is about color. What I'd like is long thick hair with a light wave to it. What I have is thin hair and not much of it (although I'm not complaining, I'm just trying to answer the question). So I tell her what I always tell her, you make the decision...she is the colorist after all...a trained professional. I'm not trained in hair color, I don't want to be responsible for this decision.

So what does this have to do with agility you ask? I'm not sure, but I think that I run better and my dogs behave better when my hair is beautifuly colored and the grey is not to be found on my head. After visiting Seema, life is beautiful, the trees are greener, my family is nicer, my husband is hunkier, the web is friendlier, diet food tastes better...life is just good.

BTW, I LOVE my hair color. She proved once again she knows her stuff.

Sunday, September 7, 2008

Swim Fun

This could very well be our last weekend of hot weather. We spent a lot of time by the pool enjoying the hot temps. Tazz enjoys the water so much now that he'll just swim and swim. Excellent exercise :)

Fin - not so much.

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Congrats are in Order

Congratulations to Diane Patterson and her dog Catcher (Fin's Brother) who got the first agility title for our litter. Big boy catcher got his NA and is probably getting his NAJ today :)

Whoo Hoo! Big shout out to Diane for working hard and getting HiMarks Perfect Catch "Catcher" ready and out to his first agility trial at only 15 months!

Here are her words (Catcher is Fins full brother and Kazee is a half sister), "Today, Catcher earned his Novice Standard title! He did it in just 3 runs, all with 1st places, and an average speed of 3.7 YPS!

Kazee, asserting her place as Princess of All She Chooses, earned QQ #6 for MACh2, with a 2nd place in Standard and a 6th in JWW. "

Fin has come "catching" up to do!

Saturday, September 6, 2008

Let's just cover it all!

Ok, I've been bad. Didn't get blogs done this week. So here is goes:

Fitness report: Another .5 hits the dust. Gotta do better than this, but I'm happy about it. No fast food. Lots of apples, veggies, and fish.

Training: going good. Fin is having fun in her personal class with Moe. She likes Moe and all the other people and their dogs. She especially likes the water buckets and splashing! She started doing a full dog walk this week. Pretty special. She runs fast and stops at the end...we'll see how long that lasts once we start trialing.

We still need work on the weaves as she does not understand the importance of doing them with distractions. She'll get there. Everything else is going great!

Fun match: Fin participated in her first fun match. I was a bit nerve wracked, but all in all I consider it successful. First time out I only did 3-4 obstacles and then gave her a reward. Last run of the day I let her do all 15 jumps in the jumpers course. We dropped the first bar and I had a VERY late FC after 10, but all in all, she is getting it. The best part of this entire video is the "finger." The gal taping had her finger in the viewfinder the entire time! In addition, a fly landed on her finger and takes center stage!

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What I learned today: She needs a little more back chaining on the dog walk to keep the speed up. Her A frame is BEAUTIFUL! She locks onto the tunnel very early and will have NO problem with a gamble. Her table is quite nice. She loves to jump :) She'll stress at the start line if I push her to play too much, but once running will take a break and play just fine.

Tuesday, September 2, 2008

The Regionals

How exciting! The USDAA western regionals held every Labor day weekend. This year, the Bayteam held the regionals in SMART territory at the Manzanita Park in Prunedale. Dare I say it was some of the BEST agility weather we've had for this regional. I was worried that there would not be enough space, but there was plenty of space for all.

I entered Tazz for all four days and what most surprized me was that he stayed steady the entire time. Yes there were moments of brillance, yes there were moments of slowness, but all in all I was really happy with his runs. I believe lots of "Q's" are in the future, just none this weekend.

Kel was in Arizona this weekend and I had the pleasure of Trish staying with me in Morgan Hill. When I left on Friday for a busy day in Prunedale, the kitchen was a mess. I called and appologized letting her know that I would clean it up. When I got home, the kitchen was "SPOTLESS!" Trish gets to come and visit ANYTIME she wants.

In the evenings we talked and played scrabble. I left each morning before the sun rose and Trish slept in. When I'd get home, there was a hot meal waiting. What more can one ask. I even had a beer on Sunday night and was EXTREMELY relaxed :)

All in all a fun time. One of the highlights was running Havoc. Always a fun ride. Mondays run was GREAT...until we got to the tunnel. Oh well.

Tazz snooker. I still don't understand why we got whistled off, but we did just at the closing...our opening was great!

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Standard. A missed contact, slow weaves, and a slow table down were our demise, but other than that he was happy and enjoyed running.

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Standard with Havoc. Compare Tazzies run with this one. It is a totally different experience running Havoc. One must think quick for sure!

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