Thursday, 31 December 2009

Happy New Year

I found this posted at work and it seems so appropriate to post on here:-

Sometimes it is good to compare our lives with the suffering, homeless and starving in the world.

If you have food in the refrigerator, clothes on your back, a roof overhead and a place to sleep, you are richer than 75 per cent of this world.

If you have money in the bank, in your wallet, and spare change in a dish somewhere, you are among the top 8 per cent of the world's wealthy.

If you woke up this morning with more health than illness, you are more blessed than the million who will not survive this week.

If you have never experienced the danger of battle, the loneliness of imprisonment, the agony of torture, or the pangs of starvation, you are ahead of 500 million people in the world.

If you hold up your head with a smile on your face and are truly thankful, you are blessed because the majority can, but most do not.

Good luck to everyone in 2010, Merry Christmas and a Happy New Year.

Wednesday, 30 December 2009

Still no Snow

Still no sign of snow here just lots of rain :( The dogs are coming in soaked through which makes them all smelly, yuc !!! The hair dryer seems to work a trick and both Ronny and Zippy have no problem standing underneath it. I on the other hand cant wait until the summer arrives again.

Last day at work tomorrow, I hate going when it seems like everyone else is off, the only good thing is all the roads are quiet so it takes half the time to get to work, might try and push an extra 10 mins in bed tomorrow.
Weekend is looking busy, Keisha and I have training on saturday to get us ready for the world champs qualifier in March, Zippy's agility class re-starts on sunday morning and on top of all that I really want to try and finish fitting the van out for the dogs.

Monday, 28 December 2009

Day 8 of Weave Training

This morning was Day 8 of weave training, I had all intentions of filming them today, I charged the camera up last night but forgot to take it this morning, in fact it's still on charge now. I promise I will film them on friday when I next get to the field and post it in the evening. Anyway, training is going really well, the puppies are currently weaving 6 poles and hitting some amazing entries. If things go to plan then they should be weaving 12 poles on friday, it will then just be lots of practice and game work and polishing up on the footwork.

Tomorrow im back at work, at least it is only for three days. The weather is not looking good though, I think we are due a heap of snow, maybe I will get sent home from work early !!! (in my dreams).

Sunday, 27 December 2009

Cool Agility Show

Today was a really good day, firstly Ronny appears to have no sign of that injury which is great news but obviously tomorrow morning will confirm that. His first jumping class was a bit manic but I guess 3 weeks off was always going to send him crazy, I won the battle of getting that wait at the start, a few attempts later but he eventually did it, start as you mean to go on is my motto this year !!!

Keisha ran a really nice agility to finish 2nd and Kody ran some really nice rounds too. Unfortunately my handling was not up to scratch today which did let the dogs down on quite a few occasions, I think more training for ME is required.

A massive plus is all the dogs had awesome weaves today, the training is starting to pay off so im over the moon with that.

Well done to Ellen and Hamish for their fantastic results, 4th in Touch and Go and a brilliant 2nd in agility, I bet that person who said you should give up on Hamish feels a complete fool now !!!

Saturday, 26 December 2009

Santa's arrived

Santa arrived and left lots of pressies for the dogs (spoilt as usual) Zippy had a new teddy as seen in the clip below, sorry its a bit boring but I missed all the wacky running around and throwing it up in the air when he first got it. Ronny had goodies after goodies after goodies as did the rest of the dogs.

Its been great having some time off, lots of sleep with no early starts is definitely a good Christmas present for me. Tomorrow we are off to the Cool agility Show, Ronny, Keisha and Kody are all in action although im only running Ronny in the jumping classes just to make sure he is fully over his injury, he certainly appears to be fighting fit but I cant help worrying about him !!!

Anyway, hope your all having a great Christmas, I will catch up with you soon.

Thursday, 24 December 2009

Merry Christmas

So that's it, all the present have now been bought and apart from the odd one or two Ive just about finished wrapping them all up. Ive had to buy mum and dad an extra one from the dogs, more of an apology really. Ronny sneakily crept into the kitchen the other week and stole a whole joint of beef, ooopps!!! and his son (Zippy) has taken a fancy to gardening and keeps bringing all mum's heathers to the back door, the garden is looking quite naked now, ooopps again!!!

Anyway, I hope you all have a great christmas.


Sunday, 20 December 2009

Wicked weather

Ok, so maybe I am a bit jealous today. It appears everyone is getting snow and lots of it apart from me. Don't get me wrong we have definitely got the chilly weather and it did snow for an hour or so last night but when I got up this morning the only white stuff was the frost. Even agility class was cancelled this morning, im guessing they must have had snow 20 mins up the road !!!

On a positive note it did allow us to continue with our weave training this morning, day 4 is now complete and we are still very much on target. The doggies can now weave four poles and are hitting some amazing entries. Im hoping the success will continue and by the end of December they will be able to weave all 12 poles.

Friday, 18 December 2009

Snow or Pay ???

I would love to say im jealous of all you guys getting snow BUT IM NOT. As much as I love the snow it really wouldn't have been a convenient time at the moment, I will explain all in a minute.
Anyway, seems as you have all put snow pictures up the best thing I can do is put a picture up of what I was doing this time last year, as you have probably guessed by the picture I had just picked Zippy up. It's funny how time fly's by, a year on already.

So, I guess I best explain why snow wouldn't have been ideal for me today. Well it begins from the start of this week,
DAY 1: I arrived at the train station on time to find my train had been cancelled, I was going to be late for work as the next one is another half an hour wait but never mind things happen. I think I might have got away with it but it didn't help when on the next train a woman collapsed mid journey, we then had to stop at the next available station and wait until an ambulance arrived, an hour late I strolled into work, ooopps.
DAY 2: The train did set off on time but unfortunately whilst on route a person fatally jumped in front of the train.
DAY 3: Yes you guessed it, not on time, a fire track side at one of the stations we pass through, late again, ooopps.
DAY 4: They said it was infrastructure problems, then equipment failure, in fact, I think they used every excuse in the book, but I can tell you one thing, LATE again, ooopps.


DAY 5, if snow had fallen it would have been station closed all day due to weather, as much as I love the snow I actually prefer being paid, 5 days in a row being late for work definitely would have been pushing it, need I say anymore.

Tuesday, 15 December 2009

The tree is still standing

I decided to get into the christmas spirit and put the tree up last night, ive been having some premonitions that it may not stay upright for very long or even better have a Zippy as a decoration on it, it appears im not the only one who worries about the tree falling down when there are puppies in the house !!!
Anyway, apart from an initial hiccup of Zippy running off with a fake branch and the odd nudging of hanging baubles it seems to be going well, ask me in a few days and I might change my mind.

Sunday, 13 December 2009

Weave Training

This weekend has been so busy, I cant believe Ive had my three days off already.
The cages are now fitted in the van which means we are fully mobile again, Ive just got a few finishing touches to do inside to make it perfect for the dogs and me.
This weekend Ive managed a good amount of training, the puppies jumping is coming on nicely and we can now string a couple of sequences together. I started their weave training yesterday which actually turned out to be quite successful, Zippy showed he had the most brains and seemed to have no problem at all on day 1. Kody on the other hand found it quite difficult, he just didn't get it at first but I persevered and by the end of it he started to get the hang of it.
Agility class was on this morning so I took Zippy along, he ran really well today and it was a definite sign that the training is paying off, he even managed the dog walk at full height. I decided not to stop for the second class as I thought it would be more beneficial if I went to the field and continued the dogs on Day 2 of weaves. I'm so glad I did, we have had a brilliant afternoon, Zippy is a natural, he just gets it (well at the moment anyway) Pudsey seems to share his brains too. Kody had a massive break through today and he is now up to the same standard as the others. I will have to continue with Day 3 next weekend as the time I get home from work it is so dark, I wonder if they will remember it !!!

Thursday, 10 December 2009

Thankfully it's Thursday

It feels like it has been a long week, I appreciate its only thursday but thankfully I have booked the day off tomorrow. The cages are being fitted into the van in the morning which is great, it will be nice to get back to some sort of normality, walking 5 loonies in the morning over to my mum and dad's at silly o'clock is a complete nightmare.
Ronny is looking lots better, he occasionally looks a bit lame but its mainly when he walks on my mum and dads drive which is covered in stones. He is on a strict rest rest rest plan now until christmas, im sure he wont be impressed but as he runs like a mad man all the time I just cant take the risk of him aggravating it more.

Tomorrow afternoon im hoping to start my weave training with Zippy and Pudsey, I will probably re-train Kody aswell. I'm trying out a different technique this time, in the hope it will turn out to be a lot quicker with a higher success rate of hitting those entries. I will keep you updated on our progress, hopefully I wont get any grey hairs.

Monday, 7 December 2009

Meet Kevin

Four months until the agility season starts and I cant wait, especially as ive got a new caravan. Ive decided to call him Kevin after Harry Enfield, the saying of "It's not fair" usually comes out of my mouth during shows so it seemed appropriate to call him that.

I guess Santa came early in my house this year !!!

Sunday, 6 December 2009

20 Legs are currently running as 19

My mob of 20 legs is not currently running at full strength. I woke up this morning to find Ronny lame on his front left leg, not sure what he has done but I think it might be his foot. It was such a shame as today was the Jumping Grids Training day that I had really been looking forward to, something that would have been great for Ronny. Anyway after finally getting over my disappointment this morning I packed Keisha in the van and headed off, it was probably a blessing in disguise as Keisha always stands quietly and calmly which enables me to hear what the trainer is staying. We have had such a good day, I have learnt loads of new training techniques that I will be able to set up in the garden if it ever drys out. It will be really useful for all my dogs and I will hopefully be able to work out what their strengths and weaknesses are. Today we worked on two grids, balance and scope. Keisha appears to be a naturally talented jumper with great balance and judgement, her only downfall appears to be the odd bunny hop she tends to throw in, but I have been given some homework to practice on for that.

I am now up and running in the new van, it was handy having the training day as I was able to give it a good run down the motorway and along some tight country roads to get used to it, the new cages are being fitted on friday so hopefully we will be back to normal soon.

Wednesday, 2 December 2009

Goodie Two Shoes

I had a really good day at work today, it's not very often in my job that you really get noticed for work you do but today I got brownie points all round.

Ive been working on this one case for a while now, ive had problem after problem after problem and it was causing me a massive headache nearly everyday. Well today I got the result I have been waiting for, after months of hard work it has finally paid off. Looking at the big grins on the bosses I knew I was in the good books :)
So this is what it feels like to be a goodie two shoes !!!

Ive given myself a pat on the back and decided to take tomorrow off, a well deserved rest I think im going to call it. So my plans for tomorrow is a trip to the field to get some agility training done, nothing like a bit of dog therapy combined with some fitness.

This weekend is crammed full of things to do, I get to pick the new van up on saturday morning followed by a night out on the town with my friends from work in the evening. An early start on sunday as Ronny and me are booked on the Jumping Grids training day, it focuses on the jumping skills of the dogs and one of its aims is to help dogs that knock poles. Its something I have been looking forward to and hopefully I will learn a whole new world of techniques.

Tuesday, 1 December 2009

New Mali Motor

Not the most exciting picture but here is the new Mali motor. I decided if the dogs have all that energy then the van definitely needs to match them. My current van isn't powerful enough to pull the caravan so im long over due for an upgrade. This beast will have no problem, on top of its new bigger engine with Turbo, it comes in the top spec, air con, electric windows and mirrors, heated windscreen, light sensors, window wiper sensors (for the rain) and a 6 CD changer. After the initial inspection we took the vehicle for a test drive and the sales man drove first in rocket speed with no seat belt, ive since told him my job and he decided to throw in a twin electrics tow bar for free :) So im chuffed, I get to pick him up on saturday, just got to get the new cages fitted now.

Today I had booked the day off work, one to sort the van out as stated above and two because Emma and me had booked a lesson with Yvonne Croxford. I took both Ronny and Keisha and Emma ran Maisy. I think we have both come away with some areas to work on in training, Yvonne pointed out some really silly habits that we both did and by the end of the lesson Ronny and Maisy were running so much better. Yvonne set up some FCI type courses for Keisha and it was really beneficial, we worked on the tunnel alongside Dog Walk entrances and Keisha seemed to get it straight away, if only I could get Ronny to do it !!!

Monday, 30 November 2009

Speedy's Show Update

Jackie's email:-

He was brilliant at the show stood like a rock, showed lovely and was 2nd out of 3 in the open class. I had put him in the wrong class, but he was such a good boy.

God my sister now thinks he is even more wonderful his eyes are soooooooooooo blue.

He wanted to lie down at the show but the concrete floor wasn’t very comfy so I put my coat down for him to lie on (it is old and I was warm) but that wasn’t good enough, off Anne went and bought bedding for him, she claims its for her terrier! But at night she had put a piece near the door to stop the draught should the golden child lie there. But that was very short lived as I laid in bed I could hear shredding, I shouted Anne and sure enough he was ripping it up !!

Sunday, 29 November 2009

Contact Training

This weekend has been packed full of stuff. Yesterday morning I managed to get a couple of hours training done down at the field, we worked only on jumping sequences and all dogs had a great session and things are progressing nicely. Didn't manage to make it to club this morning due to the weather but I did get to the field again this afternoon to do some contact work. It appears it's finally starting to click, im currently working with targets just to confirm the correct postion with speed.

Ive attached a video of each dog .......






Still got lots of work to do but its certainly a good start, this was only Zippy's and Pudsey 3rd attempt so im really pleased with their progress. Zippy has a streak of Ronny madness in him, I caught this wacky attempt of the A-Frame on video, definitely a Ronny moment ....


Friday, 27 November 2009

Fast Friday

Just got back from agility training, a bit of a mad night, unfortunately Ronny was in a hyper mood and added to the indoors with lots of other excited dogs it just seems to tip him over the edge, the start of the class didn't go so well, he has reverted back to running contacts which in most peoples eyes is great, I find it quite frustrating with Ronny as when he starts running them I know flying them is about to follow. Still Jackie and the rest of the class gave me some good words of wisdom and by the end of the night we had cracked the contact position with a stop, phew !!!
Jackie said she is hoping Speedy will turn out like Ronny, is she mad ?????????????????
I have got a sneaky suspicion that Zippy might follow in his daddy's foot steps too. Look at him in this picture, butter wouldn't melt in his mouth. YEAH RIGHT

Thankfully the weekend has arrived, the weather isn't looking great but im determined its not going to ruin my plans. Tomorrow im out shopping again, need to get my christmas shopping done as its fast approaching.

Good luck to Jackie and Speedy tomorrow for the Breed Show at Newark.

Tuesday, 24 November 2009

Good News

Just received some good news that Meg has passed her Bronze Good Citizen Test last night, well done Meg and Katie, hopefully many more rosettes to follow.

Tony called earlier in the week to inform me Eva has now mastered the tunnel after getting over her fear of the unknown, sounds like she has now converted into the loony club, I'm glad its not just my dogs that are mad for tunnels, its the extended family too !!!

Speedy and Jackie are attending another breed show on saturday, Ive been informed its at Newark so at least its not too far to travel, good luck for the show, keep me posted with the news.

Sunday, 22 November 2009

Tunnel Twins

Well I did say I was going to get the tunnel in the house, I've had to move some of the furniture around to accommodate it but at least Zippy has learnt the flat tunnel in Ronny speed.

I just knew Ronny was going to be a good teacher at this ..........

and just to prove Zippy can do it on his own ..........

Completed some great training this weekend, yesterday I was up at the field for most of the morning, both Zippy and Pudsey are now stringing jumping sequences together and it actually feels like we are making progress, both of them are really good at reading my body language which is a bonus. The bigger dogs were working on getting things done tight, Keisha and Ronny have mastered the pull ins hogging the wings whilst I practiced the flick flacks with Kody, something that he wasn't great at last year but now I'm hoping there will be loads of them next season as I think we have finally cracked it.

This morning we were at club. Zippy had a good class and his jumping was really good, I must admit I do forget sometimes that the puppies need alot more help than what Ronny and Keisha do and when we got to the contacts Zippy definitely reminded me of that. The good thing is he did his first see-saw practice today and by the end of it he was definitely looking better. Also in the class was Speedy, he is such a lovely boy, he did some great jumping sequences too and Jackie seems to understand his typical Belgian character and run him well. If I can remember I'm going to try and take my camera next week to get some footage. (No pressure Jackie) he he.

Hi Nat, I spoke to Tony in the week and he is going to do his best to get some Eva and Zippo pictures sent to me, as soon as I get them I will post them on the blog. Tony if your reading I've only told .......... well everyone :)

Finally huge congratulations to Clare and Charlie for winning out at the weekend, its about time. Looking forward to seeing you in Grade 3.

Friday, 20 November 2009

The real Pudsey

Why have the stuffed teddy bear when you can have the real Pudsey, admittedly he is not yellow but he has certainly got the kind caring character that is needed.

Tonight I have been at agility training, our club has found an indoor venue which is great news, its every friday evening but at the moment you can only run one dog, I think its to see how big the classes are going to be as it would be pretty rubbish if you had to wait an eternity to get a go.
I decided to take Ronny tonight as Keisha has been hogging the training sessions lately. There were some signs of brilliance, some rubbish handling by me and some of Ronny being cloth eared. We had some really tuff courses but we got around them which was the main thing.

My agility equipment arrived today, by the time I got home from work it was pitch black so I haven't been able to get it out yet. I'm going to get the flat tunnel in the house tomorrow, not sure if it will be one of my better ideas but im sure I will find out.

Wednesday, 18 November 2009

Something to make you laugh

Here is an email I received earlier in the week, it will definitely make you smile.

A co-worker got a pen stuck inside our printer. He started to try and remove the pen, but I told him we don't have time for that now, just put a note on the printer telling folks not to use it and then report it to the Help Desk. So he grabbed a piece of paper and scrawled on it. I left before he finished the note.

About 20 minutes later, one of my techs comes in laughing and says he was just in the lobby, saw a piece of paper on a printer and went to investigate.

Below is what he found .......
Sometimes things don't always come out the way you want them to.........  

Now that you've smiled at least once, it's your turn to send this to someone you want to bring a smile to (maybe even a chuckle) other words, send it to everyone. We all need to smile every once in a while.

Monday, 16 November 2009

Obstacle course

Just been reading everybody's blog, looks like you have all had a good weekend, some great results so well done everyone.

Not much happening for me at the moment, after all that moaning on my last post I did actually manage to get some training done. Saturday was a complete wash out so I decided to go clothes shopping instead. Mum and dad have upgraded their Sky to the HD package and have also brought a massive 42inch TV so its quite hard to drag myself away from their house at the minute, especially when the fire is on.

Sunday agility training was on but I had already made other plans so sadly couldn't go, I did however manage to get to the field later in the day and get some great training done. Zippy and Pudsey are getting on great, they can now do, tunnel, straight lines, right and left turn, front crosses, rear crosses and flick flacks, their dog walk and A-Frame are really starting to come along too, just the see-saw and weaves to master now.
Talking of the see-saw, I have ordered a new one along with a flat tunnel and some wooden competition weaves (Ronny keeps breaking the plastic ones) and they are arriving on friday. Ive decided to put the flat tunnel in the house for a week so Zippy and Pudsey can get used to running through it, im sure Ronny will offer to help out. Ive also brought the tyre home and a few jumps so we can do extra practice in the garden during the week, anything to get some energy out of the dogs, I can see the house and garden turning in to an obstacle course over the next few weeks.

I heard from Tony tonight, Eva and Zippo have started agility training too, Zippo is loving the tunnel whilst Eva is more for the dog walk and jumps. I'm really pleased that all the puppies have started training, I can see the next few months of training being very interesting for us all.

Friday, 13 November 2009

Rain Rain Rain

Will it ever stop?

Out of all the weather conditions rain is by far the worst, you can't do anything, agility training is always cancelled, if you take the dogs out for a walk they come back covered in mud, towel drying becomes a pain, especially when the towels never really dry out from the time before and on top of all that there is nothing worse than the smell of a wet dog.

Anyway after all that moaning there is something to be happy about, the weekend has arrived. Not sure what the new plans will be now agility doesn't feature but im sure I will find something to do. Have a good weekend everyone, dont let the rain ruin it :)

Wednesday, 11 November 2009

That's what they call it

Team Work - That's what they call it.

This picture is brilliant, it reminds me of how I felt last weekend, most things go to plan but not all the time. Its a true skill getting it right with your dog, something that I can do on occasions but it comes few and far between. As much as I would like to be in control and dream about it on most occasions, I can always rely on my loyal dogs to bring me back to earth, usually Ronny leading the way.

This week has been a bit manic, work has suddenly got all busy, its that time of the year when they want your personal development review done, as usual I've left mine to the last minute and im now having to glue myself to the desk to get it completed by friday, it doesn't help as tomorrow im out all day at meetings (we get homemade cookie's at the meeting so I don't mind). The good thing is the office is quiet at the moment, alot of people are on holiday, including my boss, yippee !!!

Sunday, 8 November 2009

Three training days

Picture of Ronny and Rusty
After a 4.30am alarm clock Friday turned out to be a great day, Emma and me picked up some really useful tips, we both have different style dogs in Maisy and Keisha so we were able to come away with different ideas. The good thing about a group session is you get to see other peoples problems and learn ways to overcome it, something that will be handy for future training.

Saturday's training at Helen and Andy Browns was fantastic, we did some really tricky courses and I have come away with things I want to work on, saying that I was really chuffed with Keisha, she is running really well and I think our training is paying off. I know the World Champs training in Kent was today so I hope it went well for everyone.

Today's training didn't quite go to plan, Zippy and Ronny was supposed to be at club but unfortunately it was called off for the second week in a row, the rain is really annoying at times, saying that by 11:00am it had stopped so I packed the mob in the van and went down to the field. All the dogs did the same course, we worked on what we had learnt on Friday with Dave Munnings and all of them had a great session. We finished the day with contact training, mum came up to help which I really appreciated, the older three did some really nice work, Kody and Keisha are now glue-ing their feet to the contacts which is nice, Ronny had the odd running contact (not quite what I wanted) Zippy is starting to understand what it is all about and Pudsey was just a nightmare, I think it was a case of 1 step forward and 3 steps back today, im going to sit down and think about what went wrong later. I think it would have been a bit greedy to get them all right.

Wednesday, 4 November 2009

No rest for the wicked

I thought I would just pop the dogs in the garden whilst I eat my dinner in peace, well I thought it was a good idea at the time until the heavens opened and the dogs got soaked. Ive just got back in after spending half an hour in the garden towel drying them, not helped by Zippy grabbing the towel and running around the garden thinking it was a toy. Still that will teach me for trying to grab a minutes peace.

It's my last day at work tomorrow for this week, I have booked Friday off as Emma and me are travelling to Ipswich for a training day with Dave Munnings, Maisy is accompanying Emma and I've decided to take Keisha. It's gonna be an early start but im sure it will be worth it, its a 3 hour session so im sure the dogs will be exhausted by the end of it.

Saturday is another training day, im off to Helen and Andy Brown's for a training session to prepare us for the different style courses they might use abroad if we qualify for the World Champs, again its with Keisha, im sure she wont mind !!!
It's ideal for us Midlanders as the other scheduled training days in Kent are just to far for me to travel, especially as I have to consider my other 4 dogs, im sure they wouldn't appreciate sitting in the van all day.
Hopefully Ronny and Zippy will get their chance at agility training on Sunday, just got to hope the weather will be kind.

Sunday, 1 November 2009

Weather wont beat us

When I woke up this morning and noticed the heavy rain I knew agility training would obviously be cancelled. Thankfully the rain had stopped by 10:00am so I was able to go to the field and get some training done. The dogs were brilliant, Pudsey and Zippy can now do the dog walk, something we have been working on over the last few sessions, I decided to change the way I normally teach my dogs and this time I wanted them to master the end contact before doing the whole lot, at present it appears to be working which is a great relief. The other three horrors I've decided to re-train the same, I've obviously had to change the command but I think it might work, the speed in Kody has dramatically increased, he flew over in a previous session so fast he fell off three times in a row, not knocking his confidence at all, fingers crossed by the time the summer season arrives it will all be mastered to perfection, no flying contacts anymore, im sure Ronny might challenge me on that !!!

Yesterday was a day of relaxation, shopping, shopping and more shopping, a pit stop for a massive hot chocolate at Costa followed by Pizza Express for dinner at the end of the day which was absolutely delicious.
Earlier in the week mum and me went to watch The Vagina Monologues, starring Lisa Riley, Sally Lindsay and Sarah Jayne Dunn, very very funny, something I would definitely recommend for a good girls night out.

Thursday, 29 October 2009

Back ache

Two days of stripping Pudsey is back breaking, he started to look a bit shaggy so he was long over due for a good hair session, I'm sure he is feeling the benefits though, he now looks like a malinois with a kink, very cute !!!

Tomorrow im on half a day, yippee, I thought it would be nice to take the dogs out for the afternoon considering it gets dark so early, that way come the evening I will be able to sit down for the night without being mugged.

This week the Wallace and Gromit exhibition has been on at our local museum, I think they timed it to coincide with half term, it's free to all people so mum and me are going to have a nose on saturday. Wouldn't it be nice if we could train our dogs to be like Gromit, I wouldn't mind breakfast made for me, second thoughts, maybe not, I can just see Ronny and Zippy testing the goods before it landed on my lap.

I think the Crufts tickets went on sale today, not to long left, in fact 133 days to go (Kennel Club are counting the days on their site, im not a freak) at least we are on a Thursday this year, hopefully a lot quieter than the weekend. Another thing to start saving pennies for.

Monday, 26 October 2009

Perks of the job

Back to work already, what happens to these weekends? I think we should work two days and then have five off, that sounds much fairer. Still cant complain too much, tomorrow I'm off to London for a full days seminar in relation to my job, free tea and coffee all day with a nice big lunch in the middle, all paid for by work, yippee !!!

This morning I woke up aching, the dogs are certainly putting my fitness to the test, I'm really chuffed with their progress though, it definitely makes it all worth while. I can't believe it is nearly November already, time is flying by, next week Emma and me are attending a Dave Munnings training day, something that we have both been looking forward to, hopefully we will pick up some more tips that we can work on through the winter.

Anyway, I best go and sort the dogs, they are looking at me like they have never been fed.

Saturday, 24 October 2009


Yes as you have probably guessed it was Zippy's 1st Birthday today and didn't he know it. He has been spoilt rotten, new toys along with lots of other things and finally ended the day with a big birthday cake, well a huge pork pie with a candle in it.

It was only fair that Ronny got to share it, if it wasn't for him, there would be no Zippy !!!

News in that Speedy got best dog at the Midland Counties Show today, congratulations to Jackie as I believe that was her first show with him, well done to Natalie and Reno too, great results for both of you.

Don't forget that the clocks go back tonight, it will be nice to enjoy the extra hour in bed without feeling guilty.

Happy Birthday 'W' Litter

Eva & Zippo

Tuesday, 20 October 2009

Winter has arrived

Well it looks like the winter has arrived, the morning walks are now a comedy sketch in the dark, me and five shadows walking the field attempting to second guess where the dogs have deposited their goods. I can understand why people don't want to be dog lovers, what normal people get up at 5.30am to go for a walk in the rain, something I keep asking myself on a regular basis !!!

But you only have to look at their cheeky faces to see why we give up that extra hour in bed, what else could offer character in abundance, something that Jackie and me discuss on a regular basis at agility class.

This weekend Jackie and Natalie are taking their puppies Speedy and Reno to the Midland Counties Breed Show on saturday, good luck to you both, keep me updated with your results.

Hopefully the weather will be dry for the weekend, I'm taking the mob to the field for some more agility training, I've got a few more techniques that I want to try out on Ronny and Keisha, after the success of last week I'm hoping this weekend will be just as good.

Sunday, 18 October 2009

Training has started

The training season has arrived and I have got a feeling this is going to be hard work. Nope not due to the dogs but the lack of my fitness, I'm absolutely knackered and I've only done two sessions. I decided it was only fair to give Pudsey ago so five hours later and I'm ready to sit down.

On the plus side all the doggies were brilliant. Pudsey and Zippy are now doing great straight lines and tunnel work. My aim with Kody is to crack the flick flacks, something that we weren't good at, which we have now mastered and something we can continue to polish up on. With Ronny and Keisha I really wanted to push them so we are now doing lots of hard jumping sequences, I've had a few new tips which I worked on and it works great, hopefully by the start of next season it will all be in place, well I can dream cant I ???

Wednesday, 14 October 2009

What alarm

This morning was a complete drama. For some reason my alarm didn't go off, or I turned it off, or I didn't set it, who knows, but subsequently what I usually do in an hour I had to do in 20 mins. Thankfully the dogs were well behaved this morning, usually they seem to know that you are running late and take extra long to empty their systems, but it was a quick dash about the field and back in. For once I was organised and had already ironed my shirt so it was pretty much grab my bag and the dogs and out the door.

After a few hectic weeks at work it seems to have calmed down, either that or they are secretly stashing all my work and it will land on my desk in one big heap tomorrow. I cant believe I have been in post for 8 months, where has the time gone. After 10 years working shifts it was a complete shock to finally work a 9-5 job. The first few weeks I had to keep walking around the office as I was falling asleep at my desk, getting up every morning at the same time was mind blowing. Obviously I have since adapted (boss if your reading I don't fall asleep anymore) and absolutely love the new life style.

The knock on effect to that is the dogs have regular training now, I am currently putting in place our winter training plan. Tonight me and the 5 dogs did some waits in front of the jump (individually of course) after Keisha broke her wait at the WC qualifier and got us eliminated I thought it was time to sort the problem out. It just goes to show what naughty habits I have let the dogs get into.

Sunday, 11 October 2009

Weekend Fun

This weekend has been non stop, but definitely one I wouldn't mind doing again.

Saturday Keisha and me headed off for the first selection day of the WC qualifier. It was nice to catch up with all the Belgian people and of course all the Belgians !!!
Before we started we were allowed a minute practice on the FCI tyre jump and weaves, something that I was concerned about as I wasn't sure how Keisha would react to them. Thankfully for me she didn't react at all and took them without any hesitation.
Anyway our first agility run went well, she got all her contacts and just knocked one pole, so a good start to the day. The second run didn't go so well, she broke her wait and I just couldn't save it, subsequently getting eliminated, she was a bit naughty in that round and in fact it almost seemed like she had borrowed Ronny's brain. A quick team talk and half an hour in the van to rest seemed to do the trick. In the afternoon she then did two great jumping runs and managed a clear in both. So a great day for us both, I must admit, I really enjoyed the courses, quite challenging and they do seem to suit Keisha and me.

Today was Zippy's first agility class and it was brilliant fun. We did straight lines and a few easy turns and he was such a good boy. We tried the tunnel for the first time but Zippy wasn't keen !!!
Unfortunately it didn't last long and now he is completely happy to run through it, especially if his toy is at the other end.
Speedy was a good boy, he is tunnel mad already (I cant think who that reminds me of).
I cant wait until next week, I think Jackie and me are going to need energy pills.

Wednesday, 7 October 2009

Zippy Success

I appreciate its a bit late (considering he passed it in May) but today Zippy's certificate and Rosette arrived in the post, this was his first ever rosette, hopefully there will be a few more to follow.

I'm quite excited about the weekend, Zippy starts his agility class on sunday. He is really keen so hopefully it wont take long until we can get a jumping sequence going. Its times like this when I sit back and really appreciate how well Ronny and Keisha have come on, how they can just read my body language and take jumps and weave entries at a request (just got to get those contacts now).
Saturday is fast approachin hopefully Keisha and me will be in tune with each other, we get a quick practice before the selection runs start which is great, apparently there is a different style tyre jump which might confuse Keisha. During the day we get 4 runs, 2 x agility 2 x jumping, the aim is not to get eliminated and run consistently throughout the day. Ive been informed its run like a normal agility comp and you get points for what place you get, which later decides who will get selected for the team. There are two selection days, obviously the first is this weekend followed by the 2nd selection day in March, it will be after that when you find out if you have made the team.

Looking at the list of hopefuls there are alot of good quality dogs and handlers, considering it is our first year of trying I will be happy if we can just be consistent and get around the courses and of course enjoy our day!!!

Sunday, 4 October 2009

Keisha has qualified for the ABC

For the first time ever one of my dogs has finally qualified for the ABC, I was hoping one day I would get my chance and thanks to my reliable Keisha we have finally made it to the Semi's next year, which means I have got lots of time to sort the contacts out.

A good weekend all round, Keisha had a 4th in C4-5 jumping and an 8th in C4-5 agility, couldn't really get our act together in the graded classes. The video below is Keisha in her jumping this morning, not her best run and for some reason jumping a bit high.

Ronny had another silly weekend, I'm actually quite glad the season has come to an end, he has started to jump his contacts and has gone back to superman-ing off the see-saw, it doesn't matter how many times I put him back on or tell him off, he is just incredibly head strong and when he thinks he is right there is just no stopping him. If anyone thinks they have got a hard dog then you certainly haven't met Ronny.

Saying all that, after 8 out of 9 eliminations he finally pulled it out of the bag in his last jumping round to finish 5th, admittedly it was a bit messy but when I walked the course I never thought I was going to get him round anyway, it just proves he can listen from time to time.

So not to fall behind with our training, Zippy and me managed a couple of good sessions in our garden. I took a jump with us this weekend and managed to utilise it at the show. Thankfully mum was on hand to take some good pictures.

Got to keep up with Jackie and Speedy !!!

So that's it, the season is now officially over, it has flown by this year.

Keisha and me are off to the World Champs qualifier next weekend, hopefully I can keep my head and just have some fun.