Monday, March 30, 2009

Idaho Trial

We went to Idaho to an Agility trial. It was fun. Raygen continues to show improvement. His speed is satisfactory. He is very confident while running. I am a bit disappointed that the DQ's aren't coming as easy as I wish they would. The highlight of the weekend was him having the perfect run and making it in time to earn a second place, but NQing for running out to say hello to some of his dog friends. I was told by a few that they thought I handled it quite calmly.
What can I do? The damage was done. He was put on the leash and right into his kennel. I have decided to enter him in preferred for the next few trials. At least I can earn titles in either JWW and STD.
Ryker had some amazing runs. He however has not been able getting into the weave poles. Training at home has been non-existing. Snow on the ground has made it hard to practice weave entries. I am hoping this issue will be resolved by mid-summer.
Ryddick was entered his first Open JWW leg. No faults! It was nice. He will be taking a break for at least until September. More herding is planned soon.
Coming up... CO, FRAC.

Wednesday, March 25, 2009


A penny for your thoughts

Saturday, March 21, 2009

Ryker earns his RAE

Today Ryker earned the highest award given in AKC Rally Obedience ....... RAE (Rally Advanced Excellent)
Friday he earned 4th place in Excellent B and 1st place in Advanced B, points were 96 and 98.
Saturday was lots of fun. He tied in points and time for 3rd place with Laurie Hope's Sheltie, Dirk. We had a run-off and Dirk took 3rd and Ryker took 4th. Then in Advanced Ryker and a red Husky tied with 100 points for 1st place. The Husky's time was 2 seconds faster and Ryker got a very nice second place. I was very happy with his performance.
This was our 10th DQ. Ryker is going to be on sabbatical in Rally. Not sure when I will do Rally again. My plans are to finish Rylie in Rally Advanced and Excellent and Start Ryddick in Novice.

Wednesday, March 18, 2009

WW Unusual Friendship

Ryddick and his friend Grimm.
Can you find him? Look closely on the upper left corner of the A-Frame
It is a Magpie that I the priviledge to raise and Ryddick and him bonded.

Sunday, March 15, 2009

Feeding RAW

Ryker eating his first turkey on Thanksgiving 2007
I have been feeding RAW for 2 years. I was happy with the food I was feeding my dogs, they liked it and I had no issues with allergies. Then on March 15th 2007 some of the foods of the same company were being voluntarily recalled.
Someone in the Ogden plant in Utah had cut corners and bought un-approved rice from China. No other plants were effected. At least that was the story that was told to the consumers. I have been thinking about feeding RAW for at least 4 years prior to this incident and this helped me make my decision to switch very easy. 70% of my dog training friends feed RAW and have been telling me to switch all along.
I did it cold turkey, no pun intended, and brought back the unused portion of the kibble back for a full refund. For the first 2 months I fed only chicken. Chicken feet, hearts, gizzards, liver included. I did not want their tummies to get upset and chicken the best way to help them switch. After about 6 weeks I added a bit of fish, then beef, then lamb, then turkey. It was challenging to give them enough skin and bone. Loose stools, more bone; harder stool, more skin. Here is a list of foods they get, salmon oil, coconut oil, olive oil, cottage cheese, pumpkin, green beans, spinach, carrots, bananas, apples, yogurt, eggs with the shell, anything I can get my hands on from beef, pork, turkeys, chicken lamb, fish. I have been offered lamb heads, but I am not brave enough to handle it. I am sure my pups would love it.
I stopped feeding raw chicken bone. Rylie and Raygen would swallow large pieces and on more then one occasion regurgitate them during the night. They still get bone, but it is crushed into pieces and blended into a paste. I used to feed raw meaty beef bones and lamb bones. I noticed Rylie had broken a tooth and that was the end of feeding larger bones, too.
This does not prevent me from still feeding them raw. I have never seen dogs go crazy at feeding time before.

Friday, March 13, 2009


I wanted to take a picture of the pups as they sat next to each other. I positioned them and asked them to stay. As I turned around Ryker had turned his head away from Ryddick and when I snapped the photo Ryddick was also avoiding him by looking and lying down. This is typical avoidance behavior. Yes, there are issues between Ryddick and Ryker and yes, I have to manage and train them to be able to live in the same home. No I will not re-home either and no using aversives does not work to fix this problem. It may suppress it, but not fix it.
I have been training using positive methods described in the books, Click To Calm by Emma Parsons, Feisty Fido by Patricia McConnell, Control Unleashed by Leslie McDevitt. I have learned to better read Ryddick's body language to avoid a full blown tantrum. I am happy with how they respond to the training and proud to say that I did not use aversives to get where we are.

Wednesday, March 11, 2009

WW Posing for a Poster

Left to Right Ryker, Rocci, Ziggy, Raygen, Donner and Ty (or Ty and Donner?)

Wednesday, March 4, 2009

WW Time Flies

Less then 2 weeks old

3 1/3 weeks old

6 years old

Tuesday, March 3, 2009

Rylie TPLO Update

The Surgery went well. My vet allows me to be with my dogs when they wake up. After an hour sitting with her I took her home. Spending the night is not an option for me or my dogs.
I have been lucky with my vets, as they allow me to make important decisions without making me feel bad in any way.
Rylie has been extremely well behaved. I have set up an x-pen in the living room next to the couch and an x-pen next to my bed. I keep her on a short leash when I take her out into the backyard to go potty. She gets to walk for about 5 minutes and then I put her back into the x-pen. I know she does not understand the new routine, but she doesn't mind. I take some time to open the x-pen and sit in with her and play some target games and a new trick that I will post on youtube when she gets good at it.
And as a bonus.... she pooped today. Nothing since Wednesday the morning before the surgery.
Phew, she was getting heavy hauling up and down the stairs.