Saturday, August 29, 2009

Ball Practice

These shots were taken last week when Addie and I warmed up before class by playing with a ball in the yard, like we usually do. We practiced "catching" the ball.

Okay, my bad... still getting used to this whole "Hold camera. Keep dog in frame. Aim. Throw ball. Follow dog. Focus shot." thing.

Keeping her eyes on the ball at all times was Addie's strategy, for the most part.

Sometimes it worked

Other times...

...not so much.

And this is what happens when Addie stops watching the ball to look at a butterfly flying by... (sorry it's blurry)

Addie isn't always the beautiful, elegant Poodle that she seems to be. Sometimes, she looks like this.

And whenever there's a ball, we get this.

I've discovered how Addie can roll over so quickly. She goes face first, mouth agape. Every time.

Shakin' off

Looking beautiful

Wednesday, August 26, 2009

Dog Park

Addie and I finally made it out to our local dog park. After some confusing directions, we finally found it. It's pretty nice, fenced in all the way around and I don't even know how many acres. There is a big open area when you first walk in with picnic tables and room for dogs to play. Beyond that, is a big field of long grass and weeds. To the right and left there are paths to walk your dogs along off leash, which is nice.

We've been there are couple times now; seen a few people we knew, played with some cool dogs, explored the trails. I'm kind of concerned about Addie though. She was socialized really well as a puppy, and came from a good breeder as well. But she just doesn't have good manners around other dogs. She is pretty dominant - head up, tail up, kinda jumping on top of other dogs - but still seems really playful. She gets rough and wants to wrestle and chase when most dogs just want to sniff and move on. Anyone have any suggestions on how to improve her manners?

Anyway, I didn't get any pics of her with other dogs when I took the camera last, but next time I go I'll try to remember to take it. It has been fun for Addie, and I hope we can go more often in the future.
In the car....what do you think she is saying??

Visitors of the Furry Kind

I've been doing a lot of grooming this summer, of Addie and of other dogs. And of course, Addie always gets to "play" with the dogs that come over to get a haircut.

First was Zoe, the cute little apricot Toy Poodle. She's growing out really well and wasn't matted at all. She tolerates Addie, but doesn't really play with her. So it's more of a lesson in manners when Zoe visits. Zoe also got aqua blue toenails this time around. ; )

The other dog I groomed was my friend's 5 or 6 month old Cockapoo puppy (that's Cocker Spaniel x Poodle mix..) named Clara. She is absolutely adorable. She does pretty well for grooming, though being young she gets tired easily and wants to lie down on the table all the time. So these pics aren't the best. But she's cute. I don't have any pics of Addie and Clara together, but they actually played really well together, despite their size differences! It was fun for both of them.

Training Update July-August

Wow I haven't posted in a while. Sorry guys, this summer has been busy for Addie and I. I was out of town for a couple weeks in July as well.

We've been training a lot. We're enjoying our agility foundation classes a lot; Addie's learning so quickly. We've been working on 2 on, 2 off end position a lot, at class and at home on stairs. She's doing super well. We have also been doing recall work with tugs, work on exercise balls to build the dogs' balance and core muscles, stuff with wobble boards, crate games, and other things like that. Addie loves it.

Addie is obsessed with the tunnel. She's crazy. We were standing in the middle of the room at class and our trainer was bringing out the tunnel and she started pulling on her collar to go through it. Good thing she was the first dog!

I wish I had a picture or video to show but I don't. But she's nuts, I think she did the best out of the dogs I watched in class...she has so much drive for the tunnel! And she is so fast. I can't wait to run with her for real.

This class has relied heavily on the use of clicker training, which has been a new challenge for us. At first I felt really uncoordinated, trying to click at the right time and place the treats in the right spot and have everything in the correct was a lot to remember. But we've both gotten used to it pretty well, and Addie responds quickly now. She knows what the clicker means and aside from stuff we're working on in class, she's starting to learn some new tricks and skills I'm teaching her for fun with the clicker. It's been fun.

This past week, I also started having Addie do a little work on a ladder on the ground... she has terrible hind-end awareness and I'm afraid that when we learn the dogwalk, she'll fall right off because she has no idea what her back end is doing! So I've been walking her over a ladder lying on the ground, and I'm hoping in time, her awareness will improve. Anyone have any more suggestions?

That's about it for training so far, sorry I don't really have any good pictures to post. Hopefully in the future I can get someone to take some for me while we're training.