Thursday, December 31, 2009

2009 In Review

January: Addie and I were in Basic 1 Obedience. Still learning things like heeling, fronts, comes, and etc. We played in the snow and kept ourselves entertained inside as well.

February: Of course, more snow. We got some good stuff to play in and Addie and I had fun with it. Addie learned that it is fun to catch snowflakes. We started Basic 2 Obedience, training for the Canine Good Citizen test.

March: Okay, I cheated... Early this year, I was still trying to get the hang of grooming adult Addie, and in March I cut her rather short and I'm not happy with how she looked. So I didn't take many pictures and they were all bad. But we celebrated my birthday, and started to do more outside as the snow melted.

April: This month, Addie turned 1 year of age! Unfortunately we didn't get to have a big birthday celebration because I had a big rehearsal that evening.. We spent more time outside playing ball, and continued Basic 2. We practiced all the time.

May: It was a busy month, since my sister got married. This blog also began in May! We began Intermediate Obedience, with a small group of dogs perfecting their obedience skills and working to continue on to greater things. We also took and passed the CGC test, and Addie became Ali-Ann Inspired Addiction CGC.

June: We welcomed the summer by playing outside all the time. Lots of ball, playing with friends, and going to the lake. Addie also experienced boat rides and began to enjoy the water a little more. She met some new doggie friends and we visited the park a lot.

July: We played in the yard all the time, especially fetch. We also went out on the boat more and just enjoyed the summer sun. I watched a few agility trials near us, and Addie and I started our agility foundation training.

August: This month, we discovered a dog park pretty close to us. We visited a few times, and Addie loved it. However, we decided to maybe try again next year as Addie loves other dogs just a little too much. We continued our agility training and really got into it this month.

September: Addie got to play with her good friend, Clara. Previously, she'd been too small to play with Addie but they now get along great. We tried to get outside as much as we could while the weather was still warm.

October: My life got pretty busy, as it usually does in the fall, so we didn't have as much time for adventures. But we still trained for agility and got to know our classmates even better. We enjoyed a short-lived snowfall at the beginning of the month, and dressed up for Halloween and greeted trick-or-treaters.

November: Since this month was uncharacteristically warm, we spent plenty of time playing ball outside and going for walks. We celebrated Thanksgiving and Addie enjoyed her own treat. We also went to get our Christmas tree as a family, and Addie was able to run free around the big farm and meet lots of new friends, both human and canine.

December: We finally got the snowfall we'd been waiting for. Much time has been spent brushing and drying Addie's coat after she collects snowballs on her hair. We've played with lots of friends and played in the snow all the time. Then we celebrated Christmas and have been relaxing with the holiday season.

2009 was a great year for us, filled with plenty of walks, friends, dogs, fetch, grooming, training, and agility. We hope it has been the same for you, and wish you another fantastic year with your dogs. Here's to a new decade with the beginning of 2010 - Happy New Year!

Friday, December 25, 2009

Merry Christmas

Hope everyone's been having a safe, happy, fun-filled holiday!
Addie wanted to share some of her Christmas pictures.

Posing by the stockings

The best reindeer!

Evidence of a good time had in the snow...and this wasn't even the worst!

Whatever holiday you celebrate,

We wish you a happy one.

Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Snow Trek

Yes, more snow adventures...

There is this cool place near where I live that is a little peninsula that juts into this small lake. The lake is so small that no motorized boats are allowed on it, so it froze really nicely. To get there, there is a nice, paved walking path that used to be a railroad. So I decided it would be a fun place to take Addie on a little snow hike.

Let's go!

Destination reached! What is this place?

Look! A frozen lake!

There are all sorts of deer trails here.

Surveying the surroundings

Playing some fetch on the lake

Addie had a lot of fun playing fetch on the lake.

Snow Bunny

**WARNING This post is very image heavy!**

We've gotten plenty of snow recently - nothing compared to some of our East Coast friends - but enough that Addie has been enjoying the benefits.

Snow always does strange things to Addie.

Sometimes, it turns her into a rabbit.

Sometimes, it makes her contemplative.

She gets bouncy in the snow.

Or just plain goofy!

But mainly, she just wants me to play with her.

But the fun has to end sometime... "Do we HAVE to go in?"

It's really a good thing that Addie lives somewhere that gets plenty of snow. She LOVES it and could play all day if I let her. Of course, she always comes inside covered in snow and tracks it all over the house. I wouldn't survive the winter without having a little set up right by the door full of all the supplies I need:
A big rug
Big towels
Slicker brushes
I use the brushes to brush through the big snowballs that cling to her legs. It helps break them up quickly and prevents her from matting. Also, I don't know how I'd get by without my dryer. When she has a LOT of snow on her, I don't even bother drying her - I just take her down to where I groom and blast all the snow off with my dryer.I bought it for grooming, as it was relatively inexpensive (about $90) and can tackle her coat pretty well. It's certainly not a dryer that a professional groomer would use regularly in the shop, but it works just fine for my home grooming. But it's also excellent for keeping Addie dry and mat-free in the winter! I'd highly recommend it to anyone who bathes their dog at home or whose dog enjoys the snow, like Addie.

Wednesday, December 16, 2009

Help Me!

All you blogger people are a smart bunch; want to help me find some things?

1. Flickr. First, for the Flickr users, how do I post pictures to my blog that link back to the Flickr page? I tried to post pictures from my Flickr to my blog, but they didn't link. PS my Flickr username is SmartPoodle. : D

2. Treats. I am having the hardest time finding good treats that I like and enjoy training with for Addie! All the treats are either very expensive, or very unhealthy! They need to be:
1. SOFT, not crunchy or crumbly
2. TASTY obviously
3. HEALTHY what should I look for, as far as ingredients go?
4. SMALL preferably. Either that or easy to cut up
5. INEXPENSIVE I know Zukes are good, but I can't afford $6 a bag!
Any recommendations, and where do I buy them?

3. Weaves. I need good quality channel weaves for agility. I do not want the ones made strictly out of PVC; ones like these: Obviously, inexpensive is best, but they do need to be good quality. Agility friends, where did you get your weaves?

4. Camera. I know a lot of you are in to photography on some level... I need a new camera! All I have are crappy point and shoots. I'm tired of them. I want a nicer camera, but I don't know that much about them. Here's what I want:
1. $250 or under is what I'm thinking for price.
2. A crossover, SLR-like point and shoot
3. The bigger the better, so it gets more light in. (I think!)
4. Something that takes good motion/action shots... Poodles move!
5. Something that takes good photos without the flash... Flashes and black dogs don't mix well.
6. Good quality pixels!

Any help at all is appreciated for any of these things! Just fyi, even if I haven't been posting too much, I do read almost all of your blogs! I just don't always have time to comment or post myself. That is all!

Monday, December 7, 2009

Christmas is Coming!

After Thanksgiving, we went to go get our Christmas tree like we always do.

We always go to a tree farm and cut down our own tree.

Addie enjoys coming along, because it means she gets to run around like crazy!

Ahh, sweet freedom...
The bunny poodle in its natural habitat

Addie likes to keep watch for Santa Paws.... and make sure that all is well in the neighborhood.

Praying for more snow!

Is it Christmas yet??