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And yet another week has slipped past! They just fly by. As they say, life is like a roll of toilet paper, the closer you get to the end the faster it goes.
Anyway, what's up this week?

Here's ours:

Sunday--off (working and supposed to rain)
Monday--off (working and Toby has vet appointment)
Tuesday---hoping to get training partner out here. I want to do some mixed marks/blinds.
Wednesday---agility private lesson
Thursday---Dan's
Friday and Saturday----off (working)
 
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I hope to get my truck back from the shop soon. I want to get back out in the field. I need to work on some things. We will be hunting this year and working continental style preserve shoots.
 

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where the tails wag
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Sunday: Agility run thrus followed by an obedience seminar.
Monday: Weaves, obedience, stays etc
Tuesday: Towhee has obedience class
Wednesday: Casey, Faelan & Towhee all have agility class
Thursday: Drop in Obedeince
Friday: Obedience & agility at home
Saturday: plans open right now

Focus spots: Weaves at speed, Pinwheels & serpentines. I also need to start building distance with Faelan in agility - I do not want to slow him down, but I do want to start Qing in JWW so distance is required.

Towhee: Drop out of motion, Drop on signal, rally exercises that have fronts & finishes
Faelan: Sit Stays, Random drops, slow heeling, recalls

Casey: happy, happy joy joy

I talked to an obedience exhibitor & instructor today about setting up every other week privates through out the winter (at least) for preparing Faelan for Utility & start concentrating on getting his scores consistently in the upper 190 range. My other instructor shows in agility most weekends and heads down south for the winters now. This will also be to start Ms Towhee up for her obedience career. We have worked together on and off in the past and she has always been able to pinpoint issues to be worked on and methods that will help correct them with methods suited to the individual dog.
 

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We had a pretty good training day today with our group. Did a few doubles...mostly I actually enjoyed watching other people train their dogs. You can learn a lot from that. It's very hard to refrain from doing blinds now at training but I don't want to get over zealous. Scout needs to master this final PB (she's very close) and then we can start the process. I am so excited!
 

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It's frightening how things change. I used to think FF was so horrible, and now in watching a friend get her show golden bitch started in field work all I can think about is how much FF would really, really help that dog. Currently she worries around ducks and doesn't want to touch them....and she sometimes has to encourage the dog a few times to go get the bumper. Of course for whatever reason she doesn't want to FF--but I just can't help but think now that I have more experience under my belt how much setting that expectation of going and getting it the first time would really help!
 

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I so agree! I think a big part of the problem is the name, "force" seems to imply something evil. Make it should be called something like "reliable retrieve training".


It's frightening how things change. I used to think FF was so horrible, and now in watching a friend get her show golden bitch started in field work all I can think about is how much FF would really, really help that dog. Currently she worries around ducks and doesn't want to touch them....and she sometimes has to encourage the dog a few times to go get the bumper. Of course for whatever reason she doesn't want to FF--but I just can't help but think now that I have more experience under my belt how much setting that expectation of going and getting it the first time would really help!
 

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I so agree! I think a big part of the problem is the name, "force" seems to imply something evil. Make it should be called something like "reliable retrieve training".
How about the "mandatory retrieve"
 
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we will spend as much time as we can this week on stays. He is fine at the house, but can get whiney when we are away from home. So I will need find some new places I can go to work. Two nights I don't get off work until after dark so we probably won't get to do anything on those nights.
 

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My training partner came out this morning and we did some nice training. I really needed to get outside and be with Tito after everything going on with Toby this morning, it did my heart and soul wonders.
Ran a single-blind-single combination, he did a great job. The ran a single-single-blind, and he also did a great job, so we finished it off with a double and a blind, which went great. My partner set out 3 cold blinds, Tito only had an issue (as in, blew me off) on one of them, and it was only one cast refusal. Also did some honor and "no bird" exercises, so a very good morning here.
 
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where the tails wag
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After this past Saturday, when the hunters shot a couple of pheasants while we were out in my backyard, my dogs flushed a pheasant on our hike and they all surrounded the tree where the big ole rooster took refuge; Casey and Faelan both had their mouths wide open while their tails were wagging and their heads were raised to the skies - just waiting to catch the bird in case it fell like the birds on Saturday <sigh> it didn't.
 
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Yikes! I feel like I haven't been on in forever. I guess that's actually a good thing considering that I have two exams this week. So we had a great time at the Dahl's, but unfortunately, I haven't had much time to actually work on things we talked about. I finally took some time today to get out, but I decided to work on some obedience since I hadn't for a bit. I had to slow down a bit on his heeling but we did get some really good straight lines with great attention. I also did a bunch of "ready"s, working on getting his head to shoot up in heel position. He finally figured out that if he keeps his head up the whole time he is sitting there, he gets TONS of treats and released. I had been working on fronts with treats in both hands, but he was struggling a bit. So I tried using a ball under my chin. Worked like a charm once he figured out how he could get me to drop it for him. It was really cool to watch him trying out all sorts of different things instead of the correct front. He's such a little thinker :) Also started the moving down, throwing the ball behind him after. He's definitely got that idea down. I have tomorrow off again (except for studying) so I'm going to get some field training in. Lots of holds and line manners. Then some fun marks or something.

Ok, back to studying!
 

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We are in a good groove with training obedience & field every other day. Last night we drove down to Ocala to the MADTA building for open floor. Slater did heeling, some recalls, stand for exam with a novel judge (I train so much by myself I think it's important to find "new" judges for SFE), and stays. Here is a short video of him heeling:

Today we went out to Williston for field training, trained on the big pond.
Set up 3 marks, one following the shore about 65 yards through a bunch of mud and weeds, middle one a long big swim about 85 yards across the pond then hidden in some weeds, and a third one we used a bumper boy shooter, bird launched from behind us at the line forward into the water. Blind was closer to shore basically the same direction as mark #1, rather cheaty down the shore blind, then put up another blind across the pond away from the marks that was basically get-in-and-swim.
I did the two long birds as singles for Fisher, and the middle bird as a single for Slater.
Slater first, he did the double with the two long birds and shooter as a diversion on the way back. He got his go-bird just fine and completely fell apart on the memory bird! I'm not sure if he forgot, was confused, or what, but he also was completely focused on the bird in my HAND (go bird) and kept looking at it when I was trying to send him for the memory bird! When I finally sent him he took a few strokes in the water then turned around like, HUH? And was still looking at the bird in my hand. Not sure if he was just obsessing over it, if I somehow inadvertently encouraged this recently, or what. Of course we had just the winger at that mark so no gunner to help (thought doing this as a single first would avoid needing help) but we used the sound to eventually get him out there, then he was like Oh yeah! You mean this bird out HERE???!!!?!? He did a lovely job on the diversion, then we lined up for the blind and it was more confusion. He jumped in and sorta swam around and started heading back to where the bumper boy was. Well hello. Yes I could have handled -- it was a blind -- but good lord, the point of a blind is not to jump in then instantly start slopping around. I called him back, did a heel-nick-heel (with a low 2 -- I think it more gave me something to do than really correct him) then sent him again, he dove in and got about halfway out before I had to handle, so that was good.
Not sure what all of that was, but I think I need to KISS with Slater for the next few sessions. I ended up running two water blinds with him at the end of the day, similar length (say, 60-70 yards swims straight across) this time with blind stakes and he did a lovely job. All I really want is him to head in with purpose and not be weird :)
Okay, Fisher up next. Did long birds as memory birds and the short breaking bird as the go-bird. Despite the fact he "almost" broke -- crept a few feet but held it until being released -- he was AWESOME. Good dog!!! He two-whistled the shoreline blind (and even took a very literal cast on the first cast into the water, which was a good dog) and one-whistled the long out-to-sea blind. I have worked on nothing but very simple baseball casting and very simple lining drills with Fisher and it has brought his confidence at the line up and anxiety down. When I said "Dead bird - sit" on both blinds he instantly locked on and took gorgeous initial lines. He can do it if we keep things cool.
The star of the day was my mom and her pup, Harvin. Harvin is almost 3 yrs old, Fisher x Brooke. Just about 2 months ago we started throwing the bumper for Harvin and teaching Mom how to handle him. They are doing amazing! He is a VERY good marker and very trainable. He goes in the water like nobody's business. Today he fetched 4 bumpers in the water, two single on land with cover, and then met a duck. To that he said, um, ewwww!!!!! But I helped and put it in his mouth for him and pointed him at my mom, he carried it all the way back to her. We did this twice. I think before long we'll have him picking up the duck. I will have to FF him but he actually is pretty good at holding onto the bumper (and duck).
There's our little day!!
 

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Discussion Starter #13
sounds like a great day, Anney. I think Slater was just having a Tito day, lol. I sure wish we could train water, we are done now until March.
 

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oh, and great video, too! Fisher's attention is awesome.
 

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oh, and great video, too! Fisher's attention is awesome.
Thanks :) The vid was Slater though (he's the little fat blonde one...just like his mom! LOL)
 
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We did some field training and obedience yesterday. Scout knows the PB fairly well know and is very fired up when I take her to the field. The first few runs you could send her on a drop of a dime she's that ready and focused to take off. However, as we get to 7,8,9 retrieves she slows down a bit, but is still willing. I have also finally made the decision to collar fetch. I've been back on forth with that one in talking to various people and struggling with only two hands to get started. But, my friend showed me how and helped me get going. The extra hand was nice and so far I am glad I am doing it. Next dog I will probably not think twice about it.

Obedience was good but I am reminded that I need to slow down. I did a lot of training on my own when Scout was a puppy just from reading various books and watching videos with just wanting the end result (i.e. title). Now that I am getting lessons and refocused we have to retrain a lot of stuff to neaten it up. Ugh, and I am NOT a patient person ;) Her heeling is very good and we experimented last night to find the right pace for us which is 122 beats per minute. This is a little on the fast side of average which suits us well. She needs to be horribly proofed as the little dog can still be easily distracted by random things--yes, even down to the tape on the floor at a trial. She got proofed real hard last night with her attention. I had to stand in front of a mirror and she had to focus on my armband. My trainer stood next to us to start. She didn't walk up though, because she did not want to create a bad impression in Scout's head of a person walking up and stressing her out. Then she proceeded to slowly move her hands, touch the dog etc. Later she grabbed a tennis ball and was playing with it within inches of Scout progressing up to bouncing it on the floor and rolling it around her feet. Finally she pulled out some cheese and slowly unwrapped it standing next to me, slowly pulled pieces off, slowly ate a piece or two, wiggled cheese inches from her face and off to the side, then dropped and rolled it. Scout did very well with all of this, although she did need to be corrected at times. I am pretty proud. We need a lot of this moving forward.

The other thing with Scout is that we are working on slow with the exercises she is learning. There is no problem with fast, but Scout has a hard time slowing down on any exercise and wants to charge through it. Although she can back up in heel, it happens so quickly and robustly that we have to focus on doing it very controlled and slow. Slow heeling is painful and she wants to forge oh so badly but it makes her focus harder as well.
 

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Discussion Starter #17
I need to read slower and more carefully! Slater looks awesome!!!

Thanks :) The vid was Slater though (he's the little fat blonde one...just like his mom! LOL)
 
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Lisa, it's funny to watch Tito heel slowly, he walks real stiff legged (almost bow legged) in the back, trying to keep himself slowed down. It looks downright silly!
 

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Faelan has real issues with the slow as well - it is not natural for him LOL

Seriously, I have a private coming up to help me with this since he really does not seem to understand it
 
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My instructor in the past has told me to practice slow and only slow to gain some control of my girlie. Actually it is particularly difficult when field training because she is shaking uncontrollably, whining, and bouncing in place but I make her walk nicely to the line. We failed at backing up in heel only because she does it so quickly and turbo charged and is not with me....
 
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