Monday, July 30, 2012

crazy puppy's silly first show

Well, I have been nervously and secretly excited waiting for this day to come ... crazy puppy Sonic and his sister Brooke turned 16 months last week (19th July); this mean they are old enough to run at UKA's Beginners Steeplechase and Nursery classes. This weekend is the first time they are allow to compete legally at UKA. 

I so wanted to go on Saturday but we got a viewer appointment. Unfortunately, selling the house took over my Agility at the moment. I am highly stressed, selling and moving is the last thing I want to deal with. I want to MOVE and SETTLE, so that I can continue with my training and competing. At the moment, I am sitting here being stupid, waiting for people to come and view the house, try to keep the house tidy all the time is mission impossible! If I want to practice in the garden, I have to set the equipment up and put them away and make sure I don't tamper the lawn/grass. Arrrggghhh ...

We went to UKA Nationals yesterday. The weather wasn't the best. Partly sunny and mostly cloudy and rain! I've entered Sonic in the Nursery, so he gets to do the contacts he love and two Beginners Steeplechase classes. All NFC (Nor For Competition). He is so NOT READY for the the game yet. He hasn't got the training that Sizzle has at the same age. Sizzle was in a class where Sonic isn't really. His puppy class has a break because our trainer was on maternity leave, so he hasn't train since June. Poor puppy! Due to the weather and the limited space I have in the garden, we have no chance doing a proper sequence. And now with people coming to view the house and bad weather, we hardly do anything for a long time. 

Sonic's first class was the Nursery. Although I have entered as NFC but I decided not to take his ball in the ring with me, I have a feeling that he might spend all his time biting me wanting his ball instead of paying attention on the obstacle. The Nursery course wasn't an easy peasy one that I expect but I enjoyed the challenge. I think Sonic did rather well for a baby. I was worried that he won't be able to do the double tunnels as knowing him prefer anything else than tunnel. There were two "flick away" (rear across) jumps in the course. I have not done this for a while with him, so I practice with him with the available practice jump outside the ring to remind him. Crazy puppy can easily do it with just one jump but he struggled to turn away after the A Frame but I was so pleased with the "2nd jump" with me turning him left, he did that so naturally. I think we just need to practice a lot more. 

Sonic's Nursery:

I nearly missed his 2nd run of the Beginners Steeplechase I. It was a busy morning. I've entered Sizzle so I have to walk and run his course; then got Sonic measured as well and I totally missed walking Sonic's course. I have to stand by the ring side to watch others before us. It wasn't a particularly easy course for Beginners but it's a nice flowy course. As I didn't walk the course, so I don't know the proper set up of the jumps and tunnels. Sonic did well. It wasn't very smooth but for a baby like him but I am very happy. Although I have his favourite ball in my hand, he was focused and wanted to do the job. From the video, I can see there are plenty of rooms to improve but I am really proud of how he ran. His time was great too :) a good few seconds ahead of the winner.

Sonic's Beginners Steeplechase I:

Then, we have to wait for a long time for his Beginners Steeplechase II. That's at the end of the day. This time, I decided to bring the ball in and have a game. I've noticed that we keep having ONE same problem in the Nursery and Beginners Steeplechase I ... if there is a fan or star sequence (3 jumps), he was reluctant to take the middle jump. We keep having this problem at training as well. He still would not "go away" from me, no matter how I train, he just like his daddy Sing, likes to glue to my leg! I was prepare to throw the ball if he takes the jump but he failed and we did tried a couple of times :)

Sonic's Beginners Steeplechase II:

Sonic is very cheeky and challenging to train. I think he will be a "hard work" but he is so toy motivated that makes training a lot of fun. 

Well, Sizzle wasn't as lucky as Sonic that ran all his class in the dry weather. Apart from the Champ Jumping where we weren't gel at first, my handling was rusty and cue/command was terrible. The weave entry was very tricky. The entire day, regardless what level you are running, the course was set up pretty much the same with the weave in between two tunnels. I have not seen many dogs ran clear, as to whichever way you stand, the dog just pick up the tunnel instead of the weave. If I can confidently handling the pull through, I will be up close to the tunnel and point at the weave but I can't! 

Sizzle's Champ Jumping:

After that, poor Sizzle has to run in the heavy shower! When we were called to run, it wasn't pouring down! It was only a drizzle and as we stand on the start line, the heaven open! My good Sizzle tried so very hard and he didn't even slow down to run. I was so afraid that he will slip, I didn't want to cue to early for him to turn so he was turning wide. I love UKA, their rubber contacts supplied by First Contact are always safe to run on this kind of weather. Oh yes, Sizzle did win the Champ Agility :)

Sizzle's Champ Agility:

Soon after that, we were called for our Senior Steeplechase. Yes, we are still in Senior :) We just need a couple more points to go Champ. I have been trying for the last few shows but eveytime I told myself to run clear, what do I get? Fault or elimination! Hahaha ... Sizzle is pretty happy to stay Senior :)

Sizzle's Senior Steeplechase: 

One not so good news, Sonic was lifting his back right leg again after his last run. I took him to see the vet this morning. The good news is, his knee is absolutely fine, so no cruciate ligament or patella or any knee damage. Phew! In fact, the vet said his leg movement is very nice, she cannot find anything wrong in that leg. I did question about his lower back but there is nothing that the vet can diagnose apart from "soft tissue" injury, so he is on anti-inflammatory and rest for two weeks! Bad news is no training, no show for at least 2 weeks or longer. 

Oh, I just want to say "Hi" to Gill :)

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

fun fun fun weekend with the shelties

What a weekend! On Saturday, Sing x Skye's daughter Silky came. We did a bit of Agility in the garden; Silky is such a clever girl, it's only her second time coming to me to do a bit of agility and she's like she is born to do Agility. I was really amazed how fast she learned and how much she taken in as well, especially with the contacts, she has no trouble running over the A Frame and Dog Walk. Her see-saw came on just like that! You can read all about her day here

Our fun weekend continued. On Sunday, we got invited to Roz's house. Roz and her husband Derek owned this lovely country house, surrounded by beautiful woodlands. We had a lovely walk in the quiet woodland, the dogs enjoying themselves, plenty of space to run around ... we were spoilt by Roz and Derek with yummy BBQ. Our first BBQ in the year! The weather was so kind to us, sun was shinning with breeze in between. The shelties and us were truly spoilt. We even got to do a Shelties Pool Party! All our shelties love water, apart from Seagull but he did carry in for a lap of honour :)

 this is before the shelties got wet :)

Shelties pool party! 
I love to see how much my shelties enjoying swimming together

Colin is teasing Sing ... who gets to the ball first. I can tell you that Sing is not impressed! 

 this is the first time Sonic swims in a pool, he wasn't too sure about it

Sizzle made me laugh. All the shelties were in the pool at the same time and I only have 4 balls, Sonic collected two balls, Sing has one and Saturn has one. There's none left for him, poor boy kept swimming round and round the pool to find something to fetch, eventually he found this pool thermometer in the corner and bring it back to me. Such a cute and yet sweet little boy. How can you not love him? 

 This is the only dog that would not leave the pool all day! First, he pretend he fell in the pool. Yes, he did. He tried all his trick and he fell into the pool. Once he gets wet, he will not get out!

pretty girl in the sunshine

Yes, Saturn did dive, in the pool only LOL

Sonic and Toby loves each other so much, this is their play:

Yesterday, the Olympic Torch Relay come to Mitcham. Colin and I took the shelties into the Town to watch the Torch passing by ...

Grand escort coming to Mitcham

I am terrible with heat, after spending a couple of hours of waiting and cheering (actually taking photos) of the Torch, I actually got black out by the time I got home. I didn't wake up until this morning. I was over heated, Colin and the shelties were scared that I got no reaction last night, nobody could wake me up!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012

clumsy Sonic

I think my Sonic is very clumsy, I don't know why. He seems to rub butter on his all four paws. Since he was a puppy, whenever he race after a toy, he seems to fell over or roll over. I have noticed that from a very young age but I put it down as he is not steady on his legs yet. As time goes by ... this hasn't change. He is agile and yet clumsy! He loves to dash for a ball. I have learned from his daddy Sing, I seldom chuck the ball in the air now, it's always low. Everytime when he dash for the ball, he either slipped or did a tumble. I sometimes wonder why he dislike the pipe tunnel, it could be when he ran into the slight bend pipe tunnel, he actually tumbled all the way through. 

I've also noticed that he actually have a better balance on an uneven surface than a flat surface. How weird! I guess the early co-balance exercises must have help. One good thing though, he is such a tough little guy, just like his daddy.

Just recently (over two weeks now), I've noticed that he lifted his back right leg every now and then when we go into the garden. The first time, he lifted his leg was just over two weeks ago, he came off the Dog Walk in his speedy self and then quickly, he limped with three legs. I stopped there and then, gave him Arnica and Loxicom for a week, do nothing but just walking. He seems ok. No more issue; then this morning, I took him out to the garden for a weave practice, he walked down where the DW lies, he suddenly lifted the same back leg again, it was exactly the same place where he last lifted the leg. I quickly check over and cannot find anything. We did a quick weave and he was absolutely fine but I stop at one.

Later, in the late afternoon, after Colin finihsed mowing the lawn, I let him out, he ran down a different path of the garden. After cocking his leg, he suddenly gone three legs again! I called him in and he ran into the house like nothing has happened. I've checked all his pad and cannot find anything. I am not sure if that looks like a strain muscle or something stuck into his pad? Really worrying! I know they tend to get a lot of grass seed stuck in between the long coat but I can't find anything! Grrr ...

But one good news, we have his hip scored result back, 2/3! WooHoo! And his sister Brooke had her hip scored done at the same time, her result is 3/3! Double WooHoo! I am so proud! Hopefully, this is a big improvement towards my future healthy breeding!

Sonic is having a ball. Thanks Rosie for this fantastic picture, just captured the naughty side of him!

Sunday, July 15, 2012

I am a "bully"!

Well, weather hasn't been improved, my garden finally look like a swamp! Showing the viewers around is a nightmare with a soggy garden :( ... then, the shelties go in and out of the garden through the dog flap and the kitchen tile got muddy paw print ... I am constantly cleaning/mopping. I finally joined in the moaning group and I want the rain to stop now!

Today, the weather is dry so far but the big black cloud keep passing overhead. We had an hour of lovely sunshine and I got to get out in the garden and do some weave. WooHoo! I am getting very lazy, but thinking that Sonic is old enough to do the UKA show from 19th July, I am excited and at the same time nervous. We haven't done anything for ages, the garden ground is too slippery to do anything for the last week. I fell over once when I went out to clean up the garden (doggie poo!). 

This morning, I pulled out 24 poles, yes 2 sets of 12 weave. I wanted to see if Sonic can do that. I normally will train him first then maybe do something with Sizzle, Sipzie and Saturn; but today, I decided I will train Saturn first. Sonic was so angry, his bark got louder and louder and it turned into crying when I train Sizzle! Hehehe ... bad mummy, teasing him!

Saturn is always a good weaver. I trained him at Bernadette since he was a puppy and she trained him well. I cannot fault his weave at all. His weave is his best and strongest obstacle of all. I can send him into the weave from varies angles and directions and he can weave independently ... he is just a good weaver! And, he is not slow :) Bless him, I have not train him for nearly 2 years now and not competing with him. This morning, he showed me he is still the best boy!

After a good break, Sizzle's speed finally comes back, a bit scary really. My garden is too small to do a course but we can put in little sequences and I ran him over the Dog Walk many times, he was fast and he missed the contact zone by miles! 10 out of 10 :( We did straightline and turn and every single one of them is OUT! Dear dear dear!! I think he has some homework to do! He is small but mighty :)

Oops about Sonic! His weave is still not great! He is a crazy little sheltie, bark bark bark before he starts running and he is so head strong as well. He thinks he know where he is going :) I don't mean to train the 24 poles but I thought I'd like to see what they do when there are more than 12 poles. He started well but kept popping out at 22nd pole, I tried that 3 times with me running with him, holding back slightly and running past, every single time, he pop out at 22nd pole! Or, he was so fast from the red tunnel into the weave, he either slipped and went into 2nd or 3rd pole or ran past it ... I think we need to do more "collecting" practice! But, he did managed the 24 poles twice and I stop then. He was exhausted and I can see him slowing down.

We've been walking the dogs to different places lately and that involved a lot of pavement walking. I always take Sing, Saturn, Sizzle and Sonic; Colin will take Seagull and Sipzie. Colin thinks that I am a bully because many times when we walk on the pavement towards the Common or going to the Park or Pollards Hill, when I saw cyclist coming my way, I never give way, in fact, I just walk like normal and push the cyclist to detour or stop and give way to me and my shelties. I've learned that cyclist is not allow on the pavement, they should ride on the road. I am not that bad, I give way to pedestrian and we passed by politely, I never cause trouble but I am very strong and I stand up for myself. 

As we approached Pollards Hill this morning, Colin called me "bully" again :(. Well, as we walk up the hill and about to cross to go into the park, I saw a man with a pitbull by the park gate. I thought he was coming out, so I got all the dogs to sit and wait (good practice as I do that very often while out walking), as the minute tick by, he still standing there, in front of the gate with his dog loose. My shelties were very well behaved but I lost my patient and about to release them. Suddenly, the man asked if I want to go into the park and I replied  yes. He said, can I let him come out first, I replied politely "sure". I got the shelties to sit and wait again ... nothing happened? He still standing in front of the gate with a loose pitbull. I lost my patient after waiting for 10 minutes, I decided to put the lead on the dogs and ready to go in. He wasn't impressed and he put the lead on his dog. I said to him, I am going in with my dogs and I am happy to put mine on the lead and I just march in like a trooper. He did say something but I didn't hear what he said. I took my boys to one side of the park and soon they settled down I took their lead off and play with them, I knew I have control over mine but thought if he hasn't and mine are on the lead, they will get harm if the pitbull comes to attack them, if they are loose, they can run away from him. I forgot to say, during the sit & wait outside the park gate, we met this young lady, she asked me if the man and the pitbull are coming out and go down the hill, I told her yes as I am waiting for him to come out and let us go in. She told me she is scared as she was about to go down the hill. I told her my lots are friendly and she said she knew that. I didn't realised that when we walked into the park, she actually followed us and sat on the bench while I played with my boys ... she followed us when we left the park. I didn't realised she needed a protection. Hahaha ...

And the other "bully" from me is that Colin complains I made him carry the camera bag, the dogs' toys, the water bowl and water everytime we go out walking. Hahaha ...

Sonic got to tryout this mini floppy flying disc from Clean Run 

The KNIGHTs Shelties on top of Pollards Hill, the housing on the background is Mitcham. I think we will miss this stunning view when we move out from this area.

Friday, July 13, 2012

having fun in the sun

The weather isn't getting any better, in fact, we have more rain and raIN and RAIN! Sun did come out occasionally, you have to be quick to get out and enjoy it. Lucky me didn't have to work, so I can get the dogs out for a dry walk but they do come back muddy though :)

The dogs didn't get their long walk these days, so I try to exercise them more by playing fetch the frisbee/boomerang/ball. I used to do that once a week or twice a week but now, they get to play every other day and they want MORE!

Wednesday, we have Eva's mummy come to stay for a couple of nights. With Priscilla's help, we got to take some lovely photos of the shelties doing see-saw. I am obsess of my shelties running all the way up till the end of the see-saw. I know I can take picture of them while sending them to it but, I know they will run faster if I run with them and I like to see their action at the end of the tip :)

Sipzie is like a flying sheltie over the see-saw! Look below, you will know what I mean!

 Sonic wishes the see-saw tip faster so he can go on to do the next obstacle!

 having a break, Sizzle's see-saw is back to the OLD GOOD ONE!

 Saturn, always has his full concentration when doing contact!

 Yes, Seagull used to do Agility too :)

Sing is always smiling!

So, the above photos (Thanks to Priscilla for taking such a good shots!) are of good see-saw ...

Isn't she brilliant? Hang in there Sippppppppppppp!

Unfortunately, this is what we did at the show :) Ooops!

This is what I mean by a good contact :)

... or this? Ooops! Auntie Priscilla, where is my pointy nose? Hahaha ...

see! having a break from Agility does him good. 10 out of 10, perfect see-saw!

can't resist not to post these beautiful photos of Sing & Sipzie :-)

 I hope Priscilla enjoyed her stay with us, she definitely received a lot of sheltie kisses ...
Sing said: Thank You Auntie for my yummy fishy treat! I LOVE You!