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Furbabies and scent class homework...

Thursday, July 05, 2012

So my homework for scent class has been different for each of the pups. Harley's homework has been to encourage him to take A STEP into the brush to find me when doing human searches. He is a GREAT searcher (at least of me), but reluctant to dive into the unknown. Phoenix's homework was to do short searches where I barely went out of her sight and then got down and "hid" from her. She is actually getting "worse" in the sense of worrying/crying/whining and expressing anxiety over being separated from me during the hides so the homework was meant to boost her confidence that she could find me and assure her that I wouldn't be lost for long.

Momma (Nanna) and Ken (Ta) helped on Tuesday morning. emoticon I did several successful hides with Harley. I didn't work so much on getting into the brush, but I took him to a new place. There were ducks and geese and several people milling about... Including children (YIKES!) , but he did AMAZING and his arousal levels stayed down. He didn't bark at one single person. Is he cured? Absolutely not, but we are building positive experiences. We did the short hides with Phoenix... Is it helping? I honestly can't tell... She still whined. She didn't whine when I had her find Ta (her second favorite person in the whole wide world!). She did exactly what she was supposed to do. She dropped her nose at his article and scented it and found him right around the corner out of sight. It was emoticon!!

Today Joe and I took the pups and went to the same place. We did short hides again with Phoenix. She cried the entire time... emoticon emoticon I'm not sure it is helping... Joe was holding them both on leashes and letting go of the searcher each time. Harley about killed him trying to get to me on one of Phoenix's searches. He did exceptionally well on his initial searches. He got to play frisbee and was well behaved with the people (and dogs) coming and going. I decided to try a more difficult search. I went up a grade and turned into the brush and squatted down after ONE step. Joe sent him to search... A couple of things went wrong... Joe didn't come with him to support the search. BOO! Also, (I didn't know it at the time...) he didn't let him watch to see which direction I went in initially. Most importantly, the search was WAY TO LONG to not provide support with. The first attempt, he went back to the original spot I had hidden and returned to Joe. The second attempt, he went up the path I took, gave up and returned to Joe and the original hide spot again. At this point, I thought I might be losing him.... I yelled his name and yelled for Joe to come with him to support the search. On his third attempt, he came up the path I took, cut back to my original hide, and turned back and started scenting me... I was about 20 feet away in the brush from the side he was on, but he was CERTAIN that he had me... He came in a few feet and backed up and started to circle the brush. Joe urged him to "get in there" and he dove into the weeds and on top of me. SUCCESS!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon I was really proud of him.

Live and learn... I have things to keep in mind for our next outing... There's always a new day and more work to do!

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUSANBEAMON 7/5/2012 1:28AM

  training helping dogs is important work. So many people need them. I hope I never do, but if I'm in trouble, lost or hurt, I would want a well-trained dog on the case. Thank you for your efforts. emoticon

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MOMMA_BEAR_69 7/5/2012 1:04AM

    Anytime we can be of help, just let us know. We both enjoyed working with you and the furbabies yesterday. We are getting an awful thunder and lightning storm so I will write more tomorrow. Raining too. Ken just saw lightning hit the ground in the side yard.
Love,
Momma

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WOWEETOO 7/5/2012 12:45AM

    the rescue dog i got from the spca last novemeber is a scent dog also actually she wasn't trained to do the low blood sugar scent (although my last service dog a border collie was trained) but that was the job she chose for herdelf..i mean how absolutely lucky canone person get for sure and now that i have autonomic neuropathy and don't get any low blood sugar notices she is an abolute necessity and she never fails and if it is really bad when i have gobled the pills and fallen asleep she is still sitting right there watching over me until i wake up again..she was never trained in anything and spent four years encased in a wire cage having one litter after another for an abusive breeder she is a mix of sheltie but mostly austrailian shepherd..i can't beleive how smart this dog is for sure..phoenix isn't ready yet give her more time she will come around..is harley the alpha???
carry on for sure!!
the lady mary

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Long (Record Breaking) day at Cedar Point... :-)

Monday, June 25, 2012

We spent the entire day at Cedar Point yesterday. I've been using my BodyBugg monitor for slightly less than a year (since my dear Momma bought it for my birthday gift). Walking around the park and riding helped me to break several of my personal best records...

Total Activity Minutes - 6 hours and 23 minutes
Steps Taken - 24,226 (WOW!!!)
Calorie Burn - 4,078 (GREAT!)

I was very pleased with those numbers. I was practically jumping up and down! I made sure I drank enough fluids throughout the day, and I stayed under my calorie goal... I can't wait to weigh in this week and see what the number on the scale is. More importantly, I know that I have made a LOT of PERFECT choices this week. No matter what the number is... I am going to keep working my program. This past week I have turned over a new leaf and really been determined to make the best choices. (I still can't wait to see what the "verdict" is though!) emoticon emoticon emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

MOMMA_BEAR_69 6/25/2012 3:27PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
I am very proud of you. You know you are doing a great job!!! Keep it up.
emoticon

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WOWEETOO 6/25/2012 5:51AM

    emoticon emoticon
you go girl!!!!
emoticon
the lady mary and hello dolly

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NELLIEC 6/25/2012 12:48AM

    It is always a good feeling when we are doing well!

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'Managed' Running Contacts

Wednesday, May 09, 2012

Today was the first day that I worked on what most would describe as 'managed' running contacts with my private agility instructor. Harley and I had a GREAT lesson. He still didn't get the concept at first... Even though he was getting into the descent contact zone AND ducking under the hoop target... He was jumping from the top of the descent contact and DIVING under like an EEL!!! We lowered it as low as the A-Frame would go and just got him to run flat out and under, and he started to do it beautifully. When it got raised back up and the hoop disappeared at the end of the lesson, he was still doing it very nicely. This isn't a quick fix, and it isn't something that once practiced/taught can be forgotten about. I think that we'll revisit it often (and continue to teach it), but I think that this will *hopefully* help with our "contact issues" and reward him by letting him continue to move (what he ultimately wants out of life). I thought it was a great step forward in our journey... emoticon emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

GOOZLEBEAR 5/10/2012 3:58PM

    Way to go HARLEY!!!!! emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

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NELLIEC 5/10/2012 12:20AM

    It sounds great!!! emoticon

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MOMMA_BEAR_69 5/9/2012 11:53PM

    What a great lesson!!! The two of you arE always winners in my book!!!
emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
GO, HARLEY, GO!!!

emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
GO, RICHELLE, GO!!!

Together you make an AWESOME TEAM!!!
emoticon

Comment edited on: 5/9/2012 11:53:55 PM

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WOWEETOO 5/9/2012 10:55PM

    YEEHAW!!!!!

go harley!!!!!
the lady mary and hello dolly
emoticon

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It's been 24-25 years...

Sunday, April 01, 2012

And I'm only 32!!! I find myself once again with strep throat... I haven't had strep since they surgically removed my tonsils and adenoids. When I was allowed to take my stuffed rabbit to surgery with me. emoticon

I've been on an antibiotic for 24 hours now so I'm considered no longer contagious, but that doesn't mean I'm feeling a whole lot better. The nails in my throat feeling has subsided some, but I feel so tired! I saying my prayers that all works as intended and with His help I get rid of this bug soon!

emoticon emoticon

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SANDRA-G 4/11/2012 9:24AM

    Hope you're feeling much better now. When I was little, I had strep so many times they said the next time, I'd have to have my tonsils out. The doctor must have scared my tonsils because I've never had strep again and at age 59 I still have my tonsils.

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SUSIEPH1 4/2/2012 12:09AM

    Drink as much water with a little honey in it as you can. This will help to ease your throat and also honey has healing powers ..
You can sip at it all day ...
just to keep your throat coated ...
Hope this old fashioned remedy works for you as it does for me ...
Hugs Susie
emoticon emoticon

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RAINTHIEF 4/1/2012 10:30PM

    Feel better soon!!

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MOMMA_BEAR_69 4/1/2012 9:44PM

    Continuing prayers for you that you are soon feeling 100% better. Allow your body time to rest and heal. Sleep will definitely help you. Praise God for his blessings.
emoticon emoticon

BTW: Glad to see you blogging again.

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NELLIEC 4/1/2012 9:20PM

    Strep throat is miserable! I am praying you feel better SOON!

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WOWEETOO 4/1/2012 8:25PM

    get well girl...i worked in a hospital and i am glad to say i never ever got strep throat..mmono yes but never strep!!!
as i said get well!!
the lady mary

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KINEPS 4/1/2012 8:22PM

    I feel your pain . . . . I had strep throat every year until I was a senior in high school. Not fun. Feel better soon.

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Our first agility title...

Wednesday, March 14, 2012

Just wanted to share a bit of news... Harley and I earned our first AKC agility title this past weekend in Zanesville, OH. With his three 1st place qualifying runs, we have now graduated from Novice Fast!!! For anyone interested... Harley's Facebook page is public and you can watch our run.

www.facebook.com/pages/Harley
-Zirkle/207920322617904


(Sorry the link didn't work before... It should work for everyone now... Thanks in advance for taking the time to visit!)

  
  Member Comments About This Blog Post:

SUSIEPH1 3/14/2012 11:12PM

    Go Harley!!
Hugs Susie and Bobby emoticon emoticon

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WOWEETOO 3/14/2012 11:10PM

    GO HARLEY!!!!!
the lady mary and hello dolly

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MOMMA_BEAR_69 3/14/2012 10:04PM

    emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon emoticon
You know that you are both winners in my book. CONGRATULATIONS and keep up your great work!!! I knew you could do it.
The link is definitely working now. Thank you so much for sharing with Sparkland!!
Blessings, love and hugs,
Momma

Comment edited on: 3/14/2012 10:04:40 PM

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NELLIEC 3/14/2012 8:02PM

    For some reason, I couldn't get the link to open, but finally found the Harley Zirkle page. Congrats to Harley and you!

Comment edited on: 3/14/2012 8:02:45 PM

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J2740LOU 3/14/2012 7:58PM

    emoticonHarley emoticon

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