Wednesday, March 19, 2014

March, April 2014

April 18-20 - Greater Milwaukee Doberman Club Trial-
Another set of great courses and great judges, had a wonderful time.  Kiah did get her first Q in Master Preferred Jumper and 1 PACH point on Saturday. We are just getting together as a team after some really bad ring stress so I am extremely pleased.  Keegs was his happy goofy self and we had fun running but no Q's for him. Kiah didn't run on Sunday, jammed her toe the night before and was limping so let her rest so she could heal.

April 12-13 - Medallion Rottweiler Club Trail-
A fun trial with really great courses and judges.  We had more good things then bad but no Q's for either Keegs or Kiah.

March 29 - Lakeland Dog Training Club Rally Trial-
Kiah got her Rally Novice title and 4th place with an 89.  I lost her 10 points by forgetting a halt at one of the stations, didn't even realize it until someone told me when we finished. Doesn't matter, I know she was fabulous.

Thor got his 5th leg with a score of 88, we are still having issues with fronts and finishes, he doesn't want to turn his back on things.  Will continue to build his confidence.

March 22-23 - WAG Agility Trial - 
Keegs ran on Saturday, we had fun but no Q's.  Keegan and I need to connect more.

Kiah ran on Sunday, we qualified and Kiah got her Excellent Title in JWW.  The Standard run was not so good but we can only take baby steps to get her back on track.

Palmer's Flirting With Fire (Kiah)
    JWW-EX-PRE - 20 Inch - Judge: Christie Bowers
    Distance: 160 yards - SCT: 50 seconds
    Score: 100(Q) - Time: 45.48 seconds - 1st place

March has been a busy month, we had our club's 3-day agility trial (March 7-9).  As always it was fun but busy.  Kiah and Keegs ran, no Q's but with some good things in each run.  Friends ran Kiah on Sunday to see if we can get her to feel less stress in a trial environment.  I stress her terribly, she is so afraid she will make a mistake and does not feel that pressure when others run her.  She did zoom with Renee but came right back to her and ran the rest of the course.  When Diane ran her, Kiah did not watch her as she should have but that was the first time Diane had run her in a trial.


March 15 - Badger Dog Club Rally Trial I & II
Thor got his title with a score of 93 in the first trial.  Handler error and a nervous puppy got us a score of 81 for the second trial.

Kiah got her first leg with a score of 96 in the first trial.  Second leg in the second trial with a score of 83; 10 points off due to the handler not noticing on the last station her elbows were not touching on the down. Kiah did have fun and was not stressed, her tail was up the entire time :-)

Really proud of both of them.  Keegs hates Rally so he was cheerleader and supporter for Thor and Kiah.

March 16 - USDAA trial at Forest City.
I entered because one of my trainers, Diane Sanders said she would run Kiah for me.  Had a great time and Diane did really well with Kiah.  Here is the video of her running Kiah in Jumpers.  First place in 20" performance, 24.38 seconds. jumpers.

Monday, March 03, 2014

Puppies - So much fun???

Today is another Dog Agility Blog Event Day - March 5, 2014; please visit all the blogs at: (  Please leave comments, we all enjoy hearing what you have to say.

I am not sure there is a perfect way to begin training a puppy since each puppy will bring with them positives and challenges. It also depends on the age you get your puppy and what if anything the breeder has done with the puppy prior to picking them up. To me building a bond, socialization, basic obedience and introducing them to all kinds of sounds, environments and situations is key. Starting them slowly on equipment, not pushing them too quickly and keeping it fun is also important.  

I picked up my new puppy in late May, 2013 when he was 4.5 months old.  I had planned on getting a puppy in the fall so was looking at breeders when I met Diesel at Boxer Nationals and feel in love with him.  I renamed him Thor when he came home to live with me shortly after Boxer Nationals.  He has excellent breeding, both champions and performance dogs in his bloodlines.  I am not an expert but many have told me he is structurally sound which was very important to me as I plan to do many performance venues with him.

Shortly after he came home I realized he is extremely shy around total strangers, had a hard time with loud noises in an agility trial environment and new places.  He is slowly coming around but even now at almost 14 months he is still shy in new situations and with new people.  He does believe that every dog he sees is there to play with him and is not good at reading body language from other dogs who aren't happy with an exuberant puppy around.

So with Thor one of the most important things was to start building his confidence and desensitizing him to the things that bothered him before doing a lot in agility or obedience. I took him to agility trials, to visit family and friends, in stores where dogs were allowed and walks until the weather got too cold. 

Over the summer with the help of a trainer friend we started getting him used to agility equipment, sometimes we would train at her home where they had all of their equipment lowered for their puppy and at the club where he was comfortable.  Thor has been in obedience classes since fall, we did two Rally trials in January, so proud of him he got both legs with a 95 & a 94.  He did much better in a new environment then I expected.  In March we will be doing our first structured agility class plus he will be starting a second one with a different trainer in April.  I do not plan to enter him in an agility trial until I feel he can handle the noise and people that go along with it.  We will continue to do Rally so he can get used to smaller trial settings.  

Thor has so much potential and I will be there to support him how ever it is necessary to reach that potential.  Love this guy!