Sunday, May 26, 2013

Had a very, very busy weekend so far :) It's been really fun!

Saturday morning, we went to Tolland, CT for an agility trial that Flash's breeder was at- he got to see his daddy, and we got to hang out with our wonderful breeder! It was a lot of fun. I didn't bring Baer because I wanted to focus on distraction training with Flash at the trial, and he did SO well. He also got to meet some new dogs and he did really well, I'm proud of him.

This morning I took the dogs to the agility ring at Diamond Creek to play around with Em & Yuna, got to work on entering weave poles and sequencing, and then with Flash I did restrained recalls and this new exercise I learned about where you are tugging with the dog- then you drop the tug and run away from the dog while maintaining eye contact. Both of my dogs held the tug and chased me, and I could tell they really had fun with it. (It is supposed to reinforce their drive to you when they have something in their mouth!)

And then this evening we went on a leisurely walk (I was going to go for a jog with Boo but Byron wanted to come to we brought the little man too). We didn't take too long of a walk (about a mile, puppies have soft joints and cannot walk on a leash for too long), and Flash got to meet a shih-tzu on the trail. But now we're home and everyone is passed out & happy. I'm going to check out some training DVD's I got from my breeder, and play the Sims  (for the mere fact that I cannot renew my Netflix subscription yet until later this week, otherwise I'd be in an Arrested Development marathon as we speak!)

I have to get to crackin' on my Flyball seminar notes & my Raw Feeding seminar notes. I'm excited to start teaching the things I know & love, but very, very nervous at the same time too. I'm diving in with both feet first- the only way I can truly fail, is if I do not try at all!

And now what you really wanted to see, the pics :)

Flash & daddy Trumpet! 

My 13 week old boy! Growin' up!

Baer: "Can I eat it yetttt pleaaaaase"

Byron & Flash bonding at the agility trial :)

This is Frisco, Flash's half brother! 

Rrrready for a walk, Boo?!

Tuesday, May 21, 2013

So I've joined a doggie fb group.  It's been fun, I used to get on labrador forums a lot but now that all I ever want to talk about is dog sports and dog food (ie raw), I post less & less on the lab forum.

The doggie fb group seem to, for the most part, know what's up. But I'm still amazed to see people asking a question:

How much food food do you feed ____ a day?

Well, I'll give a hint to how to keep them looking good- I don't measure her food with anything except my eyeballs. If we have a particularly active day, you get more food. If you've had a boring mellow day, you get less food. This keeps Baer normal at all times- I weigh her every two days to make sure, and her average is 48 lbs. This is perfect for her- not too heavy that she's slow, meaning weight on joints, and not too skinny that I can see every single rib. And I keep her at 48 lbs by eyeballing the amount of food I give her.

Feeding your dog isn't a science... it doesn't need to be "exactly nutritionally balanced." I don't have scales or anything. But I do have a good understanding of what types of vitamins, minerals, bone, veggie, organ and muscle meat, including the general ratio. Every dog is unique- every dog gains and loses weight uniquely. Our food system has ruined us- numbers on packaging for calories and fat content. Shoot, if you know that a chicken breast has around 3g of fat, then you'll know that giving a chicken breast in the morning & evening gives your dog 6 grams of fat. And, you can supplement your dog to ensure any deficiencies are covered. It isn't rocket science- kibble producers and most vets (who are holding hands with kibble producers, look at their love/hate relationship with Science Diet- It's a great food for your dog, it will cure what disease ails your dog, but it's mostly corn, by-product meal and chemicals. Why would any vet that was literate enough to read the ingredients recommend the stuff??) want you to believe that it is hard to feed raw, expensive to feed raw, you need to buy SUPER PREMIUM (what a great marketing term, huh?) kibble just to keep your dog healthy?

Your dog will, in the end, be whatever and how ever much you feed it. And I'd rather see a slightly underweight dog than a slightly overweight dog. It's just healthier in the long run. I can only hope one day people recognize the benefits of not having to weigh so much.

People who don't put time & effort into researching this stuff, people who just have an opinion will lash out and go "This isn't true, dogs need more weight", but I can only try and explain what I know and why I think this aspect of weight concern should be more acknowledged. The dog sports people are figuring it out slowly but surely- if you want your dog to have a healthy, long career, keep them lean.

Saturday, May 11, 2013

The happiest of people don't necessarily have the best of everything; they just make the most of everything that comes along their way.

New Infurno themed collar, to be worn at upcoming tournies ;)

What a BLAST the past few days have been! These pups keep me super busy, especially super hyper puppy. :)

I've decided I'm definitely going to do racing with Flash. It seems like it'd be a shame not to- he can do flyball, racing, and agility. Why not?! He's a little genius and such a budding athlete ;)

We have one week left before our next tournament. I'm super pumped because Baer will be start dog. With the knowledge of how the props need to be for her box turns, and all the conditioning we've been doing (and I'll step it up another notch this week as well), I think this will be her best tournament yet. I'm so psyched! Just have to get through this week :)

Monday, May 6, 2013

"Great minds discuss ideas, average minds discuss events, and small minds gossip about people."

Ten weeks old, trying to get a good "stacked" photo!


Last night we took the dogs to my friend's house (with a huge field) to play with her dogs. 

Wednesday, May 1, 2013

Such. A. Long. Day.

Got to work at 7:45am, which gave me a good half hour to run the dogs in the field. Worked 8:30-5:30, then did some training with Baer on the weave poles & basic obedience with Flash til 7pm, which then we had our agility class, THEN did teeter work with Baer & my friend's Aussie.

I am BEAT.

I'm grateful I get to go in late tomorrow, especially because it means we get to go on a HIKE in the morning!!

I'm thinking about taking the dogs to Harwinton, we haven't visited in a while and on a Thursday morning, it's bound to be empty.

So Mr. Flash likes to run through tunnels which I think is adorable. He even doesn't mind climbing half way up the A-Frame! 

So after he masters Sit, we will learn Down. But I also want to teach him to start getting body awareness. A fellow new whippet (mix) puppy owner taught her puppy to touch their front feet onto a paint can- I'm impressed and I want to do it with Flash too. 

But I can't help thinking about how people say you can't be a repetitive trainer with whippets. Baer is all about repetition- the more we repeat something, the more she remembers it and the more she's bound to get it right.

This will be a great, fun journey either way :)