Welcome to the Blog of Rosie Ison & her Scruffy Hairy Mutts.

I do hope you enjoy reading about all the various exploits of the Hairy Gang !

Thursday, December 09, 2010

R.I.P Dear Jake 21/7/01 - 7/12/10

Dear Jake

On Tuesday 7th December dear Jake lost his fight. Less than a week from diagnosis.
We are in complete shock. 2 weeks ago he looked and appeared perfectly healthy. He was being his normal pain in the butt, barking at everything and always being where he shouldn't and generally enjoying his life as normal.
Jake was a fantastic little dog with a HUGE personality and attitude.
As you read below 2 weeks ago he was taken to the vet because he had funny breathing. Last Wednesday he was diagnosed with Lung Cancer & a Heart Murmur. Everything seemed ok with Jake and we were just waiting for the results of the tests they did.
However on Monday he started to go downhill quickly. He completely stopped eating and was having to be syringe fed & even then he was spitting most out. He started trembling badly and showed little interest in anything. The only time he perked up was when Laura got his lead to take him for a stroll to relieve himself. On Tuesday morning the deterioration continued and he started to vomit frothy white stuff. He just lay uncontrollably quivering and looked pitifully thin.
We rushed him to the vet and he said there was nothing that could be done. The Cancer was very aggressive and Jake was struggling. We had to make the decision that everyone dreads and gave him sleep.
 Laura is inconsolable and I am also hurting so much. We are now going through the *what ifs* and *if only* scenarios that everyone must go through.

Jake was a manic little character and mega fast. In his agility career he only ever had about 7-8 clear rounds , which made him advanced( Grade 7)He was either absolutely fantastic and unbeatable ,or completely terrible! He developed a problem with his back legs and suffered with the heat which would make his back legs go weak. He was so hyped by the agility , by the time he got in the ring he was totally exhausted and would misjudge jumps & knock poles badly.When the new heights came in and he was measured medium it made it even harder for him, so he was retired 2 years ago after he had competed at the KC Medium Olympia Semi Finals.
He has left a huge hole in our hearts and in our house . He was only 9 years old.
Rest peacefully little man. You annoyed the hell out of me sometimes ,but boy how I really miss that now and wish you were still here to carry on annoying me .

Friday, December 03, 2010


 After a terrible tragic October, we now face another awful month.

Please say some prayers for our Dear Little Jake.

2 weeks ago Laura noticed that he was breathing deeply and every now and again would cough, he had also lost a bit of weight, however the symptoms seemed to disappear as quickly as it came. However last Thursday when he was sitting next to her she noticed his breathing was exaggerated again. She took him to our vet the next day and she listened to his heart and found he had a heart Murmur and what she thought was slight fluid on the chest. She gave Jake various medications and said if there was no improvement with 3-4 days she would refer him to a heart specialist. Over the weekend Jake seemed to deteriorate more and by Monday he was really picking at his food. Jake is normally a real pig with a passion for bananas but he just wasn't interested in anything we offered. He'd go to eat it then drop it on the floor. Clearly something wasn't right. Laura phoned the Vet and she immediately phoned the specialist who fitted Jake in on Wednesday morning. Our Vet was now also suspecting Lungworm as a possible culprit. On Wednesday morning Laura took Jake to the specialist and he did a thorough examination and suggested Jake may have a pneumonia going on. He admitted Jake so he could do some tests and X Rays. When Laura phoned back at 3pm she immediately knew something wasn't right, they told her they would have to ring back because they were actually in the process of doing a sterile procedure with Jake ! Laura waited and waited and eventually got the call to come to the surgery. She had to wait right to the end when everyone had gone , she was then called into the consulting room and told to sit down. She just couldn't ever have been prepared for the bomb shell that came. He was almost certain that Jake had Lung Cancer, and when asked the prognosis he said he could possibly only have weeks not months to live ! He's only 9 years old .. From that moment Laura really couldn't take in everything he was saying. She was so upset and just couldn't stop crying. I would have gone with her if we had known it was something so awful. Poor Laura then had to drive all the way home on her own in a terrible state.

The next day I phoned the specialist to speak with him and get the full details which Laura couldn't take in. Briefly it seems they were equally as shocked at what they found. Jakes lungs are filled with about a 100 or more cm sized lumps.
However there is a 2% chance that he may have something called Granuloma Lung disease, which apparently is very rare but can show up like cancer on X Rays. So they have taken a sterile wash/biopsy straight from the trachea into the lungs and sent it off for testing. The results will be back Monday and we are praying with all our hearts that this is what it is.

If not then we have some hard decisions to make. The Vet is talking about chemotherapy ,but I'm not sure about this even though off course Laura wants to give it a try. The vet says 50% of dogs respond really really well with no side effects and although not a cure will prolong life for maybe a yr or so. However there are dogs that respond badly and are very ill. I feel if Jake only has a few weeks we want to make them nice not miserable.
I think once we know on Monday what is the exact prognosis we can then talk and make more informed decisions then.
Yesterday Jake really perked up and has started eating again( he is on other medication for his heart and breathing) he wanted to play and was bouncing around the garden. This had cheered Laura up, and given her hope that they will find these granulomas.
I took some photos yesterday of Jake in the Garden playing, its hard to imagine he may be so ill :-(

Wednesday, November 17, 2010

Thank goodness October has gone !

I thought I ought do an update as its over a month since I have.

October was a BAD month for me. My Daughter was taken into hospital, she has Ulcerative colitis and Crohns disease. She's had it for about 15 years now but its really taken a bad turn for the worse. Then my son got blood poisoning and was very ill. They think he may have been bitten ! by what we don't know but its now 4 weeks since the first signs and he is still suffering. But worse still my Dad was rushed into hospital at the beginning of the month with a suspected stroke/heart attack. he was in hospital for 2 weeks and after the first 3-4 days seemed to be rallying round. He was conscious, talking and generally being stubborn like only my Dad could be. We had a couple of jokes with him, one being me saying he needed a shave and maybe he should start going for interviews for Santa. He laughed and agreed. However over the following week he deteriorated rapidly and after about 10 days we were told that the prognosis was very bad. He was a strong character and was stubborn to the end, he held on way beyond what was expected.
On Monday 18th October Dad passed away with dignity at 6-30pm with all of his family around him. He was 92 years old, a fantastic Dad, wonderful husband and will be greatly missed by everyone.

Dad March 11th 1918 -- October 18th 2010

So it was with a great relief when November came. I went back to training with the boys who had been very neglected during the previous 3 weeks. I actually think the time off had been good for them. Fozzie did a training day with Natasha Wise. He was awesome( as our American friends would say)  I am thrilled with how he is progressing. Training back at both Pachesham and Bookham was also great. He is focusing much more and up till now I couldn't work him side by side with another group of dogs at Bookham. He would just run off to chase the other dog which is just not fair on other people, so I would wait till there was a gap and no-one working or they would stop running a dog when I went. Well in the last 2 weeks I have been able to run him whilst another dog works. However It has to be a fairly non exciting dog, but Fozzie has managed to compete a whole sequence with another dog on course.....great progress. However he is getting more and more hyped by other dogs working , which I'm not happy about so I'm now working on getting him clued into me totally whilst waiting out turn. If I relax even a little he lunges on the lead barking which I really hate. 
Chip is driving me to drink..hic hic.  He has become very headstrong and I just can't get into tune with him. We are all over the place. When he listens and works he's totally fantastic..turns to die for, reliable contacts and fast. however if he's not in the zone he's a total nightmare..sometimes reminds me of his Uncle Disney !!!
Maybe its just me ..lol

We had our last show of the year last week, North Downs. I didn't enter Disney, I'm not sure how much I will do with him now. He's as keen as ever but he is 12 , so I am going to just wait and see what next year holds.
I entered Woody in 2 classes and bless him, he got 11th in Grade 4-5 Agility. He had the first pole down in the jumping but did the rest of the round beautifully.
It was Fozzie's first Grade 4 show & he did a Fab Grade 3-4 Jumping coming in 12th, A missed weave was his only downfall in the Grade 4-5 Agility, but it meant I could train his contacts. However on his last run he was VERY naughty on his start line waits. He had no intention of waiting at all and after the 3rd attempt I removed him from the ring. No wait means no play !
Chip was a disaster..so naughty and my crap handling didn't help. I sort of gave up in the 5-7 jumping, He didn't wait which put me in a bad position for the second jump which he crashed, he then went on to miss another  jump had another pole down and then flew into the wrong end of the tunnel..all a total train wreck really. His agility was marginally better, but not much !! His best run was the 6-7 jumping but I left him for dead by  running to get myself into a better position, so he came round a jump. The rest of the run was actually pretty ok, so at least we finished on a more positive note.
We have lots and lots to work on over Winter. Fozzies start line is a must, I am going to try something different with him. With Chip its all going to be control work because this is what I've lost since his increase in speed and confidence.

Very little video of North Downs apart from Fozzie's runs including his naughty start lines. He does make me smile though. Here is the video

Tuesday, October 12, 2010

Happy Birthday Fozzie.


Monday, September 27, 2010


My clever boy Fozzie, aka The Hairy Muppet has WON grade 3 agility, so moving him up to Grade 4 :-) I am so proud of him.
I really wanted to win out of Grade 3 with Fozzie. Its a lovely class for baby dogs to start out in, but I wanted more of a challenge than just straight up and down ! Also the class sizes of Large grade 3 are enormous. Most shows split Grade 3 into at least 3 classes because of the shear numbers, often in excess of 600+ dogs !! If they don't split then the class sizes are huge. Fozzie won out of a class of 285 dogs ! The class he won wasn't just an up and down( thank goodness), it was tricky with lots of handling. At the end of the class only 23 dogs had gone clear !!!!

He nearly won out the day before but he knocked a pole. He had the fastest round including the fastest 5 faults ! Coupled with the show a couple of weeks ago where he was beaten by such a small margin, I now knew he had the potential to do it , it was just a case of wondering if he actually would !
So in his last class of 2010 ( unless we brave the cold and do North Downs in November) he did me proud and won it. Whilst watching the video I can still see places where we can improve things so he has way more in him. It will be lovely to be in Grade 4 with him next year, the same class as Woody..Phew less course walking ;-)

Who would have thought that my little lad who bought me to tears so many times at the beginning of this year, and who I thought may never make an agility dog did so well.
Roll on the 2011 show season. However lots of winter training & areas to work on.

He's got a bit naughty with his start line waits during the last month or so, he's great at training but he's got very show wise, so that's one area to work on during winter. However his weaves have turned out brilliantly and also his dogwalk contact. I have been doing a quick stop go up till now at shows, but in training I do stop, play & then go. But for the last 2 shows I have done almost a running dogwalk (or so it appears) I still give a release as his feet touch the ground but it is instant. I am sure this has helped the speed.

Here is a video of his winning round ,and then one below of some of his other runs including the near miss ! Also his last run on this video is the Helter Skelter. Although he had 2 poles down, he had a lovely jump style for most of the round.

Monday, September 20, 2010

Almost there !

Well only one more weekend show to go and maybe one winter show and that's it till next March :-(
I just wanted to post this about Fozzie this weekend at Trent Park with a small video. It was a Grade 1-5 combined jumping class and it had an angle after the weaves over a jump. Ideally( with a more experienced dog) I would have switched behind the weaves to pull Fozzie over to the jump, however it would have meant an acute switch behind the weaves and with the previous issues with the weaves I didn't want to do anything that would upset Fozzies confidence. My other option would have been a front cross after the weaves but once again I felt I shouldn't do that, also only having 6 weaves it didn't really give enough time for this !! I ran Woody in the class first and I was able to get to the end of the weaves and push him over the jump( No video I'm afraid) Woody did this beautifully and ended up clear and in fact ended up having a run off for a place..I left before the prize giving, but I think it was for about 12th. Anyway I digress, so back to Fozzie. He picked up another gear in this class and unfortunately cut in front of me at the end of the weave to take the jump straight in front. Extremely shoddy handling from me caused this, I just needed to be quicker by the weaves get to the end and then POINT towards the jump !!! I really need to smack myself for this, Terrible :-( Studying this video it made me realise I really don't give him as much help as I should i.e hand signals
However what I am so pleased about was his jumping and attitude. He's really driving over the jumps and is so much more committed, also his style is improving ten fold.
I hope Lisa and Gemma watch this video , because they gave me so much advice re jump grids and exercises to help him understand *how* to jump,and I am sure that has helped along with a thorough warm up massage/stretch routine beforehand.

I am now so excited about next year with Fozzie. He has come a long way since we started training this time last year. I didn't dream he's ever become this good. OK he hasn't reached the dizzy heights of Grade 5 or 6 like a lot of his fellow puppy mates have, but for me he has done amazingly and I am very proud of him.

Here is the video.

Just wanted to finish this post with Mr Woody..3 runs at the weekend and 3 places, to think 6 months ago I thought he may never work again !!! What a boy :-)

Tuesday, September 07, 2010

Back to Normal and Great News

Well September has arrived and my agility holiday is over. I had a fantastic time. We started our holiday at Paul Moores & Kate Smiths place. They have a lovely house with a huge field for camping plus a lovely area for their agility equipment. We stayed there chilling out for 3 days before the tiring 10 days ahead.First was the KC Festival at Kelmarsh hall, then onto DIN at Ipswich.

Woody was well back on form with several top ten places, who would have thought that 6 months ago I thought he'd never compete again !! I tend to take him or steer him wide on most turns which costs time unfortunately ,however the last thing I want to do is wrap him tight round the jumps and potentially risk an injury again. Woody has never been a particularly tight turning dog like Chip so its not a problem.

Disney continues to be a star for his age. He makes me laugh & smile everytime I work him. He can be Soooo naughty but I just love him so and really appreciate how lucky I am to still be working him, and with him being in such wonderful health still.

Chip did some lovely work at the KC Festival but it all fell apart at D.I.N and I don't think we had one clear round !!!

My star was little Fozzie bear. He suddenly realised at the KC Festival that he could weave and boy could he. He got faster and faster. He is still struggling with the jumping and in nearly every round had a pole down. He is still not stretching as much as I'd like and regularly deer bounces.. Over winter I shall go back to regular grid work again, that certainly helped before.

Then last weekend we were at Letchworth. He was once again doing some terrific work but if for any reason we stopped on the course he became very distracted by everything around him and would just stand & stare around him. After a couple of attempts to get him to concentrate I would then just finish on a jump. If he is fully focused on his job he is fab and doesn't notice what is going on around him.

On the last day I was overjoyed to just get another clear from him & get a 14th place in Grade 3 Jumping. That was with a couple of wide turns and a couple of stutters. Then out of the hat on his last run of the weekend he came 2nd in Grade 3 Agility !!! He was leading the class nearly to the end. I had mixed feelings as to whether I wanted to win out or not. I wanted too mainly because it would give me such confidence and also it would mean that he would be in the same classes as Woody, but the other half of me wanted him to stay in Grade 3 for the start of next year. In the end he was beaten right at the end by 0.08 of a second !! When you see the video you can see why. He was slow on his down contact of the Dog walk & also he didn't drive to the last jump and did one of his funnies over it, both these things cost him definitely more than 0.08 sec , more like 1 second + !!

I have put on several Videos I have done over the past 3-4 weeks of all 4 dogs.
First up is a compilation of Fozzies runs at KC Festival and DIN

Woody at KC Festival

Chip at the KC festival

Disney at the KC Festival

Fozzies 2nd place at Letchworth

Fozzies Jumping round at Letchworth

Lastly Woody's 6th place at Letchworth

Saturday, August 07, 2010

Fozzie at Agility Club Show

I am off on my 2 week agility holidays tomorrow, so before I went I thought I would quickly post this video of my last show with Fozzie.This was the Agility Club show at Ardingly.
I was overjoyed. He got his weaves in all 3 classes on the Sunday and even gained his first placing at a KC show.
So this has given me renewed confidence with him.

Woody was also a good boy.He only had 2 classes over the weekend but I am thrilled at how his jumping is now.

Huge catchup of all my June/July shows on my return.

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

Meet Apollo !!!

I bet you read my title and thought I had succumbed to the tempatation of another puppy again?
Well no not this time...I've got a new car !!
I had a little shopper Daewoo Matiz before, I loved it but it really was just a little too small. I found I was using it more and more, and only using my van for dog shows or dog walking. Any journey where I was taking just one , maybe two dogs ,as long as it was a clean journey ie where the dogs were clean to start with and were not going to get dirty at the other end (like a vet trip or media work etc) I was using the car. Far easier to park, more economical to run and nicer to drive.
I felt the time had come to upgrade it a little so I decided to get an automatic( a first for me) Honda Jazz. So far I love it.

So meet Apollo...if you look at the number plate you'll know why she is so called !!!!

Back to Agility..I have the Agility Club show this weekend. I will update my blog on the agility shows since Axtane after this weekend, after this I am then on my marathon 2 weeks away to the KC Festival and D.I.N.
Briefly I am pleased with Fozzie, still no clear rounds unfortunately.. just the dreaded weaves still being a problem. His jumping skills are coming on, I will post some videos next time. I just haven't had the time to edit & download the last few shows.

Monday, June 21, 2010

Happy Days

Well I have just had a great, albeit cold, weekend at Axtane show in Essex.

I was overjoyed with Fozzie. Wow he was brilliant. No clear rounds but he works his little socks off. He even got his weaves first time in one class, sods law though I got him eliminated ! It was entirely my fault, I didn't call him quick enough :-(

The work I am putting into him doing jump grids and single jumps , teaching him his take off point, coupled with a thorough massage & stretch before running is paying off big time. I would now say 50% of his jumping is really good and he's stretching right out.
Here is a video of his runs

My other great news is Woody.
He did 4 runs and got 4 clears including an 11th place !!
He still isn't jumping as fluidly as previously & he's a bit stuttery, but I am sure that all he needs is to get jump fit now. He was SO happy to be competing again and I am so happy to be running him again..he's such a lovely honest boy.

Here is a video of a couple of his runs

Disney was ..well Disney. I am having such fun running him I don't really care what he does. He doesn't get trained much so I can't expect great results all the time. I think I should strap large ears to him and then he can really fly from the seesaw like in the Disney Cartoon *Dumbo*. He was always a monster for flying seesaws, now he's even worse. I have to laugh, he's so enjoying life.

Chip worked really well all weekend, with just a pole down or refusal. A couple of eliminations ( all my fault again) I wish I could run faster !!! He did however get 4th in a very tricky Gd 6-7 jumping course. No videos of him or Disney I'm afraid. Its hard getting people to video for me all the time, I'm sure people see me coming to the rings and hide in case I pounce on them to video me ! So I save my favours mainly for Fozzie at the moment and off course Woody this weekend.

Monday, June 14, 2010

June update

I was told off at the weekend for not updating my blog ( sorry heather ;-) so here goes.....

Where shall I begin ? We had almost a month off from shows during May, I actually really enjoyed my time off from shows catching up on things at home.

Chip has now been castrated and all is very well. He was very uncomfortable for the first 48 hrs and could hardly walk. He went 24 hrs without a pee because he couldn't stand up let alone walk, not because there was anything unduly wrong just because he wouldn't. About 5 days after the op, he was still quite swollen so I took him back to the vets. He was quite red so she gave him an anti-inflammatory jab, and within 24 hrs everything was so much better. I started working him again after 3 wks and competed after 4. He has gone up a gear and is faster then ever now I think.

Fozzie continues to be an ongoing project. I have great highs with him and then awful lows. One training session he is wonderful and then the next he's dire. About 2 weeks ago I was going to give up with him(seriously) I had an awful session with him at club. He was unmotivated, couldn't care less, wouldn't play and then when I did work him he did 2 obstacles and went off to sniff the sand and look for horse poo. I did try & persevere but I found myself getting increasingly cross and that is just a no no.
I came home and considered pulling him out of any training/ shows etc until next year.

I was also hearing all about the various other puppies of his age that had just come out at shows, doing wonderful stuff and here I was still struggling with Fozzie. I know one shouldn't compare but you just can't help it..There's Charlottes Scandal, Karen's Yazz,Bernadettes Zitzy Pups, Pia's Sola, Sharons Diesel (to name a few) who all came out at roughy the same time and have all gained top 5 places at KC shows and some have even won out of Gd 3. Then there's also the comparison to my own previous dogs..EVEN my standard Poodles. ALL my previous 5 dogs have come out at 18mths and have gone clear immediately and gained several top 5 places within their first few months. Disney even went from Starter to Senior in his first season and Chip from Gd 3 to Grade 5 when the criteria for moving up the classes took longer!! Where have I gone wrong with Fozzie ??
Everything with Fozz has been 1 step forward and 2 back, its just been soooo frustrating.

However I have decided to stick with it and continue.
We went away the following week after the bad club session to Devon(more on that later) so he had a nice week off and when we went back it was like having a different dog !!! He was fab. Great waits, motivated, keen, he did all is weaves everytime and really listened. I was so pleased with him.
I've decided after this that if I ever get to training and he switches off and I become frustrated to just leave and go home.

Woody is still having treatment and massage in the hope that maybe he may be able to work again. I went to see a lady associated with Galen therapy massage called Liz Pope ,who studies the way the dog moves etc. She then gives you exercises to build the dogs muscles correctly. I am now into week 4. She reckons it takes 6 weeks to see full benefit ,but recommended I ran Woody after 3 wks to see if there was any improvement.
I ran him in one run on the Saturday just gone.Sarah warmed him up thoroughly for me first and yes there is definitely an improvement. He started off really well, no measuring or stuttering, however by the last 4 jumps he did start to stutter a little before the jumps. I personally now feel this could now be a fitness problem. So I am going to start jumping him very little and often to regain his jump fitness. Fingers crossed.

Disney still continues to amaze me. Last week at Dartford & Keston he got a 1st, 3rd & 4th. Then this week he came 2nd with Beth ( my niece) in the junior under 12 class at Thames.
This is quite amusing because that will qualify him for a semi held at KC Festival in 2011, which if he was successful would gain him a place at Crufts 2012 !!!!! Mmmm Disney will be nearly 14 by then so not sure that will ever happen:-(
Here is a little video of his run with Beth.

Going back to shows. Fozzie is having good days and not so good days.(surprise surprise) I am still struggling with his jump style and he just can't weave in competition. He is getting his weaves 99% in training and in my field,he can weave from every angle and it doesn't matter where I stand. I can recall him through, send him through, run behind him, run in front of him I can be close to him or on the other side of the field and he does them everytime, but in the ring he has only twice got them first time. I think( I hope) it may be just confidence, but I am not sure whether I should continue to run him in competition whilst he still misses the weaves 98% of the time at shows!!
If he wasn't getting them away from shows I would definitely pull him out, but he is so good at training.

I am going to do lots of jump training to try and improve his style so thats my next challenge. I have been doing grids but I'm not sure they have helped, so I am going back to one jump .

On Saturday evening at Thames show,after a diabolical jumping day with him, Sarah gave him a full massage treatment. Fortunately I have my vets mobile phone number so she was able to text me permission. Fozzie had extremely tight muscles on both his sides.Sarah worked on him for almost an hr and for most of it Fozzie was very chilled out. The next day I made sure I followed to the letter his warm up routine, well I was thrilled. He was fantastic and jumped several jumps beautifully.He was also VERY keen, we still had a weave issue but everything else more than made up for that. He didn't knock ANY poles, lovely contacts and more importantly not at all distracted. He made no other mistakes apart from the weaves...what a boy.
One thing I have learned is that I can't take him back time and again to get the weaves correct. I can try a couple of times but if I continue to try he worries more and just gets worse. I want to keep him happy so I will sometimes (rightly or wrongly ) just carry on with the course even if he's messed the weaves up.

I have posted a 2 videos. The first one taken last week at Dartford and second one taken this Sunday at Thames AFTER his massage. What a difference !!!

Visit to Devon.

I had a  lovely few days down in Devon with my mate Jane. I only took Fozzie and Chip this time. They were such good boys. Jane has 8 (or is it 9) dogs! She breeds Standard & Toy poodles & Devon Rex kittens Several cats and kittens, ducks,chickens and at the time a gorgeous 5-6 wks old toy poodle puppy. Chip just let the puppy climb all over him and the dogs all mucked in together. Chip & Fozzie took no notice of the ducks/chickens etc. It was just a wonderful time with lovely walks. You can catch up with Jane and her menagerie on her blog by clicking on  here or on her website here.
Walk in the Forest

Me & my Boys

What a View

Cooling off

Jane & some of her girls

Clive the pup teases Chip & Fozzie

Chip & Clive the toy poodle pup

I want you as my Daddy !!
Chip & Fozzie
How many dogs can you get in a lounge ?

Friday, May 21, 2010

Wonderful Day at Virginia Water

Today we went to Virginia Waters in Winsor Great Park. My friend with her dog and kiddies and I spent 3 and half hrs there. We walked right round the lake & then had a picnic. Unfortunately Woody had to stay on the lead as he has just been to the Chiropracter again and isn't allowed off lead till tomorrow. Chip had to stay on the lead around the lake as well :-( as he has a slight open sore (down below..ouch !) and I didn't want him to get dirty water in it. Fozzie and Disney spent almost the entire walk in the water apart from when we went through the Valley gardens with all the wonderful flowers. The scent was amazing. The dogs should really be on the leads in the gardens, but by the time we got there they were being quite well behaved and there was hardly a sole to be seen. I put them all on the lead till we had done the above photo, within seconds of taking this Fozzie was in the lake again.
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Wednesday, May 19, 2010


Happy 12th Birthday to my extra special boy.xxx

Tuesday, May 11, 2010

Poor Chip & poor Rosie

As I write this, Chip is at the vets being castrated. I hate any surgery , so I am worried sick. I am however glad I made the decision to get him done. This weekend he was terrible. He was bitching constantly and nearly everyone he met was greeted by the special Chip hug on the leg. It caused much amusement , but also embarrassment when he met complete strangers on walks and did the same thing !!!
I intend to give Fozzie the chemical implant in a month or so before I go ahead with castrating him. As with Chip I want to make sure I like the effect it has on him before I make the irreversible decision of castration.

I am also suffering badly. I have had an ongoing problem with my leg/buttock muscle called the piriformis for a few years now. It comes and it goes, but always seems to get really bad when I start competing with a new dog!! I guess its the extra hrs I put in with training etc. It felt stiff at the start of the weekend and driving to the show I started to get really bad pains(bad sign)By Sunday evening I was in agony. I have made an appointment with my physio to see her on Wednesday evening and its a bonus we have no shows for almost 4 weeks.In the meantime I have started to perform some self help with a tennis ball ! you can read all about it here I have to say it has already worked wonders and I feel much more comfortable. My physio will also give me ultrasound and acupuncture, so hopefully I will be back on track.

Taking about my journey to Tunbridge wells at Ardingly, well that turned into a nightmare. I somehow missed the turning off the M23. I have done that journey so many times , so I don't know how it happened. Well I went into panic mode. Here I was towing a huge caravan down country lanes I didn't know, sometimes single track roads as well. I didn't know whether I was going to suddenly find myself going up big steep hills or meeting a car/van /lorry coming in the opposite direction. I was almost on the verge of crying and I had very sweaty hands I can tell you. Fortunately (after a 20 mile detour) I arrived at Ardingly with a thumping headache and feeling very stressed. I will NEVER miss that turning again I can assure you.

With regard to my weekend competing...I was thrilled with Fozzie. He had a fence down in the Grade 3 jumping, but I just had to check his time. It would have been good enough for a 6th place, even allowing for the fact he didn't have to re jump the pole as it was already down ! I don't normally check times if my dogs have faults but I just wanted to see how Fozzies time would compare. Here is a couple of his runs.

Sadly I only worked Woody in one class and withdrew him from that after about 7 jumps. He is still not right :-( He going back to the chiro next week, then having some more massage etc. I fear that he may not ever compete again which is sad. He got so excited on the start line and flew over the first few jumps, but then started to measure again. I am only going to persevere for another month or so and if he's no better then I will retire him.

Chip had a nice place in Gd 6 agility and jumping on the Saturday, and on the Sunday he did a fantastic agility round. He was flying and was so tight, but for some reason the person didn't put his lead in the bucket, they just placed it near to the finishing line and Chip ran past the last jump to get his lead !!!! I was gutted.

Disney only had runs on the Sunday. He flew the seesaw in both runs, in fact in his KC qualifier it didn't even tip ( naughty boy ) Here is his run

Tuesday, May 04, 2010

May has arrived.

May has arrived already, the time is speeding fast so quickly :-(
So whats happened since my last post.

I'll start with Woody.

He went to see Marissa on Friday. His pelvis was out, plus he had a small lower back problem. She has put him back together and now we have to hope he'll be ok. He came home with strict instructions to keep him confined to a small area and NO going upstairs. Its times like this I wish I lived in a bungalow or on my own!! because I don't think 8 hrs had passed before the stairgate got left open and next minute Woody was upstairs on my bed .....Grrrrrrr.

Lets hope he didn't undo anything, he is pretty gentle going upstairs.
I have to start jumping him again on Wednesday and see how he is, and then if all is ok he can run at the weekend.

Now its onto Chip. Last year he had the chemical castration called Superolin It worked fantastically and lasted much longer than I expected, however in the last 2 weeks its VERY clear that its effects have come to an end. He has become a hormonal teenager again. He is bitching terribly, he's moody, he's not listening to a word I say and worse still he had a fight with Disney last week. He and Disney have never hit it off, but just keep their distance from each other, but Chip has never been one to back down and he's definitely in a very bad mood at the mo. He NEVER ever starts anything but if someone has a go at him then he's more than happy to argue back. I suspect Disney( who can be a real misery) had a go at Chip for maybe just getting into his personal space and Chip retaliated. It was easily broken up and they immediately forgot all about it, so it wasn't really that serious, but I did notice a scab on Disney's back the next morning so he clearly came out worse.

Since then there is definitely some tension in the air and I suspect its the big rush of testosterone returning. Fozzie is swooning all around Chip and trying to lick the insides of Chips mouth at every opportunity, so he's clearly being very submissive to him, once again this only started about 2 weeks ago.

So I feel I only have 2 choices, either get him re jabbed with Superlorin or get him properly castrated. After a lot of thought I have gone with the second option. I want to keep Fozzie entire a little longer to give him extra confidence, and I don't want any challenges between him and Chip. Chip is 5yrs soon so I think its sensible to get him done once and for all. I liked the Chip that was chemically neutered so I hope thats how he'll be when he's properly done. So he is booked in for next Tuesday as I have nearly 4 weeks off from agility shows then, so it seemed a good time.

Bank Holiday Monday we were at Vyne show.
Disney was a good boy again and got placed in an incredibly easy very fast KC Olympia qualifier. He was only just over a second behind the ultra fast collies/shelties so I was very pleased. I know where he lost the time and that was on a very wide turn, so he's still up there with the youngsters.
Obviously I wasn't working Woody and Chip was just dire. He just didn't have his thinking cap on at all and once again I put this down to hormones.

Fozzie was a good boy. He did some good work and some not such great work. In one ring he was VERY distracted and couldn't really focus. However in a quite tricky Gd 3-5 jumping apart from the weaves he was a really really good boy.

I have started on his grid work and upped the exercises, so I am hoping long term that his jump style will improve, there is still a huge way to go.

I started him at another club last week. Its a very competitive club and the exercises were by far the hardest he's done and he was just brilliant. He is the youngest and least experienced in the group but coped really well.........well apart from if we stopped for any reason he ran over to the other dog working on the other side of the venue. He meant no harm, but was just so hyped by the environment he got a little fixated on the dogs working. After he had done it once they just made sure no-one else was running at the same time. Fortunately he hasn't ever done it at a show (touch wood)and they feel he will get used to the venue and environment.
here is a video compilation of Fozzies runs from Monday.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Show updates.

Well the show season has got into full swing.
First was the Easter Show at Ardingly. Terrible weather leading up to the show meant that we couldn't camp on any of the grass so we all had to pitch our caravans on the roadways. The whole show was moved indoors or into the outside sand schools. I was judging on the Saturday. I was dreading it because the forecast was for heavy rain and I was outside !!! I set up 2 nice flowing courses that would run through fairly quickly because of the forecast weather. As it was, although a little chilly the rain kept off all day. I actually had a great time judging. I had a lovely efficient ring party, I was given a lovely lunch and a super Argos voucher & Easter Egg as a thank-you gift.

On the Sunday I only ran Disney and Chip. Fozzie was just a week too young and Woody was still not fit enough.
Disney was a good boy and came 7th in his jumping class. Chip worked well but his waits were BAD !!! So I decided that on his last round I would do what I had done last year. If he didn't wait I will take him out of the ring. I queued for about 30 minutes in the freezing cold and drizzle, put him on the start line and right on cue as I walked off after his wait command he was up and off. So off I went right out the ring. I didn't tell him off or anything, however he didn't get his lead to play with either.

The next weekend was Wallingford show at Newbury, It was lovely weather, what a change from Easter.It was Fozzie's first proper KC show and I was soooo nervous.

I needn't have worried too much. He was hard work in the queue and wouldn't play. He was totally obsessed with the dogs working and was lunging and barking. I resorted to titbits and tricks to keep him focused on me. He was also a little distracted during the start line wait, but once we got started he was great. I only ran him in the jumping classes and unfortunately he did miss the weaves both times on his first attempt, but did them on the second. His jump style is still work in progress, but he did extend a little over some of the jumps.

Disney was a star again with 2 x 4th places. He also ran in a medium team with Karen and Todd, Nancy and Zeki, Jennie and Stella. They were all fantastic and ended up in 2nd place.
Chip was great. He WAITED !!!!!! He also did some superb work with just a single pole down in most classes. Chip is such fun to work now. He's become very powerful and responsive. He had a slight mishap in his last run. For some unknown reason he gt his footing wrong going over the long jump and ended up almost landing on his head. I'm not sure what he did as I just saw him on the ground and then getting up. Others looking on said he really did take a tumble. Fortunately he is fine, but I did rest him for a couple of days just in case.
Poor Woody though. His first proper run after months of rehab turned into not such a triumph. He started off so well, but misjudged a jump and knocked it badly. After that he measured every jump. This is not unusual for Woody who has always been sensitive when he's knocked jumps and I put it also down to maybe him still not being 100% fit. The next day I ran him but pulled him out of the class after 5 jumps as I still wasn't happy.

Last weekend was the WBSDS show also at Newbury.
I was very pleased with Fozzie. Much more focused. I decided to do both the jumping and agility classes with him. He missed the weaves entry in all but one of the 4 classes & in that class he had a pole down. Several people thought he was jumping better, but there's still room for improvement. I have included a little video of 3 of his rounds including one agility round where the judge eliminated everyone who stopped their dogs on contacts and praised them !!!!!!!!! He had had loads of faults anyway, but imagine if he hadn't.

Disney once again excelled. He got a 3rd in Gd 7 jumping and 8th in Grade 1-7 jumping.
Chip was on fire. Great waits and he got 8th in an extremely tricky Grade 6 agility class and 6th in Grade 6 jumping. However I was most pleased with him in his other agility class. He was eliminated in the class, but he did the fastest dogwalk I have ever known him do and I was even behind him. He flew across it and did a perfect position at the end..WHAT A BOY !!!! I have to say that made my day.
I don't have any video of Chip or Disney's rounds as I was only really concentrating on getting Fozzies and Woody's rounds recorded.

Woody, however is my saddest tale. He is clearly not jumping well. He starts off ok but after about 4 or 5 jumps he starts to tuck up and measure. He has either hurt his back or its his shoulder injury or it could still be a fitness thing. I have him booked into to Marissa the Chiropractor on Friday just in case he has hurt his back. Dependent on what she says is to whether he returns to agility or whether I retire him. He was so happy to be working again, but I want him to enjoy life, especially his walks, and if that means no agility then so be it.
I have got his runs on video but I'm not sure I want to watch them over again.
I have however put the video of Fozzie on here.

Sunday, April 11, 2010

Fozzies First Show

This weekend I went to Thatcham UKA show at Mapledurham, nr Reading.An absolutely stunning venue right on the banks of the River Thames. The weather was glorious and the show very relaxed. I really only did the show so that I could bring Fozzie out and see just how he would be in the ring before we start the KC shows next week.

I was soooo nervous. I really expected him to run out of the ring or stop to sniff or something. However he was fantastic. He was a little distracted on the start line on the first day, but by the second visit his concentration on the start was much better.

His first ever proper competitive run at a bonafida show and he won the class !!! He would have also done well in the agility run if I had handled it better nr the end. I meant to do a front cross, but ended up trying to flick him over the jump and he ran past it, But I was very very pleased with him.

At UKA shows you are allowed to run not for competition and take toys into the ring. I did this on the second day in the Agility round. I was a little lax on the dogwalk and rewarded him for being slightly off, but it was totally my fault as I threw the ball too far past the end ,and he did try so hard. However his Aframe was 100% as you will see in the video.

I came away feeling so much more confident with him. He still has a long way to go but for his first show I couldn't be more proud of my little lad.

Hopefully this week I will get into the field to practice his weaves and then maybe he will compete at his first KC show this coming weekend.
Here is a video of 2 of his rounds

I ran Chip at the show to practice his waits and contacts. He came 2nd in his agility class but I trained all the others.

The best news is I ran Woody in 2 classes. On the first day I put him in the casual class as you can run your dogs one height below their proper height, which in Woody's case at UKA shows is standard height (which is about 2" lower than KC height)
So therefore I could run him at medium. He did the whole course and then I kept my fingers crossed he'd stay sound. On the way home from the show we also went for an hours walk, so I felt sure if his shoulder wasn't going to hold up I would soon know.
Luckily he was fine, so today I put him in the steeplechase class at the standard height(still lower than KC) He was great, I missed out a small bit of the course on purpose at it had a tight turn and I didn't want him to land and twist! He was little slower than normal, but he isn't 100% jump fit that is to be expected. I shall do some more little bits with him this week and maybe he will be able to do a jumping round this weekend. He certainly was a happy boy to be back.
Here he is in action

Tuesday, March 30, 2010


This morning I took Fozzie to see Marissa my Chiropractor. I wasn't sure whether I wanted her to find something drastically wrong, which would explain his funny jump style or whether I would have preferred her to find nothing.

As it was she found 3 small things wrong. 2 minor tweaks in his neck and one half way down his back. She put them all back as they should ,but in her opinion didn't think they would necessarily account for his jump problem. She said she could find nothing dire at all. However having said all that she did say some dogs may have found just those few things uncomfortable enough to make them jump differently(as she called it !!)
So the plan of action is to rest him for a couple of days and then see how he jumps. I have no plans for training this week as I am off to the Easter Celebration show on Thursday . If its not pouring with rain (or snowing) I will put him round my courses when I have set them up as I am judging there.
If he is jumping better then Marissa definitely wants to see him again in about 3 weeks, however if there is no change then its just a question of teaching him how to jump properly. She agrees Grid work is a must, as is rear end awareness exercises and also core stability exercises.
Fingers crossed.

Thursday, March 25, 2010


Well I've had a busy time over the last week. My Mum( who's in her late 80's) was taken into hospital to have a serious operation. She had a cancerous lump in her stomach. They did pioneering surgery on her. She had keyhole surgery to remove it and apparently the operation was videoed to be shown round the world as there have only been 2 such operations done this way. They went through her belly button. Her recovery has been fantastic & she was out within 6 days of her surgery. Mum has now gone down to convalesce with my sister in Chichester.Hopefully it won't be long till she's fit enough for us to continue our dog walks together. My Mum is great and still can still walk 2 miles or more with the dogs. Dad is still in the nursing home, Mum is his carer and until she is 100% fit she can't look after him. So last week I was busy visiting Mum at the Royal Surrey Hospital in Guildford, visiting dad at the home in Woking, training my dogs etc etc.
Here's a picture of Mum & Dad taken last year on the 60th wedding anniversary, and another of us out on one of our walks, also last year.

So back to my dogs. I have started doing some grid work with Fozzie. He is good at it and is jumping quite cleanly. I have at last managed to book a grid jumping day at the end of April, so I'll learn how to progress on with it. His jumping style is the worse I have ever seen. He jumps like a deer, takes off too soon and lands sometimes on all four feet. He can't wing wrap cleanly because his legs are just not right !!! I have him booked into to see a chiropractor next week to get him checked out , it was suggested to me that maybe his neck/back was out which is causing this action.

His weave training has gone backwards !!! The week before I mentioned how it had progressed well, now he is struggling again and has slowed down :-( I am thinking that if he has got a neck problem this could be causing him to be funny in the weaves as well.

Contacts...well I am really pleased. I started doing the ball training at the end of the dogwalk and am happy with the result. Last week in class he flew across the dogwalk and at the last minute the toy suddenly appeared ( from someone else) at the bottom, he really drove to it and stopped beautifully. I have now put him on the lead as well and am only doing the down ramp for this ,I have started to throw the toy as he pulls against me. Its working well so far.

I just love the way the words in that song ,that I put on that video sum things up so nicely !!!!

His seesaw has also sped up.

I am still having really bad concentration problems with him and if anything distracts him, he's just terrible.

So hopefully on my next post I will be able to tell you what the Chiro found and we can go from there. I have been feeling very depressed again about him, I think I am just very tired ! I am worried that I won't be able to get him to jump properly. One things for sure if he has got a neck problem all bouncy tuggy type games(which he loves) will have to stop. I will have to find some other form of play reward.

Woody is doing really really well. He is still having his weekly swims & I have now jumped him over a few medium jumps and he seems fine. I am taking it really slowly, but boy is he happy to get out to play.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Jumping style !

Agility training with Fozzie is going well. We have some really good training sessions and then not so good ones. Its his level of concentration that I am struggling with at the moment,he gets so distracted at the slightest thing.

I am putting the jumps up to full height more and more now. What I & others have noticed is his jumping style. Because of this I decided to video him, and then slow motion it to see if there was a particular reason for his style. He jumps close to the jump and then goes a long way past, sometimes tucked up and landing nearly on all 4 paws.

It was suggested to me that maybe he needs to see a chiropractor, just in case he has a physical problem, but the few people who have seen this video just think he needs some grid work so he learns how to jump and judge distances.
I was so hoping to get to Gemma's grid training days, but I haven't been able to because of my work. So I have scoured the Internet for info on grid jumping and watched countless YouTube videos, so until I can get to a proper training day I am going to work on some grids in my field.

On the very plus side, his weave training is coming on in leaps and bounds.He gets his footing right more often than not now, and so his confidence has grown.

As regards his dog walk. Thanks to the Manners Minder he knows his criteria for the contacts really well ,and I have fazed the Manners Minder out completely on the A Frame. He has a lovely fast A Frame and 2 on 2 off position & I am really happy with it. I wanted to faze the MM out for the dogwalk also, as its such a big unit to take everywhere with me, and I still wasn't getting the drive I want. So I am now working on sending him to his toy. The MM has been great for getting the correct position,so I am sure he'll be fine with the change. Thankfully Fozzie likes a dead toy and will go to it happily. So I've started leaving the toy at the bottom of the dogwalk and will gradually extend the distance it is placed from the end. Ultimately I'd like to be able to throw the toy and Fozzie still stop, a lot of work I think !! Any help or tips gratefully received !
He is painfully slow over the seesaw so I've got to work on that a lot more as well.

I have decided not to enter him in any agility classes when he comes out until I have more or less what I want in training. I'll put him in the ring in jumping only classes to get the ring experience at shows. Maybe by June/July he will be ready for agility classes, but if I don't do any agility classes at shows all year then so be it.

On a really good note, Woody is 100% sound. I started jumping him over small jumps yesterday and he stayed sound. He has also started to go on hour long walks through woods etc and has also remained sound. Next week I will jump him over medium jumps and then the week after some full height. I don't think I will be competing with him till the end of April, I want him to be completely jump fit.

Here is the video of Fozzie jumping

Sunday, March 07, 2010

Fozzies First Competition

Today Fozzie did his first competition. It was a fun show at Scrambles. I entered him in the jumping and steeplechase class at medium height. I just wanted him to get some ring experience, complete with queuing etc.

First was the jumping. He did a great wait,but the first 2 jumps were a little tentative, however once he got going he sped up and was doing fantastically. I was going to run past the weaves(a set of 6 poles) but Fozzie thought otherwise and went straight into them! not bad considering this time last week he couldn't weave, He got his entry but the weaves were incredible wobbly (infact they took them out for the large dogs!!) and Fozzie skipped a weave. I just kept going and he finished beautifully. I was so so pleased with him.

After a little wait we then did the Steeplechase. It was a lovely course with a few handling bits and a few nice straight bits.Once again a great wait & Fozzie flew from the start. He powered into the tunnels & was extremely confident & no weaves to worry about in this class. He got very slightly distracted for a nano second by a dog in the adjoining ring coming down the dogwalk, but he didn't stop and we went clear. I had to leave immediately afterwards, but imagine how surprised and flabbergasted I was to find out later he had actually won the class !!!! Maybe he will be ready to compete properly at the end of April ??

Unfortunately I don't have video of either runs, because although 2 people videoed for me, both were uncertain how to work the camcorder so missed the runs :tears:

On Saturday it was the first show of the year, Mid Downs. I love this show as its so nice to catch up with all my friends after the long winter.

Chip was a naughty naughty boy. He was totally over the top and broke his wait in his first class. He then went on to miss his dogwalk contact as well !!!

In his second class , he did wait for a little longer but still broke it. I kicked myself for not leaving the ring with him, but I wanted to do his Dog walk contact if he missed it, which right on cue he did !!! I rectified it, and then took my own line out of the ring via the Aframe, which he got.
In his 3rd class( a jumping class) I decided no matter what if he broke his wait I would take him out immediately. I queued for 3/4 hr in the cold to run, set him up in a wait , got to the other side of the first jump and wham he broke (little b**** ) I downed him before he took the tunnel and he dropped like a bullet, I retrieved my lead and then called Chip out of the ring.
Last year I did exactly the same for the first few shows and it certainly worked. He soon learned that no wait meant no play !!!

Disney in contrast was a real star. I have been deliberating whether the time was right to retire him as he will soon be 12 yrs old. I therefore made the decision I would enter him in the first few shows of the season and see how he was. If I felt he was struggling at all I would stop. I want him to be remembered for the dog he was, not for what he had become. I asked several people to watch his first run, and Lians husband kindly agreed to video him for me( as I didn't take my camera with me) so I could see for myself how he was doing. Well he was great. To be honest I was so happy to be running him and so enjoying him I don't really remember if he got faulted or not. I seem to remember his dogwalk may not have been too good.

So I decided to stay and run him in the jumping class as well. We were going out for a meal when I got home, so I wanted to run him and dash so I went first in the class. I said as I went in I didn't care what he did as long as he has fun. Well he was FANTASTIC. He was fluid and fast. Well I had to wait and watch the next dozen or so dogs and he remained in 1st place for quite a while. Eventually he was knocked down to 3rd so I left. There was still a huge queue of people so I thought he'd probably be knocked out of 3rd place quite soon. Once again imagine my surprise to find he remained in 3rd place, beating many of the fast much much younger good dogs. Unfortunately no video of his run , just a wonderful memory. So Disney will continue for a few more months, I just love him to bits.

Obviously Woody didn't compete because of his recent injury. He is doing VERY well , he went to the chiropractor this week and she said he was 100% sound. If all goes well this week we can start jumping him again on low jumps and see how he is. It is now over 2 months since the original injury.

Thursday, March 04, 2010

Weaving, Weaving ,Weaving

Well the weather has picked up, the sun is shining and my field is drying out, so I thought I'd get cracking on Fozzies weaves. Phew its hard work ! I have never had such a difficult dog to get to weave, well maybe Libby my Standard Poodle comes a close second, but even she only ever had one hiccup !!

Fozzie just couldn't get the hang of straight weaving, so I resorted to putting guided on the weaves. I hate guides but I thought at least it would give him the idea what straight upright weaves were. He'd fly though the V weaves only very slightly out, but as soon as they went upright, it was a huge no no.

After I had put the guides on I took him through on the lead. I then let him off. He just jumped over the guides, so I put them higher. He then ducked under them !!!

I then totally despaired !!! So I decided to do something I had never done before and I lured him through with food a couple of times. After about 6 attempts he weaved albeit slowly.

I had a couple more attempts with him, put him through the V weaves to get his speed up and then left the weaves alone. I finished with a couple of contacts on both the Dog walk & A Frame, plus a couple of jumps and then went inside.

I decided to video so I could examine what was happening.
Here it is

I had several peoples feedback on this and several said the guides were in the wrong place, but as I had already tried the guides in several places, I decided to take them off altogether. Today I went out again. I also videoed once again and I saw the problem instantly when I played it back. Its his footing. If he paddles through he does them all correctly, slowly but correctly,However if his feet tangle he just cannot complete the weaves. I also had quite a bit of *I won't do that, you can't make me* attitude today..very very poodle like and very frustrating..as it always is with Fozzie. I really think I'll get a Border collie next time !!!!
Anyway here is the video of today highlighting his foot placement problem.

Monday, February 22, 2010

On the up :-)

I am feeling so much more positive about Fozzie now, lets hope this is an upward trend now.

Within the last 2-3 weeks I have done 3 separate training mornings with him.
The first was with David Munnings. Fozzie was brill, David had set some quite hard sequences and Fozzie did them with confidence and speed.

The next session was last Friday with Nancy Hudson, I love Nancy's training & once again Fozzie was confident and worked really well, Nancy gave me lots to think about with my handling of him ,and I came away feeling very good & positive about things. I was extremely pleased with Fozzies A-Frame contact. I didn't use his manners minder, but he hit his contact position first time and was fast over it.

The last session was on the Saturday just gone and what a beautiful day we had for it ,the sun shone all morning and it was quite warm. This training was with Lauren Langman. I haven't trained with her before. I found her very motivational. Fozzie was a little star and once again I got some great help with my handling of him. I sometimes wonder how I ever managed to get a dog to Grade 7 and even win a CC when it comes to my handling !! I think its all about wearing comfy slippers(as Nancy said) With a new dog you have to learn all over again because every dog is so different. What I can do with with Disney & Chip ,I struggle with with Fozzie. I am sure once we have been a partnership for a year or so, he too will become my comfy slippers.

We only covered the seesaw with Lauren, but once the class was finished Sue said I could run Fozzie over her contacts. I took her up on this once everyone had gone home, because I want Fozzie to experience as many different contacts in different environments as possible. His first dog walk was very slow and cautious, however once he had done it once the next 3 or 4 he flew over. He likes me to be a fair distance from him, if I stand too close to the contact anywhere along it that also slows him down. That suits me as I not fast enough to be right up with him all the time anyway.
Because I have had these great positive training sessions with him, I have made the decision not to return to the indoor classes with Fozzie ! This is where I was having all the problems with dogs running up to him and once again concentration.

In my field I am now just concentrating on the weaves ...Hmmmmm not so great.

Teaching weaves is my favourite thing and I am very methodical, however because of the weather/dark evenings/work etc etc I haven't been able to train them as often as I normally do. I think its going to be a long time before he's a confident straight line weaver !!

Here is a video of his training session at Laurens. Unfortunately I didn't get video at Nancy's or Davids

Fozzies Obedience has taken a slight downward turn since he has became a little spooky. His concentration isn't so good now so he's not holding his heelwork position as well.
Here is a video also taken this week at Obedience training. We focused more on keeping him happy & motivated rather than precision. He did a bit of slow pace nr the end which I was quite pleased with because he was concentrating quite well.

He has now been on the Zylkene for about 10 days and I do think there is a slight improvement. He is still spooking at funny things but comes out of it quicker.

Woody.....well fingers crossed things here are also going in the right direction with his shoulder injury. He is now swimming weekly and has also started on a course of Cartrophen. The Cartrophen is really just to help his mild arthritis.
Last Sunday Sara came and gave him some Galen massage which Woody loved. I have continued massaging him and also using the pulsed magnetic unit as well.
As my vet says, at the end of the day we won't really know what has done the job, but to be honest I don't care as long as he becomes sound again. Unfortunately though I have made the decision to pull him out from Crufts. Even if he was 100% sound, he'd be physically unfit as he's had so little off lead exercise & no jumping since way before Xmas. On top of that,I just wouldn't want to run a dog who's just recovered from a shoulder injury on thin astroturf placed over concrete !! In my opinion just not worth it for 30 seconds in the ring. Beth (my niece) was obviously very disappointed but she was very grown up about it and fully understood. Hopefully Woody will be fit again by April to do agility again, but only if the ground conditions are perfect. However he only has to limp once after agility and he will be retired. I will possibly only run him in one class a day, but we will have to now wait and see.

I went down to see my best friend Jane last week in Devon. I only took Woody as she had 5 dogs in season, so taking Fozzie & Chip would have been impossible. Woody was fantastic, even when all the girlies kept flirting with him. The look on his face was priceless !!!! It was lovely for Woody to have some one to one individual attention with just me. Because of all the girls being in season long walks were out of the question , so we just did a couple of very short lead walks.

Chip also had a lovely training session with Nancy . I do so enjoy running him, he's fast,keen and honest.

Disney is doing great and I have decided to run him again this year. I took him into the field and he was as mad as ever. Once again I will cut his runs down & I'm not sure whether I will enter him in champ classes or not. I will see how he is at his first show and go from there. Its hard to believe he will be 12 yrs old in 3 months time. So I guess I should really start doing some training with him, if only it would STOP RAINING !!!!!!!!!!!!!