Friday, February 7, 2014

Agility, Colorado style

What more can I say, we have been snowed in with -12F (-22C) temps.  Today, it was sunny and hit 20F by 9:00am so we celebrated!  The field will be ready for practice this afternoon!

Snow blowing the agility field!

Thursday, February 6, 2014

So much thinking, so little to say

Well, it is winter.  The time of year that typically gets me thinking (because I can't be outside 'doing').

We haven't had a lot going on since last October.  I purposely take some time off and certainly plan a more relaxed schedule for myself and the dogs.  Everybody needs to heal and renew.

We have attended a couple of seminars, a couple of trials, taken some time off, did some what has me thinking? All of it!  There seems to be two common themes in my mind.  Reflecting on Tangle's career at the rip old age of 3 and some new ideas that have come from exposure to OneMindDogs (handle system?).

Baby Tangle
First, Tangle's some ways I feel that I have done too much with him.  By the age of 3 he has been to two Nationals, three Regionals, attended world team tryouts, countless trials, and is very close to getting his ADCH title (USDAA's Championship Title).  Now I repeat to myself "By three years old".  Why is it too much?  I guess in my heart I feel like it is too much mileage for such a young dog.  Too much mileage with pressure, that is.  He has held up to it all with flying colors.  I still don't spot holes in his foundation.  Not sure what conclusions I draw from this, I am not that far in my thinking yet.  Perhaps I will make changes, perhaps I won't. I just wonder, should the journey have had a different focus in the first three years of a dog's life? Of Tangle's life!


I know, there are great debates going on in the US.  Is it new?  Is it the same old, just renamed?  Not really interested in that.  For me, it is someone else saying something that I am hearing differently!  It is like getting a new teacher who has captured your attention.  Maybe it is the same old, but does that mean there isn't more to learn?  Certainly not!

A lot of people are focusing on the "moves".  OK, some are fancy and new (to me at least).  But what is more profound to me is where I should be looking! 

He is committed, I am gone, but connected!

Telling him where I want him to land!

I played with this concept some on Lori Michaels' Jacob's Ladder Drill.  I did these drills last summer and found some of them very hard.  After changing where/when I look I was shocked at how well the dog understood the cues.  Very cool!!  Most of the drills felt so much easier!  For me, that is profound!

More to come on this later, but I am going to go back to thinking again...