Wednesday, January 25, 2012

iPad App

I haven't posted much lately as January is our time off. Last week in class a friend told me about the Agility iMap iPhone/iPad app. It allows you to map any course (all obstacles are icons) quickly with a drag and drop. You can then number the course. You can print it, email it as a photo or PDF, and keep it for reference. No more saving paper course maps from classes or trials! I was playing with it for hours on the iPad. F.U.N.

Wednesday, January 18, 2012

New Trick

I've been shaping Cosi to "sit pretty" and we finally are at the point where I can stand back, away from him, and ask for the behavior. Here is our final product.

I have no way to "photoshop" Jenny out of the picture. She's a busybody and had to be in the picture. :)

I also took this picture of my sweet Cosi. This is what I see every morning when I go out the door to go to work. Some days it's really difficult to see that face and go. I long to stay.

Friday, January 13, 2012

Happy Birthday, Cosi (and Trax)!

Cosi turns Big Boy 6 on Sunday. As a tribute to him, I've put together these photographs of the many activities we do together. Since Cosi is such an athlete and all round good sport, we have done a lot! Enjoy...

I tried to teach Cosi how to read a course map. It was easier to teach him the obstacles.

Cosi loves toys. Here is a small selection of his favorites.

Cosi plays hard and then sleeps hard. Here he is the evening of a trial. Those hotel beds are comfy.

Since we have access to a heated pool, Cosi gets his life vest on and off we go. It's not his favorite activity, but he does it for me.

Now here is what Cosi loves--lure coursing! He chases that plastic bag all over the field, following the line. Running as fast as he can is his favorite.

For the first three years, Cosi went to Camp at Coleen's every week. Here he socialized with other dogs, and--more importantly--got to run, run, run. Here he is waiting for me to throw his favorite ball, the Holey Roller.

Cosi's favorite obstacle on an agility course is the weave poles. The repetitive motion, the rush to beat me to the end, the joy of getting the reward all make for a fun experience. My eternal gratitude to Susan Garrett for designing two by two weave poles and training this obstacle with fun in mind.

I end with *my* favorite picture of Cosi. Photographer Roxanne Franklin took this portrait of my boy when he was two. He is the most handsome Sheltie on the planet. Love you, Cos. Happy Birthday.

Thursday, January 12, 2012

First Knitting Project - Done!

I finished the spiral hat. What a great pattern! Every four rows you change the starting point by one stitch. That gives it a spiral look to the K2P2 stitches. Here are photos:

Lying flat you can see the spiral...

Here it is with the edge rolled up:

Tuesday, January 10, 2012

Customer Service


I went to the local pet store to get some grooming supplies, and found Oliver at the front counter, waiting to help. Now *that's* customer service!

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Monday, January 9, 2012

Knitting Projects

It's winter, so I am ready for new knitting projects. I found a new (new to me) yarn store near Harrisburg. I combined a visit to Jack's aunt--she lives in Mechanicsburg--with going to the yarn store on Saturday. She went along to help me choose a color for a sweater. I bought yarn for a sweater for me and yarn for a hat for her. As is usually the case with a LYS (local yarn store), the owner was super knowledgeable and helpful. I came home and immedately started on her hat on Saturday. Now all I need is a few snow days to make the sweater!

Wednesday, January 4, 2012

Training Goals

When Cosi and I went to open practice this week, I decided to add a new training goal for this year: Distractions of Other Dogs Working. I took Mike along to practice; Mike's new job is to be a distraction. With Cosi in the crate, I worked a low jump with Mike close by. Cosi was quiet so he got cookies. When I took Mike farther away to work a tunnel, Cosi came out of the crate to investigate. Good. That tells me we need to work on distance. When I got excited with Mike by using a lot of praise, Cosi barked. Another "ahha" moment. So we need to work on distance from me and arousal. My goal is to have Cosi lying quietly (on a table, in a crate, on the floor) while another dog is working. Getting there will involve the It's Yer Choice game and Crate games (both Susan Garrett strategies).