Tuesday, June 30, 2009

Don't tell Mom and Dad but...

I played with Lily today. I know, I know. What is wrong with me? She's an impostor, she sleeps in my bed sometimes and she likes to sit in MY Momma's lap. I do have to say that after deciding it would be okay to play with her that I like her a lot better. We even slept on Daddy's lap and chest together and I didn't growl at all.

I'm going to try to keep it a secret for as long as possible that we played...I don't think that they saw me but they might have. We were playing chase. I like to be the chaser, not the chasee. It was actually a lot of fun.


Sunday, June 28, 2009

Agility Class: June 28, 2009

Today we did a lot of straight line work. Mia was really stressed out because there was a new dog in our class doing a make-up (an Aussie named Blitz). She had a total meltdown - something we haven't seen her do in quite a while. I got a barrier set up so she couldn't see him and got her to settle down on her mat. Blitz was very fast and because of that he was loud when he did the weave poles, teeter, and a-frame. The noise was really stressing her out so I started dropping treats right before he got to any of the noisy things. It seemed to help but she was still stressed. I had to up her rate of reinforcement during the sequences but she was still disengaging from me and sniffing and doing stress shakes. At least Blitz's Mom didn't mind. He has trouble with all of the distractions during trials so class with Mia was good practice!!

Mia completely crashed when we got home. She's usually pretty tired after agility but tonight she was exhausted (I'm looking forward to this effect once we get Lily in her obedience class).

That's all for now. I didn't get a chance to take any pictures of Mia at agility but here's a picture of the girls together that I took last night:


Saturday, June 27, 2009

Side Effect of New Little Sisters

So aside from the usual jealousy and general "I don't want anything to do with you unless we're not in the house or car" we've experienced one positive side effect to having Lily around. Mia can be extremely hard to motivate in training sometimes. Since I've been doing so much training with Lily, Mia has been extra interested in doing lots of extra training too! I'm definitely very excited about that!

I had them both working on "touch" today side by side. I've been working with Lily a lot on her retrieve (all the better to wear her out with!) so whenever I start collecting the balls Mia knows that Lily is about to start getting treats and runs over. It's pretty cute. Mia is really smart and can be quite manipulative, it's just hard to gauge what motivator will work best for her because it changes day to day (complicated Little Miss Prissy-Pants)...

On July 12th Lily will start her Puppy/Basic Obedience class. It will be from 3:00-4:00 (the hour before Mia's class). The plan is to crate Mia with a cover during Lily's class with hopes that Mia won't be completely stressed out and bark like a crazy lady. I'll be bringing my Mom with me the first day just in case so that she can take Mia out to the car and keep her occupied there if it is too much for her. I'm not worried about Lily sitting through Mia's agility class...I will bring a couple of frozen stuffed Kongs and hopefully after a few licks she will be passed out anyway.

Thursday, June 25, 2009

Does this count?

While working on Mia's "go to mat" behavior today she gave me this:

Does this count Momma?

Nice try.

Sunday, June 21, 2009

Agility Class: June 21, 2009

Agility class was fun today...it was really easy for me and really hard for Mom! What a nice change! She had to do all the work.

The jumps/tunnel were set up like this:

We had to do all kinds of crazy combinations of jumps with tons of front/back crosses, etc. Mom tends to still have a hard time getting her feet to move the right way but she's getting better!

It was easy peasy for us dogs as long as our handlers were doing things correctly. I had tons of fun and even watched Kiefer (the German Shepherd) have his turn only about 5 feet from me. I watched him completely relaxed like this on my mat:

Mom was pleased!

Saturday, June 20, 2009

Busy, Busy

So yeah...sorry I haven't posted in a while but we've been a little busy...

All because of this:

My new "sister" (Read: The Imposter)

I still don't like her much (she's been here since June 8) but she's growing on me a little bit.

I should be around more now that we are getting a handle on our routine and Lily's potty training. You can follow her on her new blog, Lily the Rottie.

Tuesday, June 9, 2009

Agility Class: June 8, 2009

In agility yesterday we did some verrrry long sequences (i.e. I, the human, was very out of breath) and I was very pleasantly surprised with how well Mia did. She was a little iffy at first because one of our trainer's Border Collies, Mac, was crated in a corner of the building. It didn't take her long to get over that though (I think he ended up going to sleep).

We both also mastered the art of the rear cross. I have an especially hard time getting all the footwork down and usually have to have them demonstrated before I can do them correctly but I think I understand now, lol. Have dog go on and cross behind the dog...it sounds simple but IT'S NOT.

Mia did the a-frame again but that was with a lot of help from our trainer...Mia was a little reluctant.

I brought her bed again but also brought Mia's new mat just in case. I'm glad I brought it because as soon as Mia got settled into her bed she did not want to get out of it again! So I will just be bringing her mat to class now!

Mia watching Ritzy from her mat.

On a lighter note, I snapped an amusing picture of Mia's brother's cuddling on her fluffy pink mat the other night.

Noche and E-Man being bashful.

This Sunday will be our one year anniversary of taking agility classes! We have come such a long way!

Friday, June 5, 2009

Mia and Her Mat

Mia here...Just a quick update today because Mom has a zillion videos to watch for her summer school class. Fun!

She decided that she doesn't want to lug my bed around everywhere when we're proofing and eventually to agility trials (if that happens) so she decided to get me a smaller, lighter, cheaper mat.

Mia on her mat.

Mom bought it this morning and so far we've done three 5-10 minute training sessions with it. Mom was very excited when she got it out the third time and I ran over and slammed myself down on it. Apparently, that's a very good thing! I'm definitely getting the hang of it though and tonight we will start doing the Protocol for Relaxation on it instead of just on the floor.

Also on the to-do list for this weekend are working more on my finger targeting (something Mom has been LAZY on for the last several months) and Leave It. We might even go on some extra walks to see if we can find any kitties to practice looking at.

Hopefully Momma will get enough done this weekend that we can get some video of our training sessions!

Tuesday, June 2, 2009

Belated Birthday Present and First Day of Relaxation Protocol

Back in October I went to the H.H. Backer pet industry trade show in Chicago, Illinois. I bought Mia a leather "Choke Free" harness with the intention to have my Mom (Mia's Nana) do some decorative beading on it. We both kept putting it off but I finally got off my butt and ordered the beads I wanted a few weeks ago. My Mom finished the harness on Sunday and it turned out beautifully!

In other news, Mia would like me to report that the first day of Dr. Overall's Protocol for Relaxation was spectacularly easy, boring, and tasty! She kept looking at me like I was doing some sort of crazy dance but was happy to be getting lots of treats!

I have to be at work early so that's all for now!