Sunday, January 24, 2010

Week: 4

Three weeks down (forty-nine to go) and I am definitely behind… or perhaps my expectations were too high. The good news is that February is just around the corner and I’ll have a chance to revise my schedule. The bad news is that revising isn’t going to help my overall goals for the year one bit.

The other bad news is that the long awaited CGC class isn’t going to happen - at least for me. Given a choice between the class and watching my son play Lacrosse isn’t a choice at all, and so I will have to try to pick up the class elsewhere this summer. The silver lining is that I can ease up on CGC items (which weren’t getting done anyway due to our soggy, drippy weather.)

Accomplished Last Week:

Core Studies – Tried Watch for the first time since they passed Level Two. Zachary only made it to 6 seconds (but he made it there easily) while Beau blew me away by going all the way 25 seconds! Beau finished up Front, Finish, and Heel (right pivot). I’ll be the first to admit they aren’t pretty, but after working all week on them I’ve decided they are as good as they are going to get at this time. Zachary finished Heel (right pivot), having already “passed” the other two.

Quiz results: Beau 87% (Honor), Zachary 83% (Bow + Honor). I’m finally satisfied with the “formal” Quiz layout, and the use of a simple index card to track daily progress. They continue to improve in their ability to hold a down while the other one works, but both still manage to break at least once per Quiz and that is killing their stats.

Citizenship – I don’t even want to talk about it… It poured down rain, the dogs were practically prisoners in their own home, and little other than a few out-of-sight stays was done. This may end up being a category that only gets trotted out during Spring and Fall when the weather is agreeable.

Family Member – The first three items (thuds, playing, and leashing) are all long term, slow progress items - and we continue to make baby steps on all fronts. A huge leap was made in the grooming department when Zachary not only stayed seating during simple brushing, but also allowed me to trim his ears (around the leather and thinning behind as well) and paw fur! As I don’t have a grooming table or noose and must rely on the dogs’ standing still because that’s what I told them to do, this is indeed a major hurdle leapt.

Extracurricular – Worked Retrieve, and they will both now hold the object in their mouths for a quick second or two, but both mouth and chomp continually and that, of course, is bad.

Just For Fun – Neither dog likes the plastic bottle, so I will probably drop it from the trick. It was added after the month began, so I’m not losing sleep over losing it.

Blue Bar – Videoed Beau on Level Three: Front, Finish, and Heel. Videoed Zachary on Level Three: Heel. Photo of the Week was taken of the dynamic duo on a rug wearing dapper scarves, recreating their success with the Chill video. The photo’s weren’t anything to write home about, but the process of taking them is getting smoother and that’s a Good Thing.

Released Videos:

Planned for This Week:

Core Studies – More Synchronized Movement in the house as the weather is supposed to be awful (again.) Will also work on Watch (attention) (again.) See worksheet for Quiz items.

Citizenship – With the loss of the CGC class, this category is now labeled “Optional” in hopes I can catch up on everything else.

Family Member – Continue with thuds and thumps – probably enlisting a family helper to up the ante. Need to work on being calm for collar/leash (Zachary only) and assuming we can find a break in the storms to go for a walk we’ll work on that too.

Extracurricular – Hopefully get the board in the house. Keep going on the spoon, working on the hold.

Just For Fun – Yes.

Field Trip – Indoor only (still raining) so just a trip to the Pet Store.

Blue Bar – I will get that darn mat and finish writing ECA – Dancing, plus pick another ECA to write about. Need to video the Trick of the Month and Contacts.

(As always, click to see larger)

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