Sunday, July 31, 2011

Tibby's New BFF

I hope you are ready for a lot of posts with a lot of cute dog pictures.  Tibby had a fun week-end and made a new friend.

This is Tibby's new BFF Lucy.  I wrote about Lucy a while back and said that she was too rough and didn't know how to play nicely with other dogs.  Well, she does!  We gave her a 2nd chance and they get along great. 
Tibby had a very fun week-end.  I have been pet sitting (for free - yes, I am a good friend) 3 different families' pets.  3 dogs and a cat.  So for the last 3 days Tibby has gone with me to 2 new houses and played with her doggie buddies.  And politely sat and watched a strange (not Catty) cat.  Lucy is staying at my Mom's house, so technically my Mom is pet sitting her, but we have been over there every day to let the girls hang out.  Also, my Mom has had to work, so I took Lucy out for her evening walks.

Watching Tibby and Lucy interact really makes me wish I knew what they were saying to each other.

"I tell you a secret...."

Lucy pulls Tibby's ears and Tibby pulls Lucy's tail.  It's weird, but I guess they like it.

"Put you right paw in...."


"Hey!  I don't think that's food."

"That was fun."

Lost Baby Picture

I found these pictures on my Mom's camera.  She took them at the Foundations Class we took last winter - a million years ago.  Look at cute baby Tibby!  She was pretty good at the wobble board.  Wow we have learned so much in this last year.

This was the other picture I found.  It's not Tibby - obviously!  I sometimes wonder what happened to the other people/dogs in that class.  Maybe we will see them again some time.

Thursday, July 28, 2011

Park Pictures

These are the pictures I took today at the park.  Can you see the white signs along the edge of the beach?  The beach is closed, because of high bacteria counts.  It gets closed every year.  There are too many geese that sleep every night on the beach, so the city closes the beach.

If people avoid the signs, which are written in 3 different languages, then the city puts up an orange fence to block off the whole area.  Why would anyone want to swim in high levels of bacteria?  Yuck!

Don't Need No Stinking Seatbelt

I bought a seat belt/harness for Tibby yesterday.  It lasted about 3 mins, before she started chewing on the CAR sealbelt - yes the NEW car!  I don't blame her, because the seat belt has a serious design flaw.  The package says that the dog will 'be able to freely sit, lie down and stand.".  I don't know how!  There is a strap across the back that is supposed to have the seat belt threaded through - then Tibby couldn't move AT ALL.  Not a happy Tibby.

"How dare you try to hold me down."

So we made a compromise.

With her bungee leash attached to the harness and the leash attached to a tie down behind the seat Tibby is secure, but she can move around (a little - enough).


But not that happy....

Hey!  It's not THAT bad!

'Are we going for a car ride?  Or what!'


We ran into another loose dog today! :(  This one was really scary.  We were at the park working on the 100 Jumps and after that I took Tibby for a little walk around the park.  I wanted to take some pictures of her.  The park is 55 acres.  There were 2 people walking with about 6 or 7 dogs off leash near the far side of the park, across 4 soccer fields and a baseball diamond.  They were letting the dogs swim in the lake.  Fine.  Great.  Whatever.  I was taking some pictures of Tibby in a little rose arbor and then we started to go back to the car.
Out of no where a huge, muscular brindle dog with a docked tail comes running toward us - full speed, head lowered, ears back and teeth showing.  I scooped Tibby up and the dog circled around us.  I kept turning to keep facing it, because it kept circling around us.  It started to come in fast again and I stepped into it and yelled, "NO!!  GO!!"   I may have also kicked at it. 
It turned away and then ran back to the group of dogs by the lake.

I'm glad I picked Tibby up, because it seemed to make the dog rethink what it was doing.  Even though the 2nd time it came toward us it looked like it was going to jump up toward Tibby.
During the whole thing Tibby just sat in my arms.  I think she was a little confused.  She did not try to chase after the dog when I finally set her down, so maybe she could tell that it wasn't a friendly dog.

The dog easily weighed more than me, so if it had jumped I wouldn't have been able to stopped it.  It not only wasn't on a leash (which is the posted park rule), it also didn't have a collar on. 

The scariest thing was the way it looked - focused - on Tibby.  Not A Fun Day.

Wednesday, July 27, 2011

100 Jumps Challenge

To take Tibby and the mini jump to 100 new places before the end of August.  Distractibility rating from 0-10.  10 being the most distracted and unable to take treats or do tricks.

1 - Menard's parking lot.  Quiet corner, far from the store.  8.5 -  able to sit several times and finally give a high five.  Didn't try the jump.
2 - R. Island park, by beach, picnic shelter.  9.6 - able to sit after I got into her space.  Very distracted.  Did the jump a couple times.  Eventually refused treats.  Was ticked at me for not letting her sniff everything and leave her alone.  Played sit and go.  Asked for a sit and then let her go sniff as much as she wanted.
3 Parent's house - side yard & driveway.  4.5 - able to do tricks.  Took jump freely when asked.  Played with toy.  Did jump for toy.
4 - Inside my Mom's house with Lucy (friend's dog) watching/helping :P - 1.3 Very attentive.  Worked hard.  Did cik/cap.  Sends from a distance.  Did tricks with Lucy right next to her.  Didn't get tired of working, wanted more.  Played tug with toy - while Lucy was in her face.

Lesson and a Challenge

We had another lesson at Loretta's.  Tibby was such a stinker, but I learn a lot every time we go so, well little steps....
The equipment was set up on the side of the yard close to the sheep.  Yes it was distracting.  Sheep smells and baaing.   Also, the pheasant in the bushes may have been 'scary'.  Or the mooing cows miles away may have been unbelievably alien.  However, Tibby is also very manipulative.  At first, yup she was shy about the new location, smells, noises, but after 25 mins she was just being Tibby.  "Let's see....I can run away over here and then when I come back you will give me peanut butter, because you are so happy I came back.  Right?" 

When she felt like it she did a good job.  We even did 4 jumps in a row.  And one time she was even off leash  for the 4 jumps :)

Ok so anyway, the challenge.  Today I am starting the 100 Jumps Challenge.  Before the last day of August I will take Tibby and our mini jump to 100 new places.

Steps in the 100 Jumps Challenge
1. Get Tibby's attention
2. Do a couple tricks and give treats.
3. Have Tibby jump the jump (and give a treat!)

If she is scared shy of something: 
Take her up to the thing until she crouches her shoulders - shows she is nervous.
Turn around and leave.
Give a treat if Tibby follows me.
Go back closer to the thing.
Repeat above.
Do a trick near the thing.  And run around near the thing.
I want her to focus on me and when she is stressed turn to me.

P.S. Super distracting at Petsmart = a Siamese cat walking around on a long leash.  Maybe not a great idea to let it go around corners by itself.  Thank goodness Tibby licks likes cats.

Tuesday, July 26, 2011

Foundations Class Lesson 2 Week 2

I said, " I think we are getting better! We are having fun, so that makes me happy :) I tried a couple of times to get Tibby to do 2 things in a row - cik and then the tunnel, but she isn’t ready yet. She also doesn’t think it is necessary to do mutiwraps! She told me off - shook her head and then took the tunnel. It was really funny :) She has her own mind about things!
I split the vid in 2 - for some reason I can’t upload any video longer than 4 mins."

Silvia said, " Cool! She is so cute playing at the beginning of the video! And so fast when she is doing her zoomies! GREAT that she comes in to you in between, so try to just reward that by running away with her toy and having her chase you – don’t stop it by grabbing her collar! That’s contra productive: you come and you get grabbed. It should be you come and we play together! :) Anyway, she seems to like all the new toys! On the plank, you can start clicking as she is running at the end of it. If you don’t have a wider plank, make some kind of a channel (poles or cones or you could even use a tunnel as a barrier to keep her on) – it’s really just a waste of time to try to teach her to stay on. It’s better to focus on just running and having fun. Well, you’re definitely on the way there! Great job, was fun to watch Tibby so happy!"

Puppy Class Graduation!

We graduated! 
We weren't at the top of the class, but we had a lot of fun.  We didn't end up with a lot of finished tricks, but we worked on becoming best friends and I think we were successful!

Here is our graduation video.  I had to split it into 2 parts, because I was having trouble with youtube.
I hope you like our video!

I like the 2nd video the best ;)

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Garden Grows

I think this is the 3rd garden grows update? 
Some of these pictures are like a Where's Tibby? puzzle. 
Can you see Tibby in every picture?
She's in there somewhere! 

Ready To Rumble

Catty vs. Tibby. Catty decides to take Tibby down. Rawr!

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Tibby's New Car

This is how spoiled Tibby is - I bought her a car! 
She's letting me be the driver for now, but when dogs are allowed to get a license she is taking over.
Or so she thinks ;-)

I actually bid on it at an auction.  And I won!
It was an interesting experience.  The auction was at an elderly couple's farm.  They have taken very, very good care of Tibby's car.  It only has 38,000 miles!  It still smell like a new car!
I was really nervous when the bidding started, because it was my first time bidding at an auction.  A few people were bidding against me and for a little while I couldn't tell if I was still in the bidding or not, so I just kept raising my hand!   And nice older man behind me said, "It's ok you're still in."  All of the auctioneers were really nice - they wouldn't let me bid against myself - LOL!!

I love this car!  The back folds down completely flat and has 8 feet long of cargo space.
I can fit 8 foot boards for a dogwalk in it! 
I'm already planning a car camping trip.  I can camp in it!  And there is a roof rack that a kayak would look nice on.  Hee hee hee!  I love Tibby's car!  Shhhhh don't tell Tibby - she might not let me drive it any more!

Friday, July 22, 2011


You know what tastes good on a hot day?
Some frozen pudding.
Tibby even smiles while she eats it!

Thursday, July 21, 2011

Hospital Sun Fun

It was only about 80F today! Whew! Felt great! After work I went home and picked Tibby up. I took her back to work with me. We stood in front of the hospital and my coworkers came out to play with Tibby. Tibby isn't a baby any more, so I can't really take her inside any more - unless she gets to be therapy dog someday - ha ha ha sorry I am so funny! Maybe when she is much, much older.

Anyway, I passed out treats to my friends and they made Tibby do tricks for treats. She was more interested in watching all the people walking into and out of the hospital. I could just see her little brain turning, "I don't know what this place is, but there are so many people here. I LOVE IT!!!" She got to watch a bus pull up 5 feet away from us and people with canes and wheel chairs. There was also a street fair going on a block away. I didn't take Tibby to the fair - maybe next week. She did do some tricks for them, but she was getting hot, standing in the sun, near the end of our visit. They kept saying, "Tibby, Tibby, Tibby!" and she was ignoring them. She is very good at doing sit. Even when her brain is going 100 million miles an hour she can do a sit and hold it for close to a minute.

Of course, my co-workers all loved her :) And 3 different people walking by asked what kind of dog she was.....I wish I had been keeping track of how many people ask me that question. It has to be close to 100 by now - or maybe more?

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

ST Class 2nd Lesson Week1

2nd Lesson Week One

I can't believe it is already the second lesson (and technically the 2nd week of that lesson, but I'm trying something different), this class is going by very fast! I have been trying to make this fun for Tibby. She hasn't had a zoomie issue for a while. Maybe it's the heat, but I think she is getting the game - little by little. I've been working on not demanding she do things (still I am bad at this) and rewarding even when she isn't 100% right. So often I will go back to the video and it was my movements that put her off doing something.

The Lesson:
1. multi-wraps with handler in different positions: set a bar at your current cik&cap height and have a dog do multiple wraps around the wing. Change your position so that you’re sometimes on take-off side, sometimes on landing side of the jump. Reward by reaching in with a toy to reward close to the wing. Multi-wraps should always be your first exercise when you put the bars on the next height and you should keep working on them on each height, it’s great collection jumping exercise, I actually do some before every training, within our warm-up.

2. cik&cap sequencing: we’ll mask this training for different handler positions and moves into a little sequence and include a tunnel for extra fun Start with cap on one, try cik with handler on a landing side on 3, a shoulder pull from 4 to 5, cap with a front cross on 5, tunnel again and then push for another cik on 7. Reward in the direction of where I set number 8. Break it down in little parts first.

3. Running contacts or 2o2o

What Silvia said:
"Cool, I love how she is taking the jumps and tunnel on her own! And she can collect really well when avoiding landing on the cat! Very interesting method And she sure looks really happy now! – Especially in that living room session! Maybe you could keep one jump indoor all the time and work on one jump things indoor (multi-wraps and sends – those are even more important for her), in very short, but frequent sessions? She is still a little bit confused what this game is all about, but she is sure liking it more&more. Do you still see that instructor you mentioned that you found? Could you maybe ask her to show you a front cross? It’s really easy when somebody takes you through it. If jumps with bars make more sense to her, you can use a bar, but very low, not what you’re using at the beginning – that looks pretty much like full height already. It’s too much for her age and agility experience. But hey, she sure does seem to be having fun now!!! Great job!"

What I said,
"Thanks! I wanted to ask what should I do when Tibby skips a pole in the weaves? I want to keep everything fun for Tibby, so she will keep playing with me. Do I just ignore it and have her try again?

I’m doing RC with Tibby – it looks like more fun and Tibby needs it to be fun. It’s a little hard when we can’t go outside- there isn’t a lot of room in the garage, but it’s better than not being able to practice at all.

We have lessons about every 2 weeks with our instructor. She has been having me do front crosses since out first lesson, but I forget to do them – I get so excited when Tibby decides to work with me.

The bars on the jumps….well, when I have the bars lower Tibby knocks them down. She puts her head down, knocks them over with her head and then walks through. When they are higher she doesn’t do that. When we do cik/cap I just put the bars on the ground, so I don’t have to argue with Tibby about it. I think I’ll just keep the bars down for now – I was just experimenting in those first 2 sessions.

Thanks watching our video :)"

Silvia said,
"Yes, you can just ignore the unsuccessful tries and only reward when she stays in the whole channel. RC is definitely more fun, but somewhat tricky with dogs who have different speeds and won’t run full speed after the ball every time… But well, you can still try and introduce a stop later if necessary. Interesting bar problem You can keep it down for now yes and then very slowly add height, maybe she will leave them up if they are very low Front crosses get easier with time, so just keep practising, you can practise it on walks too, in slow motion"

A Classmate said,
" I love that cat! I think he wants to be trained!
So obvious that it trusts your dog explicitly & wants his tummy rubbed!"

A different classmate said,
" The cat is too funny!"

Monday, July 18, 2011

Ultimate Wobble Board

Tibby jumps up into the hammock when I'm rocking in it.  She does it all the time, but I've never been able to catch her doing it.  A few weeks ago I was picking up her toys and I threw her green tug into the hammock.  The next thing I knew Tibby was in the hammock too!  Then I had go get the camera and recreate it :-)  She likes her toys. She has pretty good balance!

Hot and Humid

The heat index is 115F - 125F today.  That's the temp + the humidity. 
It is very, very humid.
Yesterday it was 95F at 8am. 

Tibby has the right idea to stay cool.

Just chill.