what we’re working on (kind of)

This photo seems like SO LONG AGO. We've come so far in such a short time. I need to remember that.

This photo seems like SO LONG AGO. We’ve come so far in such a short time. I need to remember that.

Bit of a weird training session tonight as another agility person who lives nearby came to the field…

And I have to say, having trained with Penny… well, she’s no Penny. As in, Lu was running and missed a ‘jump’ (as in, two uprights, no horizontal bar at the moment) and I couldn’t really see with my peripheral vision if she did so we got to the end and played and whatever and I said to her: did she miss a jump there? And she was like: yeah, I think so…

So… not overly helpful. BUT… it did make me really, really appreciate how amazing Lumen’s forward focus actually is. Watching her nearly trip over her dog several times from it turning in and getting underfoot, I just thought- YES! Either Lu is either always behind and racing to catch up because I can show and go on a wrap or run off on her while she’s in a tunnel, or is driving forward. Go Bean!


She was super speedy though, having a new dog and person to watch her, but worked really nicely. Responsive and moving well. We did a couple of sequences with some challenging bits- tunnel discriminations, wraps from weird angles, serpentine-bits, and she had a good try at everything.

I’ve closed my weave channel to 40cm now and so am working around the entries again- I really need to make sure I do both sides though as I’m certainly favouring the left. We also did just 4 RC runs – the first 2 were messy, and the second 2 were BEAUTIFUL. I decided not to jinx it and do any more at that point! We hadn’t done any RC in about a week since I got depressed about not having an up plank and haven’t had time to build one.


One of the kids at school asked me today which dog was my favourite and you know, they’re like kids- they have things about them that you like, and things you don’t, but you don’t have favourites.

I think I’m coming to terms, though, with the fact that LuΒ isn’t Mal, and won’tΒ act like Mal, and therefore mightn’t be the “dog I thought I wanted”, but I so love working with her and playing with her… and I love seeing her serious, serious little face when she’s waiting for the release word, when I say “ready?” and her face says: “I was born ready…” (I need a photo of that face), and trusting her I think more than I would have trusted Mal for a lot of agility things and being constantly amazed when sheΒ does those things! And her jumping issue is still super worrying and I feel like I’ve been training a lot less lately because of it, but hopefully with HGR and time she gets over it and becomes a normal dog who can jump normally!

Anyway, I like her a lot and we’re having super fun happy times. The end.


Oh, and unrelated, I’m holding my first agility class at The Field next Wednesday. So far I only have 2 people coming, but I don’t mind, it’ll be fun in any case and Lu can come out and play, too.


5 thoughts on “what we’re working on (kind of)

  1. I think there’s always the chance, the possibility, of getting two dogs that are very similar. But in my experience, EVEN if they’re the same breed, they’re going to be different! Tammy (my partner) is dealing with similar things right now. I have TWO Aussies, both from the same breeder, and they are SO DIFFERENT. So, when Rumble is biting me and jumping all over my clothes, Razor is my favorite dog. When Razor is barking his HEAD OFF at nothing and Rumble is just quietly chewing something on the couch, well, then Rumble is my favorite! hahahaha πŸ˜‰
    I love these two dogs sooo much — More than I ever imagined I could. But they’re not the same dog. So it’s super easy to love them in different ways.
    Razor is a DREAM agility dog to train. He LOVES to play and will play for anything or nothing. He tries over and over and over again. He’ll do the same sequence many times NOT the way I want it and smile all the way through. But you can’t shape him much at all. He just looks at you and barks if he thinks you’re trying to make him think!
    Rumble is a operant dream! He keeps working out the puzzle until he gets it right. It’s going to require a different approach, but I’m all for it! Also his DRIVE is less… in that he gets excited when things are exciting, and NOT when they’re not. So if I want him to be crazy and fun in agility, that’s what I have to offer him. Razor is crazy 100% of the time.

    Again. LOVE and really enjoy both these dogs. I count myself SUPER lucky to have them. I will LEARN so much about training in this new experience. It’s a gift.

    On that note, Rumble starts his FIRST real agility class (with other dogs and everything!) Aug 11! So wish us luck!

  2. Oh! Wednesday will be fun! I hope it all goes well! Of course it will. How could it not? Your field is amazing and I have much envy bordering on flat out jealousy :). Hell, it’s just jealousy.

    It sucks going through the ‘wow, this isn’t quite what I was expecting’ phase with a dog but what is that saying about ‘there is no comfort in the learning zone and there is no learning in the comfort zone’? No pain no gain sista, yeah! I come from the suburbs so I can say that πŸ˜‰ That dog is an amazing girl. Badger and I are very lucky to have met her. Oh and I forgot to tell you that after I came home from Tallarook yesterday that Javelin could smell Lumen on my clothes so he humped the clothes. I tells ya, she is a popular girl in my household. Technically Javelin has a disturbing crush on just the idea of Lumen πŸ˜‰

    Yours inappropriately, Penny

    P.S. Do you want me to talk about my dog’s nuts? Cos surely you want me to

    • Em says:

      Yeah it’s just a matter of going: yeah, she’s different, but that’s ok…! I think. Getting over those initial expectations and whatever.
      Lu has clearly got a very sexy smell about her – you’re going to have an awesome time when she comes to stay right? 3 weeks of humpingly good fun. πŸ˜‰
      Umm…. and… nut talk sounds… great…? YOU seem to want to talk about them so if you need somewhere to do that, feel free. πŸ˜‰

  3. Let me tell you, Ruby and Java are two very different dogs. A while ago I had this crazy wish that Java would be a little naughtier (Ruby was the naughtiest pup ever) and now she is! How did that happen? Let me tell you now I don’t like it so much πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚ πŸ™‚
    Anyway, back to being different… I have different challenges in agility with her, some that I didn’t like very much because they took a lot of time to solve. But in other areas she is clearly more gifted than Ruby, and I’m enjoying that. Like Rosie said, it just makes it easier to love them both equally, each in a different way.
    Did you see this blog post? Just what I needed. http://fulltiltbordercollies.blogspot.com/2013/04/comparing.html

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