I haven’t been posting much over the last week because we haven’t had internet on my computer and posting from my phone wouldn’t be so fun but also because I’ve been feeling all dark and twisty.
Dark and twisty because I’m sick of not being able to do things with Lu. I think the vet is going to OK her for agility tonight but I’m not sure what that means. It certainly won’t mean jumping back into competitions. It will probably mean a slow build-up on low height jumps and no weaves for another few weeks and not too much bending for a while. I’m sick of being paranoid every time she’s racing around with Loki in the yard (which is happening a lot now) that suddenly she’s going to be on 3 legs again. I’m so frustrated that the State Trial was on and I couldn’t go. Well, I could have gone, without Lu, and that just made me sad, so I didn’t go at all. I’m dark and twisty because this whole year basically has been a write-off, and she turns 2 tomorrow and we’ve only done like, 4 trials and haven’t been training in months and I don’t know where we’ll be when we start again. Seeing people have success while I have to twiddle my thumbs upsets me. We have the Shape Up Dogs seminar in October and I put us down for the advanced level because I’d assumed I would have had many months to prepare and train her up. Looks like I might have ONE month to work on all those skills. I’m trying to not be down and angry and jealous, it’s just gotten to me lately – I think the house settlement and moving and everything was so damned stressful that I’m feeling so burnt out and horrible. Bring on the holidays (week and a half to go and then 2 sweet weeks of hiking and adventuring and training with my guys).
I’ve made a plan for both my dogs, to keep me focused on what I want to do, following Justine Davenport’s foundations, while throwing in some Silvia stuff and other things I feel are good. I took Lu out this morning and with bars on 200mm worked on threadles and independent sends to the backside of the bar. It was really nice – I did 2 or 3 reps/goes then told her “Ok, have a break!” and during the break she was allowed to sniff and disengage. I’d go over to my bag of toys – as soon as she saw me there, she came flying over and was ABSOLUTELY ready to work. It was lovely. Even if she hadn’t run over I would have sat down and waited for her to ASK me to work. And while I wanted her to work she was happy and connected and engaged, and then I let her go again, let her sniff, changed toys, and had another go – probably about 3 times doing this routine. And then that was it, all done!
Loki I’ve started running contacts now. He could absolutely care less about what’s under his feet, as I suspected. It’s more a challenge to keep him on the plank because, duh, it’s faster to run NEXT TO the plank. I just have to build an elaborate fence system for the next few sessions until I start raising the plank. I’ve also started using a foot target mat when doing cik/cap, and interestingly, I don’t know if HE’S targetting it specifically, but it helps me SEE when he takes off close to the bar because the mat gets all scrunched up. So I am better able to let him know if he’s wrapped well or not, and he can use the mat to help figure out why or why not.
I promise I’ll finish my 30 days of Mal… they just won’t have been consecutive days of Mal.