Friday, September 28, 2012

Dottie is a Super Freak

In a good way.  When it comes to tracking.  At least today.

A track aged 3 hrs on asphalt, and she tracked it like it was wet grass.  Here is a clip of one of the corners:

She did circle a few times in other locations.  Once she circled around where there should have been a soda pop top article, but I couldn't spot it and apparently neither could she, so she went on and I let her.  That corner though!  Be still my heart.  I think during our next outing she may go back to grossly overshooting corners on hard surfaces, but how nice to have her doing so well on film.

Hyper Muffin

You wouldn't know it from the state of my blog, but lots has been going on around here.

I made another offer on a house and it was accepted.  Gasp!  But I had to back out since it turns out that city has a 2 dog limit.  Who ever heard of a two dog limit?  Yes, I could sneak around and be over the limit, but that works a lot better when you start doing it AFTER you've lived somewhere a while and have a feel for the neighbors.  I don't want to live in fear that I'll get caught and turned it.  When my realtor called the city about it, they told her they only enforce it if someone complains, and the people who complain the most are people who were complained about and caught.  Seems petty.

This house was a good price, was fixed up nice, and had on ok yard.  The odd part was while the garage was attached, it did not originally have direct access.  So you'd have to take your laundry out the front door and into the garage to do laundry.  But the previous owner had added a door (illegally) from a bedroom into the garage.  Which gets rid of the laundry-out-the-front-door problem, but introduces the problem of having one bedroom useless since you have to pass through it to get to the garage.

Besides visiting houses, making offers, and driving and walking neighborhoods at night to make sure they are safe enough, I have something else very important happening, but I'm not going to spill the beans yet.  I'll wait until I get one of the houses, or give up and rent a new place.  They ya'll know (those who don't already) what I'm up to. 

Why the title "Hyper Muffin?"  Because I got on video some of Muffin's antics when it is breakfast time.  This is in the morning after potty time and he is waiting to come back in and eat.  Today was only a 2 jump day, sometimes I get more.  Pie does the kangaroo also, but Muffin's is actually better since he does the fish on a hook wiggle at the top of his arc.  Isn't this dog supposed to be 11?

Hmm... I just realized I didn't blog about my birthday.  As I've said- I've been busy!  Happy Birthday to me!  The cake, which was the kind with pretty confetti swirls inside, was some of the best cake I've ever had.  Thanks Mom!

Monday, September 17, 2012

New Word

New Word: Burfur (verb).  Buried, usually alive, under dogs.  Most frequently occurring on a couch or bed, but the possibility exists in any location when a human is occupying the same space as several dogs.  Not to be confused with "mogged" which is to be mobbed by dogs, and is characterized by the human beginning in an upright posture.  A mogged human can progress to being burfured, but only after the human's struggles have ceased.

Right now I am burfured on the couch by Muffin, Dottie and Pie.

Fancy and Muffin at the Groomers

Fancy and Muffin both got a bath and hair cut today. The funny/ sad part is Fancy was all excited to go into the pet store, and was sniffing at the grooming door. But the when the groomer opened it, she took one look at the groomer (who is the same lady who always grooms her) and turned and bolted. Fancy hates the groomer. This was Muffin's first time there. I've done it previously. They say he was good.
 I realize this may be the first time my readers have heard about Muffin.  I've had him several months now.  Actually I'm not sure when I got him.  Maybe since April? He is "another" old dog.  His story from the shelter is he was an owner turn in at 11 years old who had lived his entire life outside.  His shelter picture was very cute and the shelter workers had taken the time to write all kinds of good things about him.  But when I got there the shelter volunteer was afraid to take him out because of the strange noises he was making.  Was he barking?  Growling?  He was reluctant to come out.  Another, older, volunteer came and got him out and once we were away from the deafening barking of the other dogs, I could hear it was very severe reverse sneezing.  He could barley breathe for it.  His ears were so caked with gunk I was thoroughly disgusted and thought it was a terrible case of tumors or warts or something equally yucky.

I was not immediately "taken" with him.  The volunteer carted him off to the shelter vet to have his ears addressed (no one had noticed them before.)  While they were cleaning them out and clipping them down, I tried to decide if I should take him.  The problem with dogs like this is you know if you don't take them, who else will?  What would be my reason for not taking him?  He was old.  He didn't bite me.  Both things I did want.  Not take him because he was gross?  Everything yucky about him was fixable.  So he came home with me, and as you can see, he isn't gross or yucky any more.  He is a good boy- not perfect, but who is?  Muffin learned very quickly the luxuries of living inside, especially about sleeping on the couch.  Recently I've let him sleep loose a few times at night (11 years of no housebreaking doesn't get re-trained very quickly) and he chooses the "Princess and the Pea Bed."  This is 2 dog beds staked on top of each other for maximum comfort.  And since all dog beds are Malinois sized, he looks extra silly on it.

As for the reverse sneezing, I think it was compounded by a slight respiratory infection.  He only does it now if something startles him and even then it is only for a second or two.  And regarding the respiratory infection, once again my quarantine measures held, and none of the other dogs caught it.  An especially impressive feat, I think, when you consider I live in a studio!  He was quarantined in the bathroom, and the bathroom door was kept closed, and the other dogs were kept further away with a baby gate.  Given the size of the bathroom, any dog larger than Muffin would not have worked, since a larger crate would not have fit in there.

Friday, September 14, 2012

Pie is Famous- For Real

You know you've made it big when you have your own page on the Internet Movie Database or IMDB.  Check out Pie's page from Ellie's Overcoat:

A bit lacking in info, perhaps.  But how many other people (much less dogs) in your life have made it onto the IMDB??  I wish I knew how to get a picture uploaded.

I hope the movie (all 12 minutes of it) comes out on DVD soon.  I want to see if I have to be embarrassed at Pie's performance, or if it turned out ok.  The trailer (which Pie is not in) looks great.

Thursday, September 6, 2012

Labor Day Agility Trial

Dottie and Pie both QQed the first day.  Then Dottie did not Q the rest of the weekend.  Still, I'd rather have 1 QQ than 3 Qs, 1 each day!  Pie Qed again in jumpers, but due to a missed contact, not standard.  She was not entered Monday.  Fancy did not QQ because on Monday- the only day she was entered- I got all hyper and wanted to do a front cross, but didn't make she she was committed to her jump before I ran off, and she came with me, missing the jump.

Here are a few runs that got videoed.

We stayed with ffluffy in the hotel room that her friend got for her.  It was much nicer than what we are used to!  The Malinos got to ride an elevator for the first time.  (Fancy has been in one before, at the Tibetan Terrier Nationals many years ago.)  I took my dogs up 2 at a time as to not clue in the hotel staff that we had a lot of dogs in the room!

It was a great weekend of agility, friends and a nice hotel room!

Here is Fancy posing by the big window.  We were on the 9th floor and there were amazing views.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

More Tracking

Dottie is such a tracking star!  The other 2, not so much, to my dismay...

In this short track I practiced no aging (I know that isn't a test requirement, but wanted to see how she would handle the lack of scent settling), tracking on eucalyptus leaves, tracking up against a row of trees with the wind coming from the other side of the trees, going from leaves to grass, using the side of the building, tracking over a tree (gave her a lot of trouble, she's done it better in the past) tracking on pine needles and finally, reminding her that a hard surface doesn't always mean a turn.  We are working real hard surface tracking separately, and I am not combining hard surface with vegetation until she is really good at hard surface.  It was her first time on leaves that dense, and pine needles.

We also did hard surface today (separately.)  I think today I was able to teach her that randomly pulling in a direction with your nose down will not make an article appear, which is what I accidentally taught her yesterday.  Today I let her "track" forward when the track really went to the left. She realized the track did not go that way and eventually found it.  While I wish it was easier for her, it is encouraging to see that she will not track in the the wrong direction once she realizes there is no scent there.