Wednesday, 25 June 2008

Agility Record Book

When I first started entering Agility trials, I was pretty good about keeping track of trials, Q's and runs. Now after competing in 3 different agility venues, and although I only have 1 dog, I am not so organized, and my record keeping has fallen by the wayside.

Recently I found a free down load called Agility Record Book created by David Connet. All that he asks is that you make a donation to an animal Rescue organization or animal shelter of your choice. The program supports a number of different venues, provides a training log option and has very valuable comment boxes for things like course conditions, clubs and judges. Another good thing is that it keeps track of multiple dogs and has a place to record their registration numbers. I will no longer be scrambling to the file cabinet to find registration numbers and hopefully the rest of Ardi's agility runs will be recorded.

Monday, 16 June 2008

Rainy Day Trial

The Rain couldn't dampen the spirit of agility at the Moose Jaw Band City AAC Trial on June 14, 2008. The morning started off with sun shining and a few clouds in the sky, but by mid-afternoon the skies opened up. The Starter dogs finished up the class as the rain started. Everyone headed for shelter it rained hard for a good 5 minutes, I peeked out of my shade tent to see the course builders and judges setting the course for the next class in the rain. Despite the rain people emerged from their tents to walk the course, work and run. Everyone seemed to be having fun.

An Agility trial with a little rain is more fun then a work day with good weather.

BCKOC - Rain Day

Thursday, 5 June 2008

How to remove a Tick

Spring and summer bring plenty of time to train and play outdoors with our dogs. Of course the more we are outside the greater the risk of picking up a tick.

There are many ways to remove an embedded tick, but here is one that works in those places where it's sometimes difficult to get to with tweezers: between toes, in the middle of a head full of dark hair, etc.

Apply a glob of liquid soap to a cotton ball. Cover the tick
with the soap-soaked cotton ball and swab it for a few seconds (15-20),
the tick will come out on it's own and be stuck to the cotton ball when
you lift it away. It's much less traumatic for the patient weather a person or dog.

Wednesday, 4 June 2008

Water introduction for a great swimmer!

When people first introduce a dog to water, they often throw something into water that is over the dogs head. To me this encourages the dog to enter the water with their head up looking for the object and feet straining to find the bottom. Followed by a little panic and a lot of excitement the dog never relaxes enough to level out and try a smooth paddle using both front and rear feet.

Rather then throw an object, I would
1. Walk in with the dog to a point that is not over the dogs head just walk up and down the shore, letting the dog get a feel for how the water gets deeper and the bottom seems to disappear.
2. Drag a bumper and let them catch up to it and have it. Do this a number of times. Eventually dragging to deeper water have the dog reach out and take it, once the dog has it they will likely head for shore, so if you have someone to help encourage the dog to return to shore ,then get the bumper and try again.
3. Having the dog follow another dog (with out throwing something in) into the water works well. This gets the dog concentrating on following the other dog, not looking to retrieve an object.

Butch Goodwin of Northern Flight Retrievers has a great article called Teaching puppies to swim that has some great tips for starting a puppy off on the track from the beginning.

Kitt's 1st Water Retrieve at 9 Weeks Old