Thursday, September 22, 2011

Weekend shows

Wesley went to his first shows this weekend. As I said in a previous post, I am trying to measure our success in how well he shows. I was absolutely thrilled with him. He stacked beautifully, was perfect for the exam, and gaited nicely. I received many compliments on what a nice puppy he is. I did notice that he looked very immature compared to the dogs that were there. He will go to a few more shows for experience but then I'll probably concentrate on rally and obedience until he matures a little more. He is also working on agility but, at 6 months of age, I am mostly interested in developing a love for agility and in keeping his speed and enthusiasm. We'll start getting into the more serious stuff in the spring. He can do a lot of the obstacles already so I just want to keep it fun for him.

Prior to the shows I went shopping to try to find some skirts to wear in the ring.  I hate shopping and shopping for skirts was not anything I'd look forward to. I couldn't find anything. The skirts were either way above the knee (not going there) or mid-calf and very full. I am short so mid-calf cuts me in half. It's fall so I thought there would be beautiful fall colors like gold, forest green, red etc. but everything is shades of grey and black. I guess I will be forced to walk up to handlers who are wearing suits I like and ask where they bought them. I will have to venture out again to shop before the next set of shows. I hate to take time away from important things like playing with the dogs to shop.

Thursday, September 15, 2011

Wesley pics 9/15

Wesley will be 6 months old Saturday. Here are some quick pictures we shot today. Comments welcome. I am delighted with him in every way. He is handsome, extremely social, and super smart.

Monday, September 12, 2011

Freestyle Seminar

I took Jamie and Wesley to a Michelle Pouliot Freestyle seminar in Philadelphia this weekend. It was a great seminar and I came home with tons of ideas. I worked Wesley in the sessions that dealt with attention or innovation and Jamie in the ones that called for a dog with some actual freestyle moves. I was very happy with both of them. Wesley does not seem to mind any new situation. He is happy anywhere. He loves platform work so he really enjoyed that session. He also really enjoyed a session on introducing props. I had already done 2 one minute sessions with a skateboard at home so I already had him eagerly putting his front feet on but it only took 5 C/Ts to get him putting all 4 feet on it and he was able to repeat the behavior several times. I then changed to a child's shopping cart and did have him putting front feet up on the push bar but the session ended before I had a chance to teach him to push it forward intentionally. Jamie had such a good time doing freestyle again that I may work on a new routine for my spare time (Ha Ha).

Wesley had his first ride in an elevator and, as I expected, he just thought it was great fun. He and Jamie are great traveling companions which is fine because I want Wes to think of Jamie as a role model.

I'll post more later but I got home late last night, taught classes all morning, and have Wesley's puppy class tonight. He only has two more sessions of puppy class but my club's conformation classes start back tomorow night and we are going to focus on that for September and October.

I promise I will put up new pictures this week.

Saturday, September 3, 2011

UKC shows

I took Wesley to 2 UKC shows today. He isn't old enough for actual competition but they were offering the NLC (non-licensed class) novice puppy for puppies under 6 months so I decided it would be a good training experience. We haven't had any matches or any conformation classes all summer and he will be starting his show career in a few weeks. He did a very nice job. He stacked up and held his stack even though his tail was wagging so much I thought it would propel him across the ring. He didn't move a foot on the exam. I hope all judges will like his puppy kisses as much as the UKC judges did. He gaited really well. Both the judges and many of my fellow exhibitors commented on what a nice puppy he is. He was the only Dal there and actually the only under 6 mos puppy so I have to measure our success by how well I thought he performed and all I can say is....Good Boy, Wesley!

Friday, September 2, 2011

Responsible Dog Owners Day

This evening Warrenton Kennel Club had a booth for AKC's Responsible Dog Owners Day at a street fair in our little town. I took Wesley so I could help with the booth a while and he could do some meeting and greeting. I was so pleased with him. I expected him to be a little wild with lots of people, lots of dogs, and lots of excitement but he behaved beautifully. He stood or sat for petting from literally hundreds of people. He hasn't met a lot of children but he just loved them. He had his picture taken dozens of times. Everyone commented on how beautiful he was and how well-behaved he was. I am so proud of him. He is just a great puppy.