Wednesday, September 4, 2013

Life's Always Good When It's A Dog's Life

Today I took my team out to the beach with a friend. Mostly because I think they deserve the fun time as I have started school and my days off are limited. It never ceases to amaze me how wonderful these three are...even Bella (who didn't fail to give me a couple grey hairs today) was alright once we hit sand and surf. 

Aiko is still a bit of a pain when it comes to being guided on the leash, but man is she wonderful just running about being a puppy. Her recall is wonderful, her leash work That's not what we were focusing on today, though. Today was about them...when I got home however, it was about the obnoxious amount of sand in the back seat of my car. 

Without any more blabbing from me. Here are some pictures. 

Friday, August 30, 2013

2 New Team Members

We have additions to this lovely squad known as the All American Team. Both new members are in training and both are super smart and absolutely adorable. I'd like to introduce to you 

All American Team's Short Stack Fast Paws "Arabella"

And All American Team's Set Your COURSE on Fire "Aiko"

Now, Arabella has been part of the household as my mother's rescue for quite some time now. However, I never got serious about doing agility with her because I wasn't really sure it was her thing. My original assumptions were false. Bella does love to work and she likes jumps and tunnels! At the moment she isn't too crazy about contact obstacles, but I plan on working her into liking (at least) the a frame. I'll mostly compete with her in jumpers and steeplechase runs. Most of the official training will start this fall!

The amazing Aiko was an animal services puppy that I was able to adopt through an adoption ambassador (a foster parent that can perform adoptions from her home). Aiko is a perfectly well rounded dog. She is smart, funny, and has plenty of energy and drive. She impresses me every day on how quick she is to pick up on things and how willing she is to play. 

I hope you start reading about us again, we've been gone for a while. We have new and exciting adventures ahead. 

Monday, December 24, 2012

2012 In Review

Well, you may have noticed I have not been actively posting since the summer time. That's because I have just been too darn busy! School, work, meetings, homework. Since you don't know everything that has transpired let's take a quick recap.

Abbey won her first Steeplechase competition back in February at the Free Spirit agility trial. We also attended an easter egg hunt later on in April. Which was heaps of fun and excitement along with continental breakfast for human and doggie. After that, Abbey and I spent the summer fostering some dogs, swimming in the lake and doing some rehabilitation exercises. The February trial was our only trial of the year. Now, by the time fall started so did school which ate up 100% of my time. I went five days a week, and then worked on the weekends. Abbey went through a good three months of neglect aside from the occasional tennis ball through, poor dear.

Abbey's eighth birthday rolled around approximately 1 week and a half ago and I decided I would take her to the agility field so that I could have some fun with her there. Just me and my dog. Well, she proved that 3-4 months of being a complete couch potato had no adverse effects on her natural agility talent. For those who have yet to see the video, clickedy click on the link below. As for 2013, I am predicting many more trials, finally heading to the chiropractor, and perhaps an AKC trial or two. Abbey has proven so many things to me over the years and every time we step into the ring it's like she gets better and better. Aging like the most amazing fine wine. Even at time when I haven't been the best handler, she has been the most perfect and incredible dog RIGHT after my own heart.

2013, The Amazing Team!

Abbey's Birthday Celebration

Saturday, June 30, 2012

It's a Skipper!

What's this? Someone new? Is it permanent? Well, no, not really. It's my foster dog, Skipper. Skipper is a Pomeranian Mix from Paws4You Rescue here in South Florida. When I went to go pick him up, I had the option of choosing from a terrier mix, who had just been returned, and him, who hasn't even been adopted out yet. When I got him home I honestly couldn't understand what the issue was. The dog, aside from a few minor marking incidents, is completely housebroken and knows how to behave inside the house (i.e. no chewing, no racing around the coffee table, etc.). Due to all his "goodness" my dad almost became a foster failure. Now, I have nothing against Skipper, he's amazing...BUT I have a special slot available for my next dog and I know what I want it to be. So, here I am molding senor Skip into an upstanding citizen that no one can possibly resist. So far, we have been working on fairly basic stuff like "it's yer choice", no counter surfing, offering a sit before meal time, multiple dog "name game", calming behaviours, and some basic obedience. Now, he really does pass with flying colours on most of this stuff. He is very food motivated and attentive. He is energetic, but not with so many demanding needs that a family would have to worry about him causing destruction. He sleeps well in his ex-pen at night too! It's obvious that this dog deserves a loving and wonderful home with a great family who can give him love and attention. If anyone in the South Florida area knows of someone who'd like an awesome dog like Skipper please comment below! Also, if anyone has any suggestions on how to promote your foster dog...please don't hesitate to give me some!. 

All American Team...over and out ;-).

Thursday, June 14, 2012

Super Spy...Canine Style

Abbey 007. The Air Up There, Spy Extraordinaire.


Friday, June 8, 2012


Well, I've finally done it to a degree where it will become permanent. The dogs have gone RAW. Not just raw, but prey-model raw. I have been switching between a BARF diet and high quality kibble/canned food since Abbey was a puppy, but I have decided to become dedicated and join the raw-volution. So, after I picked up my check today, I went to the natural pet store and picked up 2 packages (one raw ground bone, organ, and beef and the other Venison meat) to bring home and mix. All that being taken care of, I have packaged perfect portions and put them in the freezer. I think tomorrow I might make my way to Winn Dixie across the street to get some yogurt to supplement it with, but other than that...PICTURE TIME!

All packaged and separated in the freezer

Abbey Portion

Bella Portion

Wednesday, June 6, 2012

Best of both worlds!

Ladies and gentlemen, I give to you, the tennis ball dispenser. 

I was seriously wondering what to use as a training tool this year to improve Abbey's speed. I needed something motivating and rewarding. Now, my dog likes toys, plays with them all the time, thinks they are great...but she LOVES food. I find it more irritating to train a running contact with a food reward, though. Also speed and independence when working with food doesn't seem to turn out exactly how I want it. So, I figured, what if I blend the two? Now, I'll have you know I have tried all manner of treat-holding toys, I have used tugging as a catalyst for the food...but it still wasn't quite getting her driven enough. I wanted her to damn near come out her skin for a toy. So, going back into my mental archives, Abbey's favourite toy is a ball. On any given day a ball will win...even better, a tennis ball. If it bounces, rolls, has little feet on it, squeaks, and can fit easily in her mouth, she loves it. I have seen Abbey play with Cuz balls, tennis balls, kong balls, airhog squeakers, superballs from out of the vending machine. The dog is nuts for balls. So, I decided I would meld her favourite toy reward with her favourite reward overall. 

I got down to business cutting a hole in my tennis ball large enough to stick treats in, but not too large as she would be able to get the treats out herself. Then, I put that baby to the test. I haven't seen Abbey run that fast since she was about a year and half. I knew that speed was still in there somewhere, I just had to find the right motivational tool. One I could chuck away from me to improve our distance and independence work. What makes this goody all the more interesting? It only comes out in agility. Oh yeah. So far so wonderful, this girlie gets the picture. We worked in the yard today AND we will be renting our indoor training center hopefully next week. Stay tuned!

~All American Team