The adventures of SD Juno and SDIT Kaline (and their human, Colt).

22 September 2012

Saturday Class No. 7 and our new car

Pretty long day, but we now have a proper car! There are still a few more formalities to be finished up, but I am no longer in possession of Faithful Little Tygs On Top (sniffle), and I am in possession of newly named Trumbull, the 2007 Lexus. (Lots of Internet points if you get the reference in the name!) Love this car.

First order of business today was Saturday class. Kaline did nicely again at heeling without the treat in his mouth. He didn't stay 100% watching me, but I don't want him to—he has to look where he's going at least a bit! He was awesome at slowing down to my pace when we worked on that, and at keeping focused as we walked through the middle of the circle with all the other dogs. We worked on the moving down; he does better when I swoop out in front of him (windmill down) rather than giving him the signal from the side. Kaline also did well in the figure eights; totally focused when he was working, and when the little yellow terrier mix was working, yet super fascinated by Percy, the colored bull terrier, when he was working. I have no idea.

Recalls were interesting. My brain is starting to scramble during those, because I'm both trying to get Kaline to watch and stay focused while really concentrating on my technique—my hand signal, how my hands are supposed to move as I draw him in, do I need to bring my knee up to thwart the crotch-bashing, how fast I'm supposed to straighten up, etc. Kaline did fine when we did recalls on the big circle; then we brought all the dogs in to the center of the circle and left them all in a tight little knot with all their butts together.

I don't know what Kaline's objective was, but every time I would move away from him, his head would just start sinking, like a giraffe carefully leaning down to drink water. Only once did he actually sink into a down; mostly his head was the only part of his body that moved. My dad and Teddy's owner were just cracking up. It was pretty hilarious. We worked through it, and he did fine. The anxiety level among the humans, though, just goes through the roof the longer Anne and Freddie make us wait to call the dogs. That's pretty funny too, I'm not going to lie. With Kaline, I figured there was no point getting anxious about it, just move in if I have to to get his attention back. I ended up only about two feet from him, but who cares, he's a baby.

Last thing was long sits and downs, with the handlers and dogs in pairs. For the long sit, I left Kaline with my very unfamiliar partner and his dog: Dad and Juno. (It felt like cheating, but it was also fun.) Kaline did fine, though when I came back Anne informed me she'd had to correct him back into a sit because he was going down, and my partner wasn't doing the correction himself. Haha! Then Dad left and I had both my pups for the long down. That definitely was cheating, and after a little while Anne had me leave too. They were chilled out, like size 20 and size 16 font in their cute little relaxed downs.

After class we came home with instructions to play a lot more of the recall game in the house, and to work on leave it for Tuesday. Kaline hung out with Dad while Juno and I had a nap; then I took both dogs out individually to do grooming. Tomorrow, they get baths. At least, this is my plan.

Around 3:00, Mike the Car Guy showed up with the car. We signed some more paperwork, then began the long process of cleaning out my little Honda of all its gear. Fitting it into the Lexus was interesting as well—it has all that space for the dogs, but obviously that means there's no trunk. Mom found this secret compartment in the floor of the official cargo area, so I used that for all my obedience gear (stuff I don't necessarily use constantly throughout the day; and when I do need it, I tend not to have extra dogs in the car). Most of my other stuff went in the backseat footspace; the console up front now contains like fifty rolls of poo bags and two spare prong collars; and the glove compartment has my three spare leashes, sunglasses, and other normal glove compartment things. I even was able to transfer a couple of my window clings.

Kaline and Juno chilled in the driveway while all this was going on. Juno was pretty amusing—she hopped into the new car when the back hatch was open, and then when she got hot and I happened to open the door to Dad's car (in the shade), she just slid in there and went to sleep. Kaline and I discovered he can hop into the new car on his own, he just needs a running start!

Dad and Mike took my car to get washed, and then Mike drove away with it. Sniffle sniffle. We took my car, loaded up a little, to the storage unit with both dogs. I just chilled with the dogs in the car when we got there, because to go into the actual building they have to wear their vests. Kaline got some crate time while the rest of us went to dinner. We had to ride a really crowded elevator and Juno did a fantastic job blocking people out of my space. Phew.

Kaline is apparently developing a bad new habit, although I can't trick him into doing it while I'm present to save my life: pulling things off the counter. Since I can't catch him in the act (yet!) I've just been doing things that might entice him to get up there—squeaking toys and setting them up on the counter, deliberately leaving treats there—and when he doesn't, I praise him. We'll see how it goes.

The dogs have also been having actual play sessions. It's still way loud, but instead of Juno barking, she's making her raaaah! sounds that mean she's having an excellent wrestling session. For now, being smaller, Kaline is getting the worst of it, but he never even yelps, just rushes back for more every time she lets him up, batting her with his enormous feet.

Hopefully I should get a lot of time to work on Kaline by himself tomorrow. Should be a fun day!

1 comment:

  1. Elka will do that "giraffe head drop" thing sometimes, if I'm holding a toy and wiggling it back and forth, just a little. Eventually, she'll come verrrry slooooowly across the room, head still down, to stalk said toy. It's pretty funny.