Monday, July 26, 2010

Foundling kitten

The foundling kitten went to a new home tonight. We had him for two weeks and he continued to stay healthy while growing in size and attitude so we were confident in placing him.

He joined me on a road trip to Toronto yesterday. I truly think he enjoyed getting out, the car ride didn't stress him in the slightest as you can see!

The family he went to was super excited when they picked him up. He'll make them a nice pet and I'm glad Kevin decided to save him from that field.

Lexus, all grown up.

Little Lexington is all grown up and Bullet wants her... bad. It's been a while since I've had an intact female around, I can't wait for the next few weeks to be over!

Here we are a few weeks ago at an outdoor puppy outing that non-service dogs were invited to join in on.

All was going well with this down stay until the golden decided to bolt and pulled the lab with him. Lexus held her stay through that temptation, good girl! That golden makes me laugh, he's got character.

Interesting fact: The little black golden/poodle X to the right of Lexus is from the same breeder as Enzo was. Enzo had a brother donated with him who was black, he was shorter, stockier and reminded me more of a Portie.

Sunday, July 18, 2010

My Bully, High in Trial

Remember the moguls at the Winter Olympics? I don't know about you, but watching them put me on the edge of my seat. Every skier looked like they were barely hanging on, one mistake and they'd be taking a tumble down the hill. And by a tumble I mean a freaking big fall!

That's how I feel when I'm trialing Bullet. Will we hold it together for the 5-15 minutes we are out there working? Will we complete all three phases and come out the other side intact?

The answer for this past weekend was yes.

Bullet is officially a FULL Schutzhund 2 dog, no more of this Schutzhund 1.5 for him! We are ready to move on to the Schutzhund 3! Yay!

Covenant Run to the Battle, SchH2

July 17, 2010
Saugeen Schutzhund Club in Orangeville, Ontario
Judge: Rinus Bastiaansen (SV)
Helper: Richard Chang

High Obedience, High Protection, High SchH2 and High in Trial.

That's my boy!

While I don't have the tracking on video, here is the obedience and protection routine. He took the helper down on the courage test, that's something to watch, he comes in fast! (thankfully neither were hurt, always my worry.)



Friday, July 16, 2010

Rat poison

I'm really bothered by the poison behind that building. Not for the fact that it's meant to kill the rats, I'm not against that. The building is in an industrial area surrounded by food chain distributors/warehouses so I can see how they would want to control an animal like a rat.

But how many other animals will be affected by this poison? Birds and predators? Untargeted animals eating the bait? Is this a common way to control rat problems?

How about the fact that this IS in an area surrounded by food chain distributors... is there a possibility of this contaminating any human food in any way?

I wonder if there is a better way?

A post full of questions, I'll have to look into the answers when I have time.

$35,000 for a stuffed dog named Bullet

Roy Rogers' stuffed and mounted dog, Bullet, was sold for $35,000 in New York yesterday. His horse Trigger went for $266,000! Wow.

A bit about Bullet:

Bullet The Wonder Dog was a character on the television series "The Roy Rogers Show" (1951 - 1957). In real life the German Shepherd that played Bullet had the same name, and was also a family pet that was owned by the show's married stars, Roy Rogers and Dale Evans. "The Roy Rogers Show" was an action-packed Western with plenty of things for a good, honest, dog like Bullet to do. Bullet was a master at knowing who the bad guys were, and always eager to bite a gun out of their hand or to tackle them when his human partners were outnumbered. He could run alongside Roy's horse Trigger and keep up no matter where they went, but he also got to ride in Pat Brady's Jeep, Nellybelle. Bullet himself probably lost count of all times he untied Roy or Dale when they had been caught by villains, and of all the bad guys he led them to.

See pictures and read more about Bullet on Roy Rogers

Thursday, July 15, 2010

Here kitty, kitty, kitty.

A few nights ago I laid a track for Bullet behind an industrial building. My last leg ran a foot from the building itself, I wanted to test him with the wind and currents billowing next to the structure. As I was walking along I noticed new big black boxes placed at regular intervals next to the wall. Hmmm, I thought. They must be having a rat problem.

Then I almost stepped on a small, furry body. Startled, I jumped through the air and to the side in time. Then stopped to see what it was. (I was still laying my track at this point!) It was too fuzzy to be a rat, and I doubt I'd see any bodies if they had eaten the poison.

It turned it's head around, big eyes on me and meowed. The little kitten didn't seem shy of me, but I wondered if he'd been in the box for a snack. Do kittens eat rat poison? I'm sure they do. While sad, there was nothing I could do for it so I continued laying my track and drove home.

Over supper I told Kevin about the kitten. He wanted to go get it! I wasn't convinced but couldn't persuade him otherwise, so we pulled out our small cat crate and some gloves. Besides, what were the chances it would still be there or Kevin could catch him?

We drove back to the building and I started tracking Bullet. As we approached the area where I saw the kitten we saw it again, right next to the building on some rocks. Bullet ignored it and kept going. The kitten ignored Bullet.

How did Bullet handle where the track had been interrupted by my jump and stand in place? His head moved over to check out the spot where the kitten had been laying, then immediately moved back to find the track and he continued on, finding the last two articles with ease. Good boy :)

After our track, Kevin grabbed the gloves and the crate and went to collect the kitten. He had no problem catching or handling it, I wonder if it was dumped recently? I can't see it being a feral kitten. If it was dumped I can't see it being out there for long without getting eaten by a coyote or plucked off the ground by a bird.

The kitten is currently quarantined in a dog crate in our garage. So far it's showing no signs of discomfort, is eating, drinking and eliminating just fine. It's happy, active, eyes are clear and it's friendly. And pretty darn cute.

Once we are sure it will be ok we'll be finding it a good home, we don't need another cat.

Tuesday, July 13, 2010

The GSD from 1899 - 2007

Here is a link showing photos of German Shepherd Dogs from 1899-2007. It's interesting to see the structure changing.

The German Shepherd Dog

Tuesday, July 06, 2010

Baby it's hot outside.

Good thing we've got the watering holes nearby.

A quick run through the field and they were bone dry again.

Hot, hot, hot!

Saturday, July 03, 2010

One-on-one time

When you have multiple dogs it's important to get them out individually for bonding and some one-on-one time. This hasn't been a problem for me until I got Lexus. While I'm used to working two dogs, it's very different when you are working two for Schutzhund.

The service dog puppies use a different time slot than the Schutzhund dogs. Have some running around to do? Going out for dinner? Bring the puppy with the vest for some instant training and bonding time. When you get home you don't feel guilty putting them up and focusing on the other.

Actively training two Schutzhund dogs is very time consuming. There is only so much time in a day and sometimes it's easier to be lazy and let them run as a pack, to bring them both along when you are going for a long walk. If only the easy way was the best way! (In case you were wondering, it's not. Sigh.)

Bullet is fully bonded to me but I'm noticing cracks in Lexus. Her recall is much better than it ever was, she's ignoring strange dogs on the trails now (yay!) but when Bullet is around he's still more important than I am. She doesn't drive into me the way I'm used to my puppies doing. This is 100% my fault and up to me to fix.

I truly enjoy watching dogs interact. I'm not comfortable denying my dogs the opportunity to play and bond with each other, they connect in ways I can't compete with but don't expect to. There is more to their world than me.


It does take dedication to handle this. You have to be conscious of where their heads are at at all times. Too doggy isn't good, balance is. Right now I'm not doing as well as I should with the time management of training Bullet and Lexus as well as working full time, spending time with family and other life interests. If they were just pets it would be one thing, but to compete they need to be more bonded with me (Lexington, are you listening?). I've been getting Lexus out lately and have noticed a big difference, she needs even more of that.

I imposed a rule upon myself a while ago. Until Bullet gets his SchH3 I'm not allowed to make a decision about my next dog.