Thursday, December 19, 2013

To agility or not to agility?

I love agility. I really do!  However, I have not been committed to training my dogs at all in the last couple years. I am not sure why this is the case, but my motivation has really fallen off. I guess, sometimes when you hit inertia, it is easier to stay there.  So, once I quit attending classes I stopped really doing any work.  Last winter, I thought maybe I would train a bit on my own.  I went maybe 3 times; I rented a great space to use but even that wasn't enough to inspire me. I did some work in the yard but it was tough; once the snow sets in, I cant say that I am all that motivated to work on weaving,

So, I thought maybe I would try something new. I called a local Obedience trainer but they didn't return my call.  Frustrating!  Then, I contacted the Local Retriever Club, hoping to train Reason in retrieving. They hold practice times at 9AM on Sunday AM's.  I have just been asked to assume responsibility for the 9AM mass at my church, as well as playing piano for the 11AM.  So retriever classes are totally out as I am committed to doing music at St. Mary's. I am not prepared to take time away from that at the moment.

I ended up sitting with it for a few days and really pondering what I want with my dogs.  The reality is that I have trained Spike to a point where it is wasteful to not continue.  He has several titles:  he is Spike SJATD, FD-CHs, ADC, SGDC.  The first title is his therapy dog credentials. The second is flyball and the last 2 are agility. We are 3 legs short of his advanced games dog title (out of 9). I want to do that. I want to continue to run Spike. I have started training both Murphy and Reason. There is no reason (haha) to not continue this work with them.  Really, I have no excuse to not train Sophie in nosework either; this is a sport that she will LOVE and be able to do with no mobility issues at all.

I made my decision yesterday officially.  I am taking my 3 dogs back to agility classes and I am prepared to work HARD with them. I also have LOADS of work to do on myself as I am so incredibly out of shape at this moment. But, it's a turning point for me, I believe. I am starting over, allowing myself to find the fun and joy in an incredible sport where I get to play with my dogs. I love working with them and this is an exciting decision to make.

So, watch out world; Spike and I will be trialing this winter for sure. Reason and Murphy may well trial as well!  It's a good, good place to be!

Monday, December 16, 2013

I wonder if I should be concerned...

I brought the cats home a present today. I think they like it!  I wonder if I should be concerned or worried??

Can cats OD on catnip??

Thursday, December 12, 2013

Life is so complicated sometimes....

I have been away from this blog in so long I doubt I have any readers left. I'm tired of promising to write and not do so. Or promising to start reading blogs again and not doing it. So, I am just going to jump back into the swing of life and show you bits of what has kept me going and busy over the last months...

First, it started with this little black bundle of fluff...

This is Ryder.

Then, these two quickly followed.

This is Ophelia.

This is Oliver. 

They all have a story behind them but I want you save that for another day. Just know that Ryder, Ophelia and Oliver have captured my heart, the dogs attention and they have begun to rule the house with their quick to strike out at a wayward Murphy, should she decide to chase.  It's been interesting integrating 3 cats who all arrived within about 2 weeks of each other into a home where dogs have ruled supreme forever.

Spike has reacted to the cats with curiosity then a shrug of his shoulders as if to say "I guess they are staying.  I'm afraid of them, but if I don't get too close, I'll be fine!"  Sophie is more interested in their food than in the kittens themselves. Reason hasn't even seemed to notice them. Murphy is the only one who seems to a have a death wise as she pursues them and they tell her off with a quick hiss and swipe of the paws.  I have to admit, I am worried about Murphy and how she is responding to them; her freedom is restricted in the house now and it's been a little rough.

In other news, I have started teaching some piano lessons this year. I am loving being back in the world of music, of playing and even of accompanying again; I play weekly at mass and that is great.  It's going so well, I am going to attempt to teach out of my home this next year. I am wavering on how to make this work out--- do I renovate my garage and create a fantastic studio?? Or renovate my front porch and create an all season space so I can keep the dogs out there and actually gain some room?  Big decisions!  In the meantime, I am going on a cleaning binge and I plan to overhaul the whole house. You know, be ruthless and get rid of stuff as I have realized that my house is small and I have stuff.  Lots of stuff.  So, the fun begins. I just have to decide where to start.... It's time though!!

Anyway, I have to admit its nice being back at the blog.  I think it won't be so long between postings again.