Sunday, 22 March 2009

College and Wales

Well college was great, made progress with practical training, Dinky does full backwards circles round me now. The Inappropriate Canine Behaviour Lectures were all on aggression, different types, identifying them and what you would consider in a treatment plan. We stayed at Robeanne House which is always nice and good to get together in the evening for a glass or wine or two and a chat with other students.

This weekend me and Jon when down to South Wales as I was asked to do a clicker demo and training session for the Polish Lowland Sheepdog Club of Wales.
As we have not had a holiday for over a year and looks like we are going to be far too busy over the next 6 months to have one, we decided to make a weekend of it. So Friday night we set on the lovely journey down the M6 and M5!
Surprising the only bad traffic was coming out of Manchester and we arrived in Tintern Village at 9.30pm. We had booked in The Old Rectory B&B as they were happy to accept 3 dogs. The owners were really nice and have dogs or their own. Our room had its own entrance which led to the garden, this was very convenient. We also had Sky TV and a bath as well as a shower, I was impressed!!
We took the dogs a walk down the lane but didn’t go too far as it was very dark, then we settled down and had a few glasses of wine. The next morning we had arranged to have breakfast at 9am, so took the dogs a good walk first. When we went for breakfast it was really quiet and no one was up!! There was a bell so we rang it and eventually the owners got up, apologising for sleeping in. Then they announced they had no sausages and they would either give us extra bacon or if we waited they would go to the shop. We opted for extra bacon. Then the owner put on some music as she went back to the kitchen the CD started jumping. We were laughing by this time and I think Jon made some mention of faulty towers. Then the owner came back and asked about clicker training, Jon told me afterwards I was rather aloof with my answer. I told him I was thinking to myself at the time, my breakfast is late and I have no sausages and now you want some free dog training advice!
Anyway we went off to the next village called St Arvans to the AGM. I did a demo and then somehow we ended up discussing dominance and pack theory. I started with someone asking about the dog believing its in control of its rewards and is this good, I went on to discuss perceived control as a stress reducer and what learned helplessness is and then it went on to dominance and training. We had a short training session and I did some hand targeting with the dogs. I was a really good day and everyone was really nice and friendly. We then went for lunch in the pub and more chatting dog stuff. The secretary asked me if I would I consider doing the same for the UK Club and of course I agreed.
We took the dogs for a good a walk along the river, Tintern is really a lovely place. When we arrived back to our room, there were wine classes (we used cups the night before) and also some flowers, which was lovely, also in the morning we had a full breakfast with sausages and the owners gave us some Tintern sausages to take home as a gift.

Next weekend its water rescue training!!

Friday, 13 March 2009

Off to College

Well Im off for a weekend session at college tommorow, 9am start in Hull. We are doing advanced dog training and inappropriate canine behaviour. Our lecture on Wednesday was on Aggression and really interesting so looking forwards to this weekend.

My plan with Dinky is to work on going round out wide using the target stick and more duration on trotting, I may work on the foot lift but will see how we do with that this afternoon.

Ive spent £80 on grooming products for Snoopy from Plush Puppy and they have devised me a concoction for using on his coat to help growth and protect it from breaking. What a ridiculous amout of money, I must be mad..............................I hope it works!! Here is a picture of Snoopy's brother winning Best of Breed at Westminster dog show in the USA, this is how I want Snoopy's coat to look!!

As for the 'current climate' I must be on another planet, I have never been this busy with work!!

Whats really nice is some of the enquirys I've had have come by recommendation and by more than one person. One lady said 3 of her friends who dont know each other, from different social circles recommended me. A lady yesterday said said 2 different people in the park recommended me.

Wednesday, 11 March 2009


As a trainer and also exhibiter of 13 years I was horrified while walking through the benches at Crufts to spot 2 dobermanns wearing prong collars. Also a friend of mind has told me she saw a shepherd wearing one too.
I have never in the years of showing seen these awful things at a show. I can’t believe in a time when dog training has moved forwards so much with the welfare of the dog in mind and so many positive methods out there to train a dog, I am now seeing show dogs on prong collars.
If these dogs are so out of control that their owners have to stick spikes in their necks to control them, should they be showing them!!

Sunday, 8 March 2009

Crufts 2009

Well I was up at 4am after not much sleep. Got ready, Snoopy knew something was happening and he was going somewhere after all the grooming and faffing. I picked my mum and Sue up at 5am and off we set. We had a slight detour to Stoke on Trent where we picked Brenda from the ADTB and her gorgeous border collie Jade. We had a couple of u turns due to the AA directions having notes of Travelodge’s which confused my mum.
Anyway traffic was fine and we arrived nice and early and I went off to buy a show lead as about 10pm last night I realised it was in the box at dog club!

Snoopy’s first class was limit dog and there were 9 dogs in this class. Snoopy was impeccably behaved and shown beautifully winning 2nd place! We then went on to the Good Citizen scheme class where there were 2 entries, as Snoopy has already beaten the other dog in limit so he was automatically awarded 1st place.

The judge commented on Snoopy’s condition and muscle tone saying you can tell he gets good exercise which was nice.

It was great to catch up with everyone, Snoopy’s breeder came over from Poland and I got a lecture on grooming as Snoopy does not have enough coat. I need to be washing him every week and only brushing him when he is wet and has conditioner on so it doesn’t split his coat. So I spent a small fortune on coat care and we will see what happens!!
Did lots of shopping, Crufts wasn’t as busy as it has been but this made shopping a little easier. Thankfully we were not impacted at all by the protesters and managed to have a great day.

Anyway, I am shattered and off to bed

Thursday, 5 March 2009

Watch Crufts on the Net

Im currently watching the canine freestyle on

The only chance you ever get to see the really good stuff at Crufts was by going there, this year the BBC ( who only ever show the breed judging and a bit of the sports) refused to air crufts because of all the controversy with the pedigree dogs exposed documentary. So Crufts/Kennel Club have decided to show it live over the internet.
So you can watch all the agility, heelwork to music, junior handling etc and even register and watch it on demand for a small fee.

And the whole world can see what crufts is really all about.

Im glad the BBC dropped Crufts :-)

Tuesday, 3 March 2009

The results are in

Ive just got home and had a letter from Bishop Burton. Its a notification of module results from Hull University for the last 18 months and I have passed all my modules for the first part of the course, this means I now have a total of 120 Credits at Level 4 and means I can continue with the degree and begin the study a level 5.


Sunday, 1 March 2009

Training Videos

Thought I would share a couple of training videos, the first one is Dinky learning a back foot target which will eventually (hopefully) be a leg lift.

This one is Snoopy learning to lip sync!!