Tuesday, 29 September 2009

Doggy Fun at WaggaWuffins

Dinky, Teal and Jed having a play session after our Staff Training Day on Saturday

Friday, 25 September 2009

Bronze Assessors, Assessments and Teamwork

Well Saturday after puppy class we met up at the centre ready to head off to the Kennel Club Bronze Assessor Course, there was me and Dinky, Matt and Teal, Stewart and Storm and Dee and Diesel.
As there were only 4 of us and there are 4 cages in Stewarts van we all piled in there together. Getting Diesel the Rottie on the top bunk was fun! We arrived at the new Guide Dog Centre in Atherton, very nice place I must say. We met a few others dogs and owners who had volunteered to come.

We joined the group while they were having lunch and then spent the afternoon doing Bronze exercises over and over and over again as all the wannabe examiners where assessed. Everyone was really nice and friendly and there were also some dogs from a boxer club too and they were all lovely.

We went back to see the awards and certificates given out and Heidi from the Kennel Club asked if we would be available for the Silver in November and we said yes.
We set back off to Waggawuffins and let the dogs have a good play there before we all set off home.

Sunday was clicker Sunday with Lynda and we did mainly heelwork to music stuff. It was great to see the Sunday people again. I got through quite a few things and Lynda gave me some good pointers. There are Progress awards in November and I need to get cracking with a routine for it.

I headed home and got in at 5pm to leave again at 5.30 picking up Sarah and Samson and set of to the centre for the Bronze Good Citizen tests.
There were 5 dogs tested and all 5 passed, our assessor was Dog Trainer Keith Davies. So well done Dee and Diesel, Sarah and Samson, Lisa and Ripley, Jackie and Cassie and Jayne and Jed.

Keith also took 2 dogs from another club through their Gold at the centre and they both passed so a big well done to those two.

Our next test dates are in October and we will be doing Bronze, Silver and Gold. Due to my ever growing schedule of work Stewart is now in charge of all the Good Citizen stuff.
I’ve started back at college and we are doing Work Based Learning and Counselling Skills and Case Histories. I managed to miss the first live online lectures due to some technical difficulties but it’s all now fixed thanks to Matt’s dad.

The centre is growing from strength to strength all thanks to my team, we all have the same passion, beliefs, we all support each other and get on so well. I couldn’t have done it without them.

Its staff training day tomorrow and I’m looking forwards to a day off on Sunday!

Thursday, 17 September 2009

Classes, Courses, Days Out and Free Stuff!!

Wow how busy have I been! New Puppy Classes started on a Saturday two weeks ago and are now full, it’s the first time I have taught in the day and keep having to remember not to say ‘tonight’!!.

We have a new helper at the Club, Matthew who has been helping me on a Wednesday, Thursday and Saturday. Matthew has trained his Springer Spaniel up through the club since a puppy so has really good experience and knowledge of how we do things at the club and is a great clicker trainer, he also has a great natural ability and understanding of dogs and good empathy with people. Matthew took Teal his own dog through his Kennel Club Good Citizen Bronze, Silver and Gold before he was 12 months old with us, has experience in gundog training and is now doing agility. Matthew has been looking at some courses to help with his development.

Jayne has started her Dogwise course with COAPE and is really enjoying it, she has access to the Waggawuffins library of over 200 dog books which is proving quite useful.

I’m halfway through reading Reaching the Animal Mind by Karen Pryor which I would highly recommend to anyone. I’m trying to get it finished before I get my reading list next week when I start back a college for my final year.
Next weekend we have a staff training day on Saturday afternoon where we will be covering training equipment, operant and classical conditioning, learning styles, understanding stress and practical instructing.

This weekend is packed with dog stuff, The Kennel Club contacted Stewart the other week to supply some dogs for the Good Citizen Scheme Assessors workshop on Saturday in Atherton, so we are all off up there Saturday afternoon with dogs after morning classes. Sunday it’s a Clicker Sunday with Lynda and then our first bronze good citizen tests at Waggawuffins on Sunday evening.

I also have to get some dogs together for a photo shoot for a large pet company’s advertising, this is still in negotiations though at the moment.

We have set up a youtube channel where we have already uploaded some videos, there will be more to follow. http://www.youtube.com/user/WaggaWuffins

As a member of the APDT I received some free samples of James Wellbeloved and money off vouchers for my customers. Four boxes arrived this week, WOW there are small sacks of food, training treat bags, carrier bags and treats!! This alone is worth my membership costs. I have also ordered some clickers as I’m running out.

We started a new agility course and again have some really nice dogs, Sarah and Samson who came to our puppy classes joined to have a go at agility, Sarah is competing in Bury’s Got Talent on Saturday with Samson, we are sure she will do well and are wishing her the best of luck.
That’s all for now!