Funny: Tee-hee! I’ve been cheating on THE REGIME.
Sad: When I say ‘cheating’ I mean, cutting off the ‘cool-down’ on the work outs or having an extra ½ ounce of almonds in a day (note- this amounts to about 5 almonds).
We are on week 9 at this point and the going has gotten tough. Luckily we just finished a ‘rest week’ and are starting this week fresh with new food and exercises. Those middle four weeks were HARD. Not so much the actual working out being physically taxing, but the planned food was NOT substantial or energizing enough to carry us through each day. It was becoming a real chore to try and work out on low reserves at the end of the day. And when you add in a new puppy?? Plus we were STARVING. This last leg should be great though- the diet is meant to fill your energy stores so you can GO to the extreme. Overall, results have been excellent, even with minor cheating (we fell off the wagon for real and HAD to eat out last night. But we got salads with no dressing!!! And I only had ONE cocktail…) and we are looking to finish strong.
However. We do have one more teeny departure from the wagon planned. Next week we are going on VACATION!!! A real, not for a dog show VACATION- to a sunny destination and everything. We are going to (pardon me while I nerd out for a sec) HARRY POTTER WORLD!!! YAAAAY! Yep, I’ve been dreaming of going for a whole year now and we are finally doing it. So excited to go to Florida again and be warm and have no snow and so much I can’t even fit it all in a sentence! We are going to Disney and both Universal parks, but the main point is totally HP world. Laugh all you want, but I am going to buy a wand after I let it chose me. And then I will drink a butter beer. And do a bunch more nerd-tastic things. Hoo-ray.
That means the doggies get to live with ‘Grandma’ for a few days. Therefore I was tasked with getting puppy some semblance of manners before then. I like to think we are somewhat successful in this venture. She WILL sleep through the night every night now. She IS potty trained (sooo cute how she will run down to the door and paw on it. Good baby!). But she also is growing in destructive tendencies. It’s gotten worse since the last naughty report. Maybe Grandma’s house is still wrecked from when Black Dog ate everything when she was a baby??
On the training front (video later this week), we’ve conquered ‘high five’ officially, sit and down (including the auto drop on the table!) are old news and we’ve started ‘ok,’ ‘wait,’ ‘leave it’ and ‘get it’ for toy retrieving. She will do the ‘pink belly’ trick (Which is basically “lay on your side and let me see that tummy.”) and also will roll over. I made her learn that on her non-dominant side so it was hard but worth it to have some ambidextrousness! We started four on position for the teeter, she already fights for four feet. SO CUTE. Puppy has also perfected beginning perch work in just a few sessions. She will swing independently in both directions, so now we can move it into ‘heel’ and ‘side’ taps. Also have nose touches (‘here’) down pat.
The only problem I see is the recall when I don’t have food. As in, I don’t see it. As in, if she would rather sit and eat crap in the yard (Ewwww! Ew ew EW!!) than come to an empty hand, she will do as she sees fit. BOO. So, perfect timing, I may try and get into the next round of the Say Yes Recallers e-course that should be starting up soon. (How could I not? I am so easily influenced by marketing and all those videos on FB have brainwashed me!) Five minutes a day to a brilliant recall is well worth it if it means I don’t have to chase the puppy out into the snow in SOCKS to prevent her from eating any more crap.
We have our first show on the road with the puppy this weekend. The hotel should be interesting. Like… sleeping dangling above a pool of angry sharks? Black Dog thus far is terrified of puppy, and we all know how THAT manifests (“grrrr…” “BARK!” CHOMP). Not sure how The Dog will hold up to that stress either. This whole puppy thing is already wreaking havoc on her delicate nerves. She had a meltdown this last weekend because I was sick and the puppy was not entertained enough and everyone was crabby and had cabin fever so The Dog decided that meant she simply HAD to lay on someone’s head nonstop. Guess whose? As if I didn’t have enough problems breathing as it was.
But even with the stress at home she was excellent at the fun match we went to over the weekend. Not a paw out of line, but a little bit slower than usual on contacts. Not sure if her confidence is down still or if she was just plain exhausted mentally. Practices tomorrow and Thursday though, so we will see how she does there. We ended on a bad note- she had her first agility related ‘injury’ and we had to stop. She- I think- smacked her wrist on the chute and came out limping heavily and looking at it like OW, what the heck??? But walked it off quickly and no signs of anything since so hope it was just a stinger. Such an awful stomach drop feeling to see that happen though, even if it’s ‘nothing.’
Speaking of awful stomach drops, I think we all shared the collective feeling of anguish to see the photo of the tsunami over-taking the agility field in Japan. But I am ridiculously heart-warmed now at the out-pouring of love and concern to our Japanese counterparts in the agility community. Here is the link to donate to their cause for anyone who may have missed it:
Dog people are the best people.