Wednesday, April 6, 2011

Gator: Gone but Not Forgotten.

Hmmm, actually not really GONE gone either. More like, gone to a better place where he can no longer be savaged by the dogs.  

When I say ‘dogs’ I of course refer only to The Pup. She is wholly responsible for the mauling and maiming of the long-lived (by dog toy standards) Alligator Toy.   Her story was that his eye and stuffing brains just happened to fall out of him into her mouth which was open because she was giving him Nice Kisses.  Uh huh. If that is true, why are there puppy tooth sized scratches all over what is left of his eyes???  (The Pup was unavailable for further comment as she is currently serving hard time...and her mouth is full of stuffing brains...)

As for Alligator Toy…He gets to live in protective custody now with Wiggle Puppy.  Once I make him an eye patch that is… Here is a picture of the extensive injuries caused to his person by The Pup (Warning: Graphic Material- may not be suitable for small children or people who love stuffed Gator Toys.):
The Dog is inconsolable.  While stuffies aren’t usually her “thing” she had grown to love The Gator.  I found her with him after the incident in the pen. She had him gently between her front paws and was giving his bad eye licks- I think she was trying to put the eye back in place.  Sorry, Dog. Some things just can’t be fixed.  Especially by me as I am not crafty in that way.

 In Memory of The Gator (2006-2011)
With the exception of The Gator’s demise (oh, and one DVD case turned into Swiss Cheese by puppy teeth…and one toilet paper roll…), The Pup really IS starting to be more normal and less destructive around the house.  Maybe we have just gotten better about keeping stuff out of reach, but I’d like to think that she’s growing a brain inside that REALLY THICK skull of hers (seriously, is that normal? It’s like a helmet she wears on the inside?!?!).  This week we’ve added a few things to the training regime (not to be confused with THE REGIME- less than two weeks left on that!!!):

Heeling (no stops yet but both sides)

Post turns

Call to either hand while front-facing or facing away

Cross in Front groundwork

Sends to the Table

Stays on the Table

One Jump Work!  She is only ‘jumping’ the bar on the ground but I wanted to start the LM Jump/Click/Treat stuff to get her seeking/loving the jump. This way we can at least do some handling sequences! Eventually.

My version of Crate Games. So I have the DVD, just haven’t watched it.  But we are working on games in a crate; currently we are upping the difficulty level. She’s solid on getting in on command, laying down and making eye contact before her treat comes. We worked next on stay with tempting treats around the outside the crate. Also very solid. So last night we added her having to wait while I played mini games with The Dog and apparently its pure torture! She is pretty good, but when I give multiple treats The Dog she can’t stop herself from popping her head out. And sometimes her whole body.  It’s kind of imperative that she learns to wait her turn and watch QUIETLY (she found a new decibel range this week and likes to try it out whenever I work The Dog away from her…) so we are going to spend a LOT of time on this!

Sitting (NOT boinging) for Dinner

Toy/Treat exchange. I bought an unstuffed frog that you could put food in and we’ve been learning how to go between chasing toys and tugging and getting cookies. The hard part for her is going back to the tugging, but managed to refocus for some good play after a few attempts.

I still find her very biddable in her working temperament. She is a bit like The Dog in that she is very measured when she is first learning a process, but once it clicks for her she shows a TON of enthusiasm and drive (“OOO, can we do it again? And again and again and again???”). UNlike The Dog, I’ve never had her get frustrated and give up or shut down.  She works until she finds the right behavior. While she does have a patience/attention limit when I try to train with toys (I get 5 reps max of excellent board runs with a toy before she lies down and chews my plank), I have yet to find one with food.

So I suppose I’ll hang onto her for awhile more. Even though she is technically an attempted murderer at this point.
Lastly, I am still working on the cik/cap style turns with The Dog. She LOVES them. I would recommend this absolutely for any dog that has issue either jumping with collection or driving full tilt out of turns. Just the act of teaching them has tightened her up on course already, and we haven’t even implemented them “for real.”  We’ve worked up to 18”. She is maintaining excellent collection and doing pretty darn well on understanding the directional. This will likely never be a truly independent obstacle - she does rely on my position to discern which way to turn. I can be at a distance, but typically have to be on the side of her that I need her to turn (on her right to go to the right).  Basically, I would never be able to be tricky and rear cross which is fine by me.
I’m aiming to have these turns ready for a test run at MAC since we get to try the International courses. FUN! 

In close: Cute Dogs. Well, one cute, sad dog and one cute, mean, taunting dog. Guess which is which?

"Nah, nah, NAH MY Crack Ducky!!! Iz make U sad ! Ha!"
Guess who has Crack Ducky NOW????


  1. HA HA HA!!!!! They kinda grow on you, don't they????

    Speaking of thick skulls.
    When Riot was still under a year old, she and Blink (full grown boy) collided head to head while bouncing on a toy at the same time. So their jaws met at the toy at the same time. I heard a crack, but the dogs just kinda shook off and kept on running. Minute later I see blood coming out of both of their mouths. After a long while of trying to hold on to each bouncing dog one hand in each mouth to stop bleeding, finally was able to assess the damage.... Blink - two cracked front teeth. Riot - split gums front and side.
    Next day, went to the vet to have her gums sutured. Other than that? Absolutely NO damage to teeth, jaw or anything. Yet poor Blink lost two teeth on that kevlar jaw of hers. So yeah, helmet head all right :-))))

  2. Holy cow! Well, that is an excellent warning to keep my poor squishy soft BC away from the little Juggernaut!! At least Dynamite will be protected though, guess you're right- not so bad! :)

  3. Gator was almost 87 (roughly) in dog toy years by my calculations. Very impressive. I think he will look great with an eye patch, though.

    "A helmet she wears on the inside" HA! I'm going to have to use that one. :)