Wednesday, September 3, 2014

DABAD: Life Outside of the Agility Ring is Just as Fun

Today is another Dog Agility Blog Action Day! I realize I haven't been the best at keeping this blog up to date lately, but no worries--I fully intend to catch you up on the Stump Kids' adventures, including Dally's PACH2 in August. For now, we concentrate on what the Stump Kids do when they're not doing agility.

For one, Dally believes that it's just as important to sleep well as it is to train well. You see, sleeping helps the body rebuild muscles, and re-build your energy stores.
Catch some ZZzzs to help catch that QQ!
For LaMesa, however, she feels it's best to keep the training going, going, GOING. LaMesa might be a bit of an overachiever when it comes to fitness. She doesn't know when to stop, or really how to just lay and relax like Dally (hmmm...sounds a lot like me). She'll play tennie until she's about to collapse from heat and being out of breath. She'll chase a lure like it's nobody's business and give it a couple good shakes just to make sure she caught it.
Even while observing, LaMesa practices everything, while Dally just...observes.
Any more, I don't do a whole lot of agility training on the girls. We'll work on different aspects in the backyard--backside jumps, weave entrances, weaves with distractions, two-jump combos, etc. Then we'll go to a rarely offered class or work session and work whole courses, which is mostly working on me and what I need to improve on. But a lot of what we do is crosstraining and keeping in condition.

The Stump Kids go on lots of least one a day, and at least one mile (the heat lately has not been kind to Dally, so we don't get to go very far when it's too hot). We'll walk around the neighborhood or local parks, up and down hills, maybe with some jogging here and there. but definitely lots of walks.

We'll go to different places and just run through the grass--this helps work their backs and hind legs, plus allows them to just run and sniff the air that's different than what's around their house.

We've done some lure coursing (LaMesa more than Dally), which is a fun sport. I've done very little herding, and while Dally wasn't a fan of the sheep, LaMesa is just begging me to do more with her. I know it'll do her mind and her heart well when we can finally start herding training--nothing's better than watching your dog do what it's bred to do--but unfortunately time and finances are way too short for me. :-(

Dally has started to show interest in barn hunt, with being a ferocious mole and chipmunk hunter in our back yard. I don't want to squelch her excitement or her instinct for the hunt, so I let her have her time. I'm hoping to start doing barn hunt training and tests soon--it might be her next career with agility slowing down!

And, finally, there's that rare venture into the obedience/rally ring. Both girls have their Rally Novice titles, but I can't help but feel like I should try for more--maybe some lower level obedience, or maybe Rally Advance? Again, it takes time, and it'll take money for classes to help me since I'm not a natural obedience person. But it's a good way to really make them think, use their brains, and learn more control.

Until then, I plan to let them live their life as pampered pooches, who always have a good time. Whether that be keeping the horses in line on the family farm...

Hiking with their best buddies....

Or cleaning out peanut butter jars...

The Stump Kids' lives will never be boring.

Check out the rest of the Dog Agility Blog Group's response to "Life Outside the Ring." Lots of great insight!
Some faves: