Wednesday, June 18, 2008

Tuesday Night Class, T-Storms, evolving relationships

Ike’s Tuesday Night class was wonderful!! Seriously, last night’s course was really fun. We practiced distance, switch, and layering. I think all of the handlers and dogs did a great job working it. It’s always so much fun to see how everyone is progressing and getting better at their respective jobs.

I screwed the layering aspect up each and every time because I was going with the Ikey-flow. I was nervous since we had thunderstorms in the afternoon and T-storms tend to turn Ike into a shaking, scared puppy. I was afraid he would get to class and not be able to focus. Nope, he was there to play!

The first part of the course was a serpentine sequence that went jump, jump, curved tunnel. Katrin had us do a switch after the second jump. I screwed it up the first time and then “helped” Ike out by doing the switch on the flat with him. He did very well. Coming out of the tunnel jump, jump switch into the near end of a curved tunnel. I tried to adhere to the distance tape Katrin set up. First run Ike said “I see jumps, you didn’t ask me for a switch.” My fault, slow human. After that he really nailed it. Not quite Katrin-tape distance, but stupendous distance for Ike and Julie. I am so proud of my boy and the distance he is slowly but surely picking up. I hope he someday thinks about trialing again.

Coming out of the second tunnel Katrin had three jumps set up in a chute. Wing jump on the side that the human was supposed to be on the opposite side of (layering). Each time Ike took the tunnel I was too happy to do anything but RUN with him RUNNING!! Thinking about it this-this a.m. I wish I had treated and then RUN!! (and tried to do the layering aspect of the exercise!) At least I am thinking about it. Maybe next time I will do it.

With Ike I find myself stuck in the crosshairs of choice. When he is showing speed, spunk, and initiative I don’t want to treat him because he is such a slow eater – I don’t want to put a damper on that momentum. However I need to treat him! I need to let him know that YES, this is what I am aiming for. Argh! This is a good problem to have.

Last night Ike was really moving. After our second run he RAN with me back to our water bowl and bag. Nancy (Remy’s mum) was there and Jenn and Steeler (new classmate with a young Dal)!! Holy dog gods! Such confidence.

Which brings me to the second part of my post, the evolving relationship between my two boys. Monday night we had a pretty awful thunderstorm and like I said Ike HATES T-storms. I saw him come out of his crate and scoot into the bathroom. It is so odd how many dogs choose the bathroom as a safe haven during storms. I went and picked him up and brought him to the couch. I put him between me and John and did some nice petting/massage. He wasn’t shaking. Hmmm…pretty massive thunderstorm and no shaking? Cool!

Ike stayed on the couch with us, obviously stressed but handling the storm much better than I have ever seen him. Then Bug decided he just had to join us and hopped up. Ike totally freaked and tried to climb behind me off the couch. I think I mentioned recently that Ike is a space-nazi? I took Ike and put him on my lap. He proceeded to curl up in a ball and fall asleep with Bug RIGHT BESIDE US – LEANING AGAINST MY LEG!!! He likes him, he really likes him.

Other recent firsts include sleeping on the bed together, grappling, and Ike instigating play with a stuffie.



Shelly said...


Diana said...

Hey, what about if you threw Ike's Monkey toy or the raccoon tail when he is running fast? Diana

Jules said...

Diana, I have to practice my throwing. Currently I suck - to put it politely. However, if I could learn to hit a whiffle ball i am sure I can learn to throw a toy for Ike without hitting someone 9I hope!).

manymuddypaws said...

diana's advice about the toy is good- the hard part about food rewarding is that it slows the dog down- and with Ike I think he needs to be rewarded for fast...if not a toy, what about a goodie container. (it is heavier so aiming might be easier)
Glad to hear that the boys are adjusting and that Ike is liking his new brother :o)

Diana said...

For as far as you are going to toss the toy you probably dont need to be that good. But if it doesnt have some weight to it, that could be a problem. I think amanda idea about the goodie container is a good one. Maybe a food tube. Diana

Jules said...

Maybe that is part of my problem - maybe I am trying to throw the toy too far. I will experiment (and hopefully not injure anyone!). Thanks!

Diana said...

hey , I thought of something else. Do you carry a bait bag? Ive thrown that before. Diana