Bug and I had a herding lesson yesterday. Diane hadn't sorted any sheep or ducks when we arrived so she asked what we wanted to work on. We are attending a 3 day clinic at the end of January that will focus on ducks and the last time we worked ducks was the winter of 2008. So...we worked ducks.
Ugh. That sums up how I feel about the lesson. I feel exactly like the first few times we worked sheep. I couldn't seem to do anything right; I was repeatedly in the wrong place; I repeatedly, and ACCIDENTALLY, verbally corrected Bug at the WRONG times. It felt like a complete disaster. That being said I do distinctly remember Diane saying, "That was nice" and "Good dog" multiple times.
Bug was diving into the ducks a lot. Fortunately for us the ducks started correcting him by themselves (by flapping) so we did not need to (as much).
We worked the full hour + taking only one break. By the end of the lesson Bug was working a LOT better - I think because I was running out of dog!
The disconcerting news is that Bug is still being super spooky about the rake and stock stick. We started with a homemade stock stick that was made from very thin pvc. Then we moved to a traditional stock stick. Then, because Bug was still being spooky, Diane went inside and got a shorter stock stick she has. She said we might have to start working with a piece of hose instead - that is how spooky Bug was acting about it.
This spookiness started the week before our first lesson. the good news is it is not because of our lesson. The bad news is I have no idea why he is acting so spooky. He is acting spooky at home too. He is very leery of sudden movements. I need to schedule Bug's annual vet appointment. I have the week off between Christmas and New Years so I am hoping to go then. I don't know what the vet will be able to offer, but I am going to talk to her about how spooky he is acting. I know dogs can start to act spooky with TBDs. We'll see if the vet has any other thoughts.
If we can not get to the bottom of it with conventional medicine I think I will make an initial appointment for him with Dr. F., the homeopathic vet.
The great news is that Bug worked very hard, for a long time, and....he was not stiff afterward. Hallelujah!!
4 days ago