Monday, October 29, 2007


I snapped this picture of Baloo in the grass, I love the way her ears flop and curl.

Baloo is an "advanced beginner" in agility class and has picked up where she left off over the summer. Last week we learned a new move and command, "wrap". Wrapping is used after a jump, the command is to call your dog back around the jump to prevent a reverse jump.
This week we don't have class because the USDAA CynoSport Games are in town. The events begin Wednesday at Westworld in Scottsdale and it promises to be a lot of fun. There'll be agility rings, frisbee, flyball, herding, lure coursing. I am looking forward to entering Baloo in the lure coursing event. Last year she was terrified of the course and the tunnel especially. This year I think she'll burn up the course, racing after the little fake squirrel in record time. We'll see in few days.

Monday, October 08, 2007

October Joy

October has arrived, and Baloo and I are grateful for that. The weather in Arizona in October is perfect. Cool mornings and evenings and sunshiny warm afternoons, usually with a breeze. Agility classes have started up again, but Baloo missed her first two classes because of a schedule conflict (my schedule conflict...she was free). This Wednesday will be our first class after the long summer. We've hardly practiced and will certainly be rusty. I know she's eager to start. I put her weave poles out the other day and she enthusiastically weaved the poles and then ran over to pounce on her long teeter board (an old board centered on a short stack of bricks, initially intended to help her with her fear of all things moving, tipping, and banging). In the next few days I'll study my latest "Clean Run" magazine issues - great tips about course memorization in the last issues. Course memorization is an area I was having trouble with as we started to run sequences at the end of our beginner class. I'll need to learn some tricks and train my brain. Baloo has matured since beginner class. She weighs about 71 pounds and has really filled out. She is still having some confidence issues. I am hopeful that by re-engaging in agility class, her confidence will grow again. She is pretty confident on our walks, but around the house there are a few things that keep her spooked. In the back yard, blowing leaves and branches in our large tree are somewhat distressing for her. We have a canopied gazebo area in our yard and when the canopy flaps and blows it can send her flying. Indoors, Baloo has a lot of fear of kitchen sounds. Probably because of the lack of cooking that goes on - she's not used to it, ha! In the morning, she will not come in the kitchen to eat until I'm away from the sink. Dish washing and water bowl filling send her cowering. I know there's a fully confident dog in there somewhere, we'll just keep working on it. We are excited for new challenges and loads of practice. Agility classes, fun runs, competitions, dog shows, Cynosport Games - there will be a lot to write about in the coming weeks. Welcome Back!