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Funny that Javelin goes bonkers for the pile. Noelle tiptoes through the pile and carefully selects the right dumbbell. However, Noelle turns into a wild prey stalking monster when she gets the glove. Run to the correct glove. Pick it up. Shake to make good and sure it is dead. Turn, sprint back to front. Smooth delivery to my hand. Her enthusiasm for the gloves is incredibly high. Glove killing is .5 points off. Thank goodness it's not an NQ or I'd be screwed. I'm gonna look into getting some Just Right Gloves. Maybe those will be less flappy. The gloves I have are flappy and Noelle just goes bananas with them.

It's always something. Always.
 

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Discussion Starter #462
You will really like the Just Right Gloves. They don't flop around and tend to be easier to pick up. Get the flannel fleece ones.
 

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Ok. We're getting a size small. The floppy gloves she has now are just too toy like and she murders them 90% of the time. I don't want to dampen her enthusiasm for grabbing the glove off the floor and running with it back to me. She really likes this exercise. A stiffer glove will help a lot I think.
 

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Discussion Starter #464
Well Javelin and I got pushed of the road just as Lily and I did because of the virus. We had no place we could go to train for most of March and early April. My trainer and the building owner where I take private lessons have allowed private rental since mid April and I have been there many Saturdays working on my own. It was better than nothing, but pretty sterile and hard to fix things without being able to do classes and privates with Deb. Deb decided to come back to doing only privates in late April and since not everyone wanted to come back she has now been able to put us in her regular schedule on Thursday mornings (as opposed to me relying on catching cancellations). I am really happy for that but do miss having weekly classes where we had distractions of other people and dogs. Now that trials are starting again Ihad been thinking of entering Javelin in novice for the same trials that Lily and I will be doing rally in next week. I was really stuck on the fence on how to manage showing both of them with all of the new protocols on crates and getting out of the building after your class was done. It seemed like I would have to go in the morning with Javelin, show him, take him home and get Lily and then go back. Managing all of that sounded exhausting, stressful and not a good plan for succeeding with either of them. I talked it over with BF and with Deb and decided to only show Lily until we finish the RACh. I am using the time to clean up things that would eat points with him so I am taking a number of exercises apart to polish them up to perfection. Hopefully once Lily becomes RACh Lily I will have his work all put back together and can just go quickly through novice, open and utility and then get onto UDX and OTCh work.

The strategy I am using is something Deb is having great success with in her training with her young dog that we call back chaining. So for example there is a utility exercise called the directed retrieve. Dog and handler face the front of the ring with the dog at heel. As you are witing there a steward puts out three gloves along the back edge of the ring in each corner and at the center right behind you (distance is really about 20' from you to the glove). The glove positions are referred to as 1, 2 and 3. Once the steward is out of the way the judge orders to retrieve a specific glove and you pivot to face that glove and with a signal and an order send the dog to retrieve it. They should make a clean pick up, tight turn and return with the glove directly to front. You then take the glove and send the dog back to heel. There are a lot of moving parts to the whole thing and each little part can break badly enough to be an NQ (dog anticipates, gets wrong glove, tries to kill the glove, doesn't return to front, doesn't let you take the glove, fails to finish...). Javelin loves his gloves so much that he is prone to steal them if I leave them out. He wants to play with them like toys (and he doesn't play with toys) so his fronts are haphazard and his pick ups involve pouncing on the glove before the pick up and shaking it like a dead critter on a looping return to front. We have worked on his impulse control at the pivot and now we are working on his behavior at the pick up along with getting him to return directly to front. We put out a runway to direct him to a nice front and started with him standing facing me with the glove. Now I am working on teaching him to be at the pick up locations facing away from me so I can have him stand with the glove and facing away. That will then get connected to the pivot and send to have a clean exercise front judges' orders all the way through to judges' exercise finished.

I made some videos of several things we worked on today. We had a very good session including some really beautiful heeling where I actually kept to straight lines and didn't interfere with him unfortunately didn't record, but here are links to much of the other stuff we did today.

Go outs:

Open command discrimination:

Retrieve over the high jump:

Directed retrieve back chain work:
and
 

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Soooo cool getting to watch your process. How long can Javelin work like that without needed a break?
On those days like today when I rent that space I use an hour and a half. Some of that goes to moving things around and getting organized for the next session. A couple of those videos are about 9 minutes so generally I will work on one activity for up to about ten minutes before I move on. So he is left on a settle between each different thing we do and those are his primary breaks. I generally try to get a really good execution to end a particular activity, but if he does three good reps in a row I generally stop and go to something else more quickly. If I see him looking worried or disinterested I either go on to something I know he really likes (anything having to do with jumps) or if he really is ready to check out I pull out his tug toy. It isn't obvious but I really watch his tail to read him. He was really pretty happy all the way through today, so no tug time. He was actively doing something for about an hour of the hour and a half today, but there are days like last week where I had no business trying to teach him anything since I was very tired and hot since we still didn't have power where we only actually worked together for about 30-40 minutes total when I got mad, apologized to him and stopped. Sometimes I have Lily along too and will have to bring her more now that we are starting back to trials. With her there is little to teach and what I do with her is choose rally signs of a similar theme (every version of signs with jumps for example) and do each of those tricks twice and then we are done. She is a good distraction for Javvy and the same the other way around.
 

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I've been busy since early September adjusting to yet another remote learning style with lots of Zoom meetings and so we have slacked off a bit, but still working. Yesterday I only had two people come for my novice class. Normally I don't bring Javelin (or Lily) out during class since the class is for me to be helping my teams more than training my dogs. I asked the two humans (both good friends) if they would mind if I brought Javelin into the ring for the class and they said no so we had a class of 3. Since most of my training has been pretty sterile (no other dogs aside from Lily and once a week my trainer's dogs hanging out) I was a little concerned about how Javelin would do. He flirted a little bit with a very pretty parti spoo and he got distracted by my other friend's very up energy 15 month old wheaten male, but mostly he was really really good. His heeling and figure 8 were really nice. Stand for exam took a couple of tries since my assistant who he knows super well was the "judge." He did well with recall, the sit stay get your leash and the groups. I was pleased. And since dogs aren't robots today when I took both poodles to rent some training time he was just a mess. I got pretty annoyed. About the only thing that went well was some warm up heeling. Oiy.
 
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A Temporary Wrench in the Works...

About 2 weeks ago Javelin was showing signs of what seemed like an allergy. Clear runny mucus and a lot of sneezing, but he otherwise seemed fine. Last week in the middle of the week the mucus became very thick and cloudy and colored. He still seemed fine so I took him to our regular private training where he struggled with the scent articles and now was snorting like he was trying to clear his nose during the session so we stopped a bit early and I called to make a vet appointment for him at the earliest possible time which was late in the day a week ago. He came home with a 10 round of doxycycline and a diagnosis of upper respiratory infection.

He has improved but is still having the runny nose issues (mucus cleared up though). He seemed enthusiastic to go out to our training yesterday so we went. Well now it seemed like anytime he put his head up to heel or to set up for an exercise he was having bad post nasal dripping or something along those lines so we stopped very soon after we started with one round of open command discrimination that does not require more than just normal posture attention and no movement to finish with something happy. I did not take him to my club today, nor will I train with him tomorrow. We are going back to the vet again today and this time I will ask them to do a culture.

It is very important for the training we do to be a happy happy joy joy experience. He loves to heel (and really to do many many different exercises). Deb and I agree that he should not work more in any formal way until this is totally cleared up. We don't want to poison his love for the work. I hope for others who train for sports that you will be careful to watch the physical health of your partners so that they can get better without getting put off from the sport by having stress related to health.
 
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Poor Javelin! Was it here that I read about a poodle with a blade of grass or foxtail stuck up his nose? I recall that it took ages to diagnose. Hope this isn't the case for Javelin and that he's back to loving life in the ring with you soon.
 

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Yes that piece of plant matter up the nose was on PF. I don't think that is what is going on. We did not see the vet who first looked at this last week, but since I really didn't think he was better enough so to speak (and doc from last week didn't have an available appointment until Tuesday) I took an appointment with whoever I could get for today. This Dr. upped his doxycycline dose from last week and added clavamox to cover potential Gram positives in the mix. Needless to say as hard as the Dr. tried Javelin wouldn't do any of the little hacks, snorts, sneezes or anything. I hope he will improve significantly over the weekend. BF will have to give morning meds on Sunday since Lily and I will be at rally trials in New Jersey.
 

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Poor Javvy - I hope this takes care of it quickly. With all those antibiotics, it could affect his digestive tract.

Wise to take a break from training until he is not feeling well.
 
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Good luck in New Jersey! It sounds like Javelin will be in good hands.

I hope I can find Velveeta slices tomorrow! I use up the last I had this morning, but I had Kraft white American slices. They are not as pliable as the Velveeta and it was crumblier as a pill pocket and he dropped one so I just dropped it in the back of his throat and he swallowed. Then I tried to get him to eat the chewable clavamox tablet and he wanted nothing to do with chewing it, so I really need that Velveeta (or a brand really very similar if someone has a recommendation), otherwise things may be pretty ugly between BF and Javvy on Sunday morning. BF is just not so artful at giving pills as I am.
 

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I hope I can find Velveeta slices tomorrow! I use up the last I had this morning, but I had Kraft white American slices. They are not as pliable as the Velveeta and it was crumblier as a pill pocket and he dropped one so I just dropped it in the back of his throat and he swallowed. Then I tried to get him to eat the chewable clavamox tablet and he wanted nothing to do with chewing it, so I really need that Velveeta (or a brand really very similar if someone has a recommendation), otherwise things may be pretty ugly between BF and Javvy on Sunday morning. BF is just not so artful at giving pills as I am.
I know some stores might have off-brand Velveeta cheeses, so maybe that would work? Costco maybe?
 

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Oh yes maybe Costco. I was planning to go there tomorrow anyway. Thanks Floofy.
 
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String cheese is also pretty good for rolling into little balls and other shapes. Just warm it up a bit in your hand. The smell and flavour might not be strong enough, though.

My technique is to make five little balls, and number three contains the pill. I feed them rapidly, one after another.
 

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I keep medicines in my treat box - Asta figures that he is getting a treat cause in comes it
from the box. I also have used butter balls that he loves - just take the meds and wrap the butter around them.
 

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Claire I have a neighbor whose dog takes her synthroid in a butter ball. That might be a good try. Peggy I usually use cheddar cheese sticks broken into bits for training. I can try it in place of string cheese. Since his sense of smell is off I don't think string cheese would be appealing enough but well worth keeping in mind.
 
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Butter balls worked for this morning. I still need to food shop today so will be on my Velveeta quest since I think that will be easier for both BF and Javelin tomorrow morning.

As an aside I plan to do some stock pile shopping (not hoarding mind you) but a bit extra so I don't have to go to super (spreader potential) markets. Everyone wheres masks around here since you can't get into the store without one, but they often pull them off their noses when they are off in the aisles and back corners. Yuck.
 
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