Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘dog behavior’ Category

Going through the archives of our photos of Cooper brings back many fond memories. But of course, what we remember when we see the photos is an animated, happy dog, full of joy. But for the readers of The Cooper Project who never met the boy, just seeing a static photo limits comprehending the energy of that amazing dog.

Back in 2012, I made a short video of Cooper and Trice practicing staying steady at the line while she shoots at mythical ducks. This video pretty much sums up all the excitement Cooper exuded in life. And so today, I snagged a few seconds of that video and looped it into this animated image. See if you can count the number of tail wags and notice his wagging is in sync with his tongue.

One happy camper . . . .

Cooper-and-Trice

And when he was finally released and left the line, heading for the duck, he wasn’t going let a video camera stand in his way… Click the animated image to open the source video and see what I mean.

Read Full Post »

Yesterday afternoon, while walking leashed down the sidewalk, Carlin was attacked by an Alaskan Malamute. The Malamute, twice Carlin’s weight, charged down the adjacent driveway and jumped Carlin.

When Russ or I have walked the dogs around the neighborhood, we’ve seen this dog loose in his yard before, and always walked down the other side of the street. But yesterday, Carlin was being walked by our dog walker, who doesn’t live in this neighborhood, doesn’t often walk down that street, and had forgotten about that Malamute.

The dog walker brought Carlin right home, and reported the incident to us. At first, we didn’t see any damage beyond a broken nail. But by this morning, it was clear that something was wrong with Carlin’s left ear. Yesterday, he winced when it was touched, but this morning, he screamed. Closer inspection revealed some yucky fluid in the ear. So, off he went to the vet.

The vet sedated him, and went investigating. What they found was an infected 4mm puncture wound in his ear canal. He’s being treated with antibiotics, pain medication, and ear drops.

When Carlin got home from the vet, he walked loopily into the house, got his favorite nylabone, lay down, and went to sleep with the bone in his mouth.

Carlin sleeping off the sedative with a bone in his mouth

Tooey is recovering, too, from her mammary surgery on Tuesday, so the two of them are recovering together.

Tooey and Carlin_blog

Carlin and Tooey recovering together on the deck

What we’re going to do about the Malamute and his owner — we’re not sure. It complicates things that neither of us was there when the attack actually happened, so we’ll see.

 

 

Read Full Post »

Tooey’s resting quietly after having her spay operation on Wednesday (September 10). She also had a growth removed from her flank, which is the bare patch you can see on her side.

20140913-123238.jpg

I am glad to have the growth removed. It’s been growing very slowly over the last four years. Last time we had it biopsied, it was just a benign, fluid-filled cyst.

I am sad about the spay, though. Dogs are generally healthier when they keep all their parts and all their hormones. But Tooey has been suffering with false pregnancies, with fruitless nesting behaviors, mood swings, and swollen teats, even lactating for non-existant puppies. And as much as she loves all her people, I know she hasn’t wanted to be sent away to her co-owner’s when she goes into season.

Plus, she’s already had two large litters of beautiful, well-loved puppies, and we don’t plan to breed her again. So with all that, plus our having two intact boys in the house, it was time to have her spayed.

Since she’s an older girl, the healing will take longer than it would a younger dog. We’re to keep her indoors for two weeks, except to pee and poo, and keep the elizabethan collar (seen in the photo) on her whenever she’s unsupervised. It’s important that she not chew on any of the stitches, on belly or side. If she were to do that, it would mean more surgery and more stitches to repair the damage.

Fortunately, at least up to now, she hasn’t been too interested in her stitches, so until the incisions start itching (if they do), we should be OK.

It will be great to have Tooey up and out with us again. There are games to play, hikes to take, and birds to find this fall.

Read Full Post »

Hunting ducks is somewhat of a misnomer. Sitting and waiting is a better description. Sitting and waiting in the middle of winter, in bad weather, and in the dark of night is even more descriptive. So why do it?

Cooper is my primary reason.

The typical protocol is to make your way to the duck blind well before the sun comes up. Trudge through the muck, the ponds, the farm fields in total darkness. Then set out a bunch of decoys in knee-high frigid water (with maybe a hint of glow on the east horizon if it is not raining too hard). Wade back to the blind and then wait for the sun to come up with your loyal Irish Water Spaniel.

But while it is dark, it is not quiet.

Migrating birds by the hundreds (thousands?) fly all night long immediately overhead. Ducks create a chorus of whistling wings in full surround-sound as they make their way to points south. Geese talk to each other non-stop while cruising the night sky. Sandhill cranes plan their day while flying in flocks of a dozen or so. Then, as the sun starts to come up, all goes quiet.

Suavie Island, Oregon

Sauvie Island, Oregon at sunrise

Unless weather, birds, and your horoscope are all lined up, there is good chance that one can sit and wait even longer. But the sights are wonderful. Thousands of Canadian geese rise or land in unison, swirling like feathered tornadoes. The occasional group of ducks fly low and fast, avoiding predators, including Cooper and me. Sandhill cranes converge in nearby pastures. And Marsh harriers mix hunting and romance as they tack back and forth past the blind, ignoring us as we sit in our front row seats.

As the sun pops over the horizon, but before it slips behind a sky of overcast and rain, there is a brief moment of less than a minute, when picture postcards can be seen in every direction.

Sandhill Cranes commuting past the blind

Sandhill Cranes commuting past the blind

For two hours, Cooper sat quietly in the blind, scanning the flooded corn fields and ponds, wondering why I didn’t call for the bird. To date, in every hunt test he has competed, there has been a retrieve within moments of his entering the blind. So what gives this time?

Patrice’s obedience training with Cooper is now paying off in spades. For logistical reasons, there are not 2 hour sit-stays in obedience competition, but if there were, today Cooper would have qualified.

No ducks today. But having spent several hours listening to and watching our amazing world with Cooper is why we sit in a duck blind, in the cold and dark.

Cooper, near the end of a long but successful sit-stay

Cooper, near the end of a long but successful sit-stay

While not considered appropriate behavior in some circles, Cooper did get a retrieve or so. Not ducks, but I did let him help retrieve the decoys before we headed back home for a hot breakfast (and a dog bath).

Read Full Post »

It is raining the proverbial cats and dogs today, so what a better way to spend a morning than inside, sharing your work with your spaniels.
20130103_0087

Cooper knows the drill. He’s loved doing this for more than 5 years. As soon as lights are set, he strikes the pose and looks directly at the camera.
20121204_0054

Ms. Tooey, the princess, does not want to be left out of anything that Cooper does, so she got up onto the bench and posed simply to prove a point.
The Princess

Side note from Patrice: Russ does people and dog portraits, and many other genres of photography, photo illustration, and image manipulation. Take a look on his website, Working Theory Studios.

Read Full Post »

Back in January, Russ wrote about taking Tooey upland hunting. He mentioned when he came back that the lightbulb really seemed to have flipped on in Tooey’s head — there are birds out in those fields that must be flushed and retrieved!

Little did I realize the significance of what lay behind his words.

Yesterday we took Cooper and Miss Tooey out to to a spaniel training day with the Mt. Rainier Sporting Spaniel Association. Every one was eager for the work: the people to get ready for upcoming spaniel hunt tests and the dogs to find birds ASAP.

Knowing that Tooey particularly likes chukars, I’d gone out on Saturday to buy a few. Saturday afternoon and over Saturday night, I kept the chukars in nice comfy cages in the garage. All afternoon, all evening, and most of early Sunday morning, Tooey kept telling us, “Hey! There are chukars out there. Let’s go see the chukars. Now. Right now. I want to go see the chukars out there.”

And then, on the ride up to the training grounds, she did her best to keep a constant eye on those chukars. While Cooper and Scarlett* napped, Tooey stayed awake and watched those chukars.

That all amped her up, but we made her wait. And that combination probably explains why my arm and shoulder are sore now.

Tooey has generally been pretty gentle on the leash. Even when in hot pursuit of a squirrel, she manages to moderate her forward movement before reaching the end of the leash. So much easier on the arm and shoulder than Cooper is.

But when I got Tooey out to the practice hunt test course yesterday, she lost her mind and I almost got pulled over. What Tooey saw was just about unbelieveable: other dogs flushing and retrieving birds, and Russ out there with them doing the gunning. Without her.

course with two gunners, one working spaniel and handler, plus one waiting spaniel and its people

We were supposed to wait our turn somewhat near the course. But I had to get us away from there. So close to the course, I could not make her sit for anymore than 1 second at a time. And every time a gun went off, she was at the end of the leash, and both of us were 6 feet closer.

So instead of just trying to make her sit, I changed my tactic. Every time she pulled me toward the course, I turned around and dragged her farther in the opposite direction. We got all the way up a small hill about 100 yards away before she could sit quietly.

Eventually, it was Tooey’s turn. And she did great at the hunting. The gunners planted 2 dead birds close to the beginning of the course to give her confidence that birds were indeed out there. She found both of those quickly and retrieved them to hand.

Farther along the course, she also trapped two more chukars, grabbing them before they could get off the ground. Those were also retrieved to hand, alive.

Then, toward the end of the course, she flushed up a bird, which the gunner shot. She marked the fall, ran to go get it, and then brought that bird to hand, too.

That was the end of Tooey’s turn, but she was ready to keep going. Unlike Cooper, who tired himself out during his turn with a lot of running around, Tooey did a nice even zig-zag, back and forth across the course. And she did it at a moderate pace, too, kind of a fast trot. That makes for a more casual time hunting, when you don’t have to rush after your dog or worry that he’s going to flush birds too far ahead and out of gun range. (Take note, Cooper!)

Tooey’s puppies are due around May 7th, so I don’t know how much more hunting practice she’ll get in the next several months. But she remembered well enough from January to April. I imagine she won’t forget for the next time, either, no matter how long away it is.

Now we just need to work on steady.

———————

*Scarlett is a Boykin Spaniel who is our friend Norm’s hunting partner

Read Full Post »

I’ve been searching around for ways to handle my nervousness at dog shows. I love this quote*, which I just found in the Yahoo group, Clicker Competition Obedience Training:

…Any time you start to feel nervous, take a nice deep breath and picture three images in your head. First think about the first time you ever saw your dog. Next think of something your dog does that makes you feel proud. Lastly think of something your dog does that makes you laugh. Practice it now. I bet when you finish you will end up with a great big smile on your face.

I am inspired. I’ve starting sorting through my mental list of Cooper images. Most of them are just in memory, but others are actual photographs.

The first time you ever saw your dog

I first saw Cooper at Tammy’s parents’ house. I had met Tammy only a couple of times before, but she had taken the trouble to fly out from Minnesota with my Cooper, her Mowgli, and Amy’s Maggie. When Russ and I arrived, Tammy’s mother directed us into the laundry room, where Tammy was giving a very wiggly 8-week-old Cooper a bath.

I commented something like, “He doesn’t like the water? I thought he was an Irish Water Spaniel.”

“He’s a water spaniel,” Tammy replied, drying Cooper off, “not a bath spaniel.” Something your dog does that makes you feel proud

Cooper’s hunting and retrieving skills and his intense enthusiasm for the work makes me proud every time we go out to hunt or train. He found the thing he loves in life very early, when at 9 weeks he first retrieved our morning paper.

Since then, Cooper has pursued field work with the kind of passion that makes me snort when I hear people say, “My passion is…” or “I am passionate about…” They (and I) would be very lucky if they felt 1/10th the passion Cooper exhibits when he’s hunting.

The illustrative event that sticks in my mind is Cooper’s 2nd AKC Junior Hunt Test. This was a very hard test: Only 31 dogs passed of the 56 entered. The retrieves were long, the marks were launched against a dark backdrop of trees, and the many shadows, dips, shallows, and tall cover made the test difficult. (Not to mention the pink flamingo line markers.) But Cooper succeeded and brought back all 4 of his birds.

In fact, in all the hunt tests he’s ever entered, even the ones he’s failed, he has never failed to bring back his birds. And in all the hunting we’ve done, he’s brought back all his birds except for three: two of these were not found even though multiple dogs and multiple people looked for them, and the other was finally located by another dog after two long searches.

Something your dog does that makes you laugh

Cooper has a multipurpose relationship with his toys that makes me laugh every time.

One is that he uses his toys to express his understanding of value and fairness: He trades a toy for something he wants that is not his. We’ll walk into the bedroom and find, instead of two shoes, one shoe and a toy. Or, in the bathroom, we’ll find a toy instead of the washcloth.

Another funny toy thing is, we’ll say, “Want to go for a ride in the car?” Tooey will race to the front door, but not Cooper. Cooper runs first to the toy drawer so he can grab a toy to take along for the ride. I wish I had a video of this, but when I’m getting ready to go for a ride with the dogs in the car, my hands are full of leashes, keys, a coat, my purse, a couple of treats, and several plastic bags.

*Credit where credit is due

The quote was most recently posted by Libby on July 31, 2011, but she said she borrowed it from a previous post on the list. Later I heard that this probably came from Leslie McDevitt, who includes a similar classroom exercise on page 67 of her book Control Unleashed (2007):

When the dogs and handlers look ready, I ask each student to close her eyes, and while keeping her hands on her dog, remember the first time she saw her dog. I’ll give her a minute to take in that memory. Then I ask her to think of something her dog has done that makes her laugh. Lastly, I ask her to think of something her dog has done that made her proud. I love to watch my students, beaming and chuckling and petting their dogs as they’re doing this exercise.

Read Full Post »

Cooper and Tooey laying claim to a section of the bed

Read Full Post »

I am noticing some changes in the relationship between Cooper and Tooey. Don’t know if they’re permanent or temporary:

  • Last weekend at the beach, Tooey began to get to the retrieve object before Cooper. Prior to this, Cooper always, and I mean always, got to the stick, bumper, or ball first.
  • Tooey has been standing back and letting Cooper lick out the mixing bowl or pan, instead of crowding him out like she’s usually done in the past.
  • Since Tooey came back from her being-in-season at Colleen’s, she and Cooper have not been playing as much — no box turns off the couch and a lot less chasing each other around.

Not sure what’s going on.

  • Is it age? Cooper is 4.75 years, and Tooey is 2.75 years.
  • Did something happen with Tooey while she was away?
  • Is Cooper feeling unwell? I do think he’s having a skin reaction to the new food, so we’ll be switching back to the previous food.
  • Is Tooey feeling more self-confident and less need to be pushy?

We’ll just have to see how it goes.

 

Read Full Post »

Last night, Russ noticed a really, really big spider crawling along the dining room wall. Normally, he picks spiders up and puts them outside. But this time, something made him get up, grab the telephone book, and proceed to pound the spider.

Now, here’s the interesting thing. When the pounding started:

  • Cooper turned and ran into the bedroom.
  • Tooey got up and stood next to me, quietly, paying keen attention, not running away and not jumping into the fray.
  • I suddenly remembered Kayak, our first dog, a malamute-mix, my protector and friend.

Kayak, 1987

Here’s what I saw again in a flash of memory, from more than 25 years ago:

One afternoon, I was really angry, so angry that I had to do something physical with all of that rage. I was in the bedroom, so I grabbed a handy pillow and beat the hell out of the bed with that pillow. Kayak jumped up on the bed growling, and attacked it, certain that I was in mortal danger from whatever was on that bed.

And then the memory segued to:

One dark evening, I was walking Kayak along the even darker alley behind our house. A man jumped out of the bushes, just as every mother has warned every daughter might happen. Kayak put herself in front of me, between me and the man, and barked, “Stay Away!” That bark was so distinctive, so unusual for her, that all the neighbors’ houses lit up with lights. The man left the alley. I stood rooted to the spot, blood pounding. Kayak stayed put and kept watch until I turned and took us home.

I am so grateful to have big dogs. They make me feel safe, or at least safer than I’d feel without them. And I don’t want to give the impression that Cooper is not a protector — he’s the one who alerted us to danger in our yard, the flashing police lights, and kept me feeling safe.

And it did make me wonder what Tooey would do if she thought I was in danger.

Read Full Post »

We don’t hear Tooey whine very much. Oh, sometimes when she wants out of her crate, or when she realizes she’s close to her favorite swimming hole.

But yesterday we had a whole new venue for her latest, and most grandiloquent concert.

Tooey’s been gone for three weeks, living up at Colleen’s kennel while she’s been in season. We don’t like sending her away, but with Cooper here, it’s just easier for Colleen to keep Tooey.

Having an intact dog and bitch in the house while the bitch is in season is just hard. You can’t take the girl for a walk. You can’t let them out in the house or the yard at the same time. You have to feed them separately and play with them separately, and you have to listen to the boy howling. Plus Cooper stops eating while Tooey’s in season. And you can’t train either of them, either, with their minds so firmly concentrated on procreating the species.

So off the Colleen’s Tooey goes. But what this adds up to is that she has spent a lot (too much) of time away from home.

We didn’t get her until she was 8 months old. Add in that she was away at the pro trainer’s for 5 months, and then she’s been away at Colleen’s for 2 seasons (about 1-1/2 months total). So that means that out of her 33 months, Tooey’s been away from home for not quite 1/2 of that time.

So, yesterday’s concert. We were on the last few miles of our trip bringing Tooey back home. At about 1.5 miles from home, we were traveling by car on one of the main arterials. We start to hear this low whining noise from the back. Tooey is sitting up in her crate, looking around from side to side.

Then we turned up the side road that leads to our house. The whining gets louder and we can hear the start of a tail-thump back beat. Then we turned onto our own street, and the whining turns into these high-pitched whine-barks and the tail wagging gets really intense, loud, and fast.

Russ and I smiled at each other. Tooey’s singing, “I’m going home! I’m home. We’re all home!”

Read Full Post »

We live in the city, but it’s still home to a reasonable amount of urban wildlife. Hundreds of squirrels, a few Coopers hawks (no relation), raccoons, and as Patrice reported last week, coyotes.

Over the last few weeks, I’ve been noticing bark lying on the ground underneath our lilac and one of our Douglas fir trees. The trees did not have the usual incisor marks of a beaver as we see around a lot of the ponds where we train with Cooper. Instead, the lilac and fir bark was stripped away from the tree and just left on the ground.

After doing some surveillance from behind the window of the garage, I finally saw the bark-removal culprit in action. Miss Tooey. It turns out that her routine is to run out the back door, clear the fences and trees of all squirrels, and then promptly take a bite out of each tree in which the squirrel had been sitting. Possibly this could be her way of marking her territory unlike Cooper, who as a male, just lifts his leg.

The Douglas fir can tolerate a few more nips,

but the lilac is stressed. We will have to do something remedial with Miss Tooey in order to keep it alive.

Read Full Post »

Tooey went into season last Sunday. With Cooper here too, we knew it would be inconvenient, but we wanted to keep her home. And for a week, we tried. After a couple of days of wearing a pair of men’s shorts (the back legs go through the legs, and the tail goes through the fly),

I even bought her a pair of britches. (I looked for camo, but didn’t find it in my local store. Dot and circles would have to do.)

But finally, all the advice and warnings got to me. Here’s a sample:

  • From Sandy: “… you need to be watching them like a hawk for the next 21 days. [Cooper] is mildly interested in her now but when she is ready to be bred, both she and Cooper will do anything they can to be together. When he refuses food you will know that she is prime. If you are not going to send one of them away for this period, you will be in for a rough time. You cannot let them out of your sight for a moment or you could find them ‘tied’ in the next room. Or you could miss the breeding all together and 60 days later find yourself with a litter of puppies. When they are going nuts you are going to have to walk them separately since he could grab her in an instant and breed her before you ever have a chance to separate them.”
  • From Mindy: “Be prepared to be ever vigilant!!!!!! And if you’re not in the room with both eyes on them, and aren’t planning a litter……. keep them separated!!!!!!”
  • From Diane: “If you can send one of them away during this time, the female would be your best bet. Why put [Cooper] through that if you don’t have to… Get that scent out of the house. You don’t want him to start lifting his leg or when she is getting close pee on the floor to get her message across. I could go into dogs tearing out of crates, chewing through doors, climbing fences, and the all popular human error. Where there is a will there is a way…..or at least a lot of damage trying.”
  • From Deborah: My girls … from about day 10-15 they will do anything possible to get the boy to breed them. After that point… the boy must now vanish from the face of the earth… A stud dog with a wise nose will ignore all of the girls importunings and only breed when she is in fact ‘ready’.”
  • From Amy: “Pack her bag and send her up to Colleen…life will be much easier.”

So that’s what we did. Liz very generously offered to transport Tooey up to Colleen’s, since she was driving up that way anyway. Tooey was in good company, with Liz’s Niall, Arthur, and Clare.

Liz texted me when they arrived a few hours later, saying that Niall didn’t think Tooey was ready yet, and that Arthur (seen above sniffing Tooey) thought Tooey was the most amazing thing he’d ever smelled.

Now Tooey is safe and sound in Colleen’s familiar “girl yard.” (Thanks, Liz, for the ride, text, and picture.)
After Tooey left, Cooper searched the house and the yard, looking for her. It’s an emptier house without her. But we’ll see her in about a month at the IWSCOPS Specialty, and then bring her home again.

Read Full Post »

One of the advantages of an HRC Started Hunting Retriever test and an AKC Junior Hunter test is that the dog can wear a flat buckle collar, and the handler can hold onto that collar at the line.

This prevents the dog from bolting when he sees the bird, instead of waiting until he’s been sent out to retrieve it. Some pros teach their dogs early on not to bolt. They feel confident that their dogs will stay put, so they don’t bother with the collar. Other, less experienced handlers are sometimes tempted to try the same before their dog is trained and ready to withstand temptation.

Russ, knowing Cooper can’t yet be trusted not to bolt, is not so foolish. But other handlers sometimes make a mistake, and that’s the story that the photo below would tell if I’d taken it just a half second later.

If you look just to the left of Russ’s left knee, just on the water side of the weeds, you’ll see a small arc of brown that’s leaving a wake in the water. That’s the head of a collar-less chocolate Lab who had bolted and was chasing after Cooper’s duck.

So here’s the story: At last weekend’s Lower Columbia HRC hunt test, Cooper and Russ were waiting at the line, with all three holding blinds behind them occupied with a dog and it’s handler. The gunner blew the duck call, the launcher launched the duck, and the duck landed in the water. At that, Russ said, “Cooper!” to send Coop out after the duck. Just a few seconds later, the Lab, having gotten away from it’s handler in one of the holding blinds, jumped into to the water and swam full on after Cooper, who had by that time already fetched the bird and was coming back in.

It could have been bad. The two dogs could have fought over the duck. But when the Lab got to Cooper, Coop simply turned his head and the bird away from the Lab, and kept on swimming in a straight line back to Russ. The Lab growled and tried several times to grab the bird, but Cooper simply turned his head each time and kept on swimming.

And even more amazing, when Cooper stepped up onto the land, he calmly came into heel at Russ’s left, sat, and delivered the bird, ignoring the Lab who was still trying to grab the duck, as well as the gaggle of judges, handler, and bystanders who were all trying to grab the Lab.

The judges were amazed that Russ seemed so calm. The Lab’s handler had been freaking out the whole time, calling and yelling at her dog to “Come!”, which the Lab ignored. Sadly, but understandably, the Lab was disqualified for the day. Cooper passed the test with flying colors.

And here’s the thing. We’ve been inadvertently training Cooper for this very scenario without realizing it. If you’ve read the post about our taking Cooper and Tooey to St. Louis Ponds, you might remember that Tooey loves to chase after Cooper while he’s retrieving bumpers from the water. He’s learned to outswim her to the bumper, and then keep it away from her while they’re returning to land. Having some Lab try the same maneuver was nothing new after Tooey’s shenanigans.

So the moral of the story? If the rules let you do something to your advantage, do it. Use whatever opportunities for training you can get. And then be grateful when it all turns out all right.

Read Full Post »

Alas, there are no pictures of the Puyallup dog show this past weekend. Which is a darn shame because Rebecca did a gorgeous job grooming Tooey in preparation.

On Saturday, all Rebecca’s work paid off. On Sunday, events conspired to keep us humble.

On Saturday, we had a really light-handed, gentle judge in a nice big ring. Both Tooey and I just got into the flow. We ran around the ring at the right speed, Tooey stood for the judge’s exam just beautifully, and we came out of there with Winner’s Bitch, Best of Winners, and one more point. (That puts us at 11 out of 15 needed.)

Sunday was a whole different game. For some reason, the ring magically shrunk. Or perhaps it was that I didn’t gauge the distances right. Whatever the reason, both Tooey and I slipped on the concrete floor, and then I righted myself awkwardly by falling into and grabbing the ring gates. That put us both off our stride.

Plus, Tooey decided she didn’t like this judge. He was heavier handed than Saturday’s judge, and didn’t talk to me. Being an opinionated dog, Tooey must have decided that he was not in the “friend” category.

As he ran his hands over her, Tooey tucked her tail and tried to sit, and then turned her head to follow his every move. I tried to “support” (i.e., hold her up) by kneeling down with my left hand under her belly and my right hand holding her head forward. But all that put me in the judge’s way, so I had to back off.

And then, at the very worst, as the judge walked away from us, Tooey tensed herself and reached out to nip his fingers. Fortunately, I caught her before she could complete the nip, and gave her leash a pop.

Not a good thing to be nipping judges. But it’s also not a good thing to correct your dog while in the ring, either.

Even with all those shenanigans, the judge awarded Tooey Reserve Winner’s Bitch — no points, but a nice honor.

Read Full Post »

Older Posts »

%d bloggers like this: