These are the chronicles of two Shetland Sheepdogs and their adventures in rally-o, obedience, flyball, agility, tracking and therapy dog work.
Also including information on raw feeding, canine epilepsy, positive training, and lots and lots of Sheltie hair!

Thursday, December 31, 2009

Wrapping Up 2009!

It's nearly here. 2010. The New Year. Where the heck did 2009 go?! It's been a crazy one, that is for sure.

I'm not really big on setting resolutions. I always end up breaking them. Instead, I like to have a general idea of the BIG picture goals for the next year.

Last year I set some goals, so let's start off by revisiting those and see how we did, shall we?

For 2009, our goals were ...

- finish his CARO Rally-O Excellent title
- begin working on his CARO C Stream Bronze title
- finish his CKC Novice Obedience title
- begin (and finish) his CKC Advanced Rally title
- continue on with therapy dog work

Gio did not complete his CARO Rally-O Excellent or C Stream Bronze titles ... there were only 3 CARO trials in the province last year, and we had to miss one because Gio ended up having a bad bout of seizures right at that time.
He did complete his CKC Novice Obedience title, though.
He also finished his CKC Advanced Rally title, as well as his CKC Excellent Rally title, again with a handful of High in Class ribbons along the way.
He continued his therapy dog work, as planned, with a total of 38 visitation hours in 2009.
In the midst of this, Gio had a horrible battle with pancreatitis induced by his epilepsy medication. I nearly lost him in March, the vets were not giving him a good chance of ever coming home again. Recovery took months, so there was quite a long down-time in there where we were only focusing on improving his health. My boy is such a trooper!

- finish his CARO Rally-O Excellent title
- begin working on his CARO C Stream Bronze title
- CGN test (if there is one offered locally this year, there weren't any last year)
- begin (and finish) his CKC Advanced Rally-O title
- continue to train towards competition in agility (master those contacts!)
- continue to train towards CKC Open Obedience title
- continue visiting as a SJA therapy dog

Romeo completed his CARO Rally-O Excellent title with Magna Cum Laude. He also completed his CARO C Stream Bronze title and earned 4 legs towards his C Stream Silver title (one more leg to go).
There was no CGN test in the province again this year, though I hear rumor that there is one planned for spring of 2010.
He completed his CKC Advanced Rally-O title as well as his CKC Excellent Rally-O title, with a handful of High in Class ribbons along the way.
We continued to train for AAC agility, and he has some really beautiful contacts now! He competed in his first trials at the end of the summer of 2009 and earned 1 qualifying score in Jumpers with a 1st place in his class.
Open Obedience got put on the back burner when Romeo advanced so far through CARO Rally-O. Our focus was switched to the next level there, Versatility.
He also continued volunteering as a therapy dog with a total of 67 visiting hours in 2009.

In total this year, the boys collected 7 new titles in obedience and Rally-O and amassed 105 total volunteer hours for St. John Ambulance Therapy Dog Program!

Goals for 2010:

- keep plugging away at that CARO Rally-O Excellent title
- continue therapy dog visitations
- get out tracking more and aim towards competing for a tracking title
- keep the seizures down to the low frequency that we have achieved at the end of 2009

- finish up the CARO C Stream Silver title
- begin actively competing in CARO Rally-O Versatility level
- continue training in agility, improve the weave poles, and try for a couple more qualifying legs
- continue therapy dog visitations

Normally, I don't like to make specific goals, as in "I want to get a perfect score at the Rally-O trial in June". Rather, I make goals I strive to complete by the end of the year. ... This year, it is a little different, though. There is the Canadian Shetland Sheepdog Association 2010 National being held in conjunction with the Hub City Kennel and Obedience Club (the dog club for which I am a trainer) being held here in Saskatoon in April/May. They are having Sheltie-only trials in obedience, Rally-O, agility, and conformation, in addition to the all-breed competitions that go along with the normal show. I REALLY REALLY REALLY want to take a High in Class with at least one of the boys in the Rally-O trials at the Sheltie National! I'm still contemplating whether I want to go for the Most Versatile Sheltie award with Romeo by competing in obedience, agility, and Rally-O. I think we might pass on that one, though, and just aim for Rally-O. Both dogs routinely get perfect scores in CKC Rally-O, so it is just a matter of being the fastest dogs to do so. So our training regime is all about SPEED in addition to precision.

Now that we've tied up loose ends in terms of goals, let's take another glance back at 2009. This time with pictures and music. (All together now ... "oooooooohh!" ... nicely done.)

And finally, our wishes to you!

Thank you for traveling with us through 2009.
We sincerely hope that you will stop by for a visit again in 2010.
Wishing you a year full of happiness, good health, wet noses, and warm toes!
Oh, and don't forget, lots and lots of Sheltie hair!


Muttsandaklutz said...

Wonderful video! Loved the photos, the accomplishments, the song, and of course the dogs themselves.

All the best to you and your crew for 2010!

Katja said...


Dawn said...

What a great batch of pictures! I enjoyed reading you in 2009 and look forward to reading you in 2010 as well! Best to you and the boys!!

from Katie (the dog) and Dawn in Michigan.

Cool Design Shelties said...

I will absolutly come back to this blog :o)


Happy New Year to you and the boys :o)

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