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!

Monday, September 27, 2010


Boone from Many Muddy Paws is MISSING!

Anyone in the Lethbridge, AB area, please keep an eye out for this boy! Please crosspost.

Monday, September 6, 2010

Blast From the Past

"Past" being June, anyways!

Back in June, SAA held an AAC agility trial and I had Romeo entered in a couple of runs. That weekend he earned a Starters Standard Q and a Starters Snooker Q. A friend video taped Romeo's Standard run, and this weekend gave me a DVD with the video!

For the little bit of agility that we do, I'm very proud of my boy for how well he does! He had a bit of a bobble at the weaves (was his VERY first time EVER seeing 12 weaves in a row), and he still isn't super strong on the tunnels, so some of my handling is a bit awkward to ensure that he takes the tunnel.

Wednesday, August 25, 2010

ROAD TRIP continued

So we're home now, settled in and rested up. Life is back to normal.

Last weekend the dogs and I went on a road trip to attend a Sheltie Party! WOOHOO! Circle of Sheltie Friends has a yearly summer party for members. Not all of us are from the same area, so this year there were Sheltie Parties spread across the US and Canada. I attended the party in Edmonton, which meant about a 6 hour drive. Took a couple of days off, packed the car with dogs and presents, and headed out!

The party didn't start until Saturday, but the hostess was gracious enough to let me bunk at her place for the weekend. She has two stellar Shelties, Luka (9 years) and Cullen (2 years). All of the boys got along very well; Romeo and Cullen chased each other around the house while Gio and Luka stood back and barked at them. Perfect match!

Gio and Romeo especially loved the resident children! The young boy was a ball throwing machine, and tossed toys and balls for the dogs for ages. Easy way to win over the heart of a Sheltie ... balls and food.

The party on Saturday saw 13 dogs (12 Shelties and 1 Collie), plenty of food, loads of kids, and some great company! It was a great time had by all!

Remember the two ways to win over a Sheltie? Here is the second one! FOOD!

I guess, in lieu of food, scratches are acceptable, too.
And kids can supply ball throwing, food, AND scratches! WOOHOO!

Gio made a new buddy in Jake, the other super-sized Sheltie at the event. I think they are the most handsome super-sized Shelties EVER! Even down to their matching front leg markings.

All of these festivities resulted in plenty of tired Shelties.

We hit the road again on Sunday to come home. One pit stop along the way ... Vegreville!

Vegreville is between Edmonton and Lloydminster and is home to the world's largest Pysanka (ie. Ukrainian Easter egg). This has always been my favorite roadside attraction. I have an odd love for those giant statues or sculptures that many towns have and would some day love to go on a road trip and visit all of the big monuments, statues, and small town museums that I come across! Some day ... when I have more money and time than I know what to do with.

I have a photo like this from when I was much younger. Thought it was only appropriate to get a picture of the dogs with the egg as well!

Thursday, August 19, 2010


The boys and I are going on a very special road trip!

But you'll have to wait to hear details and see pictures until after we get back. ;)

Tuesday, August 17, 2010

Why Did the Chicken Cross the Road?

I found this on the Many Muddy Paws blog and just HAD to re-post it here!

(Dog Trainer Version)
Author: Unknown

Pavlov: we fed the chicken on the opposite side of the road each day at 4p.m. until the chicken’s autonomic system actually began causing the chicken to cross the road at 4 p.m. without even questioning the “why.”

B.F. Skinner: on prior occasions when the chicken voluntarily crossed the road, this behavior was followed immediately by a reinforcing consequence.

Cesar Milan: I bullied, chased, poked, and intimidated the chicken until it raced across the road, because I am a strong leader.

Barbara Woodhouse: You just say, “Walkies” with the right accent and place a crumpet on the other side of the road.

Karen Pryor: by associating R+ with road crossing and P+ withstanding still, with a VR schedule, and offering a reward in keeping with the Premack principle, we increased the intensity and frequency of the road crossing behavior.

Bill Koehler: a few well-timed pops on the choke chain and the chicken was cheerfully to crossing the road.

Nicholas Dodman: I gave the chicken fluoxetine, sertraline, paroxetine, carbamazepine, and azapirone and then it was happy to cross the road.

Patti Ruzzo: I crossed the road, pausing every step to spit a treat out of my mouth like a human pez dispenser and the chicken followed along catching the treats.

Electric Collar Advocate: whenever the chicken does not cross the road I give it an electric shock. But do not worry, the shock is no more than you would feel if you walked on a carpet wearing socks and it does not bother the chicken at all. The feathers standing up and the smell of burning flesh mean nothing. In fact, they are happier having nice clear communication than they would be otherwise.

Yuppie: chickens are just like little people in feather jackets, and if you love them and give them diamonds and feel sorry for them all the time, they will be happy to cross the road for you.

Paris Hilton: Because I put it in a Gucci bag and carried it.

Shelter director: Any chickens that do not cross the road will be euthanized for their own good, and the others we will ‘adopt’ out tomorrow for only $200 each. Please send us money so we can keep doing more of this important work!

HSUS member: I do not know anything about animals, I have never been around animals and am not really fond of animals, but we passed a law mandating that chickens be kept without cages because animals belong only in the wild and cannot be happy coexisting with man, so now they are walking wherever they want.

PETA member: chickens have the right to live in world without roads. Any chicken that lives within a hundred miles of a road is suffering an inhumane existence and might eventually be hit by a car so we should kill it today to ensure that it does not die tomorrow.

Sunday, August 15, 2010

In Reverse

I've received some requests via my Sheltie Hair Facebook page for videos explaining how I do my training.

One request asked for a demonstration on how I train a "back up". So here it is!

And, while I was at it, I made a video showing how I train a backward heel. There are more techniques to clean up the backward heel once the dog has the basic idea, but this video shows the very beginning steps with a STRONG focus on heel position.

Sunday, August 1, 2010

Happy 4th Birthday Romeo!

Today is the little shit's 4th birthday!

I can't believe he is 4 years old already. Boggles the mind, it does!

I still think of Romeo as the little puppy. He's the young one, the little one ... not the adult dog! It's so weird!

But, while he certainly cannot be called a pup anymore, at least he still acts like one! Definitely not a mature bone in this little turd's body.

Just to convince myself that Romeo really is a big boy now, here are some pictures of when he first joined the family at 9 months old.

The first meet and greet with Gio. Gio assumed the "maybe if I ignore him, he will go away" expression on day 1 and has maintained it ever since.

Romeo hid under the coffee table for most of the first evening. Gio continued to assume the stance that if he didn't look at Romeo, he would just go away.

But they both lightened up once they realized there were tennis balls involved!

And became fast friends.

The scrawny little puppy, affectionately named "you little black bugger" ...

... has turned into quite the handsome little man!

With plenty of *sproing*!

Happy 4th birthday, little pig!

Tuesday, July 27, 2010

More From Watrous

Here are a couple more pictures from our agility demo at Watrous last weekend. Thanks Greg and Andrea for taking them! Love to see my boy at work!

Catchin' up

Bad crop ... but the uncropped version with me included looked like I had a pole wedged
in my butt crack.

Weeee! Tunnels! At least this picture makes it appear as if he has tunnel drive ... he doesn't.

My bouncy little guy. This must have been his ONE set of nice weaves all day.

Weavin' is serious bizniz. (The finger keeps him in there ... we're working on weaning it out.)

He loves that tire now.

Chilling in the shade, waiting for the next demo to start.

A slightly better angle on the group shot from last post.

Saturday, July 24, 2010

Remember Us??

The summer is just so darned busy, I've been letting the blog slide. I've been taking on a lot of little projects, plus the dog stuff, school, upkeep of the house and yard ... Blogging is getting neglected. I'm sorry.

So here is a little catch up of what we have been doing the past couple of weeks!

Beginning of July was Pets in the Park. An annual fun day put on as a fundraiser for the Saskatoon SPCA, New Hope Dog Rescue, and SCAT Street Cat Rescue. Local pet related businesses set up booths, local dog clubs put on demonstrations, and groomers and vets offer cheap nail trims and microchipping. It's always a great time, and this year was no different. We luckily had beautiful weather and there was an awesome turnout! The boys and I spent all day at the St. John Ambulance Therapy Dog booth and organized a couple of talks about the therapy dog program.

While we have had plenty of rain still, there have been a few really gorgeous days to enjoy the summer weather! Lots of running at the park and frisbee catching.

Plenty of frisbee missing, too.

The Flickr challenge for last week was "action blur". Of all the blurry (and often humorous) action shots of the boys playing frisbee, I chose this one. I just think it is so much fun!

While there was plenty of barking and running at the park this week as well, it was a more subdued experience. Gio ventured off to explore the grounds.

While Romeo ran around me in circles "talking" about how awesome he thinks the park is.

All that circle running and talking makes a boy tired and hot. That is when the Monster Tongue makes its appearance. It never ceases to amaze me how he can fit that humungo-tongue in his teeny little head. Might account for the lack of brain power some days.

I was pleasantly surprised that I caught a shot of Romeo running towards me WITHOUT his mouth hanging open and that obscenely large tongue flapping around. See, he CAN look cute!

On Friday the boys and I participated in a Therapy Dog demo at a local care home. The residents always love to come out and watch the dogs do tricks and entertain them. But visiting time is the best!

As always, Romeo collected a new friend and admirer.

Here is our snazzy looking collection of doggy entertainers.

And finally, today was an afternoon of agility demos out in Watrous. Watrous was having some sort of car show/farmer's market/bands and entertainment day. I'm sure it has an official name, but we will go with that. Apparently SAA (Saskatchewan Agility Association) has been going out to Watrous for this event for a number of years now. This was my and Romeo's first time tagging along. The demos were a lot of fun with a great turnout of specators and talented doggies alike!

Romeo had a great time and made yet another new fan. This time a young girl who was absolutely smitten by him. Her mom (grandma??) got a really cute picture of them together, but I wasn't fast enough to grab my camera. I had just placed Romeo in a stand stay beside the kneeling girl and turned to walk behind the photographer so I could get Romeo's attention. When I turned back around, the girl had poor Romer in a headlock, held tight to the side of her face. He's such a trooper, and put on a big happy face for the camera despite the clearly uncomfortable situation.

And for that, and all the hard work he did running in the three demos in the scorching heat, he deserves a little nap.

Copyright & Link Restriction

Please do not use any text or images from this blog without expressed permission of the blog owner. If you are a organization, group, community, commercial site, are acting on behalf of a commercial site (sponsored by them), or are trying to build an audience for any site with the intent of financial gain, YOU MUST obtain permission from the blog owner BEFORE reproducing or copying any material from this site, or embedding this blogs feed into your own site.