Tuesday, 26 February 2008

Ouch my feet hurt!!!

Well not much happening at the moment purely because I can only just about walk and even then its only for about 10mins all due to Plantar Fasciitis. My poor dogs are going stir crazy as they are not getting walked. When I go up the field I am letting them all have a run around and I throw their toys just to wear them out abit.
Anyway I have still had 1:1 lessons up the field so I have really suffered afterwards as have been standing for over an hour.
Last Friday Leah came up the field and did a bit of training with her dogs and then she worked Chip for me. I can manage to do a little bit with Tigg as long as is doesn't involve running. He is doing very well on the channel weaves and will go in from all angles with me sitting in a chair.
I am waiting for a referral to a physio to try and help sort my feet, also really hoping my orthotics turn up this week. The way I feel at the moment I don't see how I am going to be able to go to shows. I keep entering them in the hope that they will get better, if not someone is going to gain Chip (grade 7) to run and then Tigg when he starts competing at the end of April. Unfortunately Buzz doesn't run for anyone else, so he wont get to do his Veteran classes.
Lets hope I can get them sorted soon and be back up and running.

Monday, 18 February 2008

Lovely weekend weather

Well the weather was lovely this weekend (although a little nippy). Went up the field on Saturday with Elaine and my husband to assemble my new agility equipment (well secondhand, I've got the old Eukanuba set), it all looks very nice now. Also had someone come up and buy my old frame and flat tunnel, so that went to a good home and freed up some space. My feet are still really bad and have found that my crocs are the most comfortable, not really good for doing agility in though. Anyway after the equipment was set up, Elaine and I played about with Pi and Chip. Chip is such a good boy, as I couldn't run, I recalled where I could and then just sent him while I was walking around. He did some really good bits and his contacts were excellent (I will have to walk around more often).
On Sunday I had 2 people come up for private lessons, so I went up abit early and did some weaves and contacts with Tigg.

He is doing some really nice work now and he seems to be enjoying himself.

After being up the field for almost 3 hours, I could hardly walk and came home and got the footspa out and sat with me feet in it with hot water and Dettol, for about half an hour. They felt a bit better, but I am going to the doctors on Friday to see what they say. My special orthotics that are being made wont be here for at least another week or two.

Monday, 11 February 2008

Sheep herding and weaves

I took Tigg and Chip on a sheep herding day, this was just a session to see if your dog had the herding instinct. Although I had tried Chip on sheep before and he was actually quite good, the difference was I was in the pen with the sheep and Chip was on the outside, this time it was one big pen with the dog in the pen with the sheep. Therefore as Chip could now be with me (rather than outside a pen) he spent the whole time walking backwards staring up at me. Tigg on the other hand was excellent. From the minute he saw the sheep he didn't take his eyes off them. I let him off the lead and he went straight around the back of them, I was able to tell him to lie down as he got around the back of them as you don't want the dog to just keep going round and round in circle.

He was even strong enough to squeeze his way between the sheep and the fence to get them away from the fence, whereas alot of the dogs would just hold them against the fence.

Elaine came with me and she worked him the second time as I tore my Plantar Fasciia tendon in my other foot whilst working Chip. Tigg was really good and it was good to sit on the outside and watch him and as Elaine said it felt good to feel like you were in control of the sheep and the dog. Thoroughly enjoyed the day and might consider taking Tigg back for a few more lessons.

Then on Sunday I held a weave workshop up at my field. Although I had to sit down for most of the day due to my foot, Elaine helped me hold dogs, put out toys/treat pots etc, it was a good day. The first group were quite inexperienced, so we did alot of work on the channel and V weaves and I think they went away with a few exercises to work on and were pleased with the work they had done. The second group were alot more experienced so all the work was done on the upright weaves, but we were working on entries and positioning of the handler. I had them sending the dogs through all 12 weaves on their own and recalling through. Also had them moving away from the weaves to get into position for the next obstacle. They all worked really hard and I really enjoyed teaching them.
Now for a weeks rest and continually putting ice on my foot, I really hope it heals soon, so I can continue training Tigg.

Friday, 8 February 2008

Weaves & Contacts

Just been to Nancy's and had a really good lesson (thanks Nancy). I had told Nancy that I wanted to concentrate on the weaves with Tigg as I am struggling to get him from V's or Channels onto the uprights. Anyway Nancy had a look at what he could do on theV's, then we tried putting some of the poles upright and it is clear that he really doesn't understand. So with Nancy's advice we kept him on the slightly open V's and practised lots of different things. He was completing the weaves with me infront or if I left him to do them all by himself and I didn't move from the beginning. He knows that he has to do all 12 weaves regardless of where I am or what I'm doing. I am now just going to practice lots of those exercises and NOT do any upright weaves with him for a month or two. I will go back to Nancy in about a months time and hopefully we can see what stage he's at. The one good thing is that I have spent alot of time working on weave entries and he did prove that he can find the entries. I will continue to proof those whilst on the V weaves.
We then talked alot about his contact position and he does a lovely touch at the bottom of the contact. I have talked to Nancy about his contacts and I am going to do a similar exercise that Nancy has been doing with Niamh. I am going to put my dogwalk plank down onto the mini table and just practice running him at speed down the plank and proofing his contact position.
Nancy has given my alot of things to work on and I must make the effort and go up the field and put the ideas into practice.
Anyway off to do abit of sheep herding with Chip and Tigg tomorrow and then I've got 2 sessions of 8 people/dogs coming upto my field on Sunday for a weave workshop. At least the weathers improved.

Monday, 4 February 2008

The Weekend

Well another update in a short period of time (what is going on). Saturday we had Toni Dawkins come to our club for a training day. I love training with Toni. I had decided I wasn't going to run Tigg and had booked a lesson with Nancy on the Friday instead, unfortunately couldn't go to Nancy's as her ground was too wet. Decided I would work Tigg, but I would only do little bits then put him back in the van. He did some really good bits and pieces and I was very pleased with him. He had lovely tight turns (so glad i taught him the "steady" command) and his contacts were excellent and had infact speeded up abit. The real problem I had with him were the weaves and I know I've got to go up the field and put the work in to help him. Then we took Toni to the pub for lunch and had a good ole natter. Then I worked Chip in the afternoon group, his contacts are abit hit and miss at the mo, but can't moan as I can't make up my mind what to do with them. I think I want to run them, then I change my mind and I want him to stop, so no wonder he doesn't know what to do. Anyway he was his usual brilliant self and did some really good bits.
Sunday I went to C-side. Bernadette set a lovely veteran agility course and Buzz loved it and he did a lovely wait. Buzz did have the fastest time, but it was clear round only and a little bag of biscuits (which Buzz loved). After alot of hanging around I finally got to run Chip in the jumping, he was going so well, then went off to look at the tunnel, so although clear, it was slow. I was pleased that he didn't have any jumps down. Then after more hanging around, finally got to do the agility, by now, my feet were killing me and I was freezing cold, but once I get on the start line, I forget the pain I'm in and just run. Chip did a lovely run, got all his contacts and again left all the poles up. He was lying 2nd when I went home, but it was very early on into the class. I was just pleased he got his contacts and didn't have any jumps down.
By the time I got home I could hardly walk as my feet were so painful, I soaked them in a bowl of dettol and they felt better. I've got an appointment with a clinic in Surrey on Thursday that specialise in making orthotics for people with Plantar Fasciitis, the orthotics are very expensive, but if it cures the problem I don't mind paying.
Having a lazy day today to rest my feet then off to training with Mac tonight.