Tuesday, October 21, 2014

Herding dog

We has Shea instinct tested this weekend. She passed! I thought that she would pass but she didn't do as well as I thought she might. I think she just needs more time and exposure to build confidence. Becuase she sure likes herding the dogs and cats! The evaluator seemed to think the same thing. Anyway, here are some pics-looks like a pro right?

Monday, October 20, 2014

Get wet. Get dirty. Run Dogwood.

This was the t-shirt theme for this year's Dogwood Canyon Trail Run and we did all three! 

It was a beautiful fall morning in the woods, a bit on the chilly side to start but overall pretty lucky weather wise. The water crossings this year were deeper and wider thanks to recent rain which was very...refreshing?

This year the 15k or 9.3 mile course ended up 9.8 miles long, I guess that was to make up for last year only being 8.5 miles long. Apparently it's very difficult to get a trail run to come out to the advertised distance. None of the ones I've been to yet have been close!

But, despite not having run longer than 7 miles since June I was able to maintain a pace close to what I did last year, even over this years longer distance so I was pretty happy with that. And other than one bloody toe and lots of sore muscles we all survived!

Friday, October 17, 2014

Camo cat

Twist was playing in the brush pile while I was waiting for the horse shoer yesterday.  She blends in quite well!

Tuesday, October 14, 2014


We were not really looking for another rabbit.  We were also not opposed to another rabbit.  The thing was, I didn't want rabbits with a significant age difference, I didn't want to litter train right now, and I didn't want to deal with a prolonged, months-long bonding period.  I also didn't want to actively seek out a rabbit.  All this criteria make the odds of a second rabbit at this point in time slim.

But then two separate people contacted me (one via Facebook, the other text) about a local rabbit needing a new home.  He was also around Summer's age, neutered, and litter trained.  I figured it might be a sign and agreed to try him out with the stipulation that if they don't bond in a few weeks-he would need alternative accommodations.

Also, he is a mini-lop, which most people find adorable, but is not really my style.  But this was more for the bunnies than for me.  And, really, he is cute.

The first night went well.  We put them in the kitchen-neutral territory, slick floor, and there were no incidents.  They actually seemed moderately interested in each other in a positive way.

The next day there were skirmishes, but no blood so we let them carry on and they spent most of their "date" sitting about 3 feet from each other looking irritated.

Unfortunately for rabbits, even unfamiliar or hostile rabbits tend to seek comfort in each other during stressful events.  Thus, the process of bonding two rabbits often involves scary or stressful situations like car rides or slick surfaces.  After yesterday's squabbles I decided to up the fear factor for them to get a positive experience.  Car rides fall into the category of too much trouble for me so I opted for super slick bathtub.  It worked-they huddled together most of the time. After a break back to their separate cages they are in bathroom on the tile floor sitting a few feet away from each other but looking a little less irritated than yesterday.

Oh, and he came with the name Archibald, which we hate.  New name will be coming pending the success of this relationship.

Sunday, October 12, 2014

First nosework trial!

This was Legend's big weekend.  Yesterday I spent the afternoon volunteering for the NW2 dogs so I would have an idea of what trials and procedures were like.  This was really helpful and I also learned a lot.  I got to video and time so it was also really interesting seeing all the dogs work.

Today was our turn.  The first search for our group was vehicles.  We haven't done a lot of vehicle searches but I felt ok about it since there are really only so many places it can be.  My plan was to walk all the way around each vehicle-there were three-then go back to any place she paid attention to.  So the only place she stopped was at the back of the truck (the first vehicle we looked at).  After we went around the others I went back to the back of the truck and let her work that again.  She seemed interested, but didn't really give a strong alert or zero in on any particular location.  The longer we stayed the less she wanted to work.  Like an idiot I thought she was overwhelmed, stressed or not confident.  What she was really saying was its not here, move on!  But I called it at the truck and obviously was wrong.  So no chance at a title, but a good learning experience.

Next up was containers.  My plan was to walk her around a specific path to make sure she checked all the boxes and so I could make a note of any she showed interest in.  About 1/3 of the way through she pulled me off my path, over to the odor box, gave it a big nudge and looked at me like "see mom, I know what to do!"  Lesson learned.  Trust my dog!!

Next we did exteriors which was the one I would have been most worried about because there is so much to look at and get distracted by and there is a 3 minute time limit.  But she worked well and tracked down the odor in 43 seconds and gave me that very confident where's my cookie look.  Interiors was super fun because here she got to be off lead as it was confined to a large classroom.  She blasted across the start line, gave the room a running search and then zeroed in on the odor under the seat of a chair in 35 seconds.  FYI containers only took her 16 seconds.  She was not one of the 3 fastest dogs in any division but I think her times were still pretty good given her experience level.  Our instructor was proud of her and so was I.  

I wasn't sure if she was really ready to trial but she showed me that she was.  We had a lot of fun and are really looking forward to another trial. But, NW is not a hugely popular sport yet so, bummer, there are no trials nearby anytime soon.  In fact even the "close" trials will require a bit of travel so looks like it might be spring before we have another chance.  But we will keep practicing and get back to tracking.  

Tomorrow we are having a NW seminar so I will get a chance to learn more and have even more fun!

Friday, October 10, 2014


So I was kind of a bad mom and forgot about Lyric's birthday (which was yesterday) until late last night. To make matters worse, she had to skip breakfast this morning and go have bloodwork, a dental cleaning, and three teeth pulled. She probably thinks I'm the most uncool mom ever right now. But, happy eighth birthday anyway powder puff! I'll make it up to you!

Tuesday, October 7, 2014

More Shea

Our friend Lori took these pics a few weeks ago at an agility trial.  Shea was very good and sweet at the trial-but still no adopters!  Come on, look at that face!

Monday, October 6, 2014

Running Report

My mileage and intensity have really fallen off the last few months due to weather, work and other factors.  So things are going all right but I think the 5 and 10K times I'm hoping for may have to happen next year, if they are going to happy...not getting any younger I guess!

In August I ran a pretty decent time at the Hot N Hilly race, and won my age group.  Saturday was super cold here in the morning (44 degrees).  I am not a fan of cold weather running, and I overslept.  So I was still running from the car to the starting line as the race began.  One of my friends was kindly waiting at the start with my number so I could still run legally.  Fortunately it was chip timed so I got an accurate time and place, but not one I was happy with-the whole scenario was less than ideal though!  But afterwards we all went out for celebratory birthday lunch (Linda and I share a birthday, which was yesterday).

Yesterday, Cheri, Grace, and I had a lovely morning trail run to get ready for the Dogwood Canyon 15K in 2 weeks.  I had hoped to do better this year than last year, but i don't think that will be the case.  Hopefully we will at least have fun and good weather.

Sunday, October 5, 2014


I posted this on Facebook to compete with the overabundance of people obsessed with their children. It has attracted more attention than almost anything else I've posted so apparently everyone finds it amusing and/or feels the same way about people who nonstop post kid photos and literally nothing else. 

Monday, September 29, 2014

Our baby

Our little Twix is all of 3.5 lbs now, able to jump on countertops and tables and already addicted to greenies. She's sweet and social, but not overly cuddly. But what she lacks in cuddles, she makes up for in cuteness. Clearly.