Saturday, June 27, 2009

Cascade Dockdogs Practice!

This morning Heffner and I went to the June practice for the Cascade Dockdogs, which we are now members of! Since last time he wasn't really into getting into the water much, I thought that taking the dogs out to the lake yesterday would be a great way to get him into the whole swimming mind set. What I didn't think about was the amount of rain that we more recently. The water levels at the lake were so high that all the beaches that we've gone to before were completely submerged. Here's one of the beaches that we usually go to:

Ordinarily there's at least a quarter mile of beach here just past the grass line that you can see. But the water level is just so muhc higher than it usually is this time of year! And on top of that, the temperatures were barely into the upper 60's when we got there and the water temperatures were much cooler. Normally Heffner doesn't care, but he was balking a little bit about going in. I also wasn't about to just chuck is favorite toy out into the lake if he likely wasn't going to retrieve it. And there was NO WAY that I was going to swim in the water when it was that cold! A sure fire way to get Heffner into the water is for me to get into the water. If momma is swimming, just try and keep him out of the water! But that just wasn't happening yesterday. And Bess also was barely in the mood for wading. All-in-all, our trip to the lake was pretty much a bust.

While we were waiting in line to get our day pass, the guy behind us was totally cracking me up! He got out of his car to try and snap a picture of the dogs with their heads out the canopy windows (they've managed to knock out both of the screens). The dogs were very cooperative until he actually got out of the car. Then they both pulled their heads back in and stared at him from inside the canopy! It was pretty funny! The guys was pretty persistent, but I'm not sure that he got the shot he was hoping for!LOL

I did take some pictures while I was trying to get the dogs in the water.

Since the whole swimming thing obviously wasn't going down, I decided to at least take them along the lake rim trail for a little bit so that they could stretch their legs. Some sections of the trail were almost overgrown by the very tall weeds along the sides, but it was still doable.

The unfortunate aspect of the whole no swimming and no beach for the dogs to wear themselves out on while playing, is that I had two dogs who still had a whole lotta energy after our little one hour trip to the lake. I ended up taking them running with me that night and that definitely helped to take the edge off, but still not quite the amount of exercise that they're used to.

Now onto this morning! Just like last time, the practice was fun with a lot of super nice and laid back people. There were a lot more dogs there this time. Lots of very excited to jump dogs too! I decided to skip the puppy dock this time since it's not deep enough for Heffner to swim, and we went straight for the competition dock. We tried doing the whole ramp thing this time. I waded down it as far as I could go (no hip waders this time since it was so warm out!), but Heffner wasn't budging much at all. I wasn't about to throw his toy out there since he also wasn't showing a whole lot of interest in going after it. After a few minutes of me trying to coax him in, I decided to go over to the puppy dock and at least get him into the water. But that also wasn't to be. For whatever reason, he just wasn't into wading out into the pond at all. He would get so far and then start backing out. I even had his life vest on him! So we gave up after a bit and just stood on the sidelines watching the other dogs jumping off the competition dock. I was hoping that he would learn by osmosis, but not so much! I also didn't have my camera with me, but there were several people taking pictures so I'm hoping that I'll be able to snag one if someone caught some of Heffner and I trying to go into the water.

So we definitely have a few things to work on this summer (the club doesn't have practice during July and August due to all the competitions and people's summer plans). 1) I want him swimming a lot! 2) I need to work on his toy drive so that he gets just super amped up when I pull it out and he REALLY wants to go fetch it. 3) I need to practice getting him to jump off a dock to me in the water. We'll see how that all goes!

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