Monday, March 7, 2016


Yesterday Miley and I had a working spot in Judi Adler's "Working Outside The Box" workshop.  It was so much fun!!  This was absolutely the most perfect type of "obedience" workshop to do with Miley!  Judi is very upbeat and creative in the games that she chooses and she made the whole workshop so much fun!

The basis of the workshop was proofing various behaviors that you need to compete in obedience, but doing it in a way that is fun and really tests your dog's knowledge of the commands that you give.  Sure they know how to take a dumbbell, but will they take a banana if you give them the same command?  Sure your dog knows the jump command, but will they still do it over a string of flags held up by two large stuffed dogs?  The list goes on and on and it made for a really positive experience for Miley and I in particular.

The workshop was also based around accruing points.  There were individual points and team points.  Each team was made up of five dog/handler teams, who were put together in a random assortment of skill level.  I'm always a little leery of team events because you never know what you're in for. But the way this workshop was set up, I felt that you actually got to know a little more about the other people you were in the workshop with.  You got to work together in a way that you don't usually get to do in a workshop setting where you're usually focusing on you and your dog's individual weaknesses.

It was a ton of a fun and it had the benefit of giving me some ideas of different approaches to work on some things that Miley is currently afraid of (more on that in a separate post).  Overall, I was pretty pleased with how the sassy pants did.  Bit by bit we're getting there.

Dominic also got to come along for the ride and practice being a well behaved puppy in the minivan.  Or at least, that was the plan.  He figured out how to unzip the soft crate that I keep in the van for transporting him.  Thankfully he doesn't destroy the zipper in the process.  Yes, a wire crate would be more appropriate for a puppy, but lets be real.  I already have three soft crates and three wire crates and just two dogs.  I need to buy another crate like I need a third vehicle.  For now, he gets to ride in the Heffner "remodeled" soft crate so that he's contained while I'm driving.  But I digress.

While I was inside the building with Miley, he managed to unzip the soft crate, loosen (emphasis on zero destruction) one of the straps securing the blockade between the two front seats, crawl through the gap and consume the large remainder of my morning smoothly that I had so cluelessly left sitting in the front cup holder.  Oh yeah, and there were a few smoothy face smears on the seats that clued me in to what had happened.  I knew something was up when I came walking up to the minivan and saw some tell tale ear taps poking up in the back where they should not have been.  I took him out to pee, and tried putting him back in the soft crate in the hopes that maybe it was just the smell of the smoothy.  Nope.  The boy likes his freedom.  To his credit, no damage was done to the minivan (currently knocking on wood that I didn't just jinx myself by saying that) or anything else.  I snuck up on the van a few more times to see what he was up to and each time he was passed out on the dog beds, looking as innocent as possible.  I'll take it!

I'm very much over due for Dominic pictures and video, but I'll leave you with this shot.  The struggle of cuteness is real people.

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