Wednesday, March 31, 2010

A New Plan

...for the itchies.

We went yesterday for the first time to a Holistic vet. It was different but what he said made sense! He gave us a new plan for attacking the itchies that includes -
Taking chicken out of his diet and increasing the amount of beef and fish.
Giving him some herbs and some liquid that I have to squirt in Rugby's mouth but he doesn't have to swallow three times a day.
Rugby also got acupuncture yesterday, and some vitamins too. 

He sent us home with articles to read, which I really enjoyed. They were filled with dog care facts (nutrition, fighting fleas and ticks, proper heartworm medication use, etc), some of the stuff I knew and some of it I didn't. Every dog owner could benefit from reading them and it is a shame that all vets don't give them to their clients!

I left pretty happy, since I agreed with this vet on alot of his points. This was a very nice change to our past vet experiences. We spent a LOT of time with the vet (about an hour) - also surprising since most vets kind of do a 'drive by' and have their vet techs do the rest.

The only thing he said that I didn't agree with was that he prefers harness to collars?? Ewww. No comment.
___________________________________

For a little more exciting news, Rugby met Karrie's 3rd foster dog over the weekend. She had to work so we agreed to drive him to the adoption event that morning and leave him with some other volunteers. I think it is best if I don't mention the events of the day, and move right on to some pictures.

Here are a couple of Jed and Rugby...


And one just of Jed since he is so cute -

He MIGHT already have a new owner lined up but he tested positive for some sort of tick related disease I have never heard of and they won't sell him to someone untill he has been neutered.

Sunday, March 28, 2010

Emergency Brakes

You gotta know when to stop!
Rugby had a great time last Thursday before class playing with Tiny (the english mastiff), Bliss (the golden puppy), Sugar (the lab puppy), Ellie (the yorkie), and Jasmine (the dobe).

The puppies were much more interested in playing with each other than playing with Rugby but he did attempt to joing them. Here is Rugby and Tiny wondering why they are being excluded from all the fun!

The rest of the photos are here.  The puppies loved going under the truck, although I don't think they will fit for too much longer!

Friday, March 26, 2010

I was warned...

Almost two years ago when I started with Margot, the very first thing she did was warn me of things to come. These things to come had mostly to do with a change in the way I saw the dog world.

Well, I must say I was accurately warned. As Margot probably predicted would happen all that time ago, I want to take a break from the regularly scheduled programing to share this e-mail I got today. Usually, I leave Rugby's blog to be just that - Rugby's blog, but this was just too entertaining to pass up. I am sure some of you have seen it already, but this was the first time it came through my inbox.

We have lots of new training updates and new pictures to share but that can wait. I hope this letter makes you a little uncomfortable today.
 ------------------------------------------
by DIANE KLUMB



Hi. My name is Diane, and I am a Breeder. I am good at it, and I am damned proud of it. I bought my first show dog in 1969 and whelped my first litter in April, 1975.


I have, since that inauspicious beginning, in partnership with my long suffering husband and a few good friends produced a few dozen champions, some top producers, a handful of Specials, and a lot of superb close-working grouse dogs and well loved companions. *We kept a fair number over the years and sold the rest. (NOTE: I said sold, not 'placed'.*.. we'll address that particular idiocy later.) We owned a kennel for many years, and trained gun dogs. This involved the killing of untold numbers of game birds, all of which we ate. I have more recipes for pheasant, grouse and woodcock than you can shake a stick at. We showed our hunting dogs and hunted over our show dogs.


I do not believe for a minute that the whelping or sale of a single one of those purebred dogs is in any way responsible for the euthanasia of a million unwanted dogs a year at shelters around the country, any more than I believed that cleaning my plate when I was a kid could in any way benefit all the poor starving children in Africa, no matter how much the nuns or my mother tried to make me feel guilty about it.


I couldn't see the logic then and I can't see it now (although today I would maybe refrain from suggesting that we bundle up Sister Edlita's meatloaf and actually send it to the poor starving children in Africa.)


Look at it this way:


If I go to a bookstore specifically to buy Matt Ridley's The Human Genome (which, as it happens, I recently did) and that bookstore does not have it, I will do one of two things - I will order it, or I will go to another bookstore that does carry it and purchase it there. What I will NOT do is take the same money and buy Martha Stewart's latest cookbook instead, because this is not what I want.


Guilt without logic is dangerous.


Show breeders are simply not responsible for the millions of unplanned and unwanted mongrels produced in this country. Period. So don't let anyone make you feel guilty about it.


I do not understand why the top horse farms in this country are not in the least embarrassed by the fact they make a lot of money doing it, yet in the world of dogs if one is to be respected, one is to lose one's ass financially. That is a load of horse shit, pure and simple, yet we accept it meekly and without question


Why is that?

Basic economic theory suggests that if we are not turning a profit, one of two things is wrong - we suffer from poor management, or we are not asking enough for our product to cover our production costs.


What are our costs?


Well, if we are breeding good dogs, besides basic food and veterinary costs we ought to be adding in the costs of showing these animals, and advertising, and health testing, which are not expenses incurred by the high volume breeders (puppy mills).


OK, so we have much higher costs involved in producing our healthier, sounder animals. Yet the average pet shop puppy sells for about the same as the average well bred pet from show stock, and often they sell for much more. What's wrong with this picture? We're stupid that's what's wrong.
Q. Why does a Jaguar sell for ten times more than a Hundai?


A. Because it's worth more and everyone knows it. "And everyone knows it" is the key phrase here, folks. But somehow no one knows our puppies are worth more and we're embarrassed to tell them. Why is that?


The difference between the sale price of a multi million dollar stallion and what he's worth as horsemeat on any given day at alivestock auction is quality. Yet we cannot address this issue in dogs because we are embarrassed to talk about money and dogs in the same breath.


Why is that?


OK, I'll tell you, because someone has to come out and say this sooner or later. *There is a war going on. *Unlike most wars, however, this one actually has three sides rather than two.


1. We have Show breeders, who are producing a small number of purebred dogs.
2. We have High-Volume breeders who are producing a large number of purebred dogs.

3. We have Animal Rights Activists, who believe that neither group has the right to breed or even own purebred dogs, much less make a profit at it.


While the first group is busy trying to get rid of the second group because they don't like the way they breed dogs (which by the way ain't gonna happen as long as the American public wants purebred dogs and the first group won't produce them) the third group is winning the war.


You think I'm making this up?


Then how come we've started saying we "placed" our puppies instead of sold them? We talk about the new "adoptive homes" instead of their new owners. What's next? Instead of price of a puppy, we'll charge an "adoption fee?" What's wrong with this new language? I'll tell you -


We didn't come up with it, the Animal Rights Activists did - we are just stupid enough to use it. We are stupid because it's based on the premise that we have no right to own dogs. It is based on the premise that dog ownership is the moral equivalent of human slavery, and that the species Homo sapien has no right to use any other species for any purpose whatsoever, be it food, clothing, medical research, recreation or involuntary companionship.


Now, I don't know about you, but my politically incorrect opinion is:
Our species did not spend the last million years clawing our way to the top of the food chain to eat tofu. The stuff tastes like shit no matter how you cook it, and there is absolutely no sense pretending otherwise.*


> Zoology 101:


Animals who kill other animals for their primary food source are called predators. Their eyes are generally on the front of their skulls, they have teeth designed to tear flesh from bone, and a digestive system designed to digest meat (like us). Animals that live primarily off vegetation are called herbivores. They have better peripheral vision, flat teeth for grinding, and the most efficient of them have multiple stomachs, which we do not (like cows). And lastly, Animals who live primarily off what other have killed (carrion) are called scavengers (think about that one long and hard.)


Man, like the canis, is a pack-hunting predator, which is probably why we get along so well. (If that fact bothers you, get over it.) How did we get to the top of the food chain? We are the most intelligent and efficient pack-hunters ever to suck oxygen from the atmosphere, that's how.

We are certainly intelligent enough to understand that maintaining that position on this small planet depends on responsible stewardship, not guilt. And we are so damned efficient that we can support a tremendous number of scavengers in our midst -- Like the Animal Rights Activists, for instance. (Me, I think we should dump the whole lot of them buck naked in the Boundary Waters and see how well this egalitarian philosophy of theirs plays out, but that's probably too politically incorrect for anybody else to consider )


So what do we do?


Well, to begin with we need to regain control. The first way we do this is with language, which is the tool they have been using on us. These people who don't want us to "own" dogs are likening themselves to Abolitionists. That's a fallacy, unless you accept the premise that dogs are really little humans in fur coats, which frankly is an insult to a species that has never waged war on the basis of religious differences.
No, the group they really resemble is the Prohibitionists - remember them? A particularly annoying bunch of zealots who firmly believed and somehow managed to convince our duly elected representatives that alcohol was a bad thing, and any beverage containing it should be illegal in these United States of America. Very few Americans actually agreed with this, by the way, but by the time Congress got its head out of its collective you-know-what, a whole new industry had developed -Organized Crime.

We look back at that whole debacle now and wonder how anything that stupid and wrongheaded ever happened. Well, boys and girls, in the inimitable words of the great Yogi Berra: Its's Deja vu all over again. The Prohibitionists are back.


And once again, we are buying it - - - Amazing .....

Tuesday, March 23, 2010

Spring Break Catch Up

So last week was spring break and instead of doing all my homework during that time, I instead spent my time stressing about the obedience trial, and doing everything except study and school work. That means for the past two days Rugby hasn't really been worked as I catch up on all my assignments. This also means that he isn't very happy with me. I always know when he needs to be worked because he becomes something of...a pest and starts constantly bugging me. And right now, he is something of a pest!

So before we went to bed tonight we practiced for a little bit inside. We did our #2 glove since I knew it would be easy and signals and the moving stand. We combined it all with practicing fronts and finishes.

I think Rugby has finally gotten the swing finish down pretty good since today he kept trying to do it without me asking. I made a game of it - we were switching between the finish to the left and to the right. The problem was he kept wanting to go left. :/ Since he was so eager to swing, I kept encouraging him to keep going and eventually I had him going in a complete circle around me - backwards. He thought is was very funny that if he kept going he ended up where he started, and I think I created a swinging monster out of him! If I can pick a word to use, perhaps we can spend some more time on it and get him to do it with less encouragement from me. It certainly would be easy to convince him to do!

I wasn't as successful in getting him to get that excited about the finish to the right, but maybe after a couple of tries and maybe getting outside will help to?

He was consistently happy the entire time we worked today, even though it was only 20 minutes or so. It was a different kind of happy than how he usually works so I'm not exactly sure whats up with him - but I'm not complaining! Also almost every single front he gave me was perfect too! Where were those fronts last weekend?!

Rugby's itching problem reappeared the week of the trial. :( He even tried to itch in the ring a couple times over the weekend. It is very dissapointing but untill the vets can figure something out and get him off medicine, etc we can't work scent articles. He has an appointment with a holistic vet next Tuesday. Hopefully he can think of something the others haven't been able to see!

Monday, March 22, 2010

New Training Goals

So the past weekend was a good learning experience for us. Seems I haven't quite gotten down the 'management' aspect of trialing. When he was showing in novice, I let him spend too much of his energy before a show and the lack of energy came through and showed in his scores. THIS time, I was really careful to keep him calm and/or locked up so that he would have plenty of energy for the ring. Since novice though, his stamina has increased pretty significantly because now I need to plan on using up some of his energy before a show!

He was a wild man, and it showed in his dancing between exercises on Friday and our poor fast transistions on the heel. We had spent so much time speeding up the heeling, I was not prepared for him to be forged doing the fast! That is where we lost most of our point this weekend, so we will devote some extra time to cleaning up the heeling pattern and better defining heel position.

The rest of the points were lost on fronts and finishes. He isn't giving me any of them consistently, partly because we didn't practice enough and partly because he is so young. Some days he would give me great fronts, and crappy finishes and other days he would give me great finishes and crappy fronts. Other days he will give me mediocre fornts and finishes. We need to work on helping him find the right spot everytime all by himself.

His size is really working against us. If he is off even just a little bit it shows - he doesn't have much room for error.

While we work on these things for open, we are turning the rest of our attention to Utility now. We have started before but we stopped working it as we prepared for this show. Now it is back to work!

Since it will be a while before we learn all of our Utility exercises, we will work on stamina at shows. We can keep showing in Open and Rally at trials, untill we get all the way though Rally to get him used to showing twice in a day. I still have to figure out what "works" for Rugby at trials. How to maintain him between days so he does his best.

It is daunting to know that this is just the beginning of a long obedience road ahead of us!

Saturday, March 20, 2010

York Show Weekend

So, I still have to get videos and pictures up, but Rugby is now
Mister Rugby Sevens CDX!!!!!!!!!!!!!

We screwed rally up because I missed a sign on Thursday, then went on the wrong side of a sign on Friday. Friday was a BIG dissapointment, because he was soo good and it would have been a 100 if I didn't mess us up! We did get a 99 on Saturday though for second place, since we were slower than the first place dogs. 2 legs is better than none I guess. Definetely worse than 3 though!

Thursday Rugby got a first place in his Open A class of 24 dogs with a 194.5.

Friday Rugby got a second place in Open A with 20 dogs with a 194.

Saturday Rugby got a first place in Open A with a 192. I'm not sure how many dogs actually showed up today - I think it was something around 14-16.

Overall a pretty good week! Now we have to really focus on our Utility stuff!!

Tuesday, March 16, 2010

Pep Talk

It was BEAUTIFUL outside today - sunny and 57*. Rugby and I went to my school today (it is spring break so not too many people were there) and we set up our jumps in the parking lot and did the whole open routine. He did really well, so we packed it up and moved to the opposite side of campus and did it again. This time one of the bus drivers pulled her bus over and watched us for a good 10 minutes before finally interupting to ask how in the world did I get him to do those things?! We told her lots and lots of practice, and gave her Margot's card for the puppy she is thinking about getting. He did his open routine even better the second time, so we packed it up one last time and took a stroll around campus practicing out of sight stays were it was convenient. Stays were good, especially since he was doing them all by himself in a place he had never been before. *Insert BIG sigh of relief*

We are leaving tomorrow morning, but we can't forget the most important part of the pre-trial preparations to get us in the right frame of mind...

The Pep Talk

The talk goes something like this:

Me: "Rugby, you know what time it is?"
Rugby:....
Me: "Its game time"
Rugby:....
Me: "Rugby, what are you?"
Rugby:....
Me: "Thats right, a winner!"
Rugby:...
Me: "Rugby, are you going to bring it?"
Rugby:....
Me: "Ok, good"
Rugby:...
Me: "Alright, lets go!" *pound it* (one of Rugby's coolest tricks)
Rugby:...

As you can see, Rugby doesn't participate much in the pep talk He mostly just listens. :p

It goes way further than just the pep talk though. We downloaded Rugby's theme songs for the ride up there too. His two favorites are below, but there is whole playlist dedicated to pre-trialing.
Imma Star by Jermih
and
Chillin by Wale and Lady Gaga

Time to go give Rugby a bath and finish getting out stuff together. I'm not sure if our hotel has internet but if we do then the blog will get a day by day update. If not, then everyone has to wait till Sunday to find out.

Monday, March 15, 2010

Foster #2

Doobie found a good home somewhere in PA, and my friend got her next foster over the weekend. Rugby and I went to visit her yesterday. I can't for the life of me get her name straight so we will just call her foster #2. She is five months old, and wanted Rugby to play with her really bad. He wasn't opposed to it at first, but she just had no manners, so Rugby helped her to learn.


He had done a good job of keeping her in line, but she wasn't learning fast enough. So I intervened and put Rugby in a crate to give him a break from her.
As he waited, we tried to tire her out. She chased this ball, but she wasn't really up for picking it up.
We took less photos of her than of Doobie, but the rest are here.

Seems like I found Rugby for good the other day, since his new improved attitude has been sticking around. If he works at the show like he worked today in practice I will be more than pleased with him. I would be EXTRA happy if he can polish up his slow transition though. We are going to work on that more tomorrow.  

Sunday, March 14, 2010

March 7th

Five years ago was the beginning of my adventure into the world of dogs. I had been working on my mom for 2 years, and she finally gave in. It started with this little 9 week old ball of fluff. This is the first picture we took of her.


Her name would be Mandi Mae, and she was destined to be my shadow, companion, barn dog, watchdog, lap warmer - extrodinaire. She went everywhere with me, from the horse farm, family functions, my work, friends' houses,the mall,

and even to school occasionally. I had a lot to learn, and luckily she had a lot to teach me.

She was verrrry timid puppy and she was 2 years old before she would start approaching people outside our family on her own. She was slow to warm up to dogs too. She woudn't dare get her feet wet if she could help it, and god forbid she got dirty in any way. Basicaly, Mandi was the exact opposite of Rugby.

I don't have much cat experience, but I am certain that is what Mandi considered herself to be. She enjoyed laying in your lap...unless you pet her too much - then she would leave. You could find her lots of the time settled on the back of the couch or on the front windowsill, and her favorite place to ride in the car was behind your neck.
This was before my days of dog training, and her training mostly entailed a long list of parlor tricks which she became quite good at. She took it easy on me and learned quickly.

She taught me about food quality control, as we made our way up the kibble food chain, and played around with raw diets. She taught me lots about haircuts. Trust me - I gave her quite a few bad ones that she didn't mind wearing untill it grew out and we could try again. She taught me what it was like to live with a dog.

Well into year 2 we had started going to agility classes. It was interuppted though for a much needed chiropractic session, and we didn't get the chance to return. She had just gotten enough confidence to start running to the obstacles by the time we had to quit.

Here is a cute video of her helping my sister with cheerleading.



June 13, 2008 Mandi was attacked by a german shepherd. She died 2 days later.
This was the last picture I took of her.

I started training with Margot two weeks later. Rugby came home with me six weeks after that. I wish I had started with Margot's only three weeks earlier. Things would be different if I had.


To make a long story short...
March 7th would have been Mandi's 5th birthday.
Happy Birthday Mandi! 

Friday, March 12, 2010

Finding Rugby

It is getting really close to 'show time' for Rugby, and I am getting reallllly nervous! Last week we had four straight days of him working really well for me. He as doing things correctly, and improving with each day. It didn't help much when out of the blue on Sunday, Rugby decided he had forgoten how to heel. More than that, he had forgoten how to work properly! What could possibly have such an effect to make him change so much overnight? Were did the Rugby from last week go?

I was a little upset at his timing, but I gave him a couple days off and we started working again Wednesday with the assumption that he had just gotten bored and tierd of it all. However, his attitude was still lingering on Wednesday as well. Thoughts of him blowing me off in the ring started coming to mind, and it motivated us to make a plan to find Rugby again in the time that we had.

It turns out it was quite easy to find Rugby again, it just took a little reminder of what constitutes 'working.'

Wednesday afternoon, we packed up our cones and hula hoops and went down to the playground.  I set them all out approximately 8 feet from each other, so we could heel continuously around them all. There were lots of kids on the playground because of the time in the afternoon we went. For this training session he was wearing an extra piece of equipment...his micro-prong collar. We started off on leash, to give him the best shot as success. The leash tightened only twice, and barely tightened. The first time was out of a wide about-turn and the second was when he lagged on a fast transition. That was all it took to find Rugby again! Ta-Da! He was back, and was heeling normally again. After some more practice we switched to a lightweight string slid through the ring of his collar, to transition him back to off lead heeling. Once he proved himself to me I took the plunge and took that off too.

By this time we had gathered quite a crowd of kids from the playground we were working next too. The mom's were doing a good job at keeping the kids off to the side and watching patiently, lucky for us. We needed to take a break from heeling so I went over to solicit their help. They all raised their hands when I asked if any of them would mind being distractions for us. I created a tunnel similar to our food tunnels, except this time...not with food. I left Rugby on one side, and did a drop on recall through them.

I thanked them all for their help and invited them to meet Rugby. They all wanted to, so Rugby sat (much more polietly than I expected) in the middle of the circle of kids, while they all pet him simultaneously. Rugby would turn occasionally to lick someones hand, but just sat there and enjoyed it for the most part. I decided it was time to start working again so I gave everyone a high-five and dragged Rugby away from the pile of kids. At this point, the boys in the group lost interest and resumed play on the playground. The girls however continued to watch and follow us around while we finished up working.

It was nice to have their parents thank us for including them as we packed up our things to leave. Besides being a positive dog expierence for the kids, at least we know now of a few neighbors that didn't seem to mind us so blatently breaking the leash law (we break that one pretty often - Rugby is always under control when not physically attached to me though).

I am so glad to have found Rugby again. We took his newly found attitude on the road and practiced in the shopping center parking lot, thursday night class, and again today at Fidos for Freedom. I wish we can polish up our finishes before the week is over!

Sunday, March 7, 2010

Its Time!!!

I have started giving Rugby Flea Treats (one in the morning and one at night) as well as a probiotic in a treat form once a day. He really likes both of these treats and he has started in the past couple weeks expecting them.

He usually lets me sleep till whenever I want, except for the past 3 days - has been waking me up! In the past this has always meant, I REALLLLLY NEED TO GO - GET UP RIGHT NOW AND TAKE ME OR ELSE! Three days in a row though? And I KNOW he used the bathroom when I took him out around midnight last night so what exactly is the rush??

This morning he finally got me up and he raced me up the stairs and went straight over to the couch (where the treats are usually fed) and sat down. He sat there for about 30 seconds wagging his tail probably the fastest I have ever seen it go untill I realized what he wanted all along. He has been waking me because he knows he gets those treats in the morning!! Sure if I let him outside too that is a plus, but it really isn't what he is after. What a jerk!

All I know is that tomorrow, I am ignoring Rugby if he tries again!

Friday, March 5, 2010

Safety Cones

Rugby and I spent some time today learning how to retrieve a cone. It was really fun watching him learn. You can see even in the video how as he starts to get it, his tail wags more. He was really happy by the end, and worn out too!

Thursday, March 4, 2010

Fail

It seems I have forgotten a couple points on our list of reasons to be adored.

11) Besides being cute, Maltese have great hand-mouth cordination.
video
What is so sad about this is that we have practiced to get to this point (first attempt). It took him a couple of sessions just to learn to open his mouth when the treat was flying at his face. He was just letting them bounce off his head at first!

On a more positive note -
Rugby was great at class tonight. We have spent so much time of the front we have to balance it out and work on the finish a little more. He cut the broad jump pretty close as well. I had set it up pushed up against a 'wall' of sorts specifically to see how much it would affect him since he has a tendancy to pull towards the right side to begin with. The front he gave me off the broad jump was really really good though. Just need to get him to jump closer to the middle!!

Did you know?

Did you know that the Greeks erected tombs for their Maltese, and the Egyptians had models of the Maltese suggesting that they worshiped them? At least, that is what the AKC says.

Rugby and I started a list of some of the reasons why people like the Greeks and Egyptions would have adored their Maltese so much!
This is what we came up with.

1) They never tell your secrets.

2) They are great seat warmers

3) They always stay out of trouble

4) They are collapsible for easy storage

5) They are a drip-dry breed

6) They don't get under your feet

7)They are portable

8) They don't tease you when you make funny faces

9) They are easy to contain and keep track of

10) They are a watch dog extrodinaire

We could go on forever, but we don't want to give away ALL of the Maltese secrets.

Tuesday, March 2, 2010

Just in Time

The week couldn't have come any sooner. After how hectic last week was for me with papers and exams all at the same time, it is nice to take a breath for a second and spend some extra time with Rugby. Rugby has been pretty itchy for a while, and I was hoping that if I just ignored it it would go away but I wasn't so lucky. I knew it wasn't fleas, but thats about all I knew.

Rugby went to the vet last week and and they gave him steroids and some drugs to help it go away under the assumption that it was some sort of allergy and it worked for about 5 days or so. We won't mention how annoying steroids are how they make poor Rugby peeeeee LOTS and how he had to wear pants and spend some extra time in his crate for a few of those days.

 So Monday I made another call and told them it wasn't working so well and both doctors got together and decided to give us a different drug to try. I don't want to jinx us since he has only been on it for two days but I think it is working!! Thank GOD! 

Our vets office is in the middle of a great big shopping center that resembles a little village of sorts which means it has fun things that normal shopping centers don't have, like grass areas and benches. I thought it would be really weird of me to bring a whole set of open jumps to the middle of the shopping center, so we just brought our broad jump and went behind the vets office and practiced some heeling, drop on recalls, retrieves on the flat and of course the broad jump. It wasn't much in the way of distracting since no one was really walking behind the buildings, but there was lots of car traffic.

This morning we got another chance to go out since I finished school work early, and this time we did everything. He did really really well - I am pleased. Today, I also took our favorite - food distractions- and scattered them throughout the entire area we practiced in. At this point, they must not be too distracting anymore because he didn't even notice they were there. After being stuck inside from the weather for so long, I can see where our heeling is a little bit lacking. When we first start out the first...three or so about turns we do he comes out of wide - really wide. He gets the hang of it eventually, but I would like to see that problem dissapear all together. Also - FRONTS. What else is new? If he comes in from off to the right, he can straighten himself out before he comes all the way in and sits. If he comes in from off to the left though, he isn't so good at getting himself straight. We worked on it and he showed definete improvement but I think it will take him a while to get it completely.

We had an audience for this session, a little tiny kid ad his mom wandered over and asked if I would mind them watch and of course I said it was no problem. So they stayed untill the little one got bored of it all. Rugby is a kid-oholic (if there is such a thing) and I caught Rugby gazing longingly at the little boy desperately wanting to go give him some kisses.

We picked a good couple days to get outside a practice because now it is cold and rainy. Looking forward to Thursday night class!