Monday, 29 January 2007

Kizzy's busy weekend

We had a lovely weekend, apart from having to do some work in the office on Saturday for both Andy and I and then Andy on Sunday afternoon!

On Saturday we visited Bernadette and Dennis and had a lovely afternoon which included munching on very tasty pizza! Kizzy played in the garden with Fat Boy which was very funny and very interesting. Fat Boy was a little overawed to begin with as he isn't used to interaction with anyone that small. Kizzy was a bit over the top and rolled him over a few times but his confidence grew and he was soon standing up for himself. They had a great time out in the garden with Kizzy rampaging all over the place and playing with Zen and Hob-b.

When it got too cold we went indoors and Fat Boy had a good sleep whilst Kizzy continued her rampage on the inside of the house. She had a wonderful time. She did some of her party tricks and Bernadette gave Andy a few hints and tips on his clicker technique which have really helped. Bernadette measured Kizzy and she was a little over 10" and is now running slightly larger than Hex was at the same age. Right, that's it, she's going back she's going to be too big ...... I don't think so!

We managed to get Kizzy to sit still long enough to take this photo with her Mum, Zen. She is so like Zen it's amazing when you see them together.

When Fat Boy woke up they had a play indoors and both got wedged in the little play tunnel, Kizzy because she's getting a wee bit too big for it and Fat Boy because ... well because he's fat!

Kizzy was exhausted when we got home and just played very gently in her play pen that evening. This was wonderful because we managed to watch a whole t.v. programme without interruption!

On Sunday I did a training day for Polly and was very lucky with the weather. It was good fun and seemed to go well. They're such a lovely bunch of people and dogs and it's nice that I've trained them before so you get a sense of continuity and start to get to know the dogs and handlers.

Andy came over for lunch and walked the dogs and Kizzy in Polly's field. Kizzy had lots of fuss and cuddles from everyone (especially Lynne who tried to steal her). After lunch whilst I started the second training session, Andy and Polly took Kizzy and Daisy (Polly's six month old papillon) into the garden and they had a wonderful play for over an hour. Daisy is officially Kizzy's best friend - we know that because they shared a stick!

Friday, 26 January 2007

Today we baked a cake

Today I baked a cake and had a little bit of extra help. I hasten to add the assistance came after the cake mixture had gone in the tins and into the oven and before the bowls were washed up! Still bad practise but I couldn't resist the photo opportunity!

Kizzy has been busy today with a trip out to Edenbridge with Andy to visit a client and a nice walk in the recreation ground. She is as warm as toast in the car with her new heated pad. It's brilliant!

Tomorrow we're off to visit Bernadette, Dennis and all the shelties including of course Fat Boy. We'll hopefully get some photos while we're there. Kizzy is going to get measured so we can see how she's doing against the size charts.

Must go now, got a sheltie to groom, nails to clip and paws to trim prior to our visit to West Sussex - well Andy has!!!!

Thursday, 25 January 2007

Kizzy training

This is my first try at doing a video so hopefully it will work. This little clip shows Kizzy training her reverses, elephant circus trick and jumping in and out of a bed. I have some more to post but will do this later as Niamh and I are off agility training shortly!

Wednesday, 24 January 2007

It's snow time

We've had some busy days recently both in doggy terms and work terms.


There's an extra item to fit into each day now that Kizzy can go out and about and that's her daily walk. She goes to our local recreation ground each afternoon and absolutely loves it. She tows Andy all the way there and then charges round meeting lots of people and dogs and generally having a good time. I went with them today and was amazed at how she really does get a good pull on her lead. We did some play recalls while we were out, she screams when Andy runs away from her (and does a couple of twists) and then tears across to him. We're very pleased with this so far.


I took a couple of photos whilst we were out but they're not very good as it was getting dark and Kiz just doesn't stay still long enough to get any good shots. That's about to change with the arrival of our new camera, we got it today on a couple of weeks' trial, it's a Nikon D100 (a digital SLR). As far as I'm concerned it's another camera just a lot more expensive! Hopefully we'll be able to get some action shots now!


We had a busy weekend with dog walks and trying to do some stuff in the garden. We had a large tree fall down in the last week's wind and our friend Jay is coming round on Saturday with a chain saw to help Andy cut it up ready for the wood burning stove.


On Saturday evening Dan & Mac came for supper and Kizzy was over the moon to see them. It's really nice that she recognises her friends and greets them. Then on Sunday evening we went to supper with Leah & Jay (yummy vegetarian roast - thanks Leah!) and of course took Kizzy with us. After supper we let her out of her crate and she had a wonderful time. She was tearing round their sitting room but Andy did manage to get her to do some trick training between her mad bouts of rabbit running, barking and playing with their Collie draught excluder 'Colin'. A bit like with our door stop collie Kizzy wasn't too sure of Colin to begin with but we soon encouraged her to touch him and that was that. He got severely beaten up and dragged round Leah's sitting room. Quite a feat considering he's three times the size of Kizzy. I think Leah enjoyed herself as much as Kizzy, I'm not quite sure which of them got the more excited playing that evening!!


Last night Kizzy came again to training but this time she was allowed on the floor. She was totally unfazed as usual and trotted off with Andy to see our landlady Sarah who wanted to see her in action doing some of her tricks. She performed her complete repertoire in Sarah's kitchen which Andy was really pleased about as there were lots of distractions including Sarah's dog Mimi. Then she came back into the school and Andy did some training with her while I was teaching an agility class. He was delighted with her concentration level considering what else was going on.
It was very cold in the school last night so today we bought her a Snugglesafe pet warmer to put under her bedding in her crate when we take her training. They're quite expensive but brilliant. You heat them up in the microwave and they retain heat for anything up to 8+ hours.


Will hopefully post some brilliant pictures anytime soon!

Friday, 19 January 2007

Office yesterday, site visits today

This morning Andy took Kizzy off to a client meeting in Chipstead. She met with the clients and they were so impressed that Andy got the job! They got home around lunch time and had their usual half hour clicker training session followed by tugging games and lunch and then it was a quick snooze and off to Edenbridge for a site visit. Andy left for his meeting early so that Kizzy could have her first proper walk.

I got a phone call to say that Kizzy has a new best friend, a Bichon Frise puppy called KiKi. She's a little older than Kizzy and was allowed off her lead. Kiz was kept on her new extender lead and Andy said he was quite dizzy from the experience as the two pups tore round and round in circles! In the end KiKi's owner had to put her back on the lead as they were getting a little over the top, plus the fact he couldn't catch his puppy!

I then got another phone call to say that things were much better now that KiKi had gone home as we were managing to walk in a nice straight line straight towards the stream. Kizzy has one of the new extra long extender leads and this is her first time out and about on it. Andy said within about 20 seconds she was straight to the end of the lead and tugging him along. She's been picking up little sticks, leaves, lumps of mud etc. When they got to the stream she watched the water flowing but Andy couldn't let her venture in as it's pretty deep and the current's strong from all the rain we've recently had. The nice thing is that each time he called her she came bombing straight back to him.

Sounds like they're having a good time. I'm stuck here doing office work that was left out for me, well and writing this update!

Tomorrow we'll get some piccies of Kizzy out and about now that she can officially go on the floor!

Thursday, 18 January 2007

This office lark is a piece of cake

"As you'll see from the photos below, this design work is a piece of cake, I've soon got the hang of things. Not sure what my Dad makes all the fuss about."

"OK, I need to make sure this line is good and straight and the angles are just right."

"Not quite sure about that dimension, need to double check my figures."

"Blast, I've drawn that line in the wrong place, need to correct that right away."

"Very tiring this architectural design stuff and I've only got as far as one window and a door frame. Time for a rest before I start again."

Wednesday, 17 January 2007

Strange package received in the post!

Well we received a strange parcel today!

It was self-opening and a naughty little person popped out!

Busy Busy

Well, we've had a busy few days. Andy's work has gone mad which means as always extra work for me in the office but now it also means extra puppy care. I'm not sure about this, I get the puppy chores and he gets all the nice bits, i.e. the training and playing!!

Kizzy came to our agility training last night and sat on lots of laps and had a good time. Andy took her into see Sarah who owns the school where we train. Kizzy met Sarah's little dog MiMi (Shi Tzu) who's very sweet. Kizzy took over Sarah's kitchen by doing circles round the (large) kitchen table and then dashing into the sitting room to tug on the hearth rug. Next week Andy's going to take her treats and clicker for a visit as Sarah wants to see Kizzy doing some training. She's very interested as a trainer of dressage and was saying to Andy that a lot of people are using clicker training with horses now for all sorts of different behaviour shaping.

Kizzy has a bit of a bark when the first training class starts but then calms down and likes to watch from her crate. When she's sitting on peoples' laps her favourite thing is to watch the handlers throw the toys for their dogs at the ends of their rounds. Some of them use a ball on a rope and that's her favourite training toy so she tries very hard to jump off the laps to get the ball on a rope. This is good as she's focusing on toys more than the other dogs. Next week she'll be able to go on the floor at training school. We'll have to be very careful though!

When we got home from training we were pretty tired but Andy still had his late night play session to do. As you can see from the photos, Kizzy was well up for training but Andy was rather quiet! Sorry Bernadette still no smiles although in one of the shots I think he's doing a Frank Spencer (Michael Crawford) impression! This was the first time that Kizzy has had her training toy box on offer, normally Andy just takes one toy at a time and plays. He was so tired last night that he put the box on the floor. Within 10 seconds the box had been emptied and naturally the best toy of all was the box!

Sunday, 14 January 2007

Kizzy Update

Kizzy has had a busy few days with lots of little outings to busy places and plenty of training and play.

She had a bit of a hyperactive turn on Thursday. The day was very busy with the visit to Sainsburys etc. and she didn't get her proper afternoon sleep. She was a monster in the evening and just wouldn't stop racing around her pen. When we took her out to the toilet patch she was tearing around and biting our trousers. She tends to do this but in a fun way, on this occasion she was manic. She eventually fell into a deep sleep at 11.00 pm and the slept in until 8.00 am the following morning.

We've had a chat with Bernadette and the consensus is that we need to put her into her indoor kennel a little more often (rather than just her play pen). This will also help with her toilet training which needs a little practise yet! It's really improved since using the indoor kennel more during the day.

On Friday she went out on site with Andy and had a visit with one of his clients at their home. Then it was onto Uncle Jim for her second vaccination. Jim also wormed her which she really didn't much care for! That evening she was very off colour, so much so that we phoned Jim at about 7.30 pm to ask if this was usual. It wasn't an allergic reaction to her jab but just that she was totally out of sorts. She was overly quiet and just wanted to cuddle up on our laps. Jim was his usual calm self and told us to keep an eye on her and call him back at 10.00 pm (or sooner if we were concerned). By 10.00 pm we decided that she was improving. We rang Jim to confirm this and he said if we were at all concerned to set our alarm for sometime after midnight and if we had any doubts to call him and bring her straight down. He's a wonderful vet and sees our dogs at anytime day or night. We've even been down to him on Christmas day in the past.

By Saturday morning she was absolutely fine and full of life again. What a relief. So in the afternoon we took her into Tunbridge Wells as we had a few bits to get in town. I had her in my arms whilst Andy popped in and out of various shops. She was fussed by lots of passers-by and also had several encounters with a very noisy pavement vacuum (including a fuss by the guy pushing this around!) She soon got used to it and didn't bat an eyelid.

Andy has started to train her to roll over and that is really coming on well. She performed it this afternoon when Dan & Mac came to visit. She is also going into a big dog bed on command (using the clicker of course!) Her circus elephant trick is really coming on well. She now rotates the whole way round her little tub. She still needs some help from Andy but not much and she'll soon be doing the whole piece for herself.

We groom her every day and she's pretty good now. She doesn't much like her head and neck being held or groomed so we've been working on that. Today was a break through as she actually stood calmly to have her neck and ears brushed. She has her feet wiped every time she's been out and is beginning to offer her front paws. She doesn't have a dog towel but a large e-Cloth which works brilliantly for her.

Sorry no photos. I'm struggling to get pictures as she moves so quickly. This has given Andy the perfect excuse to buy another camera. He has a mate who's a professional photographer and his partner is selling a rather nice camera which she's only used once or twice. It's a proper camera so I'm told. What I'd like to know is what's an improper camera? Will post some more piccies soon!

Where's that darn squirrel gone?

I had to post this picture of Abbey. She's almost 13 but still likes to climb trees to hunt for squirrels. I took this yesterday with my mobile phone so the quality isn't brilliant.

Yeah and what about us?

About time you three mummy's brats had a look in ....... what about us two? We're not just missing from the blog but we've got to share our Dad's time with that little fluffy thing. Life is just so unfair!

Becky & Murphy in Eridge Forest

Thursday, 11 January 2007

About time we had a look in on this blog!!

Never mind that darn puppy, we're here too!

Poppy 'caught in the act' on the spare bed (am I still allowed to use that phrase, it brings to mind a certain little sheltie puppy!!)

Niamh asking for her elevenses and showing off her new collar.

Abbey in her favourite armchair

Outing to the Sports Physio

Today Kizzy has gone off with Andy for a visit to Rachel who is a sports physio. Andy goes regularly for head and neck massage to help prevent migraine headaches which he is prone to. Rachel loves dogs and wants to meet Kizzy. No doubt we'll have a report on the visit later!

I've posted these pictures as I think they illustrate that Kizzy has had quite a growing spurt over the last couple of days.

Wednesday, 10 January 2007

Scary Door Stop

Today I was building up the distance Kizzy runs to a stationary toy and as suggested by Bernadette did this in the hallway for some extra length. She was doing really well but suddenly spotted our wrought iron collie door stop and had her first spook! She wasn't terrified by any means but she didn't much care for it and kept running backwards barking at it. I guess it's understandable as it's much the same size as her!

Anyway, I thought the best way to deal with this would be to use the clicker so I put a trail of chicken leading to the door stop and clicked her as she moved towards the door stop to get the chicken, then I placed a piece of chicken on the base and she took that so I clicked as she took it. That rapidly turned into her touching the door stop to get clicked and treated. Once we were doing that happily I shaped the behaviour so that she actually touched her nose to the door stop's nose!

This evening Andy incorporated the door stop into his clicker training session and you can see the results. Clicker training is such a wonderful thing!

Busy Kizzy

Last night we re-started our agility training following on from the Christmas and New Year holidays. Kizzy came along in her crate and watched the big dogs and joined in vocally on occasion!

She spent most of her evening perched on Uncle Steve or Aunty Sara's laps playing with the new toy they'd bought her - Susie Spider! Steve has a nick name for Kizzy (this nasty little habit of his occurs each time we have a new puppy). My last collie pup Niamh (pronounced Neeve) was quite a big puppy and she was quickly re-named Ben Nevis, that got shortened to Ben over time. Kizzy has been christened as Pinnie, short for Pinocchio - say no more. Nasty man.

Today I took her with me to Sainsbury's and we did a tour of the car park and shop entrance. She met lots of people and was very happy to be fussed. We walked through to the bus station and spent about ten minutes there. It's very noisy and very busy with a bus arriving and leaving every minute. There were double deckers, single deckers, green ones, turqouise ones, small ones in fact every type of bus you can imagine. All of them very noisy. Kizzy wasn't scared as she was too busy being fussed by all the people disembarking and those waiting for buses. Then she waited in the car in her crate whilst I rushed round Sainsbury's getting the shopping. This is the first time she's been left for any length of time. She had Poppy and Niamh in the car for company. When I got back she was very chilled and chewing on her chewstick.

On the way home we stopped off in our local high street as I had a late Christmas parcel to post. Everything went to pot this year due to Olympia! We walked along the main street which is very busy and noisy. Lots of big lorries travel through and she cocked her head once or twice at the really big ones but was fairly chilled. We did a stop off at the pet shop where she was fussed by the owner and then on to the post office. There was quite a long queue but she was very patient and we eventually got rid of the parcel which had been sitting on the side at home since before Christmas! On the way back to the car we sat on a little wall outside the Victoria Hall (small theatre) and watched the world go by during a welcome break from all the rain we've been having. Then it was home for the longest pee in the world (Kizzy that is, not me!)

Andy has had a very busy day in the office and so hasn't had much time for Kizzy today hence my involvement. He is going to do his clicker training this evening and I'm sure she'll be well up for it as she expects attention from him and it hasn't been in abundance today!

Sorry no photos to accompany this post, rather difficult to manage with a puppy in one arm and a parcel in the other!
Have though included a new picture of Kizzy showing how much she has grown!

Tuesday, 9 January 2007

Training Evening

We did a training evening for the Dartford Club last night. It was very tiring but great fun as they're such a nice bunch of people and dogs.

Kizzy came along in her crate and had a good socialising session with people in the break. She was totally unfazed by the evening despite the noise which was quite something! We had two separate groups going and the noise was non-stop and pretty loud! We can't wait for the time when she can go on the ground in these sort of places, only a couple of weeks to go!

Tonight we re-start training at our own school and she'll be coming along to watch. We have a lovely venue where she can be amongst it all but from the safety of her crate which she seems to love. She always travels with Wilson, that's her favourite snuggle toy. He's named after the ball from the film Castaway with Tom Hanks (don't ask me why though!)

Wilson is the grey dog on the left. Kizzy is in the middle and that's Sheepey on the right (a present from Dan & Mac)

Andy is working hard on Kizzy's tugging, she's getting stronger all the time and really loves this game. The nice thing is that she'll tug on whatever toy you choose. Her preference is for her ball or knot on a rope, followed by her chicken with rope legs and then the fleecey tugs. We try to mix it up so that she's happy to tug on almost anything. I also play this game with her as we want her to tug happily with people other than Andy. Andy does all her clicker training and feeding though.

Kizzy tugging on her knot on a rope in her morning play session.

Saturday, 6 January 2007

Horrible wet day

What a horrible wet day it is today. So, all training has had to be indoors. Here are a few photos of Kizzy and Andy practising turns to the left and right, downs, sits, shake paws and nose targets. We are going to have to get a new camera to capture some of the images though, she moves so quickly it's very hard to do with our current camera. Any excuse to spend!

1) Shake left paw from sit 2) Shake left paw from stand

1) Stand 2) Down

Turn to the right

1) Target 2) Nose to hand target

Friday, 5 January 2007

Harley Kiz

There have been some references to Harley Davidsons since the arrival of 'Fat Boy'. Kizzy decided not to be left out of this particular frame. Here's a picture of her on her very own Sportster!

Busy days

No photos to post until Dave sends a couple that he took during our visit on Wednesday!!

What a busy day that was. Lots of play between Oz and Kizzy and then two brilliant training sessions with Mary. Huge learning curve for Andy and Kizzy and things are progressing well on the clicker training front! Mary is the most brilliant and intuitive trainer, we could sit and watch her for hours.

We had a lovely day with Dave and Mary and all the dogs went home exhausted.

Kizzy was very tired throughout yesterday but did wake up to receive her evening visitors (Dan & Mac!) She did a clicker training session in the sitting room in front of them which was a good experience as most of her training is done in the small sitting room without other people around.

This morning she slept in (as did we) until 7.40 am. What a luxury. She is still so good going through the night.

Some will be pleased to know that she has found her voice but so far not too much. She really barks only when she wants to play with one of the other dogs or if she sees them playing with a toy or interacting with us. We can cope with that!

Two more days of fun and then it's back to work on Monday. We will have to establish a proper day time routine. We've been leaving her for periods in her pen and she adapts well to most things so we don't anticipate major problems.

We are doing a training evening for Dartford Agility club on Monday and Dan is participating in that but not Mac, so Kizzy will attend on Mac's lap! Then on Tuesday our own training school starts up again so another new venue/experience for her.

Her little paws haven't really touched the ground! Will take some more piccies over the weekend and update the blog!

Tuesday, 2 January 2007

Beautiful little girl

Had to post this picture partly because I took it (Nancy) and I rarely take a nice photo and partly because it shows how much Kizzy has changed in appearance since we brought her home. I think it's a lovely picture but then I'm biased, almost as much as Andy!

Happy New Year

So far 2007 has been hectic for Kizzy. Yesterday we visited my Mum's and she had a lovely time in the garden and tried her best to move the hearth rug to the middle of the sitting room. Then we went for a long dog walk and Andy carried her round, she enjoyed it but wanted to get on the ground. She met some children in the play area on the way back to the car and they loved her.

Today she's been to visit more neighbours, had a play session in the garden (see picture especially for aunty Lisa!), a clicker training session and then another huge play in the sitting room. Her energy levels seems to have risen.

She is still being a really good puppy at night and sleeps right through and her kennel is clean. We can't believe it, we've never had such a good puppy in that respect. She 'talks' all the time. She makes little puppy noises when she's having a cuddle and when she's in her pen playing by herself. This is much nicer than barking! Maybe that will come later .........