Wednesday, 27 June 2007

Kizzy Training - last post before we move house!

We've been pretty busy since Axstane. Loads of packing to be done as well as trying to get Andy's work as up to date as possible before the office closes this coming Friday. We have one week today and looking around there's still a lot to do!

Last Friday and Saturday we transported 900 roof tiles from this property to the new one. By coincidence the same tiles are on both properties and as we're going to build an extension as soon as we move in, it seemed like a good idea. The tiles were left over from work we've done on the current house. We used the little trailer and it took three trips to move them all. Andy could hardly walk on the Sunday! We're lucky that the current owners of our new property are very obliging and let us store the tiles there.

This weekend Andy and Al are going over to the new house to remove a tree and put up our picket fencing. The people buying our house don't want the picket fence we have so we're going to reuse it at the new place. We like to have this to restrict the dogs to the patio so we can keep them clean in winter and so that they don't piddle on the lawn!

Can you believe our burglar alarm has thrown a fault. We've had it for about 5 years without any problems and then it went off at 4.00 am one morning last week and frightened the life out of us. We turned it off but there's a flashing light saying there's a fault so we think a mouse might have had a nibble on one of the wires. Al is going to check it out this weekend - not really sure what we'd do without him! He's my hero.

The builders have confirmed that they'll be on site first thing Monday morning 9th July, just five days after we move in. The work was going to be outside the house but we've had a re-think on the layout and now it means breaking through the kitchen wall so that's something to really look forward to! It'll be worth it as it will give us a better garage and a utility room straight off the kitchen rather than going outside to it.

We have cried off dog shows at the moment and it's good to have the time as there is so much to do. We are booked in for CATS and St. Edwards and will day trip to those. Andy is judging at St. Edwards to we have to be there on the Sunday for sure. The show is quite big and Andy has 449 dogs to judge, just one under the maximum! The following weekend we would normally be off to Rugby but we decided that it'll be too stressful so have not booked it this year. Quite sad as it's one of our favourites but we'll be back next year hopefully.

Last week we took Andy's Becky into visit Mum in hospital. The hospital isn't particuarly keen on PAT dog visits but the sister on Mum's ward is wonderful and lets us visit any time we like and has said we can take Becky in whenever we want to. Becky is a registered PAT dog so she is 'official'. Mum was so pleased to see her. We sat Becky up on a high chair so she was level with Mum's bed and helped Mum to reach across and touch her. Mum adores her dogs and hadn't seen one since the beginning of February when she became ill. It was a very emotional moment and made me cry (I think it brought a lump to Andy's throat as well.) We hope to get a picture at the next visit, we forgot to take the camera last week.

On Monday we went out to a pub local to our new house with Dan and Mac as it was my birthday. We had a really nice meal and think we'll be going back there quite a bit! It's a nice pub called the Kentish Horse in the next village. It was also the Naughty Niamh's birthday on Monday. She was 3 years old which I can't believe, the time has flown since I travelled up to Lancashire to collect her.

Last night was our last night's training prior to the move. We decided to cancel training next week as it's the night before we move and I don't think there will be time! Anyway, we got Dan and Jay to take some video of Kizzy training as promised in a recent post. Andy and Kizzy are really enjoying their training together. Here is the evidence. Enjoy.

Will post an update on our move once we're back online in the new house. We'll be going completely offline this coming weekend.

Sunday, 17 June 2007

Kizzy's weekend at Axstane

Kizzle had a lovely weekend with stacks of time round the rings. Andy did some training at ringside and we also gave her to some strangers to play tuggy with. Typical Kizzy didn't even notice we'd left her and just kept tugging!

On Saturday Andy ran Al's dog, Meg, as Al had to work all day. We took Meg up to do one of her rounds and had to borrow Kizzy's toy as Al had taken Meg's in the van to work (tut tut). Andy was playing with Meg; Tracey and I followed behind with Kizzy who yapped and played up the whole time because Meg had her 'special toy'. A special toy to Kizzy is anything that anyone else has!

We had a visit from Bernadette and Lisa who took time out from collecting trophies and rosettes to have a cup of tea and cuddle with the dogs. They were only there on the Saturday and had a successful show. Up the shelties.

Kiz is very tired this evening. She absolutely loves going to dog shows and comes home exhausted but very happy. She is just the cutest sheltie in the world!

This was our last show for three weeks. We haven't booked anything for the next two weekends as we now have just over two weeks until our move. All systems go on the packing front (deep joy!)

Here are a couple of little piccies of Kizzy from this weekend. I hope to get some video of her training later this week which I'll post at some point!

Kizzy watching the world go by from her little garden (with Murphy the baddest dog in the world)

Kizzy and Becky

Yippee we've finally won a class!

We had a mixed weekend at Axstane with Saturday being very unproductive in terms of clear rounds but with lots of positive stuff happening.

On Sunday we had a much better day and got 4th place in the helpers jumping, 20th in the G4/5 agility. I messed up the collapsible tunnel and pull through sequence but didn't mind as the last thing I wanted was to win an agility class this weekend (it would put me out of G5 for DIN and the KC Festival - no thanks!)we trained the seesaw for good measure so I didn't really expect a place at all.

We had decided to pack up and go home to do some more stuff towards the house move and I had all but decided not to wait for my G5 jumping course. However, it was set up just as we were hitching up the caravan so I went and walked it and then asked if I could possibly run early so I could go home. The ring manager was very obliging and I ran in the first ten dogs. I didn't think we'd do that well as it was a fast course but Niamh ran it brilliantly and I knew we couldn't have done it better but still didn't expect much. We left the show and came home. Then Lorna put a message on the forum to say that we had won the class! I was soooooooo pleased but really sad that I'd missed Niamh's prize giving for her first win! Boo hoo. To add to that, we didn't even get the round on film as I just ran up to the rings with Niamh by myself whilst Andy finished packing up. Hey ho, sometimes that's the best way!

Here's a little film of her other two classes today. I think she is really starting to pick up and I'm really proud of my little Naughty Niamh!

Andy and Zen at Thames 2007

Here is the video of Andy running Zen in the medium 6/7 jumping at Thames. I think they look pretty good together! Andy suits a sheltie!

Wednesday, 13 June 2007

Wicked Poppy at Thames

Here are Poppy's two champ rounds from the Sunday at Thames.

In the jumping round most of the bad stuff is my fault, e.g. I should have trusted her to pick up the weaves but not so sure I have to take all the blame for the wide turn after the long jump - that's typical Pops; wanna do the tunnel; wanna do the weaves - oh alright I'll do the flippin' jump if you really want me to!

In the agility round I still can't fathom why she turned away from me at jump 2 when she did that exact combination so nicely in the jumping round! Probably I was too complacent having done it once? As always though she picked up a brilliant flat weave entry!

Poppy is still full on and taking her own line at 10 years of age. That's my girl!

I'll know it's time to retire her when the day comes that we agree completely over how to negotiate a course!!

Thames & stuff

We had a lovely weekend at Thames. The weather was great, bit hot at times!

The show was enormous and set out in two sections. We had runs in both areas so there was rather a lot of walking involved!

We had a great evening on Saturday and Mandy and Arthur brought Kodie along and he and Kizzy played while we chatted. They were so funny, doing laps of the caravans and generally having a great time. They were both shattered on Sunday which is hardly surprising! We sat out star gazing until about 11.00 pm listening to the band playing (we were camped very close to the marquee). They were very good and the volume was just right from our position. Steve spent most of the evening snoozing with Hob-b on his lap (see Obay Blog for evidence).

The championship class was great to watch. Poppy got two clears but unfortunately they were too untidy to get us through to the final. Lisa and Chi did brilliantly getting to their first final and winning the reserve ticket in the process! Go the shelties.

Bernadette lent Zen to Andy for her medium jumping 6-7 class. Zen was drawn at the end of the class and Andy ran pretty much at the end and won the class. He really enjoyed running her, Kizzy has much to live up to! Here is the evidence.

The Naughty Niamh was a very good girl this weekend and got a 2nd, 3rd, 4th and 14th place. Sadly the tape ran out for her 3rd placed run which was a shame but here is a video of the other three runs. We tried our best in the Novice Olympia qualifier, with one person above already qualified we were just one place out of qualifying. Sob. Two more chances and that's it!

We have started our packing this week. It's such a chore and we've got so much stuff. Three weeks today and we'll be on the move. I can't believe how quickly it's come round. It's exciting and scary! We're trying to pick something each day to pack so it's not too much of a job in one hit. So far we've taken down all the pictures and packed all the glass ware. Most of the cabinets are down from the wall. We have Axstane coming up this weekend and then two free weekends which I think we're gonna need!

Now we have poor Ed (my step-father) back in hospitial. He's very poorly and is today being transferred up to Guys so that he can be looked after for his breathing problems and get his dialysis at the same site. At the moment he's in Kent & Sussex hospital and has to be taken to Pembury three times a week for the dialysis. It's so sad that he and Mum are so ill. Dan and Mac have both the dogs at the moment but once we've moved then Tina will come back to us. I think Dan and Mac will probably keep Ellie which is lovely as I hate to think of her going to another home. Sam is continuing to recover well but it'll take a long time for him to be fully fit again.

Kizzy had a brilliant training session last night. We break the class into three sections and each puppy plays with one area and then we move round. It's good fun and also gets them used to focusing on their work whilst there's other activity going on. All three pups (Kizzy, Daisy & Rikki) were brilliant last night. They're all dragging their handlers to our small table and going straight into their down position. I really enjoyed the class last night, almost as much as they did!

Thursday, 7 June 2007

Good news

Sam is back at Pembury and well on the road to recovery. He is feeling much better and is left with a bad headache and dizziness. He has no recollection of the trauma he's been through which is probably just as well.

Here are some photos of the recovering patient which he probably won't thank me for publishing! It was a bit like a Goth gathering!

Sam and his sister Kelly

Kelly, Sam, Sally (his mum) and school friend

Sam scoffing (must be getting better!)

Sam and Kelly again

Tuesday, 5 June 2007

Hinckley & stuff

We were getting set for Hinckley last week when we had a call from my sister to say that her son Sam had taken very ill and she was taking him into Pembury hospital. I met her there and by the time I got there Sam was fighting for his life. They managed to stabilise him and then a retrieval team from St Thomas's hospital in London was sent down to transfer him to the Evelina children's hospital which is attached to St Thomas's. My sister went with him in the ambulance and I took her best friend up by car. We couldn't follow the ambulance very far as it was on a blue light and we soon lost it. He was diagnosed with meningitis and that's just been confirmed as the more serious bacterial type. He is still very unwell but has turned a corner and just last night was brought back to Pembury. We had to go to Hinckley as Andy was judging the championship class but I was ready to drive back if needed. Luckily I didn't have to do that as Dan and Mac stayed with Sally as did my step-mother. We kept in touch by phone and text so I knew what was happening all the time. It was a very scary time for everyone especially Sam and his mum.

Hinckley, as usual, was wonderful and we were really lucky to have gorgeous weather. The championship class went really well and the finals were very exciting. Our mate Mand won the large dog final with her lovely boy Jag, she was running last and held her nerve to produce a stunning round; the medium final was won by non other than Kizzy's mum 'Zen' with Bernadette front crossing as if her life depended on it (tee hee!!) and the small final by Dawn Weaver with her lovely poodle Chelsea. What a weekend for Zen, winning the Supa Dogs final on Friday and then the champ class at Hinckley. Kizzy Hudson you have much to live up to! Lisa and Chi didn't quite make the final but had a fantastic run in the agility heat, winning the class. Bernadette and Lisa came and joined us for a drink and nibbles before their long (but no doubt happy) journey home!

I had some good and bad runs. Niamh and her partner did a good pairs run with Tik just taking one pole down which was a real shame. Poppy was clear in her pairs and Murphy did a stunning round but doubled up right at the end of the weaves. The rest of the couse he did brilliantly, darn dog, he does something different every time just to keep Andy on his toes!

I made a huge effort to get more involved with Niamh rather than holding off her as I need to do more with Poppy. It definitely seemed to work and the round I was most proud of was the Novice Agility G3-5 on Sunday which we were leading for quite a while. I did everything I planned when I walked it and didn't chicken out of any of my crosses or push aways. We ended up in fourth place but only by fractions of a second, I think the winner was on 28.4x and then the next three places were all on 28.8 something including Naughty Niamh! Very encouraging. Here is a video clip of her best runs, apart from my bad handling of the snake combination in the first round!

Sadly we blew our novice Olympia class (again!). I was a little late with a call and she took herself to the weave poles. I'm actually happy about this because she is starting to find stuff for herself if I'm late with a call or make the wrong signal. Whereas she used to grind to a halt if she didn't know what I wanted, she's started to take control and that's good. Now I need to get my act together!

None of our dogs got too much attention on Saturday due to Andy judging and me scribing for most of the day. I hate that aspect of judging/working on a ring. However, we made it up to them on Sunday and they all had a great day. Kizzle didn't actually do too badly on the Saturday as she got to spend some time out and about being the youngster!

Abbey isn't too well at the moment. She isn't eating well and is very fussy. I have a horrible feeling her kidneys are starting to play up. She's off to see Jim tomorrow for her jab so I'll have a chat with him.

Mum is much the same and has good days and bad days. Yesterday I went in and gave her room a good clean. She was actually quite jolly and we sat and watched Neighbours together. She loves that show (anyone who knows me will realise how hard that is for me as I loathe soaps!) She cannot get rid of the C.Diff bug and that is making her very tired and I would think at times very miserable.

That's about it for now. Off to Thames for the weekend all being well!