"Sometimes when you sacrifice something precious, you're not really losing it. You're just passing it along to someone else." Mitch Albom

Thursday, September 27, 2012

Busy times

     As I mentioned in my previous post, I LOVE FALL!  However, it brings with it all of my kids' activities and we are swamped.  My kids, I'm proud to say, are not overbooked kids.  But, we do push it to the limit in the fall season because that is when the preferred sports occur.  Particularly, Jacob's football.  He practices several nights a week for a couple of hours, which also takes my husband out of the equation of any sort of help because he goes to all of the practices.

     As a result, Churry's outings are limited, non-creative, and center around football!  We have been doing a lot of practice after we are all home with basic commands, which she has been slacking on recently.  I have been working really hard at her Sit/Stay.  This is her most difficult one because our floors are so slick she just slides down into a sprawled out position.  I've had to laugh a couple of times because I could tell she was trying really hard to hold the position and just couldn't.  This results in her not trying to hold it very hard and just going into a down position as soon as I turn away.

     We've also been working on her getting on her side on command rather than with my assistance.  She has  "On your side" mastered, "over" mastered, and we are working on "Other side".  I think I need some clarification from KSDS friends, though.  When transferring to the "other side" is it acceptable for them to need to stand up, then go to the other side? Do they need to roll to the other side?  What's the correct method?

They looked like they were discussing what may be his problem.  They looked at him for quite a while like this!

Churry decided to take action!

The bond between these two is very sweet.  He definitely has the strongest bond with her besides me.

A good ole' belly rub!


I don't know what she's sticking her tongue out at, but it was funny.

Tuesday, September 25, 2012

Look at me now!

It is my absolute favorite time of year!  I love everything about Fall, except that it doesn't last all year long!  Last year about this time I took some pictures of Churry in my flowers.  I thought it would be fun to get some pics in the same spot to compare.  My flowers don't look as pretty this year because the weather this summer was just not kind to them, but my girl, Churry looks just as beautiful!

She wouldn't look at me because the darn ice cream truck kept driving by!

This was her first day in her puppy cape.  Almost exactly a year ago.

She still loves to smell the flowers!

Sunday, September 16, 2012

Clothes Shopping Day!

     Each year I take all four kids on a shopping spree for fall/winter clothes.  It's been a tradition for quite a while that Jacob goes by himself just here in our town because his enthusiasm just isn't quite as great as the girls'  :), but this year Kinsey ended up tagging along because we went to a larger shopping center that she enjoys.    And also, because she felt he needed some approval now that he's getting older and needs to be dressing nicer.  Hmmmm.   Mom is not sure how she feels about this, especially when he requested some cologne.  I bought it for him, thinking my years of this tradition with him may be limited and he really is easy to shop with so he can have some if he wants.  He was also a bit more enthusiastic because Churry went with us this year.  I'm not sure she will get to accompany us on the girls' trip...it gets a little out of hand with how many bags I have to carry and the number of trips I make going back and forth bringing different sizes.  Churry is an excellent shopper, too, so it's not something she needs to practice.  She can spend the day with Jacob and Pat on that day because I can assure you THEY don't go!

      I love taking her to Legends because of the masses of people to practice with, the fountains that she still thinks she would like to play in, and the many different sights and sounds that are there.  One that is fun is the T-Rex Cafe.  The huge dinosaur statues, crazy roaring sounds blasting everywhere, etc. were great distractions for her.  I didn't have the patience or time to go in and eat, but that would be quite a test for her.  So, we settled for the distractions outside.
She looks very proud to be sitting so calmly!

Did a "go up" like asked

The motorcycle was rotating around in a circle.  She was fascinated by it.

Handling the fountains very well.

This was hilarious!  There was this tiny little bench that she was trying as hard as she could to go "Under" and just couldn't wiggle herself under there.  She finally settled for this.

She sat there and stared at the other dog while Jacob was trying on clothes.  Will she ever understand a mirror?

Saturday, September 15, 2012

First Cross Country Meet

      I forgot my camera so this will be a boring post!  But, Churry went to her first Cross Country meet today.  Some things that made this a good training experience were all the spectators, dogs (who knew a cross country meet was such a popular place to take pet dogs!), the starter gun, running people, and clapping and yelling.  Churry isn't scared of any of these things, but they are all things that get her really excited and silly.  She did a great job!  She was in a sit or down at my feet all day and remained there through it all with the exception of when a lady approached us and let her huge dog jump all over Churry. The starter gun didn't phase her.  There were 4 races and I got closer and closer to it with each race.  At the last race, we were as close as we could get to it and she remained in a down at my feet when it went off and everyone started yelling.  There is also a lot of yelling and clapping at the finish line and she was very calm and remained sitting during all of that, too.   I was relieved because it was our first real outing since the embarrassing temper tantrum at Challenge Air last week.   She also stole the hearts of one of the opposing teams.  A huge group of them surrounded us and had so many excellent questions, starting with, "May we pet the dog?"  Well raised kids!  They also had many other very good questions and loved learning about KSDS and Churry.  It was nice to see teenagers genuinely interested in such a good thing!

      I've decided that puppy raising can be much like having a toddler.  You never know when they are going to decide to have a tantrum in public and they are no less embarrassing.  Except, people expect them from toddlers.  When you have a dog in public behaving poorly they give you rude looks and I know they are thinking, "Why did that woman bring her naughty dog with her?"  Luckily, Churry rarely has embarrassing tantrums and when she did last week it was amongst supportive other puppy raisers!    One thing that I noticed last week is that as poorly behaved as she was, the one time she did sit calmly was when a child was petting her.  She loves kids so much!

     And the best part of the day, she jumped in the vehicle on her own going there and back!  We have a new toy that worked wonders!  We have gone out every night this week and played in the vehicle.  I'm sure my neighbors think I have lost my mind again as we have done this before.  She had been doing SO WELL this summer with it and now she has suddenly decided to refuse again.  When we are just playing, and she knows we are just playing, she'll jump in and out as many times as I ask her to.  And with great enthusiasm.  Today, we go out there and it took a lot of coaxing.  She finally did it, but I wouldn't say with the same enthusiasm as when we are playing for sure.    Always something to work on!

Thursday, September 13, 2012

A Fun New Toy, Thanks Mandi!

Churry had to spend a couple of days with a friend of mine so she could see a specialist about a skin problem.  The skin problem turned out to be just fine, but man did I miss her!  Her first little vacation was bad enough, but this one was unplanned and I missed her SOOO much!  When she got back, though, she got to go get a new toy that she discovered at her friend's house.

Just not real sure she would like to share it 

Welcome back snuggles

This is where she belongs and I have missed it!

Love the "Here ups"

I love that it looks like she's smiling about her new toy!

Sunday, September 9, 2012

Clara, Day 2...This lady really needs to clean

       Clara is having a new experience living with a big family of 6 this weekend.  She used to nice tidy houses without so many messy KIDS in them!    One of the first things she did after she settled in was pick up all of our shoes and get them put away for me.

Shocking how many shoes one family has!
Then, she helped me hang up all of the clothes.
And helped carry a new load to the washer.

Wondering why I felt the need to vacuum during her nap!
And watching her new friend, Pat, outside working in the yard.  She sure wished he'd come back in to snuggle with her some more.

And, FINALLY, time to relax a bit.

 She's also tried to put Tayler's car keys away, the remote control, a knee brace, my work ID, etc.  We may need to put her on speed dial after she leaves so in case we can't find something!  Maybe, she could come back and teach Churry a thing or two about retrieving items...

Saturday, September 8, 2012

Challenge Air

      I had the wonderful privilege of attending Challenge Air today.  It's a wonderful program that allows children with different abilities to come to the Downtown Airport, learn about planes, and then get to fly in one.  I was only there for just a bit because of Jacob's football game, but looked like an amazing experience for the kids while I was there.  It was also fun to visit with people about KSDS and hear their wonderful comments about our beautiful puppies, even though mine was acting atrociously!  She had been in the car for over an hour and usually when she sees all of her puppy friends, she gets to play with them for an hour before she has to work.  We did manage a few moments of civility, though.  She practiced a Stay while on the firetruck.  She also handled herself well while a variety of people talked to her and pet her.  And she watched the model airplane flying around above her for a bit.  Not a bad outing for just an hour, I just wish I could have been there longer for her to really settle in and take in the experience.  She also got to say hi to her sister, Miami, but I didn't think to get their picture together.  I was surprised to see how much bigger Churry was than her!  She was acting like a perfect little lady while Churry was throwing her little fit.  I guess she needs to remind me she's still a young pup every now and then and has a long ways to go before she'll make it as an assistance dog...

Introducing Clara!

      My family has the privilege for the next few days of watching Clara, another KSDS PIT.  She's a very pretty Golden Retriever Breeder Candidate.  We brought her home this afternoon and she is having a great time playing with Bailey.

Here they are doing some synchronized poses of some sort.

She almost immediately went to Churry's very favorite spot and  plopped down for a rest!

Showing Bailey how to make her ears stand up like this!
"See, you just hold them out like this.  I think you're getting it!"

Getting out some extra energy from her big day at Challenge Air

Posing nicely

Until she noticed we are on a golf course and the golfers were very interesting!

"No really, what are they doing with that ball?"

"I can't look now, they're putting."
 She handled the golf course very well.  She just sat and watched and didn't try to retrieve any of the balls people were "throwing" for her.  I'm amazed at how well the dogs do back here because the golfers are literally right there and often the ball is rolling by within a few feet.

Wednesday, September 5, 2012

Yearly Vet Visit

        Churry had her yearly vet visit today.  She was NOT AT ALL impressed with the Parvo immunization they squirted in her nose.  She sat still and was a trooper through all the shots, poking, prodding, etc.  But, after the Parvo incident, she gave me this very pathetic look and let out a pathetic sounding groan.  Poor baby!  Tomorrow's another day...you can have the night off from working!

Monday, September 3, 2012

Enjoying the Great Outdoors

      Churry and I decided to go on a more scenic walk today.  So, we went with Pat to his biking trails and went on our own little hike.  It was a great experience for her to walk on different terrain, with different smells, and different obstacles to navigate around.

Pat is ready for his ride.  I didn't think she probably wanted to go the distance he goes, so we went our our own walk.

I didn't realize until halfway through our hike that the camera was on black and white, but it's a nice picture anyway.

Taking a rest break.  You can see some of the obstacles we practiced walking around and over in the background.

There were all kinds of unusual "stairs" to stop and sit for.

And we crossed a couple of bridges.

She did very well with her sit and stay in a strange environment.

Down and under on another rest break.

She drank my whole bottle of water on our trip.  It's a good thing I didn't get thirsty!

Made it all the way to the river.

Tired and ready to go home!  This is definitely a place we will enjoy this fall when it's cooler.   Our short hike today was about her limit even with it only being about 81 degrees when we went.    There are many more miles we could explore.