Welcome to The OBay Shelties blog! Our blog is an honest diary of our life with our dogs along with news from Obay shelties around the world.

Thursday, February 28, 2008

Fabric crate

I am selling my almost new folding fabric crate (I should have gotten one size smaller!). It is the large size 32" x 23" x 23" and can be seen on Doggie Solutions website. It is maroon colour. It is a great crate but I think I want to get the one size down as the shelties swim in this one!

I have put it on agilitynet to sell but thought I would post here in case anyone is looking for one for Crufts. Just email me if you are interested.

Amazing herding dog!

For all those people struggling with herding back at home...I stole Mac's video from her blog just to make you drool. This is a 5 year old agility dog who has never been on sheep before! Doesn't she look like a fully trained dog?! Look at that control..that distance! Freakin good! Yeah I know she is a border collie but none of the other BC's that day had anywhere near that talent. (sorry Karen and Nandy!) (note I find that these true media videos take longer to play so be patient). You can find Mac's blog at Dan And Mac's Blog.


Saturday, February 23, 2008

Herding 101

Today we attended a herding instinct day. It was very convenient; only 10 minutes from our house! I think the sheep were a cross of Sussex and Southdowns sheep.

Hex was a good girl and as usual gave it her all! I wouldn't say she was a brilliant herding dog; but for her first time on sheep I was pleased. The only other times she has seen sheep have been when we walk thru fields of sheep and she must not chase them. She showed some interest and certainly was not scared. We will never be able to continue with herding here in England but it was enough for me to see what I think she could be capable of. As for me, it felt weird to be out there with sheep again and I forgot how much backwards walking there was!

Luckily we had good weather; chilly but not cold. It was good to see all the other dogs giving it a try. The star of the day was Mac and her border collie Jess. 5 year old Jess has never seen sheep before and went in like a pro. I have never personally seen an older dog go in for the first time and respond like she did. She immediately went into her border collie crouch and used her eye to move the sheep around. She did not circle; she did not act silly. She stayed off the sheep and moved them straight to her owner. She lay down when told! She even balanced perfectly when the sheep got on the fence. Everything was calm and controlled. Just a perfect herding dog even with no previous experience for either her or her owner. Such a pretty sight to see. It gave me chills.

Also Karen and the other Jessie and Lian and sheltie Saturn did really nicely.

As for the other OBay shelties there.....well lets say Chi and Todd have LOVELY handler focus. hahahaha 'Nuff said! Somehow I don't think their videos will be making any blogs anytime soon! On the positive side; no one fell down!

Here is Hex's video. It is kind of long and probably boring to most of you. So don't feel obligated to watch. I figure it will only be interesting to Johanna! ;-) Hex is now lying fast asleep at my feet. She has had a busy few days and I want to keep up a more intense schedule with her until the week of Crufts. Then we will just keep her chilled out for the few day before Crufts.

Friday, February 22, 2008

Interesting Course: Agility training Feb 2008

I like to check out other blogs for interesting training sequences and courses. It really helps when they put up videos also! There was a recent post on a blog about a course that contained a certain sequence that was quite testing. You can see the videos of her different attempts at the same sequence here.
She was trying sequence 4 - 6 of this course. She just replaced the dogwalk with the Aframe and the Aframe with the weaves. The idea is the same. I love that she left in the bloopers. They made me laugh!

This is the original course.



I found a video of this course being run at Agility in Motion. Just click on the movie that says Round 5 world team try-outs. Bloody hell I don't know how those two guys got those two from crosses in from 4-6. Well I take that back...they can run like stink! I hate men that can run! hehe I wish I could see some of the large dogs runninng this course.

So here is a video of our attempts at this course. I was pleasantly suprised that we did the course on the first try. Ohhhh but then......the carnage! It was good fun though and thanks to Lisa for helping me set it up and to Sassie for posting her attempts and giving us some good ideas! I am exhausted after working this course and need a cup of tea and a lie down.

Agility Training 22 Feb 2008

Have you guessed that Dennis is away? This is my third post today and I still have another post to do later! So it will be 4 blog posts today! And I did train my dogs, clean the house and take Zen on her daily pregger walk.

Lisa came by this morning with her mother Julia. As you saw in the post below; Julia ran a few sequences with Billy and did really well! I also let her run my old girl Pax over the same sequence. The oldies, Pax and Billy, were so happy to run! Julia is a natural; never did agility herself before but just watched Lisa a few times. I think it goes back to the fact that she used to ride horses.

After Julia left, Lisa came back with Chi to do some more training. I still had the course up that Andy and Nancy helped me set last week. Let me tell you that Andy is a fantastic setter-upper of courses! He does it so much quicker than us girls; it must be his architect training. I am rubbish at setting courses; it just takes me ages.

Anyway, this was the course that Nancy picked out from the Feb issue of Clean run. It was the black numbers of "nested courses" page. We just replaced the long jump with the wall jump as we needed to practice wall jumps for Crufts.



And here is the video of Hex and Chi running this course.

For Julia Happy Birthday!

For Dennis and Helene

We have changed Zen's theme tune to

Beer Barrel Polka (aka Roll out the Barrel)

Do English people know Polka?? Dennis' mom Helene loves her Polka! Anyway, Zen is getting round like a barrel and we can't help humming this song when she is around! Here are the lyrics although we tend to just hum up until the chorus!

Lyrics of Beer Barrel Polka
There's a garden, what a garden,
Only happy faces bloom there,
And there's never any room there,
For a worry or a gloom there
Oh there's music and there's dancing,
And a lot of sweet romancing
When they play the polka
They all get in the swing

Every time they hear that oom-pa-pa,
Everybody feels so tra-la-la
They want to throw their cares away,
They all go lah-de-ah-de-ay
Then they hear a rumble on the floor, the floor,
It's the big surprise they're waiting for
And all the couples form a ring,
For miles around you'll hear them sing...

Chorus:
Roll out the barrel, we'll have a barrel of fun
Roll out the barrel, we've got the blues on the run
Zing boom tararrel, ring out a song of good cheer
Now's the time to roll the barrel, for the gang's all here

Thursday, February 21, 2008

The next wave of Monty pups in agility!

I have stolen this video from Johanna's blog cause it is the first time I have seen a Monty pup from another litter (other than mine) do agility. Monty is Zen's sire. I used him here in England to produce Zen and then he went over to Denmark to work with Johanna. Luckily some good sheltie breeders have been using him over there and Spirit is from the next group of puppies to be hitting the agility rings.
I believe this was Spirit's first agility show.

I love how Susanne takes the time to praise Spirit and make the run a happy experience for him.

Tuesday, February 19, 2008

Ribbon/rosette Wall hanging

My sister Terry had this wall hanging made up from obedience and agility ribbons of her 5 dogs. The lady who does them is Quilting Cove.

I do not know her or anything but had found her website and I thought her stuff was gorgeous and unique; so I sent her info out to friends by email. So Terry (of course!) decided to get one made. The lady did it ever so quickly and the result is so pretty. Here are the photos of the finished product!


Monday, February 18, 2008

Hex Sheltie of the Year 2007!


Two weekends ago I went to the Engish Shetland Sheepdog Club Working Section AGM. They give out the yearly trophies at the AGM and I was really suprised to find out that Hex won the "SHELTIE OF THE YEAR" trophy! Zen has won this trophy two years in a row and if we were going to win I thought it would have been her again. But Hex had other ideas and just won over Zen by a small margin. That's my little girl!

Here is a photo that Dennis took of me and Hex and our trophy! I LOVE this trophy and wish I could keep it forever and ever! :-)

Sunday, February 17, 2008

For Johanna :-)

Hex shows her Dad the proper contact position.


Now finished as the super stud-man; Tazz gets to practice some agility in prep for Crufts!







Thursday, February 14, 2008

She's a Brick House



She's a brick----house
Mighty mighty, just lettin' it all hang out
She's a brick----house
The lady's stacked and that's a fact,
ain't holding nothing back.

She's a brick----house
She's the one, the only one,
who's built like a amazon
We're together everybody knows,
and here's how the story goes.

Well you can't help humming this song (The Commodores "Brick House") when you see Zen! She is fat and full of puppies. I think I am going with the "Tiz" theme as quite a few people have come up with good names. So now we need more! (hint hint~! Come on Eleanor, Diane and Ann Marie my favorite three puppy namers!) They will be "OBay Tiz......" with call names that MUST have "Z" in the name. Preferably "Z" as the first letter but I will be flexible on that! (well slightly flexible) Keep the suggestions coming. Maybe I should do a prize for the best name!

I have been trying to keep Zen fit by taking her for short walks everyday by herself. By taking her out alone she will just trot along rather than storming about chasing others. We just walk across the road thru the fields about 1 mile round trip. She is already getting tired just doing that. Personally I cannot understand why someone would continue to work and train a pregnant bitch in agility. Just craziness.

I had all ambitions of trying out with Zen for the European Open especially as it looks as if GB may not be doing the World Champs this year. So the EO will be the next best thing. But now that I have counted weeks; it looks as if it just ain't gonna happen! Her pups will only be 5 weeks old during the day of the try-outs and I will NOT risk taking Zen out just for that. I have always said that I am, in reality, "A sheltie person that does agility" rather than "an agility person who has a sheltie". Now I guess I can say that I am first and foremost a sheltie breeder rather than a sheltie competitor. I guess that is good? But I am still going to miss working Zen! I can only focus now on Hex and see if I can get her thru the try-outs.

This is a first for me. I am going to post a photo of my shelties ungroomed just because the photos are so funny. We have three of Lisa's dogs for the weekend. Griz, True and Chi. Billy the Bastard is holiday-ing in Wales with his grandma so luckily we don't have him also. (Thanks Julia!!) Just kidding as we LOVE Billy even if he is a Bastard!

So anyway I am in Sheltie heaven with EIGHT shelties and one lurcher for the weekend. I wanted to get a photo of Griz the lurcher relaxing; but then thought why not add Zen in the photo...and then decided to try for all the shelties. Just realize this photo is taken by me alone with no help from anyone else! It is not easy getting 8 shelties to put their ears up while sitting still and at the same time snap the photo!

PS I adore Griz the lurcher. She is my all-time favorite "not a sheltie dog" except for Whizz the border collie!

Now all the dogs on the couch. (Where else would they be? In the dogs beds maybe???)

This one I am posting just because 10 year old Grandma True (front right) looks so gorgeous in this photo. We started grooming her with the "Mane n Tail" spray conditioner and it has really helped tame her coat!

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Swimming Shelties

I haven't had a chance to post to the blog recently; but have lots going on. I hope to get some training videos up later in the week. I attended a training day last Saturday with Hex and the Working Sheltie AGM on Sunday. More about both later!

For now; just a little clip of Hex and Chi swimming at the White Orchid Doggie Pool. I am very lucky that the pool is less than 1/4 mile down the road from me! I am still hoping Hex will be able to attend Crufts; so I am really concentrating on her fitness as well as her training. Chi has just started swimming these past few weeks. Lisa is taking him to help rehabilitate him after his surgery as well as to just improve his overall fitness. She had taken him 3-4 times to another place where he is swimming in one spot while tied to a pole; they swim against a current. Chi did not love this; but he started to show some improvement. So I suggested she bring him along with Hex and I to this pool. Unfortunately my battery in the video camera ran out because by the end of the session Chi was actually going in on his own without the lead and swimming out for his ball! That is a fab result as he started out a few weeks ago hating to swim!

Hex just loves to swim and I love to watch her! I just think everything she does is so darn cute!

Tuesday, February 05, 2008

No photos, no videos just talk

We had a good weekend but unfortunately no videos or photos to blog with. Boring, I know!

We had some scary news last week. Poor Oz had his 1 year vaccination and had an allergic reaction to it. Mary got him home from the vet only to have to turn right around and drive him quickly back as his face and head swelled up. I have been through this before and know how scary it is. Her vet had the same response that my vet did....."Oh he must have gotten bit by a bug"....... WTF!!!! Yeah like it is just a coincidence that he just had his vaccination 1 hour before he swelled up? What is with these vets??? ARGHHHHHHH! I spoke to Mary again today and he is fine and back to normal.

I spoke to the three other puppy owners from that litter to warn them of possible reactions. Luckily Zoe and Wizz had already had their injections with no problems. There is only Kizzy left and at least now Andy and Nancy can talk to their vet about it.

On a more positive note, on Saturday, Lisa and I went to Lesley Olden's for a "Course Analysis" training day. It was a great day as expected and good practice for me and Hex to get back into gear running full courses.

On Sunday I judged at C-side. What a long long day! Thankfully Lisa drove (and scribed) as I was toast on the ride home! We left the house at 6:30 to get to the show to tweak the course and start judging at 8am. I didn't take any breaks as there was another judge to be judging in the same ring in the afternoon and I didn't want to have the ring go late into the night. So I judged around 350 dogs in 6 straight hours!

Luckily I was really pleased with how the course ran and I love watching the dogs go round. It is so interesting as a trainer and as a handler to see how people choose to run a course and how their dogs respond to them in the ring. Most people were very kind to their dogs and I like to give people as much opportunity to work thru issues as possible. I think everyone appreciates that and no one "took the mickey" in my eyes.

One issue I found (as this was grade 1-3 dogs) was a few dogs who refused the dog walk. I didn't mind if people needed to encourage the dogs over but a few people thought the best way to do that was to DRAG the dog across! Yikes! One lady though that she could take her little spaniel by the scruff and force it to walk up the dog walk. Not Likely!

The funniest moment (although probably not to the handler!) was the black lab who grabbed not one but TWO obstacle numbers and did loops around the ring proudly carrying them! HA! The handler was actually very calm and I was so happy that she was not harsh to her dog. I had to have a sit down on the Aframe for a minute or two while the lab did his laps! :-)

The scariest moment was the huge Doberman who did jump 1, jump 2 and then straight AT ME with a deep growl! SHIT! I turned away and just felt the dog skim behind me. Phew!

All in all a good weekend and I enjoyed the judging.

Well obviously Hob-b didn't have puppies this weekend and her due date passed uneventfully. Zen on the other hand is looking possibly a bit thicker in the middle; so fingers crossed. I am already thinking about registered names and am stuck on what theme to use. The pups will still need "Z" names as I want to keep that for all her puppies. But I haven't had a theme for their registered names really hit me as perfect yet.

My first thought was to make a play on Grandma True's name (Ch. Linden 'Tis True) and have the registered names as "OBay Tiz...." but I havent' gotten any further than that! Then I thought maybe something similar to the "OBay Truly .." theme. Maybe "OBay Extremely..." Or "OBay Absolutely.." or "OBay Positively..." I don't know! Hob-b's puppies were going to be so much easier as I had a great "Helluva" theme ready!

Friday, February 01, 2008

Weekend training plans

Weather report: No rain today!

A belated Happy Birthday to my big sister Terry! She turned ?? old yesterday. I am so jealous because she is getting one of these ribbon wall hangings (photo below is from her website) for her birthday. I saw this email on one of my sheltie lists from this lady. I have not personally seen her stuff or worked with her; but was impressed by the creativity so I forwarded the note to some friends. I have decided that Terry, Johanna and Sonia are three peas-in-a-pod. They are the people who, if you show them something new, they just gotta have it! Hmmm why is it I am friends with these people? hahaha Anyway Terry is getting something like this for her birthday and is using ribbons from all 5 of her dogs. It should be really special.




Once Terry gets hers and we see how reliable the lady is; I will report back with photos!

Yesterday we actually did get out for a walk. The rain and gale force winds just stopped suddenly around 3pm. So I met Lisa and we took Hex, Hob-b, Griz and Chi for a good walk around the gallops. Hob-b and Hex have been my main walking partners recently and they are a nice team to take out together.

Hex and I did some short training sequences today. Nothing big but we set up sequence 6 of the Jenny Damm DVD. It is one of the shorter sequences and I needed to get some equipment off areas of my grass so the mud could dry up. So now there is one big area in the middle that I cannot use for a little while. I also set up this sequence that I found here on AgilityNerd blog.



A special note to Johanna: I have started to "refresh" Tazz's contacts for you! ha! I figure we can't let the poor guy go to Crufts not having done any agility since August!

Here is a silly video of Hex trying to learn to "Sit pretty" (basically sit up and beg). I find it hysterical that some dogs, like poodles and terriers, can almost do this naturally yet I have never been able to teach one of my shelties to do it. So I have been working with Hex as I figure it cannnot hurt and will help her core muscle strength. And it is just cute!



The weekend plans are:

  • Saturday: Course walking training day with Lesley Olden. Yeah!
  • Sunday: I am judging in the morning at C-side and also get to run Hex in the afternoon. Yeah finally a good training run for Hex!