Friday, June 25, 2010

We made it to Canada!

We made it to Canada last Friday (the 18th) without any problems. I have a wheelchair modified Honda Odyssey with a clear space in the middle (where the 2nd row of seats would normally be). There is a ramp with space for my power chair right behind the front passenger seat. Because its generally safer to have dogs travel in crates, we have Laurel's plastic airline-type one on the floor on the other side of the van, behind the driver's seat. We tie it down to the van floor and now we put Hardy's crate on top of hers and tie it down to the other crate. It worked really well with the Intermediate size crate for our trip but I'm guessing it will be more challenging when we need to use his full-size one.
We have a nice bedroom on the first floor here with a little yard for Laurel and Hardy right outside. Apparently, all the boxes had been in the bedroom but Sue and her husband, John, had cleared them all out before we arrived. So we got all settled and classes began on Sunday. Laurel and I will be taking the Unlimited Levels classes which are based on Sue Ailsby's Training Levels and Hardy and I will take every Puppy class they have. Hardy loves spending time out in the little yard and is getting up very early in the morning so I have been putting him out there and feeding breakfast in various treat toys. For lunch, we do training and I am now cueing each of the behaviors. We're also still working on name recognition and eye contact, as well as going to mat and going into his crate. Then at dinner, we either do more training or I feed him in his crate.
Brent left for home late Sunday morning so that he could get to my parents' in time to celebrate Father's Day. Then Hardy and I attended our first puppy class. I really liked the balance of puppy play, practice of behaviors and time to discuss important puppy things (housebreaking, bite inhibition etc). Even though the class was 1 1/2 hours long, the time flew by and the puppies didn't seem tired or stressed by too much training. One of the puppies spent much of the play time humping Hardy and I have to admit that even though I knew it was normal and didn't mean anything, I wanted to ask John to make the puppy stop. Hardy stood up for himself and made it pretty clear he didn't like the attention. Hopefully, next class the puppy will have gotten the message! Then in the evening, Laurel and I took our first Levels class - Laurel passed Levels 1 and 2 quickly but I realize that each level becomes more demanding and has more and more behaviors that you have to pass. I'd love to pass Level 4 before we leave here.
Sue came home with her dogs late that evening and when she took them out of her truck, she realized that her GSD Schutzhund dog, Eco, had bloat. At about 11:00 pm, I raced them to the emergency clinic where they stabilized him and then we raced to the vet school where they did surgery for a twisted stomach (apparently it twisted 360 degrees). Thankfully, he is doing very well and came home a couple days ago. He is on complete crate rest for the next couple weeks at least.
We're settling into a nice routine. Laurel is so good with Hardy - she is very patient and lays down so that he can climb all over her. If he gets out of hand, she lets him know. They've also been swimming at Marden Park. Hardy was very funny - he ran right into the water and swam around in a circle, then he got back out and started eating goose poop on the shore. I guess he has his priorities!
Tomorrow Sue and John are having an open house at their training hall, Dogs in the Park. Laurel and I are going to participate in an agility demo and Hardy will get to meet a ton more people and friendly dogs.

No comments:

Post a Comment