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About TrulyReady

  • Birthday May 4

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    Jacksonville, FL

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  1. My favorite was taking Truly to an obedience trial in Atlanta that was being held with a breed show a few weekends ago and being asked by more then one person if she was a Canaan Dog. The ring steward couldnt figure out why I wasn't on her list and she didnt see a Canaan dog in any of the novice classes. I kindly explained she was a smooth coat border collie, and how there were different coat types yada yada yada and the lady was silent for a moment and came up with that she had never seen a border collie with such big ears. I had to chuckle a little bit and just shake my head.
  2. As a general rule my dogs have 15-20 minutes to eat thier food, then it gets put up for the next scheduled meal. My Border collie is not a big eater and I found myself getting anxious over her not eating and adding things, leaving food down all day etc hoping she would eat. She would pick at it when she wanted and like your pup would not work for food rewards no matter how good they were (she would snub her nose at steak, chicken etc) In agility I reverted to only using a tug reward since she was not interested in food and it all came crumbling down when we actually started competing and I wanted that focus on me rather then toy or agility equipment. Then I decided I wanted to train for competative obedience and Rally and was trying to figure out how to do it with toys rather then food etc. Long story short, I woke up and got a grip one day and decided she would only eat dry kibble, and only have her bowl for 15 minutes. She did go hungry for a day or two and I would just keep offering the same bowl at each meal and started offering less at each feeding to where she would clean her bowl. Within a few weeks I had a different dog, we are now training obeience with food rewards only and she is eager to work for food. When we do alot of trick training I cut her food back for the day. I have never left food bowls down for my dogs, but because Truly always looked "thin" to me she got me suckered into accomidating her and creating a monster. If I know I'm going to train before lunch I don't feed her morning meal at all and just feed after my training sessions. She's still no chow hound by any means and is picky about training treats but after almost two years of her spitting things out in training she now eagerly works for treats. I still pick up almost full bowls of food every now and then after her 15 minute meals, but she will usually eat it all on the next go round and I don't sweat it anymore and honestly she hasn't lost a single pound over it.
  3. I'm sure my runs at the Southeast Regionals fell into the "less-then-steller attempts" catagory! With that said I don't watch much of other peoples videos unless it is specifically a teaching/training video. But I do LOVE to watch other people run at trials, both good and bad. I think you can learn from bad handlers just as much as you can a good one. I can look at other peoples late front crosses, or a front that would have been a better rear or blind and keep it as a mental note for making my plans later on other courses. I think I learn just as much from watchin a handler make a bad plan as I do watching a world team member execute a perfect run. Unfortunatly my run's don't always go perfectly and never look like a world team type run like I invision. Seeing other people make mistakes similar to my own makes me more aware of the results my handling (or lack of) have on my dogs perfomance. The one thing I can't stand to see is people getting angry or frustrated at thier dogs poor performance due to the handlers lack of training or handling. As long as a team is out having fun, mistakes or not, I enjoy watching them!
  4. I also rotate brands and flavors every bag, not only does it help fill in the gaps any brand of kibble may have, but it has also allowed me to find brands I like verses the ones I probably won't buy again without much disapointment. I love Nutrisource and like their seafood selects grain free so much I always go back to it every third or so bag I buy. Switching brands makes buying dogfood more fun, I love researching new brands to buy, I like you said alternating allows you to splerge on a more expensive brand then you would not usually buy every now and then and not feel bad. I usually order dogfood online from somewhere with free shipping (wag.com), this also lets me try brands that my local stores don't carry.
  5. When the topic of breed specific bans comes up it makes my heart sink. Anyone who even remotely considers this to be fair is not a dog lover at all. What if someone came to your front door and took your heart dog (any breed) for absolutly no reason and told you they were going to put them to sleep for absolutly no other reason than some other dogs of the same breed in your city were aggressive. You also get into what is a "pit bull"? What about a boxer/lab mix that maybe has bully chariteristics is it a "pit bull"? Is it fair to make the true dog loving bully breed owners have to sell their homes and move to another city/state just because they love thier dog? I totally agree that pit bulls can be dangerous, and they are powerful dogs that can do more damage then say an aggressive Jack Russell but to ban them all together is totally unfair. Maybe coming up with spay/neuter programs for these dogs, or requiring registration of these dogs to keep track of them and if you are not a competent dog owner who licences thier dog, has it spayed/neutered etc then they could take the dog. Anything other then blindly taking peoples beloved/safe/friendly compainion and killing it for no reason. Maybe there should be IQ tests to own a bully breed... To say they should be murdered just because someone doesn't "like" them is heartless and inhumane towards both the dogs and the responsible owners. This coming from a person who owns an Australian cattle dog who could give any pit bull a run for its money, I can't judge.
  6. This is just personal opinion but I would never consider a husky or a Malamute as a therapy dog in a school setting. There coats are particularly allergy triggering and would probably set of every non pet owning asthmatic child in the school... Thier undercoat is light and carries in the air more then most breeds, not to mention no amount of brushing will help when they are blowing coat. Add to this they are both bred to be very independent and aloof and are not people pleasing by nature. This is not to say they arn't friendly but most want attention on thier terms and when they are done, they prefer to do their own thing. My uncle raised huskies for years and though they tolerated kids well and were never aggressive it was a chore for them to put up with us as kids. As a teenager my neighbor had a Malamute who was aloof but very tolerent of just about everything but still wouldn't be my top pick for therapy dogs.
  7. Truly my highly active, hard to keep weight on 30lb Border collie is on NutriSource Performance food 2 1/2c per day mixed with Honest Kitchen 1/2 cup per day as a topper, although I'm lucky if she will eat half of what I offer this seems to be working well for her and she eats it better then most things I've tried. My older less active Border collie and Cattle dog are currently on Nutrisource grain free seafood selects which I like alot, and they seem too also. Before that they were on Earthborn Holistic Ocean Fusion which I also liked. I switch back and forth between three or four brands and get a different brand with each bag, I spoke with a friend/vet who in conversation mentioned if you were going to feed baged dog food it is good to rotate a few brands of high quality dog food just in case one brand maybe lacking certain nutrients, the next brand would probably cover it. It made sence to me, so thats what I do. So far so good with no issues switching brands etc.
  8. I will start this off with I know the difference between the actual training methods of shaping vs. luring. My question is for those who do both methods in simple exercises what are the benefits to take the time to shape a behavior? For example, something simple like 'Spin' right and left I can effectively teach my dog by luring in just a few sessions and have a pretty solid behavior performance in the end. Where if I took the time to shape it, to me it take considerably longer. I understand also that as the dog learns to offer behaviors that shaping new things gets faster/easier but my border collie in particular has never been one to offer behaviors and have VERY low drive for treats and looses interest very quickly even with very frequent clicks/rewards when shaping mostly because she's not interested in the treats (it can be steak, hot dogs etc she just doesn't care) She is VERY toy motivated and I try to mix it up with a toy reward every few clicks which is very time consuming. Luring seems to work much better for her but I'm wondering if the end result is really that different? My newest edition is a Staffy bull terrier puppy who is over the top food motivated and has no toy interest (totally opposite!) but will offer behaviors for a cookie til the cows come home! What started my thoughts on this topic was trying to teach the Silvia Trkman Heeling method (spinning front paws on a bowl to start) My 5 month old Staffy puppy picked up on feet on the bowl = treat within 3 minutes. My border collie no matter how much I treat for a head shift in the right direction etc etc etc will connect it with putting her feet on the bowl, and because of her lack of food interest getting the treat isn't that important. If I resort to luring her for the initial behavior am I losing anything in my end behavior result? I will add that my border collie is brilliant and excels in agility and have over the top drive for other things that she can go "do" something. I just can't seem to get her to stop and think about non-agility activities no matter how exciting I try and make them!
  9. Most of the research is now saying It is better to wait until the dog is done growing to Spay. Sexual hormones play a huge part in the development process and bone development. The is especially true if you plan on doing any sports/herding they say that early spaying can lead to orthopedic issues. With that said by 12-18 months most dogs growth plates are closed so I don't see the reasoning in waiting until three. I spayed my Current dog at 6 months because I knew in my mind I didn't want to breed her, but at the time I didn't realize the harm it could cause. If I had it to do over again I would have done it at 18 months. Here is an article with more info: http://www.caninesports.com/uploads/1/5/3/1/15319800/spay_neuter_considerations_2013.pdf
  10. I will say I love my Ruff Tough Kennels ( www.rufftoughkennels.com ) And they have tie down attachments you can buy seperatly to secure them with a rachet strap to the inside of your truck which is nice. I've never used them with a truck before but I do use the tie downs inside of my SUV as a "just in case" of a wreck.
  11. I did not use a particular "meathod" to train it, we train with Stuart Mah when we can and he's helped me with my running contacts. I would compare the process i used with Daisy Peel or Terkman, starting with a low/ flat peice of equipment with a target and then moving to a toy reward and marking the dog moving fluidly through the yellow to the bottom of the board then rewarding and gradually moving up in height and difficulty. My criteria is the dog must have a solid hit with a full stride to through the bottom of the board (as if running a flat plank) I know part of my problem is when trialling while she was getting her contacts letting her get away with hits that were in the yellow but higher in the contact zone then my criteria was in practice but I'm not sure how to rework this since our problem seems to only be in the ring and not on the practice field (even with distractions, pushing her hard over the frame etc). Her running aframe is beautiful in practice and I know letting my trail criteria slip started the issues but not sure how to go back and fix it since I can't seem to recreate it outside of the trial environment. We have only had this issue for two trials and I would like to fix it before the problem continues to grow.
  12. I have been training Truly on running contact for about 5 months now. She picked up on the concept super quickly and I was really amazed a how much easier it was (so I thought) than I had first anticipated it would be. We had had a 80-90% success rate for months and usually only had misses when we had wonky stuff following the aframe or a bad approach to the frame. The past month or so of trailing we've been more hit and miss and our last trial we were probably at a 40% success rate for the trial. At practice though we are still holding at 90% success and I have seen NO change for the worse in our performance at practice. I have been trying to up the difficulty in practice with turns off the frame etc and she still has done well. Can anyone else with a running aframe give me some ideas on how to proof my running A-frames for compatition? I have been trying to mark incorrect A-frames at trials but depending on how far the next obstical is since Truly is so stinking fast she is sometimes over the next obstical before my brain processes as a miss. Any ideas or experiences would be helpful.
  13. I have never done any of Susan Garrets online courses etc. but was able to meet her in person for the first time at one of our trials here in Florida a few months ago, and I would hand over my $250 in a heartbeat to her if I had more time to work through the program. When I heard of the cost of her programs last year I was flabbergasted at people paying thousands for some of her seminars etc. I tought like some here that it is a money making gimmick and she reminded me of some over commercialized trainers in the horse world. With that said after meeting Susan my perspective changed totally. She was so "normal". Susan was amazingly personalbe, kind, and down to earth. She truly loves her dogs and has an amazing working relationship with them. Seeing her young dog Swagger run and her just laugh when he made mistakes, she never once looked frustrated even as he pulled the entire ring gating down trying to get to his toy at the end of the run. She's a natural teacher which many people are not, she is encouraging and accepting of others, and I never got any vibe she felt better then the next person waiting to run. I personally am not much on obedience training but Susan is a master at making games to make learning fun and interesting to both dog and handler and making you break things down into peices to perfect the larger picture of your dogs performance. The pre-agility foundation training can be the most important part of your dogs whole agility career and that to me is well worth $250 to set my dog up as a successful working partner.
  14. I prefer to train 5 days per week when possible, we do two classes per week with our instructor (these are group classes so her actual feild time isn't long), and try to do at least three sessions at home in the yard in a week, but we keep them short (usually 15-20 mins) and work different skills at different intensity levels depedning on the weather, if we trialed the weekend prior etc. Sometimes my whole session maybe startline stays where I may only call her over a low jump 2-3 times in the whole session. I am currently working on Nancy Gyse Alphabet drills book so will be doing more jumping than usual in the next few weeks, and when teaching running A-frames we did many repetative A-frames due to training, it just depends on what we are focusing on at the time. If we have back to back trial weekends I may only go to class and skip all home training, or just plain take the week off. My dog is young and super high energy/ pushy dog and if we only train once a week it is a one step foreward and two step back game. I find that training shorter sessions throughout the week works best for us. I've slacked some during the winter and can tell a regression in her performance so I know I have to get back on the ball.
  15. I purchased an Aluminum A-frame this past weekend from Agility-equipment.com at a show. It is the do-it-yourself model, meaning you have to apply your own surface, it is only the Aluminum frame (with chains, and pin at apex included) The dirctions are for how to attach Marine grade plywood to the frame, I was wondering if anyone has any opionions on other options? I would love to have a aluminum/rubber surface done in the future but its not in the budget at the moment which is why we went mor do-it-yourself. Has anyone had issues with Plywood sufaces? Has anyone tried PVC board? we also considered putting an aluminum suface with paint/non-skid sand but I worry it will gt to hot in the florida summers. Would love to hear opinions before we take on this project!
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