Monday, January 31, 2011

Sunday Classics from the IL

Disclaimer:  I can't make any of this up.  But it's possibly exaggerated, as I'm usually trying really hard not to laugh in someone's face.

We were in Illinois yesterday, where gas was about .30 cents more a gallon for the ethanol blend than in Iowa.  I'm in the back seat.

Driver: "Gas went way up again.  How many miles per gallon do you get in your car?"
Passenger: "On the way here...about 28-35."
D: "What....what?!"
P:  "Well yeah...when I put ethanol blend in it.  I get about 24 - 27 when I use Flex fuel.  I was told there's not really a reason to use the Flex fuel until after gas gets to a bit more than $3.50 a gallon."
D: "Well right, cars burn ethanol faster.  No wonder your gas in Iowa is cheaper.  They put all that ethanol in it."
P: "What?"
D: "That's why Iowa gas is cheaper.  They put so much ethanol in it compared to Illinois gas."
P:  "I'm pretty sure it's because Iowa has a larger tax subsidy for ethanol."
D: "That's what they want you to think.  I always burn Iowa gas faster than Illinois gas."
P: "But I'm pretty sure it's the same gas they sell here in Illinois.  We have state subsidies that make it cheaper."
D: "Well I don't know about that.  I'm pretty sure it's different gas."
P: "It's the same gas...the octanes are the same."
D:  "I don't know about that.  I always go through Iowa gas faster than Illinois gas...that has to be the reason."

D to P: "Pass Bob the salsa."
Bob:  "I don't want salsa."
(D and Bob are not married.)

P:  "I think we're going to get going...."

The list goes on and on....those are just a few highlights.

Friday, January 28, 2011

The Crazies.

So yeah.  What the title says.

Have you ever spent so much time with someone one on one and begin to realize that they may be slightly unbalanced?  The unnerving part is that I won't notice for several months and the instant my husband meets them he lets me know that they are nuts.

So....let's say that you let this person believe that they are always right in terms of dog things.  You start to subtly add in your own experiences and research, but you're always wrong.

The crappier part comes in when that person has helped you so much...but also shown you things that don't work for your dogs, because they believe in a "every dog has to be trained the exact same way" mentality.  When you try and point this out, you're told that you spoil your dogs too much and you don't control their lives well enough.

The bottom line occurs when you have an incident with your dog, and you vent your frustration to this person.

Person then states that you shouldn't allow your dog to act that way and shame on you.

Now....Rocket is an intact Male Doberman.  A breed very well known for same sex dog aggression.  You do everything in your power to control the situations he is in because you know this and the damage that could occur.  When someone allows their young, intact male dog to run at your dog, barking and shrieking.....and you're holding your dog's collar to keep him behind you, but the little dog automatically runs up to your dog's boy parts and gets up close and personal...WTF DO YOU THINK IS GOING TO HAPPEN.

I had control of my dog.  I grabbed his buckle collar instead of his prong and swung him in circles behind my back to keep the other dog in front of me.  I got an apology from his owner and we went to work.

He knows when to focus.  He knows how to behave in a busy ring with other intact males.  He KNOWS what is expected.  It's when we are not actively working that he is allowed to be himself....which includes all the same sex male DA he was born with.

Yet somehow...I was in the wrong.  I let my dog growl at another dog.  Rocket got a "shame on you!!!" and a finger shaking.

Seriously?? SERIOUSLY?  My dog is not. like. other. dogs.  He is meant to provide protection for me, to work with me up close and personal.  It is NOT in his nature to welcome strange males into his personal space, let along let them sniff his boy parts.  It is NOT in his GENETIC CODE to allow this.

I do a damn good job managing him, and it pisses me off to no end to hear crap spewed at me about my breed....when I did my research...and person has never had one...not even a working breed.

And they wonder why I wear headphones when I train.


I've been incredibly lazy with training lately.  Sure, we have member classes on Thursdays, training on Sat, agility on Mon and I'm assisting a beginners class on Tuesday...but I haven't been putting a lot of work into it.  We've had a ton of OT at work, so I'm cramming in as many hours as possible so I can a much larger cushion in my bank account.  Rocket's back on Orijen, which means I can either fork out the $80+ for a 29 lb bag of the red meat or just go in every two weeks or so and spend $40 on a 15#.

The Prozyme is nuts - he looks like a different dog.  Noodle too - they both look athletic and trim instead of so skinny they can't function.  They both eat two meals a day now, so that's been huge.  Best $23 I've spent....the bottle has lasted almost 3 months.

Kind of bummed....husband doesn't feel that our house is big enough to have the four dogs and foster too.  I see where he's coming from - Rocket's a freaking bucking bronco through here and Allie and Ruby aren't too small either.  Someday, when we have a larger house we can foster, but not anytime soon.

VERY EXCITED for the day Rocket's new collar shows up!  Shouldn't be too long now!!

Friday, January 14, 2011

Just ordered my first Paco collar!

SO EXCITED!!  Finally decided to invest in a really nice leather collar for the kid, we'll see how my custom design request works out!  The design is based on this belt.  

I've been drooling over their designs for a few years and wanted something special, so we'll see how that belt transforms into a 1.5" wide double layer black collar with an extra D ring and silver hardware.

Yep, I get excited over dog collars.

Sunday, January 9, 2011

Anyone else want to have a party when they pay off a credit card?

Yes, I am one of those people who gets excited about dumb things.  Paying bills?  Yep.  Paying off a credit card?  I better be strapped in my chair.  Vacuuming?  Boy howdy.  Cleaning my cube at work?  SCORE!

But seriously, I'd love to have a party every time I get myself out of debt.  This does mean, that in 2026, I will have a huge blowout appropriately named "Stick it IA Student Loan!"  Nothing like paying off $50k in student loan debt when you're 45.  I don't know how people manage to have kids and student loans.

Hopefully, if things go as planned, we will be out of credit card debt by this time next year. 

Training Today/Ruby Update

Ruby is weird.  No more coughing, no more stressing's like she's decided it was a month of get Mom worried about my health then go to the vet and find nothing....then start acting normal again.

I think she was put on the planet to give me more gray hair.

I took Allie and Rocket to the club for training today.  Allie did surprisingly well!  She does even better without a prong collar on, so I just used a clicker and her martingale.  She didn't lose focus or lose any of her enthusiasm for the 30 minutes I messed around with her.  Our number one thing to work on if I'm ever going to show her is her sit.  She still has puppy butt, and in an attempt to be able to see my face, she'll sit about 2 feet away from me instead of right next to me.  Other than that, she was doing a great job.

Rocket had much better heeling today, but I can tell it's going to take me quite a while to get him used to keeping his head up and attention on me when we are moving.  We can reliably do about 5 steps before he has to look elsewhere, so I'm continuing to reward him for his head placement.  I added the last board to our broad jump and he handled it without any issues, so I'll be able to start moving the boards apart to get him to the distance that they will be when we trial.  He had much better attention today too, and I think his ecollar training is working...when I say "leave it", he leaves it and doesn't go back.

We'll continue to work work work!!

Monday, January 3, 2011

Keep your paws crossed for Ruby

Ruby, the survive it all with a growl dog, has changed recently.

I can tell she still wants to get around and go go go, but I noticed a really slight gimp in her gait.  She's been getting herself very worked up, so much so that she's giving herself lick sores on her feet.  She's growly and antsy and short tempered, more so than usual.

The scarier parts are the reasons why we're going to the vet this afternoon.

She's starting to choke on water and food.  I can hear her coughing after getting exciting about something.  Her panting in the house has increased and she's more restless than usual.

Jeremy and I have been wondering if she's older than we thought.

Please keep everything crossed for her today, I don't know what we'll do if it's what I'm worrying about.

Saturday, January 1, 2011

Happy New Year!!!!!!!!!!

I've never been one for new year's resolutions, so instead, I'll make a few goals.

1.  Get out of debt
2.  Save for a new car
3.  Keep working out
4.  Make more progress at work so I can get promoted!
5.  Remember the things that matter the most in life

Now, dog related....
1.  Get more points towards Rocket's CH
2.  Finish Ruby's CD/RN
3.  Keep training Rocket in obed/agility/tracking
4.  Volunteer, volunteer, volunteer
5.  Retrain Allie

I hope everyone takes the time to make goals for themselves this year!