Thursday, October 20, 2016

Remembering Teach: 5/5/2011-10/7/2016 #TeachieThursday

I feel I owe everyone out there a post.

As many of you already know, that follow us on social media, we lost Teach unexpectedly on Oct. 7, 2016.  He was just shy of 5.5 years old.  I'm not going to get into the details of what happened, just know we were with him and comforted him until he passed.  And there was no suffering.

The last picture I have of Teach on my phone, taken 10-6-16
Teach was far too young to be taken so soon.  He was full of life until the very end.

Just a week before he passed he had fun playing agility at a show-n-go at the Festival of the Dog.  This was the first time I had ever asked him to weave all 6 poles in the middle of the course.  And of course he rocked it.  He tried so hard for me all the time!!!  Anything to please his mommy. #mommasboy #mommyissues

I won't lie, he's left a HUGE hole in our hearts.  Not a minute goes by that we don't think of him.  And the outpouring of support from family and friends (near and far) has been overwhelming.

Our good friend April made this collage of Teach from the spring agility trial.
Teach was named after Blackbeard the Pirate, Edward Teach.  I have a huge love of the Outerbanks and all the history from that place that we thought it would be neat to give him a unique name from down there.  But Teach wasn't a pillage and plunderer.  He actually was a teacher for us.  He taught me (and so many others) what it is to be a good dog trainer.  He taught me more patience than anyone else has.  And to also never give up!

Before Teach I was of the mindset of the traditional methods of dog training, use correction until they do it right.  Well that didn't work for Teach and I almost broke him because of it.  He introduced me to the world of Positive Reinforcement training (+R).  And let me tell you ... you can get farther from praise than you can from correction, Teach taught me that.  Poor Teach was my guinea pig, LOL!

Forever running free
He also introduced me to the Fenzi Academy, a fantastic network of +R trainers that offer online classes.  It was through them that I brought Teach back to a very happy working dog.  This is one of my favorite videos of his last Rally Excellent leg.  Look how happy he was.

Teach was also turning into quite the nose work dog.  I wanted to find a sport just Teach and I could do together.  Tucker does so much with conformation, rally, obedience, agility, and hopefully herding.  Teach was done with obedience and rally.  He would never be a conformation dog (although we think he was Champion).  And he did love agility, but they both did that sport so he had to share his mommy time.  Here is a video of Teach practicing for his Odor Recognition Test.  He never got a chance to take it, but I think he would have passed easily.

I started this blog because of Teach, and I'm undecided if I'll continue.  I have really gotten bad about posting.  But regardless I'll still be active on Facebook and Instagram.  As a matter a fact on our Instagram account I started #teachiethursday.  Its a way for me to remember this awesome dog that I am grateful to have been able to share my life with, even if for a short time.

With that I'll leave you with one more happy smiling Teach (the way I'll always remember him!) and a poem (grab a tissue). #teachforeverinourhearts 

Hunybahr's A Pirate's Life For Me BN, RE, NADAC IAC

 I stood by your bed last night, I came to have a peep.
I could see that you were crying, You found it hard to sleep.
I whined to you softly as you brushed away a tear,
“It’s me, I haven’t left you, I’m well, I’m fine, I’m here.”
I was close to you at breakfast, I watched you pour the tea,
You were thinking of the many times, your hands reached down to me.
I was with you at the shops today, Your arms were getting sore.
I longed to take your parcels, I wish I could do more.
I was with you at my grave today, You tend it with such care.
I want to re-assure you, that I’m not lying there.
I walked with you towards the house, as you fumbled for your key.
I gently put my paw on you, I smiled and said ” it’s me.”
You looked so very tired, and sank into a chair.
I tried so hard to let you know, that I was standing there.
It’s possible for me, to be so near you everyday.
To say to you with certainty, “I never went away.”
You sat there very quietly, then smiled, I think you knew…
In the stillness of that evening, I was very close to you.
The day is over… I smile and watch you yawning
and say “good-night, God bless, I’ll see you in the morning.”
And when the time is right for you to cross the brief divide,
I’ll rush across to greet you and we’ll stand, side by side.
I have so many things to show you, there is so much for you to see.
Be patient, live your journey out…then come home to be with me.
Author ~ Sammie Klaehn

Monday, September 5, 2016

Chewy Review: Frisco Dog Poop Bags, Scented

This month's review is something a little different for us.  The boys were a bit disappointed that this was the product I chose to review.  LOL!

Tucker came down with giardia back in the winter so that is what spawned our new routine of bagging poop and putting it out for trash.  When I saw these bags were part of the review I jumped on it knowing we always need poop bags.

We tried them out the other morning.  They are a good size, and do cover up the smell pretty well.

Sniffing for the right spot
Teach thinks he found it
All bagged up
Teach is not amused with this one

We would recommend these to anyone.  And right now is running a sale on them, 120 bags for $4.49.  Not bad!

As always I was given the Frisco Refill Dog Poop Bags, Scented in exchange for a honest review.  This review reflects the opinion of myself and my dogs. is not responsible for anything that I wrote.

Wednesday, August 3, 2016

Playing Catch Up, Part 4 ... June Fun, Yard Visitor and Floods

These months are just getting away from me these days.  This post will bring you what all we got into during the month of June.

Honestly, other than an agility trial there wasn't much else that went on.  Our hiking and picture taking took a break.  No conformation shows for Tucker happened since he decided to start blowing his coat.

Teach continued to do nose work every week and started to do really good with it and catching on to what was needed to get that reward.

I do have some videos to share from the agility trial.  This one was held where we wnet back in January, at an indoor horse arena.  While it wasn't air conditioned it was at least out of the hot sun.  So that was nice.

We'll start with Teach because he really rocked his first class.  This Touch 'n' Go course was particularly hard and even the upper level dogs struggled with it.  Teach was one of just a few that actually did qualify during this run.  And not only that, but also placed!!!  I was SOOOO proud of him.  If we had to leave right after that I would have been thrilled.

Here's his run and you can see how tricky it was.

Teach got his next Q from the tunnelers class which I'm sad we didn't get on video.  We do have his round 1 where he didn't qualify based on time, but he did everything.  He's a big dog and not speedy so I was thrilled he did get a Q.  

Here's his first run which didn't get a Q but still looked nice.  This was also the last class of the day and it was getting hot ... so he was even less speedy.  LOL!

He ended the day with 2 Q's out of 4, not bad.  And class placements in both.  Good boy Teach!!

Tucker had 2 Q's out of 6 (he did the weaves class which I'll get to in a minute) and even stayed on course and only wanted to visit the judge once and I was able to call him off before he got there.  So even better than the last trial.  It helped that there was no jumps so no need for ring crew to be sitting around.  

Here is Tucker's first Q in Touch 'n' Go Round 2.  Was really proud of this run for him, he gave me a great start line wait to get to the other end of the tunnel to get a good line for the dog walk.

And here is his tunnelers Q which was also round 2.  He's not quite as big as Teach but still doesn't cover the ground like some dogs do for this class.  We really need to clean up our lines to get that time down!

As for the weaves class I mentioned earlier, Tucker decided he didn't want to do them.  He had one good set out of 3 and after we got that I called it good and we finished the class. For the second round I scratched him.  I didn't want to create a habit of blowing by them.  After this show we have gone back to really working with them.  I did get pretty lax on practicing them (being new to agility) and didn't realize how easily they can fall apart.  Lesson learned on my part!  Now we try and practice them several times a week and even then it could be more, I think.

Here is a picture of the boys showing off their ribbons.  

June also brought a cute little visitor to our house one day.  The boys were out back playing when they started checking out our little kid playhouse that we have for Madalynn.  At first I thought great, they have a snake in there and Randy is gone.  Then I saw brown and thought a chipmunk must have went in and now can't get out.  I was wrong on both counts. Check out who was there:

This picture shows where the house is located and the fawn was behind that blue door!  CRAZY!
Thankfully the mama deer did come back for it that night and by morning it was gone.  It was so adorable!!!!!!  Probably won't ever happen again, but I guess she thought it was a safe place to be.

If any of you follow the news or the weather you'll have seen that we have some devastating floods come through southern West Virginia and completely wiped out several small towns towards the end of June.  Even now, almost 2 months later people still are recovering.  And will be for a long time to come.  The lake/dam that is north of us, Summersville Lake, saw its highest levels since it was constructed back in the late 60's.  Randy and I took a drive up there 2 days after the flooding to see.  Water was in the trees and just 10' shy of cresting the spillway.  The release gates at the base of the lake only normally release water during Gauley River White Water Rafting season that starts in the fall.  Normally the outflow for then is 2,800 cubic feet per second.  The amount of water they were releasing once the levels downstream started to recede was 14,500 cubic feet per second.  The campground was completely under water and where RVs normally sit, boats were tied off to trees there that had gotten loose from the marina.  It really was something to see and without that dam towns downstream probably wouldn't have existed.  Here are a few pictures and videos from the lake.