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October 30, 2021: Shadow’s Dog Blog: Hollow Weenies

This morning Alys repeatedly said that we were going to gility. Hearing this the first, second, and third times, I nearly jumped out of my skin. I so look forward to gility, it’s almost as much fun as running out on the trails.

There were many delays. First, Pete had to drop Alys off at the recycling center where she was to sort books. We went to the back area, so I did not get a treat going past the gate. I tried to tell Pete we needed to go in the front way, but he didn’t seem to hear me. He was preoccupied. I heard him tell Alys he had a meeting.

Shadow runs dog walk last summer

Pete then drove to the college, and there he sat staring at the computer screen for a few hours. Me, I got to spend some time in his office, which is less boring than being in the car. The computer, it makes differing sounds. The box has people in it – they talk a lot.

Finally, Pete finished up and we headed back to the recycling center and picked up Alys. Alys had packed up a truckload of books in Pete’s absence. They worked fast, and soon enough we were on our way to gility.

Pete took me for a walk beforehand. Then in we went. Cody and Murphy were there, as was the English Shepherd, I don’t know his name, we’ve never sniffed butts.

Claudia had us first work on going through weave poles. You know, you either know what you’re doing, or you do not. Cody and I, we pretty much got weave poles down. But Murphy, oh my dog, what a spaz. His owner Betty is very patient, which is pretty amazing, given that Murphy, a springer spaniel, hasn’t a clue as to how about going through the weave poles, or really, much else.

Sniff, sniff, sniff, and more sniff, sniff, sniff, sniff. As I heard Alys say, there is no single-minded intensity of focus there. Claudia, who is our teacher, finally had Betty first use a piece of dried moose sausage and then, a piece of hot dog as a lure. She told her to hold it in her hand and in this way guide the dog through the weaves.

Murphy, when bribed, did just fine. But hey, me and Cody – we were really put out. We continued doing our very dog gone best, for over an hour. There was at one point a long wait because Claudia chose to go over some alternative training methods with Betty. And no pieces of hot dog came our way. Alys saw what was going on. The hot dogs, they were on the desk – she whispered to Pete as he and I walked past, “go and get one of those,” but because Claudia didn’t offer, he did not go and pick one up.

Cody and I agreed that perhaps the next time out we should both act clueless when we are asked to negotiate obstacles. This way, we’ll get moose and hot dog treats. The problem is, we are so good at what we do that it is hard to mess up.

Maybe Alys will explain to Claudia what’s going on here.

Next: 301. 10/31/21: October 32, 2021

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