Cedar was most excellent on Friday at our lesson with Dianne.
Like, really REALLY good. The best she's worked for me in months. I think that *maybe* all of the work we've been doing over the past few months has finally started paying off. For once, nothing bad or scary happened! LOL
We started out doing some outrun stuff, which was really encouraging because she actually took my corrections and would swing out wider when I asked. That is a big deal for us... and even though it's kind of a "small potatoes" achievement, I think that it shows a lot about our partnership and how it has changed. And it's nice that for once, she wasn't scaring the bejesus out of the sheep, too. I'm sure they appreciated it.
I know it's small, but look! An outrun! :-P
After warming her up with some outrun/lift/fetches, we worked on driving. She is much more confident and response with driving as well. I had her drive the sheep in a rectangle around me, both directions. She was really good.
I think that I must be more comfortable with going clockwise/come by, because my timing was off more on the counter clockwise/away side. Still, Cedar didn't blow up and bust the sheep apart. She actually kept her head for once.
She's learning to rate herself, too... instead of continuously pushing on the sheep, she will back off on her own. I know a lot of people with more "talented" dogs probably take this kind of stuff for granted, but to us it's kind of a big deal. :)
After putting Cedar up, I worked Moss. I could tell that he was going to be challenging today by the way he was when I walked him to the sheep. Even though he wasn't pulling on the leash (he learned THAT lesson last week!) he wasn't paying any attention to me. He was fixated on the sheep. I'm not sure how to fix that... thankfully Dianne is taking him for training in a few weeks :-P. My head was also not completely in the game, so the first part of our work was pretty full of FAIL. I completely take all responsibility for it. Moss just sort of ran around while I sat there looking dumb and not getting after him enough. Thankfully, Dianne got us sorted out (thank you!) and the rest of the work went quite well.
Dianne said that Moss is starting to figure all this stuff out, and is getting more confident. I say he needs to be knocked down a few pegs :-P
I still really love to work him, because he makes my job so easy. So much of the skills we have had to train Cedar how to do, he already knows instinctively. For example, when I ask him to go around the sheep, he pretty much always kicks out 90 degrees.
I don't think I've ever seen him get slicy when I ask him to bring me the sheep.
Good boy, Moss :)
We're going out to work tomorrow morning, and I have a lot of stuff I'd like to work on. Plus, I need to pick my whistle practice back up... I've been slacking!
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