Monday, September 28, 2009

Can You Help? Just A Smidge?

Last week we got to put a tiny check in the Win column. An infamous Border Collie puppy mill in TN was finally busted. I'm not going to re-hash Swaffords' history here. If you're a Border Collie person, you already know it. If you're not a Border Collie person, you probably don't want to know it. But, if you wish, there's always your friend Google!

Stories about the bust...
Border Collies Living in Muck
Puppy Mill Bust

I am posting this to beg, though. Times are tough for everyone right now. Times get even tougher for rescues that end up cleaning up these people's messes. I know of a few other dogs who came from here previously and, although I do not have first hand knowledge of these particular dogs, I can tell you they won't be healthy, happy, ready-to-place dogs.

There were over 100 dogs pulled from this property. Some surrendered, some confiscated. The confiscated dogs will be in legal limbo for a while, I guess. The surrendered ones are already on their way to various rescues.

If you can spare anything, please pick a rescue, any rescue. Send some cash, send some towels, if you are near any of these people, offer to help.

The rescues that are getting dogs:

Starfish Border Collie Rescue

Glen Highland Farm, Sweet Border Collie Rescue

New England Border Collie Rescue

Mid Atlantic Border Collie Rescue

Friends of Pep Border Collie Rescue

East TN Border Collie Rescue

West TN Border Collie Rescue

Hulls Haven Border Collie Rescue

I am probably missing a rescue or two. If you know where these pups are going, let me know!

Look at these poor beasties! :-(

Sunday, September 20, 2009

A Little Payback

Kate crapped an Aussie! It was just like in Gremlins, put a little water on her and she starts popping out more Annoying Little Sisters.




Hi! Here to pester!

She paid for it, too. Got to experience Life As Bella for an hour.



Made her a smidge crazy

And a teeny bit of the angry. BC does not stand for Border Collie. It stands for Big Canines.

My bad! Just passing through!

No one ever bothers Bella. Just Kate.

Put my bug spray on before we left

Maybe it’s because she ignores them? One-track mind?

Let Kate keep track of them. I’ll keep track of the ball.


The good thing about Annoying Little Sisters is that they are, after all, easily distracted.

Can I be in this shot?

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

Back To School

Hi Internet Peeps!

I have been sooo slacking on pic taking and post posting. We have not been doing as many dog park trips of late. More agility, more walk/jogs. Hard to train with camera. Easy to walk with camera, but only pics of dog asses result.

We had a 3-day trial over Labor Day weekend. It was one of those weekends that make you remember why you do this. It was so much fun! We did really well on Sat and Mon. Sunday was a bit of a wash, but the issues were all obviously handler-related! We had perfect weather, a very well-run trial, and great neighbors. Don’t great shade neighbors make a difference?

And guess who is going back to agility class?

Yes! Short Bus!

I decided to give classes another shot with Miss Kate. I help my instructor with her Beginner class. Kate has been having a lot of fun farting around on equipment after class. I started agility with her about 6-8 months after I got her. It was too soon. She was fine on individual pieces of equipment, but could not handle sequencing. Kate greatest motivator in life is to not be wrong (and, by “wrong” I mean in her eyes, not mine). If she saw what she though was the line and it wasn’t, she would just fall apart. She has a real hard time when she is not 100% sure of what you are asking. The girl does love her routines.

Ohai! I needs mah regulars!

I pulled her back then because it was just stupid. The only thing either of us was getting out of it was a hit to the checking account. I feel different about it now. I feel like we both have a lot we can learn even if we never get to the trial stage. I also feel that I have learned enough to be in a position to help her out more.

Needs help

Those of you agility folks remember the recent Just For Fun v. Title Chaser v. Hard-Core Competitor endless discussion on the Clean Run list? Yeah, that one. Well, my take on that whole thing is the very reason it has taken 3 years to make a stupid – in the grand scheme of things – decision about Kate.

I don’t give a shit why you trial as long as your dog remains your #1 priority. Bucking for the world team? Working on your ribbon collection? Just like hanging out with other crazy dog people? Great, great and great!

I have seen nationally known handlers come out of a ring and completely ignore their dog because a late rear-cross cue caused a spin. Throw leash over dogs’ head, dog walks behind you to go talk to other uber-hander about what went wrong. Gross.

On the other hand, I also know Just For Fun people who continue to run a dog that obviously doesn’t give two flying shits about agility or who are still, after a year of trailing, walking around a ring with head low and tail tucked. When do you make the decision that this activity is just not for that dog? That your dog is not ready? What are you trying to prove? That you can fix your “poor rescue?” Equally as gross.

I don’t want to be that person. I don’t want Kate to be that dog.

I don’t want this look.

Like, ever

Friday, September 4, 2009

The Waiting Game

When we go to our Secret Park #2 I usually throw the ball for the girls separately. Really just because the only time Kate makes noise is when she’s playing. We call it the Damn It I Missed bark. This happens a lot. This park is just an office park. It’s quiet and serene - when the train is not roaring by - and I like to be a good, quiet, unbothersome user of illegal parks.

Kate’s a pretty good wait-er

She’ll wait any time, anywhere

Unless Bella is waiting for a throw. Then I get dirty looks, like she just remembered she not in the game at the moment.

It also doesn’t help when your sister likes to rub it in. Literally.

Bella is not such a good wait-er. Will wait in the way, because, you know, I may forget that she’s there.

She doesn’t get worried so much about her turn. She worries about Kate and the ball. She knows as well as anyone that Kate is a bit of a dingbat. There is a chance that she will lose the ball, tear the ball, eat the ball, something may happen to that ball, damn it. Must manage ball at all times.

Sister is not to be trusted

And, on a totally unrelated, not about dogs note…
I work in an area that is all industrial. This means that after 5PM, it’s a ghost town around here. Great place for criminal activity. Want to steal copper pipes? Break windows? Vandalize buildings? Great? Come to Santa Clara!

Yesterday morning we were greeted with about 3 parking spaces full of crap dumped in our parking lot. Big, heavy crap like cinder blocks, 3 large tree stumps, pieces of cement about the size of a truck tire. Some of it also being hazardous crap you can’t just throw out. WTF? So, now we have to pay to have this crap cleaned up?

Oh no! You don’t eff with obsessive fans of CSI.
The original, not CSI Miami – yuck!

Step one: We get the video from our neighbor behind us. Fence is in the way, vid kind of crappy, so no hard ID on people, but the truck is unusual.

Step Two: Send Facilities Manager to get tacos at lunch. Have FM just happen to drive by junk yard on way to tacos. FM will recognize truck. Stop get out of car. Take a shit load of photos of truck and dumpster. Include license plate.

Step Three: Take vid and photos to cops. Cops talk to dump guys. Show evidence. Dump guys say, “Oh we loaned our truck to someone yesterday, wasn’t us, but we’ll be right over to clean it up!”

Step Four: Stand in parking lot watching jackasses clean up the crap they left. Also, make them haul more crap for us for free as not to end up in jail.

You know, it’s taking them a lot longer to clean it up than it took them to drop it off!

I love it when crap like this happens. Take that, Criminals!