I knew when I went for lesson today in Olympia that I had nothing good to report. :0( Two weeks of nagging at Champ and getting no where. Boo Hiss. When Dave asked me how things were, I replied, "I think we are at a stalemate."
I'm a wimp. I'm never going to be a Patrick, Faansie, Jack, or Suzy. I get NO respect. I nag for 4 months and accomplish very little and those guys take care business of it in a day or two. The dog knows what to expect. Sigh.......
I just don't know how much is too little or too much of a correction. It should be simple, right? If I haven't seen results, I obviously am not giving the right correction. Still, it remains a battle with me.
Patrick told me if you don't give a correction in each of your work sessions, the dog hasn't learned anything. Maybe I'm the one who needs correcting?
Champ is a biddable, but a tough nut for me; just like his Mom. Suzy put a few months of pro training on him at a year when I knew he was going to take advantage of my wimpiness just like Kilt did. That training was invaluable. For that I am thankful. But he was very young then and now just turning three he is feeling pretty darn macho about himself.
He's come a long way in several years, but it's still not where he should be in my mind. We still have this "traveling" stop. I whistle a down and he takes 3 to 5 steps. Should be easy to correct? Nope, not for me. Sometimes I think a few steps are marginal. Or, I think he knows what he is doing. So this is still a gray area to Champ and I am to blame. Grrrrr.
I'm a softie. I am always so tickled that they are having fun and doing fairly mediocre that I am satisfied with their work. Ugh!
Anyway, I got to work in the 17 acre field by Dave's home today where Faansie will be having his clinic. It was really nice. Champ didn't have any problems with the outruns for the most part. I would like to enter him in some of the BIG California trials in March if I get in. I'm not expecting anything other than "experience" for Champ. But, 2 of the trials will have 600 yard outruns. He is getting pretty used to about 250 yards here in Washington. Not the best for him. Once they become accustomed to looking for their sheep at that short a distance, they start turning in even if the sheep are set double that distance.
Dave has been a good teacher for me. But, I feel I am not doing my part. So depressing. Maybe Faansie can train an old lady. Hahahaha We will see.
On the other hand, Yoko has been working very well for me. She is still a bit off contact and wide, but is trying her very best for me. I so love this dog. Yoko and I have probably only had 5 lessons in her lifetime, so what will be, will be. I'm sure Champ will get there with a few more years on him :0)
Onward and upward. Ugh. STOP being such a wimp, Suzanne!