Welcome, Welcome!

So, I join the ranks of the self-hosted blogs. It’s new for me…but so far, it’s ok!  A little frustration but I’m expecting good things. Right now, I’m using wordpress. It has worked for me in the past and I like how I don’t really need to know how to write code to make myself a website.

Well, what is going to change you might ask?  Well, first one thing that won’t-this blog is still about my awesome coonhounds!  The title of my blog has changed. I wanted something a bit more “general” especially since the old tagline didn’t really fit us anymore.

The girls now have a Facebook Page. This is what you need to go “like” in order to get blog post updates along with some different, exclusive content. If you aren’t on the FB page, you might miss something! The Royal Coonhounds

I am going to try to start more interaction with my readers. This means, I’m going to try and start replying to comments! If you have felt like my blog has been a wasteland for your thoughts…fear no more!  I will also be interacting on Facebook. I’m already on Facebook all the time, so we all might as well hang out!

Right now, I’ve kept the old theme. But, I do believe that will be changing soon. I want a more customizable layout. For now, I’m sticking with the familiar but be looking for that to change again in the coming weeks.

Merchandise. No, I’m not going to be selling y’all stuff (although, if you really want a t-shirt with my blog name, just let me know ;) )  But I want to be able have dog stuff with my dogs and their own site. Now I have the site, I just need the swag.  And I’m sure Grannie won’t mind toting around some awesome personalized gear!

So, please update your bookmarks, google reader, RSS feed or however it is you find me. Like the Facebook page and you should get the new posts in your news feed.

 

Canine Good Citizen

I need to start with some background….Way back when I first read the requirements for the AKC’s Canine Good Citizen test, I immediately dismissed it as impossible. I mean, it seemed to be designed for any type of dog, except hounds. For a long time, I didn’t even think about it. I didn’t desire it; it was totally off my radar.  Over time Daisy has become more responsive to me-especially when we are out in public. She likes to perform.  Even more, I have become a better handler and trainer. So, we had the opportunity to test for free at a local dog event. We had not been practicing recently (my bad), but I am pleased to introduce to you:

Daisy Mae, Canine Good Citizen

Words can not express how happy over-the-moon I am!  I really did not go into expecting for her to pass. I should stop underestimating what my dog can do.  I think I’m the half of this team now holding us back and I plan on changing that for the future.  Watch out world…Daisy is on her way!

For those of you who are curious, or don’t know the requirements there are 10 sections a dog must pass:

1. Accepting a Friendly stranger. The evaluator comes up, speaks to the handler, ignores the dog. Dog can’t jump, paw, whine, pull, ect.

2. Sitting politely for petting. The evaluator goes to pet the dog, the dog must sit. No jumping, ect.

3. Appearance and Grooming. The evaluator runs their hands over the dog, touches paws, checks teeth.

4. Out for a walk.  You have to show your dog can walk on a loose leash.

5. Walking through a crowd. You walk through or by several people. Your dog can show a little interest but must stay with you and not jump up. As we were at a dog event, it was a huge crowd.

6. Sit and down position and stay in position. Dog must do both a sit and down. Then must do a stay in one of those positions while the handler backs up 20 ft.

7. Coming when called.

8. Reaction to another dog. Now, this is normally done with another dog of known temperament. The two handlers approach each other and talk, the dogs can show casual interest but can’t pull, bark, whine, growl, ect.  Now, for our test it ended up some stranger (it was in a public park) let his dog run up on Daisy and sniff her butt and her underside and she just sat there. So she passed.

9. Reaction to distraction.  Dogs can’t panic or show aggression. For Daisy’s test the evaluator threw a tin full of coins near her when she wasn’t looking. Daisy startled, then went right up to sniff the tin and see what it was.

10. Supervised separation. I had to hand Daisy’s leash to a stranger (a lady that was helping the evaluator) and walk out of sight for 3 minutes. Dogs can’t bark, pull, ect. Daisy has zero issues with strangers. In fact, I think she’d be more than willing to go home with any friendly face.

Coonhound Mornings

So, before having a yard, Bella was strictly a non-player. Daisy would try but a few snarks from Bella and that was over.  Now, the girls have room to stretch their legs. It started with chasing. Bella likes to run and she and Daisy would chase each other. Now, its like I have a whole new dog in Bella! She wrestles and gives it right back to Daisy. Daisy growling during play used to scare Bella-not anymore! It has been so awesome to watch Bella earn to relax a bit more and to enjoy playing.

There are a few things about this video to watch out for.  First, my camera ham Daisy is distracted by the camera. She has to stop and make sure no treats are being handed out before continuing to play.  Second, near the end I love how Daisy just flops down like a kid pretending to die playing ‘Cowboys and Indians’.  Third, the sounds of the birds. I like waking up to that sound.

 

Well, Hello There Fall!!

Ok, yesterday morning we woke up and it was muggy and 80 degrees. The same time this morning?  A cool 63!  It feels sooo good! The girls are really frisky this morning. So frisky, that Bella did something totally out of character. She bayed OUTSIDE!  Now, Bella bays a lot. In fact, she is my noisier dog but it is always inside the house. I went out and Bella is in the middle of the yard, hackles up baying at the sky. I didn’t see anything she could be baying at so I’m attributing it to the sudden weather change.

 

So, to catch up….Daisy did awesome in her first time staying in a hotel. We checked in and there were a ton of people in the lobby. Lots of distractions but she stayed right with me. No pulling on the leash, no trying to sniff everything. In the room she went around sniffing everything. Then did it again and again. The housekeepers were still out in the hallway and we were near the lobby where all those people were so she stood at the door wagging her tail over and over.  She would also perk her ears and tilt her head side to side. I think she thought for sure they were coming to give her something!

 

 

I put down her toys so she’d know this was a place we’d be hanging out for a while. I also filled her water bowl and fed her dinner. She had a long day on the road and was hungry for sure!

 

 

 

It took a couple tries for her to decide where she wanted to sleep. I thought that between the couch and TV stand might be a good place but she thought under the desk was better. I probably should have known that. Daisy does generally like to sleep in her crate at night. We stayed at a new LaQuinta Inn and Suites. I would recommend them to anyone traveling with their pets. They don’t charge a pet fee and allow 2 dogs up to 100 pounds each.  Ours also had a free ‘extended’ continental breakfast.