Striving valiantly

“It is not the critic who counts; not the man who points out how the strong man stumbles, or where the doer of deeds could have done them better. The credit belongs to the man who is actually in the arena, whose face is marred by dust and sweat and blood; who strives valiantly; who errs, who comes short again and again, because there is no effort without error and shortcoming; but who does actually strive to do the deeds; who knows great enthusiasms, the great devotions; who spends himself in a worthy cause; who at the best knows in the end the triumph of high achievement, and who at the worst, if he fails, at least fails while daring greatly, so that his place shall never be with those cold and timid souls who neither know victory nor defeat.” fdr

11025992_856348497741669_2926227735191398812_nI was nervous for so long. I judged myself and my dogs. I ruined so many competitions for my team with my attitude. I let other peoples rudeness affect my relationship with my dogs. I allowed people to say disrespectful things about my dogs. I thought about the q for way too long. And then I stopped thinking about anything except running my best for my dogs, my team.

My dogs have taught me that its only about the teamwork, only about getting into the ring together and putting your whole heart into being the best for your teammate. Especially Roy – my weird, independent, brilliant, lone wolf boy. He more then any of them demands that I don’t play for anything less then my all or anything more then us.

What I’m going to do I think!

5 things I won’t do again with my next puppy. 


  1.  I won’t teach Sit, …for the first year. If he teaches himself to Sit…then he is welcome to use it in ways he finds interesting.
  2. No puppy socials. These are disease factories, primarily populated by fearful asocial puppies. The puppy play was not helpful for us in any way. I think they can be incredibly useful for people who will want their dogs to spend a lot of ti
    Yikes!

    me at dog parks. Also, if, its a well run social with an experienced trainer running it then people who are new to dogs can get some experience in reading social interactions.  Thats the whole point after all. But the actual social interactions at socials I attended was pretty minimal and the whole picture isn’t really something that I need for my life with my dogs. I also want to know is why they put water bowls down at these things? Can’t puppies go an hour without water? Because it would be a solid way to help avoid spreading diseases.

  3. No leashes attached to collars until he’s grown, just harnesses.
  4. No puppy classes-see #’s 1 & 2.
  5. No dog parks, my intentions were to expose him to bad dogs and bad dog owners so he would know how to handle it. But you can find bad dogs and bad dog owners anywhere without having to deal with the horrors of the dog park and its not his job to deal with it anyway. Its mine.

5 things I planned for that went well and I will do again. 

  1. Exploring! Showing him people, and the sight, sound and appearance of noises, weird events, objects and other animals.

    Yay Roy!
  2. Show him how to walk on weird stuff, interact with objects, problem solve, be creative.
  3. Lots of hiking!
  4. Crate train.
  5. Other people don’t offer reinforcement, no cookies from other people, no playing with other people, no running up and sitting for other people. This was a huge huge challenge, I’m sure I offended many people when I told them not to feed my dog cookies and to not to ask my dog to sit.

5 things I wish I had done more of with the current puppy who is now a young adult. 

  • TUG, I should have spent more time making Tug & physical play with me valuable.
  • More shaping less luring.
  • Patience.
  • Grooming-we’ve got nail trimming & baths but brushing is not a favorite.
  • Been more aggressive about keeping unstable dogs and their owners away from my dog. 😦
TUG RULEZ