Thursday, September 1, 2011

Working again and starting school

I worked Pepper again today.  We did a lot of the same things, with having her come around to my side on a flank and then come between me and the sheep.  She did it much more easily this time, so I think there was some latent learning going on for her.    She had better flanks going around after crossing in front of me, and I didn't see any of the panicked "ack, I'm in the wrong place" which would lead to rushing around too close that she did a couple of times in the last session.   
We also did some driving with me behind her.  I had her on a long line, but didn't have to use it.  I've been finding that if I keep in contact with her by repeating "there" in a steady low tone, her ears keep me tuned in and she doesn't go into yee haw mode to try to bring them back.   It works better than stopping her.
I also worked Ben a bit just to keep him in practice.  I have him entered in an advanced farm trial in October.  
Yesterday I worked Luke, Hank ans Sprite.   Sprite was a pushy little monster, obviously she thought she hadn't been doing enough lately.   Hank was just the same as he always is, and Luke was really happy to be at work again.  He doesn't think he should be retired.   He got the biggest grin on his face when I called him through the gate instead of one of the other dogs. 
The rest of the week has been pretty much a boredom zone for the dogs.   Lots of getting ready for school things to do-  today was the first day back for the kids.   They were both excited and a bit nervous and they got up extra early and were running around with their shoes and backpacks on an hour before it was time for the bus. 
Are we ready for school or what?

Michael, First Grader!