Wednesday, January 23, 2013

Winter In Minnesota...

Can be very frustrating sometimes...with 6 very active dogs, it can get downright annoying!!!

You can't take the dogs out on a hike...their feet freeze just going out to pee in the morning! Sometimes they will even fall over and just lay there until their feet thaw out a bit...not good. Let's not talk about how the owner feels :)

In order to have a place that #1 the dogs could play in no matter how cold it got and #2 I wouldn't have to worry about them slipping and falling on the ice (if any of you remember, Zip fell on the ice and torn a bunch of muscles...no good!) we decided to put turf in the garage. If you have been reading the blog for awhile, you know all about the turf situation :) If you haven't...well I just kind of brought you up to date ;-)
Yes...if you didn't think I was a little off my rocker before, you do now. My name is Loretta Mueller and I turfed my garage...cause I love my dogs...does that make it "less crazy"...no, not really. 

You do what you have to do...I guess one could refer to it as my "woman cave" :)

The dogs appreciate the "green room" as it is now referred to, because it is the one place in the winter they can totally let loose and enjoy RUNNING. I appreciate the green room because it makes the dogs sleep after being in it :)  And...all that green for some reason calms my soul :) Happy Land!!!It's a great place for the pups to play AND...I can even get some equipment in there to work basic stuff!!!

I refuse to work my dogs when it's under 10 degrees in the barn. I have really reduced muscle issues in my dogs since I have followed this rule. It just works much better and I don't worry about them getting injured. Win win if you ask me. It hasn't been even close to ten for a week...and 5 Border Collies and a Jack Russell can't stay idle for that long!

Ball work, yes, fitness stuff, yes, but they do need to RUN...

Closest place to work our dogs is about 2 hours away (heated place in the cities) but sadly, getting time to RENT ring space, not take a class...just doesn't really happen. We are always on the look for facilities that will allow us just to come in and rent an hour...

So...we get creative to work our pups.

Today we worked this little thing...
Just a tunnel and two jumps, but think of all the possibilities!!!!

Serps, threadles, backsides of jumps, snooker moves, discriminations  collection, extension, even gambles!!!! 

30 x 30 space, you could even get a set of weaves in there if you wanted to...I have. I have also had a table, chute, dog walk plank in there...It works really well for basics.

And in reality...that's really all handling is right? Just the basics, those foundation exercises that always need to be solidified. Call to heel and side, crosses, collection, timing...it's all right there in 3 obstacles. 

Sure...contacts are important and weaves...but the biggest part of any course is jumping and handling...which you can get. 

I spend SOO much less time actually TRAINING my dogs now than I used to. I was never a driller (I get bored easily)...but I did work my dogs a lot. I have really changed that..They stay in better shape if we work little bits here and there. Having that little space to play around really makes a big difference.

Someday I hope to win Powerball...but until then...we adapt :)

The dogs get their green room...
I get to take Hot Yoga classes...
We are both happy :)

3 comments:

Taryn said...

Today was 11 degrees when I got out for my dog walk. That probably sounds darn good (and balmy!) to you, but is quite cold by our standards. (Wash, DC area). I thought of you dealing with another 15-20 degrees colder plus wind. Yikes! That's just not doable for more than a day or two!

But of course my area pays the price in summer when it hits 100 and super high humidity. You can't be outside in that either.....

Loretta Mueller said...

Exactly Taryn...it's all relative! LOL

Melanie Walton said...

You are not crazy for turfing your garage - you are a genius! and I am sure your dogs thank you for it from the bottom of their hearts x