Tuesday, May 12, 2009

Triple Blinds for Laddie

Laddie Only Today

Lumi was limping on Sunday afternoon. I couldn't tell what was bothering her, could have been shoulder, wrist, back, hips, maybe something else. Although she was no longer limping by Monday, I decided to keep her out of training for several days, then train with her some on Friday. If she's limping again on Saturday morning, I'll scratch her from her Senior Hunt Test. Otherwise, hopefully she'll be OK.

CONDITIONS TODAY: Sunny with temps in the 60s.

TODAY'S TRAINING: I took both dogs with Renee and Gabriel on a short hike. I dropped Lumi off at home with a frozen chicken wing, took Laddie to the pond behind Stadler's nursery for a triple water blind, took Laddie to Oaks Area 3 for a triple land blind, and brought him home to receive his own frozen chicken wing.

SERIES A. Triple water blind (Laddie only)

The first blind was a land-water-land (LWL) blind to the left at 15 yards. The second blind was an LWL to the right at 50 yards. The third blind was an LWL diagonally across the pond at 80 yards. All blinds were ducks planted in tall grass near water's edge.

Laddie required no WSCs for the first blind, one for the second, and three for the third. He was responsive on all whistles and cast reasonably accurately. My primary concern wasn't his handling but how he would do on his pick-ups and water re-entries. He was fabulous on all of them. In each case, I blew a come-in whistle as soon as he had shaken standing over the bird, and his pick-up and water re-entry were so prompt that no other cueing was required. I cheered enthusiastically as he pushed off into the swim-depth water, and rewarded him with several small bites of fried chicken liver after his excellent deliveries.

SERIES B. Triple land blind (Laddie only)

The first blind was in the center at 100 yards, with the line crossing a depression filled with standing water. The second blind was to the right at 130 yards, with the line diagonally crossing a crest and a depression, then going thru a narrow keyhole formed by a break in a hedgerow, and finally going diagonally uphill into an area of waist-high cover. The third blind was to the left at 180 yards, with the line diagonally crossing a crest, going past several trees on either side, and finally going diagonally up a hill. The terrain for all three blinds was knee-high cover and irregular footing. All blinds were ODs.

Because I'm now requiring my dogs to run a tight line on all blinds, Laddie needed handling on all of today's blinds. He never slipped a whistle, but took poor casts twice on the first blind. In each case, I called him back to the SL and started again. His performance remained focused and exuberant throughout the series. I rewarded each retrieve with a thrown duck that I had brought along to the SL for the purpose.

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