Thursday, March 31, 2016

Keep Your Dog Mentally Stimulated with the Buster Treat Ball


So we've been dealing with some "March blues" and a bit of cabin fever as well. The nonstop raining that tends to happen in March in the Pacific Northwest can become a total bummer for everyone. My dogs hate the rain and they do not like walking in it. Forced marches in rainy weather are no fun for anyone. We still do them but we don't go as long as we usually do when it's not raining. The dogs have not been getting as much exercise as usual and keeping them from becoming bored can become challenging. I like to have a variety of puzzle toys around and I am always excited about trying new ones.

Today we are reviewing the Buster Treat Ball. Buster is a fantastic company that makes all sorts of puzzle toys for dogs and they also have a great variety of other dog products and even some cat products. They are always fun to work with and we've done a few reviews for them in the past. The Buster Treat Ball is very similar to the Buster Food Cube (review) and I really like them both.


The Buster Treat Ball can be filled up with your dog's favorite treats or you can fill it with their (kibble) dinner. I prefer to do puzzle toys at meal times so that my dogs have something to do and they have to work for their food. These kinds of toys are great because they are working both their mind and their body.


The Treat Ball is an awesome toy because it features Buster's patented inner maze for slow release of the food/treats. This puzzle toy has two openings, the bottom one has a door on it so you can shut it to make the toy harder or open it to make it easier. This makes it an awesome puzzle toy for any dog, regardless of their puzzle toy experience. I really appreciate it when a company makes a product so versatile, especially since both of my dogs have different needs. Zoe will sometimes give up on a toy if it's too hard and being able to make it a little easier for her is so great!


The Buster Treat Ball is made from durable, ABS plastic and we've been using it for over a month. The dogs have not been able to chew it up or hurt it in any way. It's a very well made toy. The treat ball comes in two different sizes: Small or Large (ours is a large) and two colors: Blue or Red.


Check out our short video of Zoe and Phoenix playing with the Buster Treat Ball!

Zoe and Phoenix are both really enjoying the Buster Treat Ball. Zoe can be difficult to please with toys and having toys that spit food out at her really help with that. I really love how versatile it is and that the difficulty can be adjusted. It's also just an all around awesome durable toy! We are planning on ordering a second one. I would definitely recommend checking it out, especially if you have a busy, active dog!

ZoePhee received the Buster Treat Ball in exchange for an honest review. We were not monetarily compensated and all opinions are my own. Buster is not responsible for the content of this blog post.

Wednesday, March 30, 2016

Windy Day Frisbee! Action Shots!


The one thing I've learned so far about playing frisbee/disc with Phoenix is that it's a bad idea to try it when it's windy. I'm still learning how to place the disc and the wind does not help. The amazing thing about Phoenix is that she has so much heart. She really tries her best to play my silly games.


We were lucky this past weekend to have my husband available to help take some photos! I really like these shots even though they're both a miss and not a catch! Also, please ignore the look on my face! The sun was bothering me and I was concentrating on what I was doing!

I love my little dog so much!

Tuesday, March 29, 2016

Treibball & Training Tuesday!


It's Treibball Tuesday! Phoenix had her 3rd Treibball class last night and I'm so happy. It went so much better than last week. I got there super early as usual to walk Phoenix around the neighborhood and so she could get a chance to play in the building before everyone else arrived. This is working out so well. Phoenix is starting to think going to work is fun. She even started pulling me towards the gate to get in. I don't really want her pulling so I didn't encourage it too much and I did work on it immediately as it was happening. 

I took this while we were on our walk before going into my work.

Last night before class, Phoenix met Adam who works at my work and she actually let him pet her. He is only the 3rd man she's ever let touch her. Vince (my husband), a Petco Worker and now Adam. She also did some of her tricks for him and got lots of snacks for being so brave. He's a really nice guy and I appreciate that he's so gentle and patient with my nervous dog.


After meeting Adam, Phoenix and I went into the play room (where all the classes are taught) to set up class and I played frisbee with Phoenix until it was time for me to actually work. She had a lot of fun and she was pretty happy the whole time.

The way Monday works is that I help with the first class then after that class is our Treibball class that we participate in. So Phoenix generally hangs out in the office during our first class. This week we got about half way through the class and Phoenix got to come out to do a quick demonstration on what a finished "heel" looks like. After her demo, I didn't really have time to stick her back in the office she I ended up sticking her in the lockout area, which is basically just a fenced in area that they have between the doors to the boarding area. I was pretty proud of Phoenix for how well behaved she was in the lockout. She couldn't see any dogs but she could definitely hear them all. She didn't whine or bark or anything. Every once in a while, I would drop treats down for her to reward her for being so good and quiet. 


Our Treibball class went really well. We are still learning the foundation for this game and I'm not allowing Phoenix to do any pushing of the ball. Right now we are learning how to get into position behind the ball and directions. We also did some nose targeting on the ball, too and we had the dogs learning to unroll a yoga mat because it helps teach the dogs to push things with their nose. Phoenix got to demo the yoga mat for the class and she did a great job. I'm proud of her for being able to do demos!

I'm starting to come down with a cold and I wasn't really feeling that well so we didn't participate a whole lot during class. We practiced the exercises a few times, then I worked on reactive dog stuff. We played a lot of "look at that" with the other dogs in class. Every time the other dogs moved, Phoenix got cream cheese for watching them and then looking back at me. She didn't freeze or fixate on any dogs at all during this class and I was really proud of her for how well she did. We even had one of the more enthusiastic dogs try to run over and say hi (he didn't make it, his mom called him back) and she handled that really well. It just goes to show you how much being trigger stacked really matters. 

Last week was a tough week, bad things happened and I set her up to fail. This week good things happened and we set her up to win. Having a bandanna on her that says "NO DOGS" has been very helpful, too. People see the bandanna and keep their dogs away. It also helps to remind me to set her up to be successful. 

I was really happy with last night's progress and I am excited to see what next week brings! 

Do you participate in any classes or sports with your dogs?






Monday, March 28, 2016

New "Dog" Bed!


Last week we had an unfortunate incident where one of my cats decided to pee on our nicest dog bed. I was less than than thrilled about that as you can imagine. It was a nice bed, bolster sides and no matter how much enzymatic cleaner I used, I could not get the smell out. So we ended up throwing that bed away and the dogs needed a new bed.

We had been looking at beds but they were all expensive and had very little padding. So my husband had this great idea to get a kid's mattress! We found this Sealy mattress at Walmart for $60, basically the same price as a large dog bed. It's completely waterproof and it's just like our bed!


The girls really like this mattress! It's large enough that they both fit on it with room to spare, which is awesome because Zoe can be guardy sometimes about he space. It's got a lot of cushion and they are super comfortable! It was a pretty good buy, too! I'm really happy with it!

Do you like your dog's beds? What sort of beds do you have?

Sunday, March 27, 2016

Happy Easter!


Happy Easter everyone!


Easter Egg Delivery Service!


...and our black and white Sunday photo!

I hope everyone is having an awesome day!

Friday, March 25, 2016

New Trails & Happy Dogs


When you live with a dog who is afraid of other dogs and you live in the city where dogs are around every corner, finding dog-free ways to exercise is important. The dog park is out for the most part and we can only go to Thousand Acres during off times. I know I've talked about this before but leash walks have never really been enough for either of my dogs. It's fine when it's raining but being able to run is way more fulfilling.


I was pretty excited when I found a different set of trails that were deserted. The dogs were able to run and play and we didn't come across anyone or any dogs. It was a bit of a rougher hike for us as the trails were not as groomed but I'll take it.


This part of the trail heads into Thousand Acres and we didn't want to go that way. The dogs are recalling off a squirrel. First squirrel I've actually ever seen out there. I've seen lots of birds, bald eagles even, some bunnies and deer but never any squirrels until that day.

We had two super nice days hiking these trails and we didn't run into anyone. It was really awesome.

Do you ever try to find secret trails or deserted parks for your dogs?

Thursday, March 24, 2016

The Good, The Bad & The Ugly: Why Owning A Reactive Dog is Like Grieving


I'm beginning to really loathe March. This past month has not been the best of months, it's been nonstop raining for most of the month. Endless days of rain is never good for anyone who struggles with depression and I'm not any different. Trigger Warning. I'm learning that having a reactive dog is a lot like constantly going through the 5+ stages of grieving. There's denial, bargaining, anger, depression and finally acceptance. It's not linear and the past couple of days I've been going through pretty much all of them and feeling them all at the same time.

From being so upset that I didn't want to get out of bed and even look at a dog, to being completely angry and upset with her previous owners that I hoped they never get another dog, being angry at myself for all my stupid mistakes back in the early days of having her (I'm never angry at her and I know her issues are not her fault), to even bargaining: Oh if only I had just done this differently... or I wish I could go back in time, I wish I had gotten her as a puppy, or maybe if I just try harder or try something else... To just really mourning the life we could of had if she had been socialized properly and not gone through her previous traumas.

I don't regret adopting her, she's taught me so many things and it's because of her that I am the trainer I am. She's my heart dog, my freaking ray of sunshine (which only a select few get to see), the reason I get out of bed every morning, the only dog I've ever had that wanted to be with me and play my stupid games, which makes it so much worse when things go wrong. It's hard to not get emotional when something goes wrong with a being you love more than anything else in the world. I don't have any family other than my husband but I have these dogs and they mean more to me than I have words to describe it.

I promised you guys a while ago that I would always be honest with you and tell things how it is. We are all human, we all make mistakes and the past two weeks have just been awful screw ups and errors in judgement on both my husband and myself.


From the stupid hypothermia incident at the river, to getting charged by two shepherds and having a snarky incident, we are having a rough two weeks. I didn't really go public about the incident with the two German Shepherds but literally the day after the river incident we got charged by two huge shepherds. The owner had no control over them and they pummeled both of my dogs. None of us saw them coming and it was a big snark fest. Phoenix ended up bleeding from a tooth getting knocked. Once the owner got control over his dogs, things were okay, there were no other wounds or anything. We ended up leaving the park.

From there we had our 3rd Treibball class, this was Phoenix's second time going. The first class she missed. I got to work super early and ended up walking her around the neighborhood. After our walk they ended up letting me into the building so we could hang out and not be out in the rain. I had about 20 minutes before I was "on the clock" so I spent the entire time playing with Phoenix in the large play room where we teach our classes. I want her to have a great association with the place. I want her to feel like when we go to training it's just us doing more silly games and to keep stress low.  While we taught our first class, Phoenix was in the lobby/office hanging out. She was so good and didn't bark at all. 

A video posted by Lauren Miller (@zoepheedogs) on


There are only 3 other students in her Treibball class and she's been doing great in class. She's been playing the games that are being taught, she's been tugging with me and she has been pretty good about being around other dogs that she does not know. I've been able to keep her attention and I've been happy with her progress and hopeful that I was on the right track with her.

Sorry for the cell phone pics, I can't drag my DSLR to class.

On Monday during her class, she had a couple of freezes when the dogs would run by. Sometimes she would stop and stare at them but I was able to just feed it and get her attention back on me. Easy peasy.. no real outburst or huge reactions, she did at one point have a very "nervous tail" where she watched a dog and was wagging really hard. Her tail wagging like that is not a sign of happiness, it's a sign of arousal and one of the signs she is going to react. I worked hard on keeping her arousal sort of medium-ish and on the game we were playing. She did really well and class was not a big deal. She gave me some amazing focus. After class she even met our trainer's sheltie and they wandered around together while we cleaned up. Things were going really well.

Checking out the 45cm ball, Phoenix will need a 55cm!

By the time it was time to go home, things were going so well that I made the mistake of asking for more. Knowing when to quit when you're ahead is important and I messed up. I asked our trainer if she thought we could intro Phoenix to her other dog as well. I figured we'd be working together and we might as well try to get the dogs used to each other.

Phoenix has always been fine with on leash greetings, she's been fine with dogs who are her size or smaller. She's been to Pet Expo and passed dogs on leash, she's done Doggie Dash and walked with hundreds of dogs on leash. She's been at some crazy events and done better than Zoe. Both of my dogs used to go to work with me every day at the vet clinic and hanging out at a vet clinic is extremely stressful. She was able to pass and greet dogs at the vet clinic. She's always been one to try and avoid conflict whenever she can. She would get nervous sometimes but not flip her shit. She's gotten defensive with dogs for rushing into her bubble when she didn't see it coming but never just for a quick on leash greeting to say hi with calm well trained dogs.

The greeting with both dogs on leash in the lobby didn't go well and Phoenix snapped at them and she scared the crap out of them. I am honestly not sure if she actually connected but I think she did.

The look on my trainer's dog's faces was so sad and it's not something that I've been easily able to let go. I cried the whole way home and most of Tuesday as well. I have never wanted to be that person with **that** dog, the one that traumatizes another person's dogs or makes someone else's dogs scared and upset. 

Nobody was hurt and she didn't draw blood but to say that I was shocked would be a complete understatement. She has never gone after dogs like that before in that context unless they were trying to eat her first. I guess there's a first for everything and that makes me the asshole owner who says, "OMG! She's never done that before!!!". We've all heard someone say it and we've all rolled our eyes. Great. I just joined the dumb ass dog owner club. Seriously, no one can beat me up more than I am already kicking myself.

My trainer, bless her, was really nice about the whole thing. She said that Phoenix is a great dog, that she's doing so well in class and that she's seen worse. It's not that big of a deal and to not apologize. (I kept apologizing... and couldn't stop). She told me that Phoenix is still welcome to come back to class. We worked out a plan to make sure that what happened wouldn't happen again and Phoenix will be going straight to the car after class. She also mentioned doing intros differently, parallel walking and circle walking, which I am familiar with and have done in the past. I don't know if we will try introducing them again, probably not.

So it just brings me back to why the heck I thought greeting two dogs on leash in a tiny lobby at 10 o'clock at night was a brilliant idea. It was not. We were all fried. We were all tired and obviously Phoenix was completely out of spoons and likely trigger stacked from the previous incidents that we've had in the past few days.

I'm so embarrassed and I feel so stupid for trying to intro the dogs and pretty much like such an inexperienced idiot. I put someone else's dogs in danger and I thoroughly regret it. I am really sad and disappointed in myself for setting my dog up for failure, too. Phoenix has come a really long way from the scared little dog who shivered in the corner and wouldn't let anyone touch her but apparently, she still has a few lessons up her sleeve for me.

Phoenix gets a home made bandana.

I would be lying if I said I wasn't tired of dealing with reactivity. It's exhausting and depressing. Having to constantly worry about her and keeping people and their dogs away from her. Having to peek out my door to make sure the coast is clear before I let them walk into the hallway, having to tell everyone my dogs are not friendly, even though Zoe really is and would like to say hi. Getting dirty looks from other dog owners because I've had to tell them to get their dogs because "mine aren't friendly". Being known as the grumpy lady with the "mean, skittish little dog" (even though she's never done anything to any of my neighbor's dogs) is frustrating. It just really wears me down.

I will never give up on Phoenix but sometimes I do wish we had a cabin in the woods somewhere away from everyone else. In the city there's a dog around every corner. I know that I'm lucky she's less reactive than most but I think I'm a bit unlucky in that she's "silent, but deadly". People think that both of my dogs are so cute and because she doesn't give traditional reactive warnings or outbursts that she's fine and we've had a lot of problems because of it. 

I guess I am lucky she's "a mostly functional" reactive dog.



In the end, I know it was only a bad moment, not even a bad day and certainly not a bad life. She is an amazing dog, a wonderful companion and she's so much fun. I totally see the good in her. I wish other people could, too. She will still be going to Treibball and she's going to Impulse Control classes, too. I always hope that with a little more work she might get better and more comfortable around other dogs. I'm not quite ready to just accept that this is the way things will always be.

What is your biggest struggle with your reactive dog? Does it feel like grieving to you, too?

Tuesday, March 22, 2016

Wellness Pure Rewards - Venison Jerky Dog Treats #ChewyInfluencer


Hi everyone and welcome to our monthly chewy.com review! Chewy.com is an awesome company that ships all of your favorite pet products right to your door! They have amazing customer service and their shipping is incredibly fast. They are one of our favorite companies! We received our treats as part of the chewy.com blogger program in exchange for an honest review.

Today we are reviewing Wellness Pure Rewards Venison Jerky. Wellness treats are always a huge hit here so the girls were pretty excited to get them!

Wellness Pure Rewards are a highly flavorful, protein-packed jerky treat. They offer a variety of different proteins including: Venison, Beef, Turkey, Chicken & Lamb, Venison & Salmon, Turkey & Salmon. These treats are more than 90% meat! These are grain-free and there are no corn or soy products in them, either. These treats are awesome for training and would be great for dogs who have tummy issues because they have limited ingredients.

Ingredients: Venison, Dried Chicory Root, Cultured Whey, Salt, Lecithin, Garlic, Mixed Tocopherols (a natural preservative)



Like I said above, my dogs are huge fans of Wellness and these treats were definitely a hit. These treats are a bit bigger than what I generally like for a training treat but they are easily torn into smaller pieces and they are also pretty easy to cut up, too. Both of my dogs consider these to be high value and I even used them to teach Phoenix a new trick! I will also be using them in our training classes.

I would recommend checking out Wellness Pure Rewards! We will definitely be getting these again!

ZoePhee receives treats from chewy.com as part of their blogger program. We were not monetarily compensated for our reviews. All reviews are 100% honest. 

Monday, March 21, 2016

The Problem With High Drive Dogs, Hypothermia Scare with Phoenix!

Phoenix loves to fetch sticks out of the water!

Do you remember your parents telling you "if your friends jumped off a bridge, would you?" We learned that lesson on Saint Patrick's Day when we had a mild hypothermia scare with Phoenix. All the other dogs were swimming, having a good time and were fine...

The weather was finally sunny, my husband had the day off and we decided to go hiking out at our favorite park. The day started off pretty normal, except that everyone had the same idea we did. The parking lot was full and there was no parking. That was okay, though because there's another park about half a mile away with extra parking so we decided we'd park there and hike in. On our way into the park, we found a little off shoot trail and spent about an hour wandering around on some trails that bordered our favorite park. These sorts of trails are hardly ever used, some of them were flooded and we didn't see anyone or any dogs. When we finally made it into the park it was very, very crowded but we decided to continue on and use it as a training opportunity. Zoe had been getting frustrated with the lack of friendly dogs at our apartment complex and she really wanted to socialize. I had my husband take her down to the river to visit with the dogs while I played some counter conditioning games off to the side with Phoenix on leash.


Phee was doing really well, so I asked for more and moved her closer to the action. We had several very nice greetings with other dogs and it this point I decided we should end on a good note and continue hiking. Once we were away from the big group of dogs, I went ahead and let Phoenix back off leash. We came across several more dogs on the trails but she did great practicing avoidance behaviors, which I prefer over greetings. She definitely tries not to have conflict with other dogs and I'm pretty happy about that. She does great with dogs who are calm and we ran into a bunch who were perfect for her to visit with. I'm finding out that both of my dogs really likes pit bull type dogs. I wish they weren't such breedests but I'll take it.


The day was going pretty well and my husband happened to pick up a stick. As soon as Phoenix saw the stick she was immediately "in drive" and wanted to play fetch. She loves to fetch sticks out of water more than anything else. Everyone out there had their dogs playing in the water so we didn't really think about it too much. We were cautious, not throwing the sticks too far and making her take breaks in between fetching so she didn't get too cold. I told my husband to give her one more throw and then we needed to leave and I was thinking he'd just sort of drop it in the water for her... Well... I learned that I need to give better instructions because he really chucked it out there and she ended up loosing it to the current. This is the problem with high drive dogs, they will do the thing they love until they literally die if people are not careful and Phoenix is no different. She searched and searched for that stick. I told my husband to quickly throw her another one because we needed to get her out. He threw a stick right to her, she grabbed it and swam back to us.


When she came out of the water, she was frozen solid. She was limping on all four legs and was so cold she could barely move and she was screaming and freaked out. It was pretty bad and probably the scariest moment I've ever had as a dog mom. I immediate picked her up and hugged her to my chest trying to warm her up. My husband told me to wrap her in my sweatshirt and that's what we ended up doing. We wrapped her up and hugged her until she was warm, taking turns carrying her. We got her over the sun-warmed sand and set her down and started toweling her off with my sweatshirt and rubbing her to warm her up. As soon as we did that and she was more warm, she took off to play with Zoe like nothing had happened and we both let out a sigh of relief. She was okay.

She was able to run around and hike back out of the park on her own, although I kept calling her back and checking to make sure her gums were still pink and that she was okay and warm enough. We are very lucky that she listens to us and we were able to get her out of the water when we did.

We learned that just because everyone else is swimming their dogs doesn't mean we should and if I do swim her she needs short throws and long breaks between them. I also need to buy her a life jacket. I'm not sure I will put her back into the water until summer, though. This was way too scary and I do not want to repeat it. Lesson learned. Just because the weather is warmer and sunny, doesn't mean that the water is warm. I was so relieved that she was okay. She came home and was playful and happy, her usual self. Thank goodness.

Has your dog ever scared you before?







Sunday, March 20, 2016

How To Offend Zoe...


Zoe is pretty easily offended by things. She is not a fan of being wet so it was pretty funny when Phoenix hopped out of the river and shook all over her!

What offends your dogs?

Friday, March 18, 2016

Flying Felix & Speed Sling Ball! Dog Toys from Major Dog!


Happy Fit Dog Friday, everyone! Today I have a review for you on some new toys from Major Dog! We've reviewed a toy from them in the past and you can find that here: Major Dog Tiger Toy

Major Dog is a great company that is based in Germany, the toy capitol of the world. They are the only dog toy company to my knowledge that put their dog toys  through the same rigorous testing as the toys made for children. Quality and safety is extremely important to Major Dog and because of that all of the toys are TÜV-certified. The toys are awesome and they help to keep our fitness routine fun and interesting! The dogs have been loving them! Even Zoe who isn't all that into toys has been playing with them! We got our toys in exchange for an honest review.

 

Flying Felix


If you've seen some of our posts in the last few weeks, Phoenix has gotten really into playing frisbee! She's learning a lot of disc dog ticks and she loves it! I love disc dog stuff my dogs are getting a great workout and having a ton of fun. The only problem we've been having is that Phoenix is afraid of hard discs.The Flying Felix toy is a great solution to this. It's a soft disc-like toy that's made from a sturdy canvas material. It's super easy for the dog to catch and it makes learning disc tricks so easy for Phoenix. This toy comes with one small squeaker and I can't even begin to describe to you how much Phoenix loves it! This toy is not only awesome for playing frisbee but it's also great for playing tug! It's one tough toy and we've been playing with it nonstop since we got it! Another great feature of this toy is that you can fold it and it easily fits into my pocket. So I can quickly whip it out for rewarding Phoenix in training sessions as well. I love how versatile this toy really is!

Phoenix flips for the Flying Felix!
Flipping for Felix! Ignore my face, the sun is in my eyes!
Flying Felix can also be used for tugging!
Phoenix does a back vault for the Flying Felix!

As you can see, Phoenix really loves the Flying Felix and we've been having so much fun with it!

 

Speed Sling Ball


The Speed Sling Ball is the other toy we received from Major Dog. This is an awesome fetch style toy that was designed with special rubber to be easy on your dog's teeth. The ball has a canvas loop attached to it, making this toy easy to throw. It's also great for playing tug. The Speed Sling Ball comes in two sizes: small or large. This toy would be great for any ball obsessed dog and any dog who loves playing tug. Both of my dogs have been having a fantastic time playing with the small Speed Sling Ball. I use playing fetch as my warm up to doing disc tricks and they have both enjoyed chasing after this toy. The handle is made from the same sturdy material as the Flying Felix and it's really held up to all of our games! I like that it's easy on their teeth and how durable and sturdy it is. The Speed Sling Ball is rapidly becoming Zoe's favorite toy which is awesome because she's not that into toys!

Phoenix poses with the Speed Sling Ball
Zoe retrieves the Speed Sling Ball!

Zoe and Phoenix have been having a fantastic time playing with their new toys from Major Dog and I love that they are thoroughly tested for safety. Many of the toys in the Major Dog line are tough toys and my dogs have not been able to destroy any of them. I also love that these awesome toys make exercise fun and interesting for my dogs! Phoenix has been having a great time learning her disc tricks and Zoe has been really enjoying fetching the Speed Sling Ball. Both of these toys are rapidly becoming their most favorite toys and the ones I also whip out to reward them for in training, too! Major Dog has a great selection of toys for even the pickiest pooch and I would highly recommend checking them out! 

We received our dog toys from Major Dog in exchange for an honest review and we were not monetarily compensated. All opinions are my own. 
Major Dog is not responsible for the content of this blog post.

Thursday, March 17, 2016

Happy St. Patrick's Day!


Happy Saint Patrick's Day everyone!

This year we have a couple of throwback photos for you from last year! I apologize for that but I just have not had that much time and the weather has been horrific for outdoor pictures! 


Be sure to check out our cute little video from last year, too!


I hope you all have a wonderful day and stay safe out there!

Are you celebrating St. Patty's Day?

Wednesday, March 16, 2016

The Wreckage!


I love how Phoenix is always up for whatever. When I asked her to hop up onto the wreckage of The Peter Iredale she was happy to do it! She loves posing for me!

Does your dog like posing for photos?

Tuesday, March 15, 2016

Phoenix's First Treibball Class!


So I work at an awesome dog training facility and they had an opening in their Treibball class and I took it! We've never done Treibball before and I literally did not know anything about the sport until last week. We got there early so I could try to take a few pictures and to walk her around the block a little. The training building has a beautiful mural painted on it and I thought it would make a pretty background. I helped with the first training class of the night which was a basic manners class so Phoenix got to hang out in the office and wait for me while I worked the class. She was so good! I didn't hear her barking at all!


Sorry this photo is really blurry. I was trying to get it quickly so we could continue with the lesson and I didn't want to be too disruptive. Phoenix is learning to line up with me behind an object. The whole point of Treibball is that the dog learns to gather and drive balls toward a goal. You can learn more about it by going here: http://www.nationaltreibball.com/

A video posted by Lauren Miller (@zoepheedogs) on

Phoenix was SO good in class. She was a little nervous at first and was whining a bit but she did not react at a single dog. We had her behind some barriers and my trainer says she doesn't even think we need the barriers next week! At one point Phoenix did decide that the box was for jumping on which sent the box flying and created a bit of a disturbance but it was pretty funny. We've been playing too many shaping games with boxes! Next we have to get her measured and figure out what size ball to buy her!

I am really excited at how well she did at class and I'm so happy that I get the opportunity to take her! I'm looking forward to all of our future classes! We have more Treibball and she's going to an Impulse Control Class, too!

Does your dog(s) go to training class? What classes are you taking?

Monday, March 14, 2016

Recalling Off Prey, Seabirds!


Believe it or not, while we were at the beach, the dogs could not have cared less about the seabirds. They trotted around and for the most part ignored them! At one point Phoenix did decide they might be fun to chase but I was able to immediately call her back. Thanks to Premack!


Phoenix half hearted attempt at chasing the birds was a great opportunity for me to practice calling her off prey. The birds were not in any danger and they really were not all that bothered.


As soon as I called Phoenix she immediately turned back and came. The birds landed right down where they were. It wasn't any worse than the birds taking off to avoid cars that were driving on the beach and everyone was fine. As you can see, Zoe did not care at all about birds and was busy sniffing.

I love the beach so much! I hope we can go again soon!

Have you ever taken your dog to the beach? Did they like it?