Last updated Wed, Feb 7, 2024
Enhancements to our Awards and Schedule pages are done! Thanks for your patience...both are much easier to navigate now with the new links. I wish I would have added them years ago! My next project - a page with my pups including my Chelsea Golden Retrievers. Highlights of the wonderful seven generations of Goldens and their people I have known starting with my first "Chelsea" prefix litter in 1980!
Hello trainers! It was so nice to be back to classes, breaks are nice, but... my heart is here. Our first class consisted of a terrific group of incoming trainers. As always, I enjoy meeting new people and welcoming back returning trainers with new puppies. I am so looking forward to watching the new teams grow. Returns from literally decades ago registered in the Puppy Class to help ensure great starts for their new family members. See the new rosters below!
Over the holidays, our 'decades long group of trainers' met at Mexican Fiesta in Hartland. It was great to see everyone again and hear updates on the paws! And thanks to the Mexican Fiesta staff for accomodating us, our visit was a bit long. Luckily, Tuesdays are not too busy and we were attentive to making sure we did not over stay our welcome by keeping an eye on the tables as guests were being seated. Well deserved generous tipping for the staff followed!
Tip! As I've been doing a "Paleo" lifestyle (most of the time...). I usually have to miss out on most Mexican foods due to the grains that are not allowed. Problem solved by ordering tacos (or ?) on a bed of lettuce instead of a corn shell. BTW, their Sangria is delicious at Mexican Fiesta! I'm hoping the Pickleball ladies group will be interested in meeting there for our holiday get together as well! UPDATE - our Hartland Pickleball ladies group was on board, much fun again this time for a lunch meet! Ok, back to the paws...
Results Rendezvous! Another 'paws' fix over the break. The members of the Ingham Co. Kennel Club (ICKC) put on a wonderful show weekend! Planning to only attend for a few hours is always impossible once I arrive. I lose track of time when seeing many long time friends as well as meeting some new ones. It was difficult to be everywhere I wanted to be! Agility runs were entertaining (sometimes for various reasons)! Especially nice to meet new puppies that friends are starting and a few older pets I've missed meeting in the past. Simply put, I had a fabulous time!
Travel smart, espcially if you are going out of state... Luckily, so far the 'mystery flu' has not been too much of a concern in MI. The ICKC shows this past weekend in Lansing had many absences out of caution. Thanks to those from out of state that chose to stay home out of consideration. Michigan and Ohio have been lucky, but our neighbors in Indiana and Illinois have not. It was great to see so many long (almost life time!) people with new puppies! Haha, a wonderful way to get a 'fur fix'! Update mid-January, still not a concern per some local veterinarians...phew!
The snow I'm thankful so far it hasn't been too much! Remember to watch for slick spots when out walking. To help keep your walks as safe as possible, be proactive. Utilize your pet's training skills! Use circle lefts, as introduced at the first class with the paws in both Puppy and Obedience & Manners One. Also, use a "Wait" as necessary, and if training is done above Puppy class, the "Easy" when warranted. If needed, a "Sit" (with help if necessary) when extra control is needed. After your pet responds, resume walking to keep your walks as safe as possible.
As winter moves in, keep sand or another safe material to put out on those areas ice is likely to form. When out walking keep aware for areas where product has been used. If purchasing products, be sure they are 'pet safe'. Some materials are not safe... A horrible experience at the Novi show in January when the Expo center was newly opened. As usual when showing, I always like to arrive very early. My Newfoundland, "Natalie" only took a few steps from my vehicle towards the entrance and my usual very stoic puppy was literally howling in pain. As it was still very dark out, I was clueless as to what caused her anguish... Within seconds (literally) two sponsoring club members swooped her up and carried her (all #120!) into the building. When I caught up to them, I learned the liquid de-icer used - at that time - was not animal friendly. Note, the product that was put on the parking lot was quickly replaced. Thankfully, only the extra early arrivals were the only dogs affected! Lesson learned by the new facilty maintenance department.
Aspirin pain relief products and Xylitol. Meds should be cleared with your veterinarian before giving. Note that Xylitol sweetner is very harmful to dogs and it may now be found in aspirin! It may cause a sudden release of insulin which then leads to a sudden drop of blood sugar. Be aware it is found in many products, check labels before letting your pet share snacks that are labeled for people. Please check with your veterinarian for a safe pain management.
Potty Training When It's Cold Outside!
If weather warrants, put a coat or sweater on your pet! Most breeds will appreciate your thoughtfulness. I personally have trained all of my pups to go outdoors soon after getting them. Using newspaper in the first week or two for baby puppes if needed. This early start on a newspaper will be handy in the 'golden years' if your older pet loses ability to hold for long periods of time... This time of year... it's tough to expect a young puppy to be comfortable in the very cold and harsh weather. You may want to consider training for now to be both in and out. Especially if you have a very young pup or a frail, sick or older pet that is in need of training. You may also consider training your pet to go indoors if you have several flights of stairs to reach an exit door. Better to have your pet go in an acceptable indoor area than to decide to relieve itself in random areas...
Training indoors? Be sure to put a cheap piece of vinyl flooring down and then use potty pads or newspaper on top of this flooring. Position it by the exit door you have chosen. When the weather subsides, then train your pet to go outdoors. Some trainers prefer to use litter systems and/or potty pads forever. You know your situation and living environment. Do consider if your pet may be traveling with you - and - cross training if possible so your pet is comfortable in a variety of environments.
If your pet is used to going indoors and you wish to transfer the potty area to the outdoors, plan ahead for a hopefully easy transistion. Be sure to shovel snow to the relief area and shovel down to grass. I do not recommend training to go on an adjoining deck as some pups may not leave this area and go in the designated potty area later if outdoors alone. Pick up any sticks and items that your pet may find interesting in your designated area and keep your pet on leash so it is not able to entertain itself by meandering.
To start your pet in a designated area, simply get a 'sample' of pee and poo to take outdoors if you do not have another pet using the designated area. Soak a paper towel with your pet's urine. Store in a ziploc bag by the exit door. When taking your pup out, pick up the soaked paper towel and put on the ground. Or place a soiled potty pad on the dirt or grass. With a little luck, your pet will make the connection and go. Remember not to praise until your pet is finished going (not when it begins) per discussion at class! Hurry back into the house and give a treat!
When traveling with your pet, it's best if your pet is comfortable on leash and able to potty away from home. For that reason, acclimating your pet to being on leash when relieving itself is a terrific idea. Some people never do this and their pet may resist going if leashed - so sad for the pup! Remember the 'how to do' tips shared at the end of your first class with me (if you stayed for same).
Slippery Outdoor Area? Use a pet-safe salt or substitue for safer footing. My go to if I don't have a pet safe melting product is a pail of sand to spread. Away from the house around barns and chicken areas, straw may be helpful. If straw is spread on ice, you may slip, so apply to rough areas or when there is a partial thaw. Do keep your products somewhere where it/they will not get wet and freeze solid. Some people use regular clay cat litter - I have had pups that wanted to eat it - thus, I don't use it!
If walking your pet in an area where regular salt may be? Example - on sidewalks, roads and streets. There are special products you may purchase to provide your pet pad protection. I have used a dab of Vaseline on the bottom of feet which may keep the salt from burning.
Be sure to wipe off your pet's feet when you're back indoors. Even better, dip each paw in a small pail with warm water and towell dry. The "Steady" is helpful for doing this if you have taught it!
Or socks! My first Great Pyrenees, "Maggie" was regularly seen with argyle socks and a matching scarf after she went through heartworm treatment (before heartworm preventative was readily available). Due to same, her circulation was impaired and I believe she actually appreciated 'getting dressed'. Maggie was so cooperative when I put her socks on. Such a sweetie, I still miss her after fifty plus years... I have a couple cute pics of her 'modeling in cognito', precious!
Pet edibles from China!!
This is not-so-new-news, but many well known stores have chosen to still sell treats on their shelves coming from China. There have been documented cases of thousands of pets that have died or became seriously ill from digesting food with toxins found in them in our country alone. Be sure to check labels and discard anything with "China" on it!! I find it sad what greed can do to people in the trade that we assume care about our pets... Too much info to share here on this subject - Google and learn.
Important Link Here:
FDA Pet Food Recalls & Withdrawals
DIY Long Line
If you are in need of a long line, looping two leashes together will work. Or, to save money - you may make one! Simply purchase parachute cord for smaller pets or clothesline or boat cord for larger ones and simply add a bolt snap. Adding another bolt snap at 20+ +/- intervals if longer lines are needed will save time if your pet may get tangled is a concern. Using a harness on your pet instead of a collar is recommended and be sure to supervise!
If you prefer to keep your pet in a limited area, consider an over head cable to provide for exercise. Consider ample 'head' room for people when setting this up! Again, a harness may provide a safer connection than a collar. Supervision is important, too. Pets can get tangled and visiting animals - including children - may come on to your property. : )
Donating? Keep your money local and give to the agencies that actually use the vast majority of the funds for the animals. There are many 'businesses' and even some local non profits that are skilled at taking advantage of people that have a soft spot for animals. Heart-wrenching ads on television can attract you. There is one agency that receives much money which provides their admin staff annual salaries of not only six digit figures, but high multiple hundred thousand $ salaries. TAILS DOWN!
Please help to spread the word! Your referrals are most appreciated. Business cards are available for drop off at pet related businesses and veterinary hospitals. Please share when you can! Much of my business is word of mouth and spreading the word will help ensure I'm still running when you get a future pup, thank you!
Enjoy your training journey and life with your pet!
My best, Mary T.
2022 Results & Pawformance Rendevous Titles & Honorifics!
AKC Canine Good Citizen
Joe G. & "Bruce" Doberman Pinscher, much training with George (and Marge) G.
Test pass with Joe at Sportsman's DTC in Warren. Congrats everyone!
AKC Canine Good Citizen with Therapy Pass
Maureen K.'s "Suki" - Labrador Retriever & Poodle mix.
No other information was provided. Congrats, Suki is a sweetheart!
A small group of Results - Pawformance Sports! trainers plan on doing AKC Rally-Obedience trials later this year!
We're looking forward to that. Hopefully my next update here will have some news to share!
Recently lost pets, I'm hoping your memories offer some comfort.
Such a gift it is to have experienced the love and bond with a dear pet.
Sadly, not all people are fortunate enough to have this experience, be thankful for the time you have had!
"Meka" - Akita - Cindy H.
"Hercules" - Belgian Malinois - Tom S.
"Lucy-Lu" - American Cocker Spaniel & Golden Retriever, a 'Dakota' mix - Robert L. & Carrie S.