I have two vizslas napping in their crates after a four-hour drive back from Maryland, a bath each, and an hour-long walk during which these pictures were taken. As you will quickly determine, these are three in a swift sequence. I just happen to like them because you see how trim they both are and how nicely they cover ground.
First off, both boys look like the business. Momo has trimmed down even further, Jozsi has filled out. They look like track-stars. I will get actual weights once they've dried out after dinner, but eye-balling things, I'd say Jozsi is now taller than Momo. He's also only got one-speed: full on. Jozsi really is Mr. Enthusiasm.
7:00pm Newsflash: Momo trimmed down to 43lbs, Jozsi 'The Beast' is now 50lbs!!!
Bob and I spent an hour with Momo this morning going over his retrieve -- and I now have a lot of work to do. Momo clearly knows every single part of the retrieve, and I have no doubt that if I hadn't been there, Bob would have him retrieving everything. So, if we're going to realistically try for Senior Hunter in a month, I need to go over all his drills with him and must not let him think that I am the easy option. I hate the idea of causing him discomfort, but I know that at this point he knows exactly what he's supposed to do -- and so is just choosing not to obey me if he doesn't go out for his fetch. It's tough seeing someone handle your dog roughly -- and I don't mean anything cruel here -- just that to this point in his career Momo has done great doing things which he wanted to do (and which conveniently enough were things I wanted him to do), and if his retrieve is going to be reliable, soft words of encouragement aren't going to do it.
Lael + Neil are experiencing similar challenges with Momo's mother, Makin, although as they work with her to do agility. And as much as I loved her when I met her, Makin never had a reliable retrieve either, so I'm dealing with genetics here, too. The challenge is how to be stern enough to get the job done without toasting the dog -- to build a stronger relationship by working through challenge.
News in Blogland:
1) Kim @ Forest King Vizslas decided that Cedar and Kyler deserved to be in the 'Vizslas who can type' section of our blogroll and has just started her first blog.
2) For those of you that are interested in working (as opposed to show) setters, and especially Gordons, I just discovered that my friend Bill, a.k.a. Black&Tan, has started his own blog, The Black and Tan Bombshell, in honor of Norm Sorby's book that bears that as its subtitle.