Wednesday, June 5, 2013

June?!? Agility and dog-raising vs. kid-raising.

WTF it's June? How can this be???

So starting private agility lessons with the Aussies tomorrow, and since it is best to have a game plan, let's see if I can find some objectives...

1. agility?

No srsly....

Remind Zig how to perform obstacles
Handling-crosses esp front crosses, serpentines, threadles?
Distance (someday?)


Didn't get finished until post lesson. Mostly an evaluation of our skill set, as it's a new instructor to us. Not surprisingly, I got lost on course, Griff was steady but slow in his weaves, and Zig was a bit all over the place...She wants us working on weaves until next week, which is good but also frustrating that after all the weave pole practice we've done we are still pokey....well, Zig's not pokey he's just looking for his reward to come out of my hand...I swear I toss them usually!

A friend asked me today whether I saw big differences between being a parent to an infant and raising dogs. Now, I've been a parent for a whole 10 weeks, but so far here are my thoughts on the difference, or lack thereof.

1. With dogs/puppies, you worry about rewarding inappropriate or undesirable behavior, like crate-barking. With infants, you comfort any crying without worrying about whether that is "reinforcing" for the baby. They simply aren't developmentally ready for anything else. They are more like 1 week old pups than 8 week old, just operating on a basic needs level.

2. My dogs and I quickly develop a partnership, they have responsibilities in the relationship as well. Not so much with a baby.

3. If something happened to me tomorrow, I'm sure my family would provide loving homes for my dogs. They might not be exactly the same as the one I provide, but their needs would be met, and I think they'd probably be pretty happy. It's difficult to say the same about an infant. Of course he would be cared for, but the loss of his mama, especially as he's breastfed, would be more impactful I think.

4. I now have one more creature that I would throw myself in front of in case of runaway train or zombie attack.
Zig supervises tummy time. 

We'll see how my perspective changes as he ages.

Thankfully, the dogs have adapted very nicely to his presence. The boys are up with me in the night, sitting at the foot of the rocker while I feed him, checking on him when he cries, that sort of thing. I'm pleased, because quite honestly I didn't do as great of a job socializing Zig to kids when he was little as I should have. I just didn't have that many kids around and I didn't feel comfortable stalking playgrounds in the neighborhood-someone would have called the cops!

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