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You get the dog you trained

I got to thinking about that last post….I’m not sure how that ‘explanation’ of our last trial sounds to someone outside my own head. I don’t have time to expand/expound, but I probably ought to be explicit:
It’s not her fault. I hope I didn’t sound like I was getting down on Mesa. I completely own any confusion, disappointment, annoyance, or exasperation that might have been felt. I have the dog I trained.

In my defense, Mesa is my very first working dog. The very first APDT rally trial I ever did with her was the very first time I ever competed in anything, ever. And, herding is a sport that’s one of the hardest things I’ve ever done. (This statement includes my college & graduate degrees in physics and mathematics.) ALL the retraining and advanced work we do is built on a foundation made mostly of mistakes, confusion, misunderstanding, and experimentation while I learned/am learning. And it’s just really showing that now we are working at a level where partnership: trust and understanding, are absolutely necessary. Mesa is a truly awesome dog who has learned to work in spite of me. Now we are in the middle of a long haul…re-learning to work together.

My little red dog has stuck with me through thick and thin, has taught me most of what I know about training & competing with dogs, and still loves to work with me.

Best. Dog. Ever.

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