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    1. #1
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      Back from Fenzi Dog Training Camp!

      Fenzi Dog Training Camp was the best long weekend EVER and I consider myself very fortunate to have been able to attend with my dog. There were close to 100 dogs and about 300 people. One woman flew in from New Zealand to audit -- and as a side note, she has two Labs, and if you think AKC title are hard, look into what it takes in New Zealand to title your dog in obedience! It was great to meet people from all over the country who I know from online classes (mostly auditors, but a few people flew or drove their dogs in from the midwest and east coast) and, of course, spend time with my local friends. My trainer attended and almost everyone I train with was there, including my entire open/utility class! You could really tell what the breed of choice is in my area -- Aussies -- and there were very few Labs (five, to be exact, and we were the only yellow) and just a couple Goldens. Pretty sure he was the most photographed Lab -- those yellows!

      Linus did great both in the event site and the hotel. It was exhausting and he snoozed a lot, but he gave me all he had in our sessions and performed quite well. I let him schmooze more than normal, so he got tons of love! It was really hot out that weekend, but we had AC in the event space and in the hotel, thank goodness! We were able to find grassy space to be off leash for a little bit every day so he could decompress, sniff, roll around and get the zoomies out.

      First day we did ring confidence. It was a lot of what we already do, but I thought it would be a great way to warm up for the rest of camp and I learned a bit more about additional things I can do for him as well as myself. Here are photos (remember, we're the only yellow dog in the entire camp, so we are really easy to spot!). We also did a handling session without my dog with Nancy Little Gagliardi -- who, by the way, is amazing! She teaches for the FDSA and I'd heard a lot of great things about her, but working with her for myself made me a believer (as a side note, her dad is John Gagliardi, the most winning college football coach in history -- and I am sure she gets some of her wonderful coaching and communication skills from him).

      Second day, we worked with Nancy again, this time on Open/Utility problem solving. I chose our go-outs because I'm having a hard time fading the target. More photos here. Almost everyone did go-outs during this session. Knock on wood, at the moment that is our biggest challenge. I had another working spot with Nancy and this time, we worked on heeling. She is fantastic! Photos are here. I think on this day we also had an open/utility games working spot with Julie Symons, another great instructor, but no photos yet (still being edited). We worked on jumping confidence and signals and I got some great ideas from other people's working spots, too. Just trying to keep our exercises fun and fresh and help my dog gain confidence and drive.

      Saturday, we worked with Nancy again and continued to work on heeling, this time our left turns and figure 8s. I loved working with her and envy those who can train with her in Minnesota. Here are a few pics. We finally worked with Denise on Saturday in a short private lesson. One of my goals was to work with other people since I see Denise about three times a year and take a lot of online classes with her -- and just finished a really intense 12 week course with her. I really do love working with her and it's been a few years and she knows me and my dog well, so that is always helpful. We worked a bit on heeling, then I pulled out our articles because I wanted her to help me with ways to make them more fun. I think articles are going to be a stressy exercise for Linus, both for when he is stressing up and down. So,we did those and as you can see in the photos here, he nailed them and was super happy. I was really proud of him because this was his first time doing articles on carpet (he's really never on carpet) even after three days of strange dogs on it and this was our first time doing them in this type of facility with an audience.

      The final day was a half day and it was mock trials - obedience, nosework and agility. We had two spots in obedience. One was with Denise and one with Hannah Brannigan. Photos are here. Both of us were beat so we didn't even do the mock trials. I just wanted to work with Denise on a few more things and then when I worked with Hannah, I wanted her to show me a few things from her figure 8 session that I missed because I was in another working spot. So, she did and, well, as with all things Hannah, mind = blown. Since most of the handlers, dogs AND instructors were beat on Sunday, next year they are doing away with the final day of mock trials (it was a new thing they thought they'd try this year).

      A few other takeaways...

      Shade Whitesel, who is primarily an IPO instructor, was fantastic! I audited her heeling session and she seems really wonderful to work with and people could not say enough great things about her. If she is putting on a seminar in your area, I would highly recommend attending, even if just to audit.

      Everyone raved about Loretta Mueller, an agility instructor. We have some good ones around here, too (Daisy Peel is one), and people could not say enough wonderful things about Loretta as a coach. I wish I could have gone to some of her lectures.

      If you ever want to geek out on dog training, Hannah Brannigan is your gal! I have taken some online classes with her and love her and have audited several. She also has a podcast called "Drinking from the Toilet" which is another good one. I can't wait to go to one of her seminars. I did watch her Stop Sniffing session and it was fascinating. In a nutshell, she brought three containers of "smell": bitch in season, chicken poop and sheep urine. Many of the dogs were intact males but all had sniffing issues and not stress sniffing, necessarily. Basically, she clicked them for sniffing and by the end of the session their go-to behavior was focusing on the handler. She did this one last year, too, and everyone knew about it and she had quite the audience. Truly amazing stuff.

      I feel like I am missing some things...it was such a whirlwind. And this is already a novel. Anyway, such a wonderful experience and I highly recommend it to anyone that competes with their dog -- there is something for everyone. It's affordable and everyone is welcome. Next year it's going to be held at the Eukanuba Center in Ohio and I am looking forward to attending (though I most likely will be auditing).
      Last edited by Labradorks; 07-02-2017 at 06:19 PM.

    2. #2
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      the photos are great, there seem to be a LOT of your dude compared to others (especially candids!) - Around here it is all about the aussie's as well, and in sports, tollers. considering the popularity of the breed in general there are a large amount around here!

      Sounds like a great weekend When you audit, does your dog come with you or do you leave them somewhere?

      Must be information overload though!

    3. #3
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      Quote Originally Posted by Tanya View Post
      the photos are great, there seem to be a LOT of your dude compared to others (especially candids!) - Around here it is all about the aussie's as well, and in sports, tollers. considering the popularity of the breed in general there are a large amount around here!

      Sounds like a great weekend When you audit, does your dog come with you or do you leave them somewhere?

      Must be information overload though!
      It's those yellow dogs!

      I don't know why a person would want to bring a dog if they were auditing! It was worth it and I'd do it again in a heartbeat, but I am also looking forward to auditing only next time.

      Only working dogs are allowed in each session. It was like high school. Several rings in different buildings and you had 15 minutes between each session to get to the new ring. There was a one hour lunch break as well.

      I think there were eight rings going on at once all over the grounds. There is only so much space beside the rings. There is a crating area for the dogs who aren't working at all or who are not working in a session.

    4. #4
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      Sounds like you two had a great time and learn a lot!! Nice pics too!

      I've done a couple seminars locally and it's amazing what you can learn in a short period of time from some very knowledgable instructors.

    5. #5
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      It sounds to me like just keeping the dog glued together with all that was going on would be an accomplishment in itself! Was this the event around Suison City you'd mentioned a while back?

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    7. #6
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      Quote Originally Posted by barry581 View Post
      Sounds like you two had a great time and learn a lot!! Nice pics too!

      I've done a couple seminars locally and it's amazing what you can learn in a short period of time from some very knowledgable instructors.
      I love seminars! This is like the mother-load of them all! Something like ten instructors (all of which give seminars on their own as well, not just with FDSA) over four days. It's enough to make your head spin. Luckily I have everything on video (my working spots) otherwise I'd completely forget everything I learned.

    8. #7
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      Quote Originally Posted by TuMicks View Post
      It sounds to me like just keeping the dog glued together with all that was going on would be an accomplishment in itself! Was this the event around Suison City you'd mentioned a while back?
      Nope, this was in Albany, Oregon. Suisun City is field training only and that one is in less than two weeks! The dogs all did really well, actually. We had one working spot on the last day where I didn't have much dog and frankly, there wasn't much human left, either.

    9. #8
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      Listened to the latest Fenzi podcast and they had a part of Denise's speech about superheroes Ohio next year!

      Would you say it is overall more beneficial for obedience work? I realize there were various sessions but was it more obedience based? Or many other sports?

    10. #9
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      Quote Originally Posted by Tanya View Post
      Listened to the latest Fenzi podcast and they had a part of Denise's speech about superheroes Ohio next year!

      Would you say it is overall more beneficial for obedience work? I realize there were various sessions but was it more obedience based? Or many other sports?
      I would say that it was equally obedience, agility and nosework with a dash of behavior/problem solving. For me, it was all about obedience, though I kick myself for not sitting in on at least one Loretta Mueller agility lecture.

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    12. #10
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      Linus looked great. I can understand aussies if your sport is flyball or agility. But for obedience, I don't get it. I mean, Labradors are so well rounded. (That is, most Labs. Then there's Ram Jet Rocket Dog.) But I mean, you have to live with the dog so get a Lab.

      I'm not biased or anything.

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