The Kwick Journal will take on a new atmosphere dealing with age issues, keeping
                                dogs in shape, duck/goose hunting, our 50+ year marriage and most of all raising a
                                  beautiful little child with special needs. With respect to the dogs it must become
                                                                        simply "Maintenance Mode".
                                 May 20, 2013 Kwick Journal entry - This is the beginning of a new phase. Training
                                   will be pointed toward maintenance of skills with the emphasis on being ready
                                                                        for fall waterfowl seasons.
 
                                                Maintenance Mode Archives May-June 2013 (Link)
                                                    Maintenance Mode  Archives July 2013 (Link)
                                                 Maintenance Mode Archives August 2013 (Link)
                                               Maintenance Mode Archives September 2013 (Link)
                                                  Maintenance Mode Archives Oct/Nov 2013 (Link)
                                             Maintenance Mode Archives Nov 2013/Feb 2014 (Link)
                                                  Maintenance Mode Archives Mar/April 2014 (Link)
 
                                May 1 - Heart Worm meds for all, Frontline plus - Daisy, Gunny, Taffey and
                                            next month new Preventic collar for Kooly
                                May 2 - up early, loaded gear to work the Derby, took Kooly, Daisy and Gunny,
                                            left Taffey at home, arrived 7:45 am assigned time at the W property and
                                            no one was there, sat until 8:10 am and then drove to club house on the
                                            other side of Stoughton, gate closed, drove to Gallagher property and
                                            that gate was closed, drove back east to the Stoughton property where
                                            they were setting up the Open. got out of the van and quickly found out
                                            the Derby had been cancelled - checked e-mails and phone records when
                                            I got back home and no one had bothered to notify me - over two hours
                                            of driving and $25 in gas plus not being able to go to court support my
                                            Grandson
 
 
                                                note: court date extension - next Friday
 
                               May 5 - cut first asparagus this morning, annual spring cold is getting better and
                                            not nearly as bad as last year
                                                 note: Mississippi River at Fulton is 14.3 this morning, with a projection
                                                          to crest at 16.3 this weekend (flood stage 16.0), probably will have
                                                          to move trailer to higher ground the 7or 8th
                                                 note: pick up boat trailer for Migrator from Phowlers on the trip and
                                                          fix the small hole in the camp trailer floor
                                                 note: Illinois CCW class instruction this week
                                                 note: fifty degree change in weather coming up
                                                 note: sure a lot easier to get things done around the house and yard
                                                          when dog training is low on the priorities list 

                                                 note: four months until hunting season
                                May 6  "rest in peace" Gunny
                                May 7  put CCW classes off until June, not an easy day
                                                 note: cleaned out van, removed one aluminum crate & rearranged setup
                                                 note: immediately noticed a much more relaxed atmosphere when feeding
                                                          and airing the dogs, didn't realize just how much tension there was,
                                                          carefully planned, 24/7 diligence in dealing with a dog's unpredictable,
                                                          rarely demonstrated and potentially dangerous behavior works, but
                                                          there is an emotional cost plus the continuing risk with our four year
                                                          old, autistic Granddaughter in the house.....it finally became necessary
                                                          to make a very painful choice - I decided to NOT wait until it was too
                                                          late and my Vet was very supportive....need to stop this entry....too
                                                          emotional
                                May 8  trained late morning, "temp" - 75F, hazy & no breeze....ran Kooly & Daisy
                                           in tandem with send backs in the grassy area of the Square Pond DTA - six
                                           exercise, alternating, short remote line singles (50-75 yards), went back to
                                           pick up "the line" (place board, white bucket and pole) after Taffey ran four
                                           20 yard fun bumpers from the line, put fan on them when back home
                                                 note: forecast crest of Mississippi R. at Fulton is 16.8 feet (Sunday) and it is
                                                          at 15.6 feet today (Thursday).....future flood reference data
                                                         
will probably drive to Savanna and move trailer tomorrow
                                               
 note: lawn mower up from shed = fresh gas, change oil & bag/mow the
                                                          front lawn
                                May 9 drove to Fulton, Iowa and picked up trailer for Migrator from Phowler's, went
                                          to Duck/Fish camp to survey the Mississippi flood threat - visual was about
                                         16.1 at 1 pm and cresting at 16.8 Sunday - close, but not a problem
                                                note: Taffey stayed home while Daisy & Kooly traveled
                                                note: brought a bunch of hunting gear home
                                                note: measured area near door where the floor has rotted through,
                                                         fix next trip
                                                note: cancelled next shipment of Eagle Pack Power - Amazon jumped
                                                         the price from $48 to $65 
                                                                              (left click on thumbnail)
                                                               

                                May 10 mowed/bagged rest of lawn, shoulder beginning to express very little pain
                                            when working
                                               note: Amazon's Eagle Pack Power bags came up at $52 today....must have
                                                        been a large "response" to the price jump or someone "screwed up" 
                                May 13 "dang" didn't win the MEGA MILLION........again
                                May 14 trained at Riverside Park DTA - Daisy & Kooly ran four cold blinds ((blinds
                                            150-200 yards in easy cover with hardly any factors, still having some trouble
                                            with anything close to a straight up left back due the shoulder injury and
                                            surgery
, both dogs were responsive to whistle sits and took their casts, Taffey
                                           
came out afterwards to run a few short, hand thrown Dokken marks as I went
                                            around picking up the four blind stakes....it was in the fifties. cloudy with a
                                            stiff, northeast breeze from behind us
                                              note: dropped by the gun shop to schedule range practice 
                                May 15 started planning for the future pup's training and what came up was trying
                                            to optimize training alone, a first new idea was to design a training alone
                                            setup for teaching doubles, Daisy & Kooly will serve as perfect practice
                                            partners to look for finding ways to streamline and make the presentations
                                            as seamless as possible, then when the time comes with the pup, I will be
                                            more prepared to "modify in the moment"
                                                   note: the following diagrams show first using a simple "Mama-Papa"
                                                            presentation and searching for the best way to send the dog from
                                                            the line to retrieve the memory (verbal or hand motion)
                                                            the second diagram is a transition setup to two gunning stations
                                                            (with still one gunner) I will move from the "go bird" station to
                                                            throw the memory find the best way to move from station to
                                                            station as the dog is retrieving/moving with respect to the line
                                                            while retrieving and delivering (tentatively released on name for
                                                            the "memory") Daisy & Kooly should be able to provide plenty of
                                                            useful feedback, stand alones and send backs have been a way
                                                            of life for them
                                                   note: if a gunner moves during a marking setup it is called a "chaos"
                                                            drill (the motion becomes a distraction which the dog must learn
                                                            to deal with)

                                                   note: in retrospect my new pup may need a few "chaos" marking drills
                                                            to get use moving gunners
                                                   note: much of the early puppy work with Taffey, Kooly, Daisy & Gunny
                                                            was based on remote sit, training alone presentations, using that
                                                            experience along with modifications needed to fit seamlessly
                                                            into Hillman's "slant" on things should be very interesting
                                                   note: The key will be to achieve what Taffey taught me to enjoy which
                                                            was to work at having a pup say "That was fun! What's next?" all
                                                            day long
                   (left click on thumbnail)  
                                                                        
                                May 16 - cool in the fifties, trained at Riverside Park DTA, setup the 1st simple double
                                            with Kooly to run first, "memory" was thrown short with "go bird" long and he
                                            had no problem - did it perfectly......Daisy was next and was not nearly as sure
                                            of how to run it, decided to go after "memory" first, stopped her, sent back to
                                            the line and then she was given a hand signal to the long "go bird" then when
                                            sent back to the line she had forgotten the short "memory" = repeated the setup
                                            and she was OK the second time.......moved to a different area and switched it
                                            up to make the long mark the "memory" with the short as the "go bird"...Kooly
                                            again did it perfectly....Daisy was still confused, a repeat demonstrated some
                                            progress - analysis = given the past behaviors of each in new situations, the
                                            results were not at all surprising, Kooly has an exceptional memory and is an
                                            excellent marker, plus he has become much more focused the last few years,
                                            Daisy has always had trouble engaging/balancing her brain with excitement,
                                            new "stuff" is not an automatic "I get it" happening.....she'll be fine with time
                                                      note: Kooly has always been able to recognize the correct side of
                                                               a gunner....never quite sure about what is going through Daisy's
                                                               mind in "new" marking games...what she does is never a surprise
                                                               and there's a proactive expectation for being prepared to make
                                                               adjustments in the moment ("ditz mode" pops up occasionally) 
                                                      note: good session - went pretty much as expected and this will be
                                                               an excellent way to run doubles alone
                                                      note: once this becomes a smooth routine, running cold blinds past
                                                               or through old falls will be added
                                 May 17 early afternoon - trained Kooly & Daisy at Riverside Park DTA and worked
                                             setup #1 in a different area - changed up a few things.....moved slightly as
                                             the gunner to cue which mark was to be retrieved ("go bird" thrown second
                                             with "memory" thrown first). In addition, the commands "sit" and "watch"
                                             were used. When distance becomes a factor the "radio line" will be
                                             re-introduced.   

                                                               
Daisy's Double Routine (Setup #1) YouTube (link)

                                                                Kooly's Double Routine (Setup #1) YouTube (link)
                                                               

                                             Daisy and Kooly started training this spring working in two areas. First was to
                                             begin anew conditioning for the start of duck hunting season in September.
                                             The other area was to study new ways of increasing the effectiveness of
                                             training alone. Both are experienced. However, a pup is "in the works" for
                                             next spring. This summer, they will help update my "training alone"
                                             techniques and strategies.
                                            
                                            This week's work was focused on developing a routine to present multiple
                                            marks using one gunner/handler in the field and the dog returning to the line.
                                            Memory and marking skills will be emphasized. To perform well the dog must
                                            be very focused, under control and especially responsive.

                                            In this drill the key cue is the motion of the gunner to the correct side of the
                                            next retrieve. Comparing Kooly to Daisy in the two videos, it easy to see that
                                            Kooly actually adjusts the position of his body at the line (on his own) while
                                            Daisy just changes the direction she looks. Kooly is the better marker.

                                                        note: The singles are fairly short in this drill. This is because when
                                                                 using a video camera with no zoom capabilities the dog and
                                                                 gunner quickly become specks on the horizon. The intention of
                                                                 theses videos is to be able to see how each responds to cues
                                                                 (physical and verbal)

                                                        Step #1 - one "station" (refer to previous photos posted May 15th)
                                                        Step #2 - two "stations" with a solo, walking gunner ("chaos" mode)
                                                        Step #3 - increase difficulty with factors (including distance)
                                                        Step #4 - run blinds from the stations to create diversion work         

                                                         note: A few weeks ago, the order for "Retrievers Online" arrived. It
                                                                  included all three issues from 2013 and the first of 2014.
 
                                 May 18 - day off....need to transplant many hostas......two huge, dead oak trees in
                                              the front yard need to be taken down and the plants are in harms way
                                                         note: need to register title & buy license plate for the Migrator
                                                                  boat trailer
                                                         note: work on Kooly's teeth - brush
                                 May 19 moved several hostas.....shoulder sore afterwards
                                 May 20 hot today, drove to Bullet Gun Shop for the second practice session with my
                                             Glock 40, noticeable improvement of over first time a few weeks ago, advice
                                             was excellent, knowing why makes a big difference, Illinois CCW class starts
                                             first week in June
                                 May 21 trained at the Square Pond DTA "grassy area" - Daisy & Kooly ran six singles
                                             with line at the northeast corner in tandem (Taffey stayed home and slept)
                                                         note: trained early
                                                         note: drove to the Vet's in Edgerton, WI to pick up Gunny's ashes
                                                         note: picked up Smith & Wesson 22 at Bullet Gun shop and bought
                                                                  section of Diamond aluminum for duck trailer floor
                                                         note: severe hail damage at duck camp, went to view my trailer and
                                                                  luckily it missed mine, did some cleaning, fixed the small hole
                                                                  in the floor near front door (used piece of Diamond aluminum),
                                                                  brought home the extra dog crate
                                 May 22 trained -  Square Pond DTA "grassy area" - Daisy & Kooly ran seven singles.
                                             with line at the northwest corner (prevailing wind opposite of yesterday), put
                                             the ramp in the van for Taffey and after the two ran their singles she walked
                                             with me to pick up the equipment = ran six short singles 20-30 yards, when
                                             picking up the last one, she just turned and headed for the van with the
                                             bumper in her mouth.....body said, "I'm finished."
                                                         note: Taffey slept soundly the rest of the day
                                                         note: hosta plants moved so far = 17 with 6 left to move from the
                                                                  first bed......many more to go
                                                         note: shoulder doing well 
                                 May 23 trained at Riverside Park - Daisy and Kooly ran four cold blinds
                                                         note: Kooly two whistled all four blinds - nice job (see photos)
                                                         note: Daisy two whistle the second and third, got a bit "zig-zaggy" on
                                                                  first and last with 4-5 whistles
                                                         note: solid whistle sits (every time for both) 
                                                         note: Taffey walked with me (about 600 yards total) then stopped   
                                                                   about 50 yards from the van and stared at me, went and got
                                                                   a bumper, tossed it out and that was just what she wanted,
                                                                   delivered, then walked up the "geriatric" ramp into her crate
                         (left click on thumbnail)  
                                                                    
                                                                          cold blinds 
       
               "Daisy"

                                              late afternoon - moved all but one of the hostas from the propagation bed
                                              and mowed/bagged front lawn

                                                        mote: Lylah revealed a great deal of problem solving skills which
                                                        required coming up with a solution in her mind and then completing
                                                        the task.....it was a pleasant surprise. She's four and a half years
                                                        old and very handicapped with her autism plus she has absolutely
                                                        zero verbal skills.

                                                        Yesterday, my wife bought a set of magnetized letters which worked
                                                        well on an Etch-a-Sketch medium and she discovered they would
                                                        stick to a metal rack. This evening her new playing area was our
                                                        steel entrance door. Just fooling around, I took the letter M and stuck
                                                        it up about 8 inches higher than she could reach. I laughed and kind
                                                        of teased with "Now what are you going to do?"

                                                        She wheeled around and went down to the "rec" room and quickly
                                                        reappeared with the big plastic stepper my wife uses for exercising. It
                                                        is about 8" high. She put it down by the door, hopped up on it and
                                                        snatched the letter. 
 

                                           may 24 day off for dogs - took Beavertail blind off the big rig, unloaded boat,
                                                       ready for Bimimi top, moved one hosta, mowed back yard plus airing
                                                       yard, garage full of hunting "stuff",,,,,need to move into storage area
                                           May 25 trained late morning at the Rockton Road DTA - county mowed a wide
                                                       strip around the perimeter, Kooly and Daisy ran a set of singles - angle
                                                       entry/exit across a "corner" (cover knee high+ grass....75-150 yards)
                                                                note: ran tandem - alternating retrieves & send backs, "temp" 78
F                     
                                                                note: Taffey ran five fun bumpers from the line (made it up ramp)
                                                                         (now all cool in the living room & sleeping in front of a fan)
                                                                note: work around thunderstorms for the next three days (26-28th)
                                           May 29 the "tree expert" arrived this morning to remove two huge oak trees
                                                       from the front lawn, what a huge loss. estimate is they were 150+ years
                                                       old, the work was done with a crew of 5 and it was all completed with
                                                       lifts, crane or chipper....pretty efficient operation and the main trunks
                                                       were dropped perfectly - it was amazing to watch (tool many pictures)
                                                                note: shot a new Smith & Wesson 22 at the gun range, ready
                                                                         for next week's CCW class
                                                                note: duck equipment stored and the fishing Bimini is mounted 
                                                                note: the rest of the specimen hostas were trampled during the
                                                                         tree removal.......they will come back
                                           May 30 trained at Riverside Park DTA - Kooly & Daisy ran six "Ya-Ha" singles
                                                       in tandem (75-150 yards) - focus was on conditioning, did a ten second
                                                       delay before each release (remote steady expectations)
                                                                             "Ya-Ha" singles (bookmark link to) 
                                                       Taffey ran six fun bumpers from the line (on the sixth she "told me"
                                                       that was enough)
                                                                note: mowed airing yard plus half the back lawn (grass growing
                                                                         very fast - wet and warm weather)
                                                                note: oars for the Migrator arrived (need to scuff up (sand) the
                                                                         varnish and apply two coats of a flat "camo" paint