Around Thanksgiving I was going to sit down and make a list of all the things I’m thankful for. Truthfully the first thing that occurred to me was to be thankful for not being at war… but we are at war. And it doesn’t make any sense to put such a thing on the list in spite of the fact that war is something I watch on television and isn’t in my back yard at all.

I remember back when I had a job. I’d work my 40 hours (or 60); then I’d come home and have at my other life. I used to enjoy gardening, going fishing, watching football on television, cooking, sitting and reading a book. This past year I put in a garden; but it got overgrown and unmanageable; I didn’t so much as go fishing or buy a fishing license; football on television is background noise as I pound away at the keyboard of my computer; cooking is mostly a matter of the microwave oven; and I read only one book all year long.

Resolved ~ I’m going to take my life back in 2012. Just the simple stuff, like I noted above. I’ll train my dog daily. And we’ll go on long walks across my property. And I’m going to get me some cold-weather-hardy laying hens.

Okay, that’s enough.

Oh Bernadette!

I haven’t kept up on my blog reading either. Bernadette took third at the FCI World Champs. Here’s a link to her blog:

OMG check out this course:

You should read Bernadette’s discussion of the judge tweaking numbers on this course. It’s hilarious. I’m wondering how everyone managed the transition from jump #11 to the pipe tunnel at #12.

TDAA and the NoBirds!

I’ve been preparing for this day for several weeks. That’s why I’ve been so quiet on my blog. The lead-up to the New Year was kind of fun as we got to write checks for tens of thousands of dollars to the favorite charities of TDAA people as we divested the old corporation. But I had other practical matters to attend as well. Today I published a new Rule Book, and new Judges’ Guidelines; we announced the 2012 Petit Prix dates and locations; and I got out notes to over 100 judges querying their continued interest in judging for the TDAA.

I have more to do tomorrow.

Looking at the furor on Facebook the most controversial issue is that we’ve taken off the upper limit (used to be 17″) for participation in the TDAA.

This isn’t just a business decision (I’ll get to that in a second). It’s also a matter of fairness. We’ve been the only agility organization that places artificial limits on what dogs may participate in the venue. I know a bunch of very lovely animals that would thrive in the TDAA who have been locked out by the arbitrary cut-off measurement. I want to give those lovely dogs a place to play.

One of the objections to allowing bigger dogs to play in the TDAA is that some exhibitors will feel a greater threat to their own little animals. And I understand that. In the same new rule book we’ve added a new section on aggressive dogs. We intend to be about ten times more diligent than any other agility organization in policing matters of aggression. It’s true… every dog deserves a safe place to play. That will be our top priority.

Now, down to business… we’re looking out for our host clubs here. This is a practical business matter that may double the entry for trials across the country. I apologize for insisting that we run the TDAA like a business. But that’s how it’s going to be.


Questions comments & impassioned speeches to Bud Houston The Country Dream web store is up and running. You know… I have five volumes (over 100 pp each) of The Joker’s Notebook available on my web-store at an embarrassingly inexpensive price. These are lesson plans suitable for individual or group classes for teaching dog to work at a distance.

4 Responses to “Resolutions”

  1. betty jaco Says:

    I will be interested to read the new section on dog aggression.

  2. Bernadette Says:


  3. Denise Says:

    What kind of chickens??? (If you’ve decided yet.)

    • budhouston Says:

      I haven’t really decided. However, I understand that there’s a cold weather hardy variety of the leghorn. One of the best hens I ever owned (when I lived in Texas) was a leghorn.

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