We were fortunate to be able to get a private lesson with David Rogers this weekend.  Since we missed the Jack Knox clinic due to a cancellation.  I missed getting a third party observing Chris' working, and getting her evaluated. 
So off we went to our local "desert", the Carrisa Plains.  This is the same area that my trainer Shelley Parker lives.  David was staying at a local ranch, where he has stayed before, and giving all of us needy herders some helpful advice.
Last Saturday, when my lesson was scheduled, we started getting into some heat again.  The weather had been unseasonably cool for several days, but now was climbing again.
My lesson was scheduled for 8 am, and by the time it was over, it was in the low 90's.  Shelley had also had a lesson the day before, and also one of my herding friends that I help also had lessons scheduled for late morning. 
Low and behold, we all had some of the same problems with our young dogs.  The problem was attitude.  They weren't all working basically the same, but didn't have the correct attitudes, when approaching their sheep.
So their problems, though different, were the same.  It figures.  We all work with each other, so if not "caught" by a third party, we might have not figured it out for a long time.
People will ask me how often I get lessons myself.  I will tell them, as often as I can talk Shelley into it.  If I have that third person observing me, then issues will be overcome quicker.  I want to practice perfectly, not going backwards to my bad ways, struggling to do things correctly.  I think getting lessons throughout the year is important, whether you are just beginning (especially important) or a seasoned Open trialer, a third person watching you will help, providing they are good trainers.
By the time my friend was finished with her two lessons, it was after 2pm, and the temperature was soaring into the upper 90's.  Poor David, by that time, his shade was gone, and he was sucking water like crazy, and was due for a long break.
After my lesson, I tried Chris on her attitude when approaching her stock, and she did great.  I was very happy with what she, and I, had learned.
I tested Kate and Tam, to see how they would first approach their stock.  Kate needed a slight correction with me calling her name quietly, to check her.  We practiced that a few times, and she got it.  Tam was just fine with her attitude and never needed a correction for it.
I may have eventually gotten Chris where I needed her mind to be in a few years, but to get it now, that to me, is priceless.
Thank you David.
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