Thanks to my wonderful dogs, I probably gathered more wins and titles than any other handler. – What is funny, because I don’t see myself as a particularly good handler. How could I compete with those long-legged guys anyway? Well, want to know how? – Thanks to my wonderful dogs, trained to perfection.
Training dogs is my biggest passion. I very much prefer training to competing and compete only because it’s too easy to be perfect in training. Training dogs was always the only thing that really interested me. But this was before an ere of internet and the only way to learn about it was to get a dog and try it. Or, if your parents didn’t let you a dog: search streets to find all stray and lost dogs there were and try to train them. I think I stopped eating meat when I was 7, originally because I needed all the meat I could get for training dogs from the streets. Or, when there were no dogs – cats.
When I finally did get my first dog, I thought I’m in heaven. Most people would feel like in hell. Aiken was a really difficult dog to train for an 11-year-old. Unlike stray dogs, he wouldn’t go crazy for my sandwich. But he was a great teacher. He fought against all training methods that were in use at that time and taught me to think on my own. I thought of clicker training, channel method for weave-poles, 2on2off contacts and teaching a dog left&right all by myself, my dogs were the first to know it in Slovenia – only to learn later that all those methods were already invented before me, so some would think it was just an unuseful re-inventing of the wheel. But learning “in live” gave me deeper understanding of dogs as any book could.
I never in my life read a book on agility training or watched a video, everything I know is “go out, try and see”. That’s how I thought of my famous method for running contacts and cik&cap turns that are really my very own inventions, not re-inventions anymore.
That’s how I got to do what I always dreamed of. All the studies that I finished were just to postpone a horrible day D when I would have to go to a job and leave my dogs home alone. 9 to 5 job was always a horror to me. School on the other hand, was always easy, I finished both primary and high school with the highest score on the final exam in our school, got a stipendium for talented students because of that, finished studies of philosophy and journalism at University of Ljubljana and almost went on with PhD studies – but then realized that it’s just another try to avoid a normal job and that I don’t need that anymore. I can do now what I always wanted: train dogs. My childhood dreams came true.
Big thanks go to everybody who believed in me. To my mother who believed in me no matter how unbelievable my dreams might look to her. And of course to my boyfriend, for all the support, for all the listening he does when I need to think loud and for all the patience it takes to live with crazy me and my crazy four dogs.