July 29, 2012

Sunol Regional Wilderness and Rattlesnake Aversion Training

Today was an excellent day! Riley went through rattlesnake aversion training and we went on my favorite hike to-date. A big thank you to Redbirddog - he got us in the rattlesnake aversion course last minute. I'm very glad we went through with it because Riley's immediate reaction to the baby rattlesnake was to mouth all over it and try to play with it! My supposedly "soft" little Vizsla girl had to get her e-collar turned up to level 7 before she would leave the snake alone. Here's a video I took of the process:

The first part of the class is exposure to the baby rattlesnake. 2nd is the shed rattlesnake skin. 3rd is the adult rattler inside a fake rock so they learn to avoid the sound. The last exposure is an adult rattlesnake on the grass. This step is a test to see if they are adequately fearful of the rattlesnake. She did really well and ended the training with a bounce in her step and a wagging tail. Thank you Natural Solutions K-9 Rattlesnake Aversion Training!

Next we went to the gorgeous Sonal Regional Wilderness Park. I have honestly never been to a park this beautiful or this perfect for Vizslas. It's officially my favorite park! $5 for parking and $2 per dog is definitely worth it! There are beautiful places to swim, shaded trails, rocks to climb, a cave, grassy fields, and so much more. If you're looking for the perfect spot for your next Vizlsa hike, this is it! The park opens at 8AM, which is the perfect time to go if you're looking to avoid the crowds. Also, the higher you climb, the less people you will run into (introvert alert!).

The view from the top of the ridge - gorgeous!

Chloe, Riley, & Bailey chillin' at "Little Yosemite"

Riley & Chloe - "We've had enough!"

Posing on top of a large boulder

Coaxing Riley onto the boulder!

Redbirddog and Bailey

View from inside a cave

Riley exploring the creek

Chloe, Bailey, & Riley tripping over a rock

Riley is such a poser ;)

Chloe, Bailey, and Riley get a drink from the creek

Riley - wilderness explorer!

My absolute favorite spot was this little pond formed by a small dam of rocks and fallen trees. The dogs had an absolute blast swimming in the fresh, clear water. Riley is getting really good at swimming! She's finally learned not to flail around with her front legs and keep them under the water for maximum efficiency. Here is a short video of her swimming around with her buddy Chloe:

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