The Gang

The Gang
Ain't We Got Fun?

Thursday, December 24, 2009

Merry Christmas to all

As the Christmas season draws nigh, we would like to take this time to thank each and every member for making
the Southern Alberta Working Herding Dog Association a wonderful club!

May the spirit of Christmas unite us
and make 2010 the greatest!

We turn TWENTY this coming year!

Merry Christmas from your SAWHDA Executive.

Tuesday, December 15, 2009

Hi, Everybody,
Just a quick note to let you know that we are holding a party at the Lee residence, 359 Canyon Crescent, in Pincher Creek, on December 19th starting at 6:00 p.m.. Guests are to provide an appetizer and a $5 - $10 gift from their house for the Chinese Gift Exchange. Each person is responsible for bringing their own alcoholic beverage as well.
Those who are travelling from afar and who wish to stay overnight are invited to stay at Mary Ellen's place, at Russell and Marilyn's place, or at Darryl and Judi's place (if you aren't allergic to cats) rather than drive home.
We always have a good time when SAWHDA members get together so hope to see you there.
I am too excited. Three more sleeps until Christmas holidays!!! Yay!
CGN stuff has been sent away so certificates should follow soon.
Thank you to all members who provided 'stuff' for the garage sale. Despite the miserable weather, we managed to raise
350 dollars.

Wednesday, December 2, 2009

Demos for Pet Expo

Hey, everybody,
We have between now and March to come up with six dogs that can barrel race, 6 dogs that can cart (various stages of ability) 8 dog/handler teams to be part of a drill team (done to Rally commands) at least eight people to be part of our square dance team, and three dog/handler teams to do an actual complete performance of freestyle dance. All participants must be willing to commit to two full days of performances at the Calgary Pet Expo, March 27th and 28th. Participants will be responsible for their own accommodations, meals and transportation to and from the venue in exchange for a great time!!! If you are a member of SAWHDA and have the time and inclination to be part of this cool venture, please email Judi at and let her know which performance events you and you dog would like to join.
We will be arranging for Calgary folks to practice evenings in the city and then join the rest of us at Cowley for progress checks and dress rehearsals for everyone on some weekends in Cowley in order to assure a smooth performance by all.
Mark your new year calendars for fun!

Sunday, November 29, 2009

Lethbridge Kennel Club Dog Show Pics

Thank you, Gail, for sending us pics of our dogs at the show!!!
High in Class!!! Spiral left at a brisk pace.

Airborn!! Waiting their turn. Qualifiers in Excellent!!

Monday, November 23, 2009

Special very special post!!!!!!

You may have thunk (thinked? )thought, yes, thought that we forgot to mention two very special awards presented Sunday at Rally O in Lethbridge. We did not. These two awards were even more special than the rest because one of them belonged to Joan and Bo, who is her senior Belgian, yet had the fastest time and a perfect score of 100 to finish his Rally O Excellent title, and the other belonged to a little dog who has waited a long time to gain enough confidence to enter the Rally ring and was rewarded with a perfect score of 100 in Rally Novice. Louann and Never did it! Never say never. What a special team! Good on ya.
We all toast both teams.

Lethbridge Dog Show Wins

Hi, everyone,

What a fabulous weekend for SAWHDA members at the Lethbridge & District Kennel Club Dog Show. On Saturday, in Rally Novice B under Judge Judith Snowdon, Louann and Never scored 89. In Advanced B, Maureen and Levi scored 95, and Shar and Ryder scored 93. Joan and Dex received a score of 89 and the High in Class went to Denise and Jagged with a score of 98.

In Rally Excellent, Louann and Brazil scored 70, Maureen and Levi picked up their fourth passing scores towards their RAE with a score of 75, Shar and Ryder picked up their eighth score towards their RAE with 91, Denise and Jagged picked up their first leg of RAE with 93, and the class was deservedly won by Tubby and Lexi, whose smooth, even performance was so nice to see.

Joan and Dex got a leg towards the CD title, while Bode not only gained another leg towards his CD, but took High in Class and High in Trial to do it! What a team! Bode is here from Stateside to pick up some titles and run home for Christmas. WE, of course, feel that Bode makes a really good Canuck dog so why even bother to return him, EH?

On Sunday , Denise and Jagged were on track with a double perfect score in Rally Advanced and Excellent! Two scores towards Rally AE! Maureen and Levi are at five scores for their RAE.
Shar and Ryder are sitting on 9 legs towards their RAE and are determined to be the first SAWHDA team to reach that pinnacle.

Mary Ellen was proud of Mo in the conformation ring as he behaved himself and had a good time.

Gail took some cool pictures and will email them to me asap so keep looking at the site for updates.

We are very happy to hear that Lee is home from a stay in the hospital! Low blood pressure and high heart beat don't make good partners.

We are off to Calgary this weekend to show the Shag! Wish us luck while you are doing the eChristmas hop down the streets of Fort Macleod. Remember to meet at the A&W at 10 O'clock to join the group and walk to the start. Theme this year is O Xmas Tree.


Friday, November 13, 2009

CGN grads!!!!

We had a wonderful turnout for the SAWHDA CGN tests today at Lundbreck, AB. Judges Andrea Knibbs and Bill Nykiel decided that 12/16 dogs would gain their CGN titles today.

The following dogs were deemed to be Good Canine Neighbors:

Mo Jo Owner: Russell & Marilyn Lee

Kipper Owner: Barb Blachford

Alf Owner: Dale and Nancy Keenan

Bess Owner: Lee & Hank Hargreaves

Walker Owner: Deb Golding

Fyre Owner: Deb Golding

Swayze Owner: Judith Snowdon

Mesa Owner: Judith Snowdon

Token Owner: Judith Snowdon

Pixel Owner: Amanda Labadie

Spirit Owner: Donna McLaughlin

Violet Owner: Donna McLaughlin

Thank you to Cathy, Jenn, Gerry, Dorothy, Shar, and Ryder for working all day and cheering all the participants along. Thank you to everyone who came from out of town to make our day such a success. Thank you to Shar and Deb for setting up and taking down. Phew!!!

Thank you to Bill and Andrea for donating their fee to the Pincher Creek Humane Society!!!!

Thank you to my dogs for making it look easy. How lucky am I!

Pictures tomorrow.


Monday, November 9, 2009

Sunday Practice

Hello, hello.

A reminder that our Canine Good Neighbor test is this coming Saturday, November 14th at the LUNDBRECK HALL, with check-in and registration at 9:30 a.m.
I will be sending out the confirmation letters today for those who have pre-registered. Cost for registering after Nov. 1st is $25/dog.


We have rented the Cowley Hall for Sunday, November 15th for obedience and rally practice. We would like to start with
obedience at 9:30 a.m. and follow this schedule:

Entire hall:
  • 20 minutes free for heeling practice.
  • group sits/downs pre-nov. - nov. open.
1/2 hall
  • utility glove work (American or Canadian)
  • pre-novice circle left/right
  • novice figure 8's
  • open figure 8's
Other 1/2 hall
  • pre-novice sit for exam exercises
  • novice stand for exam exercises
  • utility moving stand for exam exercise
  • signal exercises
Entire hall
  • recalls
  • jump practice (broad, bar, high)
  • retrieve practice (on flat..... over high jump)
  • go backs
  • directed jumps
  • scent discrimination

11:30 Rally Obedience

Entire Hall: drill in rally heeling exercises and turns. (Lines).

****** I need to know how many are wanting a Novice course or should I begin with an Advanced course? Remember, it is up to handlers whether or not to use the leash. ******* Let me know.

1:00 p.m.

Scent hurdle practice: basics only
  • recalls over jumps/ dogs do not need to know how to fetch for this part.
  • send-away's to box/ dogs do not need to know how to fetch for this part.
  • fetch from box..... one dumbbell and dog at a time.
  • handler's request
Cost: members ...... $5.00 Non--members ....... $10.00
Membership for 2010 available for $20.00

See you there!!!


SAWHDA rocked at Red Deer

Hi, Everyone!
Home from Red Deer with new titles and High in Class awards and Perfect Scores for SAWHDA members.
We ended the weekend with our members taking 1-4th in the Excellent Class. Joan and Beau had a perfect score and finished their Excellent Title with a High in Class. Right behind them were Mary Ellen and Grace, with 99 and a Rally Excellent Title as well. Simon and Tubby and Shar and Ryder had 98 for third and fourth place.
Shar now has 7 runs towards her RAE.
Amanda and Wicca had two perfect scores in Advanced and High in Class on Saturday!
In the conformation ring, Mary Ellen handled Mo to a one point win. On to Lethbridge with that plan.
Joan's Belgian, Dex, got his first 2 legs on his Rally Advanced, Bode , the Berner, garnered 5 pts. towards his Cdn. Ch. with Kerri at the helm, and he earned his first Rally Advanced leg with Carol. We hope he can stay in the Great White North for a bit longer.
Please send results to me if you would like them posted to SAWHDA blog.

Sunday, November 1, 2009

APDT Rally Trial at Sit!!

Hi, all,
This weekend, Denise, with Viper and Jagged, Russell with Mojo, Shar with Ryder and I with Token ventured to Sit Happens! in Calgary for their APDT trials.
Denise and her dogs were absolutely flawless with fabulous scores; some High in Class with both dobes. And both of the dogs finished their Level 3 titles as well.
Shar got her first Level two leg with Ryder and a third place finish.
Russell qualified three for three and finished with his Level 1 title! He and Mojo entered a Level two round for the experience and had a blast.
Token qualified in both Level two rounds to gain her Level two title and then entered the Level 3 arena and got a leg towards that level as well. Had she left me at home, she would have been much better off, believe me. I need duct tape to prevent me from double-commanding. Too much CKC in me, I'm afraid.
Russell arrived Saturday in full hippy regalia and Shar and I showed up after my herding practice at High River (which, by the way, was terrific) as a clown and a jester with treats for both dogs and humans. We spent the day visiting with friends and cheering Denise and Russell on. Russell brought the house down when we were talking about finding a vendor's so we could buy some cheer after the trial was over. Russell piped out, "I have 3/4 of a bottle of rum..." and then continued after seeing everyone look over at him, "for baking purposes, of course."
We stayed at the Port of Call Inn and it was fabulous. What a treat! Had supper at Red Lobster and then dipped into the 'baking rum' for an hour or so. What a terrific time!
Best of all, we got to stop for another herding lesson at Louanne's on the way home and Token was amazing. Louanne says that Token is a "field" dog, not just an arena dog, which I take as a great compliment. If only she could stay at Louanne's for a week or so, she would really come ahead quickly.
Next weekend, Shar and I head for Red Deer with Ryder, Mo, (one of Token's pups) and Gracie, Mary Ellen's shorthair. Shar has Ryder double-entered for RAE points, Jodi and Russ have Mo entered in his first ever conformation show handled by me, and Mary Ellen has Grace entered in Rally Excellent with me showing her on Friday and Mary Ellen taking over on Sat.Sun. Wish us luck.

Wednesday, October 28, 2009

High in Class

Congratulations to Carol Solkshinitz and Bode, who collected two Qualifying ribbons and a High in Class award in Novice Obedience competition in Camrose! Good job, Carol, especially since Bode has only been working for 8 weeks on his performance.

Mary Ellen Whyte has decided to keep a girl baby from Cheyenne's litter. Tess has already started her puppy attention training and has 'the watch' down pat. She has huge shoes to fill if she wants to walk along with her mom and her Gramma Grace.

Good luck to Russell, Shar, Denise, and Sarah(if she makes it) to Sit Happens! APDT Rally Trials this weekend in Calgary. They intend to have a "howling' good time. We'll scoff some pics for the page.

Happy to report that Hank, Lee and Bess arrived at their daughter Heather's place in Seattle safe and sound and well before our southern Alberta weather started its PMS.

We have CGN spaces reserved by Judi (2) Deb (1) Janet (2) Nancy (1) Shirley (1) Barb (1) Hank and Lee (1) and Bev (1) . We could really use more entries for this event. If you know someone with a very nice dog that behaves in public, please encourage their owner to support SAWHDA in its responsible ownership campaign.

Take care.


Wednesday, October 21, 2009

More Novel Rally Pics

Hey, all,
Carol just sent some fabulous shots of our Novel Rally courses at Cowley last weekend. You will especially enjoy the one of Carol doing the hula hoop and Emily ducking down and thinking of heading to the nearest fallout shelter!!! Thanks so much, Carol.
Check out Simon tugging at Tubby's sleeve!!!

Sunday, October 18, 2009

'Novel Rally" a great success!

What a super day! Great weather, great dogs, wonderful company, good food, and a venue worth the drive. And I mean, drive, as we had members from Calgary, Claresholm, Lethbridge, and Fort Macleod join us. Our club is known for its off-the-beaten track activities and today was certainly one of those activities. We set up three Rally courses which we felt all dogs and handler could manage, but along the way, we added some extra little activities to add to the mix. Like the hula hoop, which had to be swung three times from any body part (no, not anybody's part) any body part; or the golf ball on a spoon which was held while heeling around a left spiral, or the marching in place while the dog sat beside you, or the 'roll the ball' while the dog remained sitting. A mix of APDT and CKC and SAWHDA antics provided challenges and laughs for all. Shirley had a runaway hula hoop that zipped along the floor right past Krissy, so close it moved her hair! Whew. And Emily, who thought Carol had completely lost her mind when she was swinging the hula hoop. Way out! Tubby's dog Simon, did a bow at the end of his run. Louann's Brazil, did a wonderful sit like a gopher and then slapped a high five for her trick. Token did her bear imitation, Karen's dog did hugs, and everyone's dog had some trick or another to offer.
Memorable moments, too. Maggie, Kim's Berner, had a happy, tailwagging performance, the first in a long time, and we were all so pleased. Joan's Belgian, Beau, was so smooth and upbeat it was a pleasure to watch. Moira and Maggie had a good run, Barb talked Kipper out of worrying about the registers, and Lore kept Bonnie from cruisin' for a bruisin'. Shar and Mary Ellen had really nice runs with Ryder and Grace. Russell had Mojo fired up for his rounds, too.
We took a break after the first course and invited everyone with a dog that needed some socializing to bring the dog in and have it join our conformation and puppy time. As you can see from the photos, we had lots of takers. We raised $325 for the Cowley Hall to offset our heating and electrical bills for the cool weather coming. Our next Rally Fun Match will have funds ear-marked for Pet Expo, which we hope to attend again this year.
Spoke with Jackie Clemens, our Montana member, and she wishes she could have been with us as did Judy Hunt, who had celebrated a birthday with a surprise party. All in all, we were cleaned up by 4:00 p.m. and happy to have had everyone together before the snow flies! Yes, it was a super day!

Sunday, October 4, 2009

Canine Good Neighbor Test Approved!





THE TIME IS STILL 9:30 - 3:00

Testers: Andrea Knibbs and Bill Nykiel.

Cost: Members or early bird entry $20 /dog.

Non-members or drop-in entry on test day $25/dog

Hosted by Southern Alberta Working Herding Dog Association

Proceeds to Pincher Creek Humane Society SPCA

Registration info:

(Early Bird entries close: Nov. 1/09)

Email entry info (see form below) to

Send entry fee to Box 237, Lundbreck, Alberta T0K 1H0


CKC Canine Good Neighbour Program

Good Dogs Make Good Neighbours...


To identify and reward responsible, caring owners and their canine partners throughout Canada.

To ensure that one of our most favoured companions, the dog, is accepted as a valued member of our communities right across the country. Canine Good Neighbours can be counted on to present good manners at home, in public places and in the presence of other dogs.


The test is non-competitive and allows dog and handler to demonstrate confidence and control in 12 steps. It assesses the handler and dog's relationship, together with the handler's ability to control the dog. Dogs are evaluated on their ability to perform basic exercises as well as their ability to demonstrate good manners in everyday situations.


The handler is required to bring the following equipment to the test

Proof of vaccination certificate

Dog license or CKC registration #

Test fee

A leash not less than .75 metres (2’) nor longer than 2 meters (6’) in length is required (acceptable collars include a well-fitting slip, buckle or martingale collar, made of fabric, leather or chain. All other types of collars are unacceptable.

A grooming tool – either brush or comb

A plastic bag for picking up after the dog

For the registration form you need :

Owner’s name ______________________

Full address ______________________

Phone number______________________

Email address______________________

Dog’s registered name if registered ______________________

Dog's call name if unregistered __________________________

CKC registration number (if registered) ________________________

Breed ________________________


Demonstrating confidence and control, you and your dog must complete these 12 steps.

TEST I - Accepting A Friendly Stranger This test demonstrates the dog's ability to allow a friendly stranger to approach and speak to the handler in a natural, everyday manner.

The evaluator will walk toward the handler and dog and greet the handler by shaking hands and briefly chatting. The dog should remain under control with only gentle verbal or leash assistance, if necessary. The dog should not go to nor jump on the evaluator. It must not exhibit any signs of shyness by hiding behind the handler or by attempting to avoid the evaluator, and must not exhibit any signs of resentment.

TEST 2 - Politely Accepts Petting 
This test demonstrates the dog's ability to allow a friendly stranger to pet it while out with its handler. The evaluator will pet the dog on the head and shoulders. The dog may sit or stand quietly beside the handler and may change position, but must not exhibit any signs of resentment or shyness.

TEST 3 - Appearance and Grooming This practical test demonstrates that the dog will accept being groomed and examined and will permit a stranger to do so. The evaluator inspects the dog, brushes the dog briefly on the back and sides, and lightly examines its ears and front feet. The evaluator then quietly walks behind the handler and dog, returning to face the dog. The dog does not have to hold position, but should not have to be restrained: minor movement is allowed. The handler may assist the evaluator and talk quietly to the dog.

TEST 4-Out For A Walk This test demonstrates the ability of the dog to walk politely on a loose leash as well as the handler's ability to control the dog. The evaluator will have the handler and dog walk a course, which will include at least one right and left turn and a 180ยบ-degree turn. It is not necessary for the dog to be exactly aligned with the handler or sit when the handler stops. The handler may talk to the dog.

TEST 5 - Walking Through a Crowd This test demonstrates the dog's ability to walk politely beside the handler in pedestrian traffic while remaining under control at all times. The dog and handler walk through and close to several [at least five] people. Throughout this test the handler may talk to the dog, giving praise and encouragement. The dog must maintain a position close to the handler without becoming unduly stressed or unruly. The dog may show some interest in the strangers but should not go to them.

TEST 6 - Sit/Down On Command and Stay In Place ( On a Long Line)
 This test demonstrates the dog's ability to respond to the handler's commands. The handler may take a reasonable amount of time and use more than one command to sit and down the dog. If required, the handler may touch the dog gently to assist it.

Once the dog has responded to both a sit and down command, the handler will decide in which position the dog is going to be left. The handler will then tell the dog to stay, and walk forward 20 ft, before turning around to face the dog, then will return to the dog.

TEST 7 - Come When Called (Long Line)
This test demonstrates the dog's ability to come when called by the handler. The evaluator will stand near the dog, and instruct the handler to position the dog in either a sit, down or stand position. The handler will then leave the dog and go to a distance of 3 meters (8 - 10 ft) before turning and calling the dog. The dog may change position, but must remain in place. The dog should come readily to the handler; the handler may encourage the dog. (Practice so dog is not upset by the lead dragging)

TEST 8 - Praise/Interaction
 This test demonstrates that the dog can be easily calmed following a play session or praise. After playing with the dog for approximately 10 seconds, the handler then calms the dog. More than one command may be used, but the dog must display controlled behaviour when told to settle by the handler. The evaluator is looking for evidence of a good relationship between the dog and handler.

TEST 9 — Reaction to Passing Dog
 This test demonstrates the dog's polite behaviour while in the presence of other dogs and handlers. Two handlers, with their dogs, approach one another from approximately 6 meters (20 ft). They stop, shake hands, briefly chat, and then continue walking for approximately 2 meters (6 ft). The dog should exhibit no more than mild interest in the other dog, and should not cross over to it.

TEST 10 - Reaction To Distractions This test demonstrates that the dog is confident at all times when faced with common visual and auditory distractions such as the sudden opening or closing of a door, crutches, wheelchairs, baby strollers, joggers, etc. The dog may express natural interest and curiosity at the distraction, or may startle temporarily, but should not panic or show aggression or fear. One or two barks are permitted but the dog must not continue to bark at the distraction. The handler may encourage and talk to the dog throughout this test.

TEST 11 - Supervised Isolation
 This test demonstrates the dog's ability to be left alone with a trusted person other than its handler, while maintaining a calm acceptance of the situation. The handler asks another person to hold the dog, and tells the dog to stay or wait. The handler will leave the area and go to a pro-designated location, out of sight of the dog. The handler will wait 3 minutes until called to return by the assistant evaluator. The dog is not required to stay in a particular position, but should not show excessive stress or nervousness by pulling on the lead or trying to get away. Excessive panting, barking, whining, or seeking attention from the evaluator is not acceptable.

TEST 12 - Walking Through A Door/Gate
 This test demonstrates the dog's response to the handler's commands as well as the handler's ability to control the dog in a restricted area while moving ahead of the dog and through a door/gate. The handler may speak quietly to the dog as they approach the door/gate. The handler commands the dog to sit/wait and walks through the door/gate, while instructing the dog to follow calmly and join him. Alternatively, the dog and handler may proceed through the door/gate together, with the dog accompanying the handler on a loose leash. The dog must not go through the door/gate before the handler instructs him to do so.

You and your dog can do it! Come and and give it a try.

Saturday, October 3, 2009

Snow today

In spite of the snow and slush on the ground and on the roads, Carol and Emily came from Calgary to work. What a great young dog. We trudged through an inch or two of slush in the top pasture and threw her some pretty stiff distractions but she stuck to the plan and stayed with Carol, heeling off leash while the neighbor's cat and two dogs and two kids came over to the fence to watch. Dogs running up and down on the other side of the fence gave her even more reason to make the right choice. Recalls were excellent and Carol enjoyed the idea that Emily was responsible for being in position and paying attention; not Carol. Can't wait until next time. The possibilities with this team are endless. Thank goodness for the heated garage to warm us up.
RoZe has a conehead. She developed a huge hotspot on her left flank and now has Balmex plastered on it and a cone on her head.
She is being very good about the entire mess, except that the cone definitely bothers her ears. Chewing the rawhides has given her deadly farts so she is living in the computer room at present. All the boarding dogs plus Swayze and Shaggy, are warm and dry.
Busch and Token, Mesa and Hunter are dry.The new roof on the old covered kennel has been just great.
Darryl is in the process of putting up a wind break of Plywood in Busch's run seeing as Mesa had a tantrum yesterday and tore the canvas windbreak in half.
Worked Swayze today and he was fabulous after a month off. I am waffling back and forth about entering him in Advanced in Red Deer.
Have set up three lessons for three dogs in herding this month. Happy am I.
Talk later.

Winter on the way? Time to get busy!

Must share a really neat photo sent in by Brenda Bando this week from winter past. Tug looks as though he has been in
'statue' form for hours! Right now it is fitting as it has begun to snow lightly; it's not sticking though. Darryl is outside rebuilding the front of one of our outside dog runs. Mesa had a tantrum yesterday and tore the wonderful white heavy canvas that provides a windbreak for the dog houses completely in two crossways. Jeez. So, today, Darryl is replacing the beautiful white, heavy canvas with PLYWOOD!
Brenda Bando and Cathy Smith Clark passed their first aid instructors' course. Brenda has agreed to come to Cowley and put on a one day seminar for our club. I think it is a topic where we can truly put the information shared to good use.
Our club is going to be busy, busy over the next two months. We have many opportunities to join each other and enjoy our dogs.

October 17th: Rally O seminar Cowley Hall Contact Karen Ibbitson @ 403 335 9449 for entry information.

October 18th: Rally O Fun Day Cowley Hall 9:00 to 3:00 Prizes and goodies!!! $5.00 per dog per class. Dogs must be entered
in their proper classes according to their highest present standing in CKC or APDT Rally. No 'Excellent" dogs in
Novice or Advanced. This is Rally ...... with a bit of a twist to it.

October 31st Sit Happens! APDT Rally three levels of tests.... Our members are going in costume. Entry forms available from Judi.

November 14th Canine Good Neighbor Tests (limit of 25 dogs) Members in good standing and early bird entries (Nov. 1st)
$20 per dog, all others $25 per dog. Check this blog in the next few days for further information on how to register.

November 15-21st Decorating the Cowley Hall for Xmas. Anyone who can make it, please phone Lucille at 403 628 3921 or email Judi .

November 28th : Annual Fort Macleod Santa Claus Parade. The theme this year is "Oh, Christmas Tree". Email Judi at or Shar at if you can make it. We will be without a float, but smaller dogs
can certainly ride in the carts. The parade begins at 11:00 and we generally meet at 10:00 at the A&W Restaurant.

November 29th around 6:00 p.m. The Cowley senior citizens Xmas supper. We need four people and three or four different breeds of dogs for Santa Paws Pictures. We have never taken pics for the Cowley seniors and thought it would be a nice touch seeing as we use the Hall for our practices. Contact Shar 403 563 3980 or Deb 403 562 2741 after 9:00 p.m. if you are able to help out.

And, Pet Expo Calgary has approached us once again this year to attend March 27 & 28th. If you would like to take part, please email Judi. Participants are on site from 9 - 6 Saturday and 10 - 5p.m Sunday. Set-up is Friday afternoon. We had a wonderful time last year and our booth and our presentations were very well received. If we decide to go, we shall do our square dances and a couple of drills to music. This means practice. So far, Judi, Shar, Deb, Nancy, Joan, & Carol have said they'd like to attend.

Phew! That's a lot of action. And we need to book our five Sundays for Rally O classes somewhere in there as well. And what about Vista Village and Crestview Lodge picture days. And Brenda's First Aid time.

Oh, & do not forget the Lethbridge Dog Show November 20 - 22nd. They are a small club and can always use our support.
Google canuckdogs and download their premium list and an entry form.

Good luck to Kim Tollefson and Bosley tomorrow in your DD test at Bragg Creek. Dress warmly and wear good warm footwear.
They are probably shovelling a ring for you right now.


Wednesday, September 23, 2009

A Summer to Remember!!

Wicca Woo Masters Agility Dog

Check out this agility news from Sarah ,Amanda, and Kim! What a fabulous summer they have had.

From Sarah: "We have had a couple great weekends Trialing. Gyp is running great and bringing home the Q's, we are working towards her SIlver Award of Merit. Kaleb reached his 40th Masters Standard Q! And Miss Jane retired from Agility Competition this past weekend. Our Agility friends made it special by presenting a book of memories and a cake with her photo on it! She ran her little heart out in the 2 runs she was entered in, and placed 1st and Q in her runs. We hope to do more Rally in her retirement years, and I think she will love that! We had 7.5 years in the Agility Ring together and I am so lucky to have had that time with her. She was the first JRT in Alberta with an ATCHC, Bronze, and Silver Award of Merit."

From Amanda: Wicca earned her MAD (Masters Agility Dog) title at a recent trial. This has been a long time coming, and I am very proud of her.

Boone earned his ADC (Agility Dog of Canada) and SGDC (Starters Game Dog of Canada) aswell. He has come a long way since I first got him, and as his confidence grows so does his success in agility.

From Kim: "
We spent the Labour Day long weekend in Namao at a CKC agility trial. Maggie earned an Intermediate Standard 'Q' and an Excellent JWW 'Q'. Bosley finished both his Intermediate Standard title and his Intermediate JWW title and went on to earn an Excellent Standard 'Q' and and Excellent JWW 'Q'.

Last weekend we headed to Medicine Hat to an AAC trial. Maggie had an awesome weekend bringing home 4 'Q's (2 Advanced Snooker, 1 Advanced Gamblers and 1 Advanced Standard). Even better than the 'Q's was how great she ran all weekend, even in the heat, as we often struggle with motivation/stress issues in trial situations. Bosley made his AAC debut and brought home 3 'Q's (2 Starters Standard and a Starters Snooker) and I was very pleased with his focus and enthusiasm all weekend. "

Tuesday, September 22, 2009


Quick addition to our blog. Mary Ellen and Gracie returned from the United States with a Rally Excellent title and a High in Class Award. The trailer towed nicely and shopping was great! What more could be said?

Sunday, September 20, 2009

Harvest Fest Celebrations

Saturday, September 19th, members of the Southern Alberta Working Herding Dog Association set up their booth at the
Kootenai Brown Museum in Pincher Creek, Alberta, and spent the morning and early afternoon informing and entertaining visitors. Joan and Maureen with Beau, Dezi, and Levi drove from Calgary, Jan, Deb, Gary and their mom came from Coaldale with their Bernese Mt. dogs , and Lee and Hank came from Claresholm with Bess, the golden, to join Louann, Deb, & Judi. It was a perfect opportunity for us to practice obedience with our dogs and to expose them to different activities that were taking place all around the museum yard. Jan's young Bernese Mt. Dog was amazed and very interested in the bean bag toss. Beau really tried hard to have his picture taken with the goat that showed up for the pet contest, but the goat was having none of that. Maureen's sheltie, Levi and Lou's Cardigan Corgi, Brazil, passed the 'cart rides' offered by Deb's and Judi's GSD's. Walker and RoZe. Lee had her golden retriever demonstrate some of the skills she has learned in the personal assistance dog program. The dogs also demonstrated parts of the Canine Good Citizen test. And Judi's GSD, Token, amazed her by remaining calm and working to find the correct scent article despite the fact that three kids raced through the articles and one stopped and tried to
pick up the articles and then followed Token around and even swiped at her to pat her before moving on! What a good dog.
There were pies of every flavor available for purchase and we couldn't stand it and just had to taste.
While we were packing up, we discovered a fairly flat area of lawn with two sets of bleachers on one side set away from the main museum area. We are thinking that this might be a good place for us to do some carting or rally 'O' next summer. Parking is very close and our entry fees could go to the museum instead of to the club for the use of the venue.
And, speaking of the venue, club days will begin again at the Cowley Hall mid-October, so keep tuned!!

Sunday, September 13, 2009

More news

Just received word from our Spokane friend, Jackie, that she is going to attend the agility trials in Kelowna next weekend.
Matt, the young fellow who drove Jackie to Cranbrook, has agreed to drive her to Kelowna, only this time they have rented
an RV to relax in when they are done the agility fun. What a super summer!
Jackie is still elated that Rosie finished her RN title at Cranbrook with 96/100 and that Raisin, her Alberta born sheltie qualified in both her rally classes. Found some pictures of the celebration!

Monday, August 31, 2009

Cranbrook/Castlegar shows

The Cranbrook Dog Show was hot, hot, hot, but compared to Castlegar, the wasps were far less numerous. Once again our wonderful plan to use Watkin's bug repellent on ourselves and the dogs paid off big time.

It seemed that we had returned home from the Kootenays just long enough to exchange dogs and get a good night's sleep. We dropped off Swayze, bathed Shaggy and drove off to Cranbrook where Deb joined us on Friday evening.
It has been years since I have been in the conformation ring.
Token is seven and she was the last dog I showed. The first two days Shaggy went Reserve Winner out of four bitches, but on Sunday, Swedish Judge, Nils Molin liked Shaggy and gave us the points and then proceeded to allow us in a marathon run-off against the specials males. It normally takes two of my running strides to match one of Scott's or Larry's , but it is amazing what adrenalin will do for a person. I have photographic proof of tremendous reach and drive on my part, not to mention suspended animation. And I was amazed to be pulled out and asked to do yet another lap in the form of a triangle with Shaggy. She was fabulous. Right off the farm into the ring and she handled it all as though she knew what she was doing all along. I was glad that I had chosen to handle her myself her first weekend out. I was annoyed by the rough handling of the mouth exam given by the Canadian judge, who felt it was necessary, after lifting both sides of her lips and checking the bite, to yard open the mouth and stick an index finger on the tongue to check her tonsils, I am sure. My girl handled it better than I ever expected, stifling a gag and trusting me when I took her head for the rest of the hands-on stuff. Trust is a huge factor in this kind of situation.

Cheryl and Jeff's GSD, Brenner, joined the other specials in the conformation ring and looked fabulous and confident on the end of Jeff's lead. We are convinced that they have a co-dependence that is actually healthy!

In the Obedience ring, Token once again did her routine but just ten seconds from the 'return' on the long sit out of sight she lay down. At least she stayed. Once again, no Q, but an improvement. Small steps.

Bess, Lee and Hank's golden, held it together in the Performance Rally ring and managed to gain three combined Advanced/Excellent class scores to give her three 'Q's towards her Rally AE title. Her scores were great:

RAdv B Saturday Judge L. Perron 96 Second place

R Exc. B Saturday Judge. L. Perron 96 High in Class

R. Adv. B. Saturday Judge A. McNiven 100 High in Class

R. Exc. B. Saturday Judge A. McNiven 90 Second Place

R. Adv. B. Sunday Judge A. McNiven 100 High in Class

R Exc. B Sunday Judge A. McNiven 98 High in Class

Her sudden deafness in the Rally Advanced ring in the afternoon left her unable to comprehend what a simple SIT was
and I ended the torture by NQ'ing in Advanced rather than put up with her shenanigans. We collected our pictures and
headed for East Side Mario's and home.

I must mention that Hunter came along for his first time away from home and did a great job of being a good boy. I wanted
to show him to Kim Cowie, who showed his dad, Buschman, to his championship. She thought he was growing
into a very handsome boy.

What did I learn from the entire experience? Take a break, go herding, lose 20 pounds and come back with a vengeance in the new year.

It was wonderful to spend time with Jackie Clemens and her young assistant, Matt, who was kind enough to take hundreds of photos and some video footage for the competitors. Matt is a graphic arts grad and he loves trying new angles for his photo shoots. We stayed at the Econolodge , which was super. Wonderful desk people, quiet atmosphere, a great restaurant on site, and super air conditioning! Jackie achieved her goal of having her wonderful 12 year old Rosie, complete her Canadian RN Title with 95/100. Raisin and Crispy both qualified with scores in the high 90's as well. And Jackie has a new star on the horizon. Jordy, her new pup, is an intelligent, rambunctious, in your face, ever-playful BOY puppy! He was completely at home playing in the giant X-pen yard with the shepherds and with Token in particular, who really enjoyed him. It will be great to watch him grow up with three older 'GIRLS' who are not sure if they can fit this kid into their routines. Jackie promises to keep us informed as to the antics of all four of the dogs and we are sure Matt will back up the text with great photos.

Denise McKay's wonderful dobe, Jagged, had beautiful performances in the Excellent A class and took away rosette upon rosette to finish her RE title in style. Shar and Denise and I found time to take part in Brenda Bando's agility, barrel racing, freestyle, do whatever you like demos and had a great time.

Russel and Marilyn cheered us on and shared photo and stories about their new grand daughter. We had a chance to meet Russ's mom as well.

Mary Ellen has bought a wonderful new Ultra-glide trailer with a slide-out; mint condition. She and her dogs, Grace and Cheyenne, and Chey's new babies, spent the weekend practicing camping and preparing to go to Missoula in the next few weeks.

I am off to Saskatoon Thursday morn to join Paul and Pauline in judging the Draft Dog Tests and I am sooooooo excited. Can you tell I love the sport? I know that some of you will be off to the States for the Great Falls Trials and I wish you the absolute best of luck in your endeavors.

Send me or Amanda pics and news so we can tell the rest!!!!

Oh, a reminder that Sit Happens is hosting a Hallowe'en APDT trial and some of us
have decided that it is a great time to turn out in costume and support the cause.
Come along.



AKC Dog Show Fun

Ta Da!!! We are home, safe and sound. And what a weekend. Weather-wise it was unbelievable! Ten minutes from a clear blue sky to an angry purple cover accompanied by winds that tore down canopies and ripped tents from their pegs and deposited them in ponds. An agility wall left the ring to sit near the road.
The outhouses....... well the saying - - - - happens couldn't have been truer. They were tipped over in a heartbeat. Token felt the storm coming before it hit and we started limping our way back to the trailer and arrived just in time to save Sharlet from turning into Mary Poppins. She was trying to hold on to the canopy which was, in turn, trying to fly away. I yelled at her to let it go, but when she said she thought it would hit the truck, I yelled back. "Well, hang on!"
We managed to rip the cover from the frame, but in the end, all that was left was a bent and tangles mess. Thank goodness Jack and Denise showed up in time to do the fastest awning retraction ever. In the aftermath, people checked their neighbors to make sure that no one was injured. We turned the van and the truck bed into Hostels for the rest of the weekend as some of the agility people and their dogs were tentless. Good thing they decided to take us up on the offer, too, as another storm hit at 2:12 a.m. and brought with it a lightning and rain storm that was scary, scary, scary. Token and Swayze tucked in with me and Mesa and Ryder hopped in with Shar and we were actually surprised at how
calm they all remained as the trailer was hit again and again by gusts of wind and the thunder shook the ground.
It's amazing how a Tim Horton's X-tra double double can make things feel better. Thank you to Hank and Lee!!! The twisted frame of the canopy joined others as the clean-up crews folded and piled them higher and higher upon retrieval from the various sites. And through it all, the show went on. It was hard for many of us who spent our days in the obedience and rally tent because we just kept expecting Michelle Simpson to materialize any minute. I think when I signed the catalogue that was set aside for MIchelle's family, the terrible reality hit home and I had some difficult moments all day.
Our dogs did well. The Rally ring was 'hot' with high scores and new titles accumulating time and again. Here are some of the accomplishments that our members and dogs attained over the weekend.

Bess Golden Retriever Owned by Lee & Hank Hargreaves New CD and New RE Titles (97) (2nd in class)

Mesa GSD Handled by Judith Snowdon 4th place in RA (already titled RE)

Token GSD Handled by Judith Snowdon New RE title High in Class (98)
Swayze GSD Handled by Judith Snowdon New RN title High in Class (99)

Ryder GSD Handled by Sharlet Caroe 2 "Q's" in RE (already titled RE)

Ryder & Mesa GSD's Handled by Judi and Shar 2 'Q's in Brace Obedience 1 High in Class