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.
FRIDAY, AUGUST 7, 2009
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