Sunday, August 31, 2008

Hide and Seek

I was reminded recently about something that Petal used to do. We all have particular habits that make us individuals but this trait was not something I thought odd until I moved out of my parent's house.

Petal almost never ate anything immediately (unless it was pork or chicken); she'd hide it somewhere. Usually this involved burying it in the couch or finding a secluded corner to secret it. It was such an endearing habit that I'd deliberately give her treats as a kind of party trick when people were over or if I was at someone's house with her.

A lot of my parent's dogs hid treats or would take a mouthful of food and eat it somewhere in 'private' so it is an inherited trait from her extended family. I can't recall ever seeing a Puli stand at the dish and eat until they were done.

So how do you hide food when there is no dirt with which to bury it? What else but air? You'd think that burying a treat in the couch would mean pushing it into the cushions but no ... Petal was always satisfied with the air camouflage. She'd take the treat, spend a few minutes deciding the best hiding spot ( sometimes with three or four changes of location) and then push air over it with her nose. She'd lie down and stare at it until she was quite sure no one else could find it ... and then leave it exposed for anyone to pick up.

The best part was if you picked it up after it was 'hidden' and say "What's this Petal?". Poor Petal, she'd spent all that time carefully hiding it and she'd look at you like "How on EARTH did you see that???" She'd take the treat again and repeat the process but with more intense searching for a better spot.

I recall a camping trip once when we gave Petal her dinner and she took a few pieces of food, scratched a hole in the dirt, nosed the dirt back over the food and - I'm anthropomorphizing here - looked aghast "Where's the food????" I have a witness to this and he can vouch for her reaction. She stopped, stared, and started looking for the food again like she couldn't imagine where it had gone. It was priceless. Some squirrel in the middle of winter would have hit the jackpot.

Petal would also only eat part of her dinner and bury the rest with air. This actually involved her scooping air from the floor with her nose and lifting it over the side of the dish onto the food. If there was another dog around the burying was very intense and went on for some time. Sometimes if she was lucky there would be something to bury the food with like a blanket or a rug but often air would have to suffice. At night she'd get her bedtime treat and if she didn't want to eat it right away it ended up somewhere buried in the comforter, if she forgot about it til the next night I'd re-treat her with the same one til she eventually ate it. She had a pretty good memory though and would sometimes take the 'new' treat and try to find the old treat she knew was stored away somewhere.

Halo quickly learned the habit of Petal 'hiding' food and would just wait til Petal left the treat and snap it up. Now of course the Ridgebacks don't save anything for later, every single treat is gone practically before you knew you had it. Petal was a rainy day girl and I guess it doesn't hurt to have a snack stored away, hidden by air, covered in lint behind the couch ... just in case.

Friday, August 29, 2008

Ridgeback Romp Sept 6th

Just a reminder about our next fun day romp mad house type run with the dogs on September 6th at 1pm. I'd put noon on the initial email but changed it to one ... by accident of course. Anyway, leave it at 1pm and I hope to see everyone there.

Halo may leave for the US in September so it could be her last hurrah before she goes. I'm sure she will be putting on airs and being bossy but after 19 puppies safely raised she has some call to throw her weight around.

In case you don't remember what sort of fun we've had in the past here's some reminders ...

Fingers crossed for no snow. This was for Halo's first litter's birthday bash. It was a bit chilly but the dogs didn't seem to notice.

Can you believe this was already almost 3 months ago? This was June 15th and the grass was long and the water was high. The dogs had such a good time boinging their way through the tall green ocean and wearing themselves out.

This is from last year - one of the first fun days we had and Raimi was just 3 months old. He is SO tiny next to Tumbles ...

And even tho she won't be there in person who can forget Petal's presence at the fun days for Ridgebacks? She was so patient and long suffering ... her shadow is still close at my side.

See everyone next Saturday September 6th at 1pm!

Monday, August 25, 2008

The Fifth Element

So it's my turn to be excited! In a few short weeks I might be adding a baby girl to the house. There is a litter due in the US and I'm hoping to get a little show bitch puppy from it. The dam is due early in September, is as big as a house and will probably have 13 boys ... just because I want a girl.

The dam comes from similar lines as Raimi's sire and the sire to these puppies is Halo's half-cousin. I'm quite confident that if there is a show ridged girl or two to choose from I'll end up with a really nice structurally sound bitch with a great temperament.

Raimi is so excited to get a girlfriend. Well, maybe not since he'll have to share me but he'll have a little friend to play with and possible future love interest. Or rather a passing lust interest.

Her name will be Leeloo and she's still cozied up in her mom right now ... assuming there is a girl or two. Sometime next week we'll know if we should start planning for a new addition.

Sunday, August 24, 2008

Teenage Mutant Ninja ... Ridgebacks

I've been hearing lately about the last litter and how they are getting on just before their 8 month birthday. It seems they are now officially in teenage angst stage where you have a 65 to 80 pound puppy who is behaving like a 8 week old puppy.

This is the point at which they realize how big they are and how smart they think they are. This involves them testing the limits of the rules they have spent the last 6 months learning. It's almost as though in a matter of days they unlearn everything they know and thus unlearned, start to apply their own rules to life.

Remember everything you can about teenagers, apply that to dogs and voila! You have a very good idea what the next few months will involve. Yes ... I said months. You may have to replace things like shoes, dog beds, and couches but think of it this way ... at least you don't have to pay for college.

Also, Isis in Edmonton just came into heat, far far earlier than any of her sisters have previously done, their mother didn't come into heat until after she turned a year old so this is a bit of a surprise. Bella, Mya, Karma, Lulu and Rifka's families should be on the look out for signs of imminent heat. Those four being spayed will have to wait til their vet agrees it's safe should any of them come into heat prior to that event.

There you have it. Teenage Ridgeback life has officially begun ... enjoy it while you can (if you can?) because soon they will be all grown up!

Friday, August 22, 2008

How to Get Ahead in Advertising

Phew! Just got back from our big photoshoot. Kathryn took lots of pictures but we'll have to wait for her to send them on. Raimi is now curled up with eyes pressed closed and sighing with exhaustion. You wouldn't think standing around would take up so much energy!

We arrived to find Kika already preparing for her close up. She is so adorable! She was in Barb's arms looking wide-eyed and puppy like. I missed her photoshoot because I was upstairs babysitting the two morons but I did see the end of her session. She was running around on the floor because they were trying to tire her out so she'd lie down! And boy did she ever, she was so tuckered she lay down on the table and went to sleep. They got some great shots of that and then it was Seth's turn.

Seth was not sure about this at ALL. He'd been hanging around awhile was bored with the whole proceeding. He decided to look bored, wouldn't prick his ears and kept panting. The more difficult and delicate aspect was that the boys er ... manhood ... was hidden behind one of their legs. The table was stressing him out a little bit and he didn't really seem to know what we were asking him to do. We decided to give him a break and do Rory instead.

It was like going from the eye of the storm into the hurricane. Rory was very confused by the 'stay' concept and didn't understand that when we backed away we were intending him to stay put. He kept sliding on the fabric and was generally confused. Frustration levels rose and ding ...

It was lunch time. Everyone needed a break and some food so we let the Raimi and Rory out to play. Aha! That took the edge off! There was a nice stretch of grass outside the back door of the studio and they had a marvelous time! They beat each other up with abandon and I had visions of a grass stained Raimi and Rory on the front of brochures.

Finally they burned off enough steam and we headed back in. Rory still didn't understand what was wanted until I suggested we use the show collar I'd brought, they could photoshop it out. Once that collar was on he stood still and shot after shot of him sitting and standing were perfect. He was a little teenage star! Hope it doesn't go to his head.

Then it was Raimi's turn. Well, he's not this good looking for nothing. It was a fairly consistent barrage of exclamations on how great he looked. He was quite good, better standing than sitting because of course he's mostly been show trained. He is also used to being asked for expression so it was very easy to get him to give wrinkles and ears and bright eyes. It will be hard to choose his 'perfect' shot. Although, looking at him with a critical breeder's eye ... I hope they don't use one of him kneeing out!

We then brought Seth back in with the show collar and that corrected his slouching problem! They got some absolutely fabulous shots of him and I'm really pleased with the results. Every dog looks just as it should and in hindsight everyone was so good. We definitely impressed them with the dogs and the ad agency was very pleased with the result.

This is an ad campaign for Bayer Animal Sciences for magazines and vet clinics with print ads and brochures. After some market research they decided to use a breed that was a 'neutral' dog as in no cropping, docking or controversial issues and was an average looking breed. They also wanted a large breed because it's more impressive and the age differences are more acute. Look for these guys in the new year on your vet clinic's brochure shelf!

Thursday, August 21, 2008


Word from afar about little Bella of the one crowned ridge. She is unique in Halo's litters in that she is missing one of her crowns but her sister Makeda in Oklahoma from the first litter has three so I guess there was a mix up with the order and we got the right number of crowns but on the wrong number of dogs.

Bella is following her brother Kona's example and taking to water with aplomb. Halo would be so proud. As if. Take a moment and compare this photo to the photo of Kona swimming. Notice anything particular about the expression on their faces? Very similar ... very "Uh, are you sure this was a good idea?"

Here she is presumably taunting her friend Gemma from the shore. If you play video games or (dare I say it) RPGs you'll know that higher ground always gains you an advantage. Ridgebacks are experts at higher ground. I'm pretty sure there is some level of taunting going on here. Plus one to higher ground for Bella ....

The BC coast is so beautiful and the opportunity to take advantage of it with a few Ridgebacks is enviable. Bella is a lucky girl to get to hang out with her friends and enjoy milder weather than her siblings here on the prairies!

And finally relaxing on the couch at the end of a fun day at the beach!

Sunday, August 17, 2008

How I Learned to Stop Worrying and Love the Cat

I realized just now that I have not mentioned the kitties recently. I don't see them very often because they spend the majority of their time in the outdoor cat run soaking up the sun and watching birds, catching bugs and eating grass.

It's funny in the morning because I have a herd of orange cats precede me up the hallway to the dishes and insistent meowing while I prepare their food. They can be very demanding for barely 30 pounds of cat. I love how they all appear to be smiling with their upturned mouths, it makes them very pleasant room-mates.

Little Weasley does not look like this anymore. He's now almost the same size as Mallaig so sometimes I mistake one for the other. He loves to try and catch Raimi's tail and when he grabs it and bites the end Raimi looks round in surprise but never does more than poke Weasley with a questioning nose.

Mallaig is the absent cat. This is her looking very Scottish on my dresser. I would say 90% of her time is spent outside, sometimes I worry she's found a way out of the run but no, she just loves being outside. She is very cheerful and has the loudest purr I've ever heard on a cat. She fires that up whenever you pet her and she loves to be held ... then its off again to see what's happening outside.

And chubby little Ceilidh with eyes that bore right into your brain to steal your thoughts. There is something about this cat that makes it seem as though she is more than a cat. Her most annoying and very favorite thing to do in the evening is to meow at me when I'm surfing the web in a demand for lap space. She lies across my hands and impedes the typing a bit but it's a nice way to finish the day.

Raimi loves the cats, really seems to enjoy their company. He likes to chase Weasley, pin him down and nibble on him. Granted I'm not sure Weasley appreciates the attention. Raimi also thinks it's great fun to watch Weasley spaz around the livingroom and try to catch him .... an event which usually ends in a nibbling. Ah those fearless kittens.

Nightmare Before Xmas

Here's another brag about Zero ... I know I know ... so boring now.

Today in Colorado Zero took a 5 point major at a RR Club of the United States supported entry show! Zero is proving to be much more than a zero and more like a dream than a nightmare. He is entered tomorrow and we'll see how he does on his quest for more points!

Big thanks to Erin for showing this guy ... Mr. Perfect does it again!

Friday, August 15, 2008

It Happened One Night

Today I’m a little tired. Someone was up part of the night fussing. There I was sound asleep and suddenly 110 pounds of dog decides to curl up between my legs. As he lay down an elbow, or something equally sharp and pointy, hit a nerve and I was awake in an instant. Then began the fussing.

I’m not sure what brought it on but I suspect something was happening outside that put him on edge. It resulted in him lying down, getting up to change position, lying down again and getting up again a few moments later … very restless. Where was he lying?

On me. And not just on me but on my torso. You know, the part that you need to breathe. So it was either on the floor wandering around aimlessly or lying on the bed on top of me. He seemed to be very concerned about something but didn’t know what it was. I’m not entirely sure that by lying on my shoulders and arm Raimi wanted me to save him from the evils in the night or him to guard me. I have settled on his protective instinct because it makes him sound less a sissy.

So this continued for about an hour and in that hour I heard the dulcet tones of the THUD THUD THUD THUD of the police helicopter over my neighbourhood. Whatever the commotion I guess I can now sleep easy knowing that he will alert to anything unusual around the house. Not like Halo who years ago blissfully slept like the dead while someone broke into my car …

Thursday, August 14, 2008


A couple weeks ago when I went to pick up Rory from Kathryn's house he was so excited to see me he jumped up (naughty boy) and one of his nails caught an earring. It disappeared somewhere in Kathryn's lawn or under her deck.

These earrings are hard to remove because they are closed and the catch snaps into place so they don't fall out. You have to really be trying to remove them ... or have a dog remove them for you. They are claddaghs and look like these ones but in gold. I have worn the same pair for at least 6 years without removing them except for special occasions where the earrings needed to match the outfit. I'm basically lazy so the idea of putting in a new pair everyday is so beyond something I would ever do.

So I sent Kathryn an email to keep an eye out for one gold earring in her lawn somewhere. I have been earringless for the last two weeks with intentions of buying another pair on Ebay eventually but not feeling a great rush to do so. I put the lone earring in my jewellery box for a lack of anything better to do with it and thought wistfully about its solitary plight.

Today I got home, let the Boy out to pee, changed into my evening comfy clothes, and prepared to head out with Raimi. I decided to take Raimi for a walk around the neighbourhood for a change of scenery and because it's a bit hot for running at the park. I need my sunglasses tho so I went to the truck to get my shades and as I turned to shut the door I glanced down at the road.

The sun caught a flash of gold and a circular shape. My earring. I picked it up and sure enough it's a gold hooped claddagh, slightly bent but salvageable. I left Raimi in the yard a moment and went to find the other one just in case I didn't put it in the jewellery box and this was the same earring. There it was right where I'd put it to patiently wait for its partner.

I have my earrings together once again and where they belong. The odds of me glancing down at the road at that moment are incalculable, as is me parking in just the right spot and a whole myriad of circumstances required for me to find an earring the size of a nickel when I thought it was about 30 kilometres away. I don't know what sort of two week journey the earring took to get back to me but clearly it knows where it's needed.

Wednesday, August 13, 2008

Truth in Advertising

I was contacted this past weekend by an ad agency in Calgary to possibly use the dogs in some advertising for flea and tick control for a company in Toronto. Lindsay at Woodruff Sweitzer described what she needed, I gave it a moment of thought and said, “I can get exactly what you’re looking for. No Photoshop required.”

They are asking for the lifestages of a dog so a puppy, an adolescent, a grown adult and a older dog.

The cast includes:

Kika as the baby puppy. Recently she moved to Calgary from Jahina Ridgebacks in Manitoba with proud new owners Jim and Barb Kruse. Kika is just about 9 weeks old and will probably pee somewhere and have a 3 second attention span. Those babies are so darling!

Rory as the teenage Ridgeback. Just about 7 and a half months old and as many know he is owned by Kathryn in Calgary and was bred by me. Rory is at that gangly stage of half puppy half adult and will make a perfect adolescent Ridgeback. He’ll probably play his Nintendo and look ‘pretend bored” by the proceedings as teens are wont to do. Or he’ll be beside himself with excitement and knock over lights and give out monster kisses.

Raimi as the adult Ridgeback. Mr. Handsome with muscles bulging and soft brown eyes. All the girls will swoon and giggle. I just knew one day those looks would pay off; you don’t have to be smart if you’re handsome and Raimi is that in spades. Apparently all they need him to do is ‘sit’ so … phew … because I don’t think he knows much else.

Seth is the old man. Seth of course has been putting up with Rory for the last 4 months and he’s earned his turn in the limelight for the abuse heaped upon him by that puppy. He’s the perfect example of an old dog who is greying across the brows and grizzled along the muzzle. He’ll be the guy offered the comfy chairs and a hot cup of coffee. He will also probably be barking out orders and grumbling about how hot or cold he is.

None of this is written in stone of course, the client has to approve the dogs and everything has yet to be finalized but it’s an exciting prospect just the same. Apparently they were prepared to photoshop and manipulate the dogs so they all looked like the same animal but thankfully because of a healthy network of Ridgeback owners we can offer 4 dogs who look relatively the same.

I’ll keep you posted as to the progress we’re making and whether they ultimately decide to use these dogs. I’m not sure if they are considering with other breeds of dogs but like, really … what trumps a Ridgeback??

Monday, August 11, 2008


Busy weekend all round. You know how much I like those.

Sunday saw us at Marda Gras just down the street from my house. Tanja came with the kids and Halo and we headed off to the fun and frolic of a street festival. The dogs were an unmitigated hit. I don’t think we walked more than 10 feet at a time without being stopped and having the dogs admired and fawned over.

Halo embarrassed herself by vacuuming up all the wayward popcorn from the kettle corn vendor. Once she realized it was a free for all she was madly picking up squashed popcorn with abandon. To Tanja’s mortification she also managed to unstick and devour a piece of popcorn stuck to someone’s shoe as they were walking. Raimi was ambling along, would spot a piece, the cogs would turn ‘Hey … look … is that food? I will sniff it … smells like food … maybe I’ll ...” and it was whisked from under his nose by his mother. He did get a couple pieces but he was not nearly as enthusiastic as Halo.

There were a few vendors who were giving out dog cookies. They’d ask can the dogs have a bisq … and Halo was right on it. Sit. Shuffle. Sit. Shuffle. Ears. More shuffling. Sit. Head tilt. And the cookie is gone man, gone. Raimi counts on pity to get his cookies because his sit is less than satisfactory and he’s not as food motivated as his mother. Obviously.

They were otherwise very good, some pulling because they were excited to see what the next vendor/person/child was going to offer in the way of food or scratches. Lots of licks were given out, mostly unrequested, but resulted in lots of smiles and giggles just the same. Tanja must have repeated ‘Watch out for the tongue” about 4 dozen times.

The dogs generate a lot of interest wherever they go because they are impressive and an unusual sight. Raimi especially got a lot of “Ooooh, he’s very big’ and the standard disbelieving exclamation when we say ‘He is her son.” Well, he didn’t come out of her that size. Only one person said ‘Are they mother and son?” and I thankfully only got one ‘Are they a breeding pair?” They’re not pigeons! Someone said “Gosh but they look like Labs don’t they?” and I was hard pressed to bite my tongue and mask the disdain in my reply. Labs indeed.

In all fairness it was a fun day out with the dogs and resulted in a nice tired Boy for the rest of the day. I’m sure Halo was busy digesting all that popcorn during her afternoon nap.

Thursday, August 7, 2008


One of my favorite past times is to relax in front of the TV in the evening and think about little more than how much I like relaxing in front of the TV with The Boy and various cats. Part of the reason this activity – if it can even be called that – is so delightful is the convenience of the remote control.

Everyone makes fun of the lost remote, how you’d sit and watch the same channel for hours, regardless of what’s on, just to avoid having to get up and go to the television. This is a surprisingly true observation and one that I am guilty of on occasion.

Take last night for example; I was watching … I think it was Friends … and rather than get up at 8pm when the show ended I sat through some sort of model search show because I couldn’t be bothered to move my butt 6 feet to press a button on the TV. I did change it at 9pm because something truly horrible came on and when I did choose another channel it was just one button press away from where I’d started.

The remote is gone. Oh, I know where it is. I know exactly where it is. The garbage. Sans batteries which thankfully did not make their way into the digestive track of one large adolescent Ridgeback. They did not join little plastic pieces he no doubt ingested in his systematic destruction of one of my very favorite modern conveniences.

How, one might ask oneself, did a Ridgeback who is secured in a dog safe room get his teeth on a TV remote? Well, he spent the day prying the expen away from the open door of his room and eventually getting out to amuse himself in various acts of destruction. I leave (or rather, left) the door open with the expen blocking it so that he didn’t spend the entire day alone, the cats could see him, he could watch them wander past, and it didn’t completely cut him off from the house. No more Mr. Boy. My kindness extends only to the point where you accept that you are in the room til I say you may come out. So now the door is shut and he must suffer the day in isolation. It’s taken him months to figure out he can move the expen … months. Sigh.

I suspect since his escape at the show he has realized that with enough muscle you can get yourself pretty much anywhere you want. Granted – it’s a joy to come home and be immediately greeted at the door by a bouncing happy Boy … somewhat diminished by the sight of remote control carnage on the livingroom floor.

Wednesday, August 6, 2008

African Queen

It was a big weekend of shows for the Invictus crowd. Rosie – who is Raimi’s sister from the first litter – was at a show in California this past weekend and did us all proud. According to Erin, who showed her in the class, Rosie is ‘Halo perfected’. Better head, better front, more length, less rounded croup to sacrum – all the things we were going for with the breeding. She is very pleased with Rosie who is also, according to Erin, spoiled to pieces by Virginia and Jon! She needs a little fine tuning in the show ring so that she knows how to behave and that she actually does have to do what she’s told by her handler. I guess on the first day Erin had words with her about listening and the second day she was much better!

We are quite sure this girl will finish her US championship quickly, she is entered in a few upcoming shows so we will have to track her progress as she gathers points. I know her owners want to do much more with her so once she is finished she’ll be spayed and will likely take off on her agility, rally, and obedience titles! She is a smart little whip – which I knew when she was a baby, what a spit fire. She was ALWAYS into everything and drove me mental!

Rosie has also acquired her Canine Good Citizen title so I have updated the website to reflect that achievement. Halo has her Canadian Canine Good Neighbor title and I’m not surprised this is something Rosie would pass with flying colors.

Good luck to Virginia and Jon at the shows and keep me updated – hopefully we will see another champion for Halo in the near future!

Monday, August 4, 2008


A bad day at a dog show is always better than a good day at work. That is how yesterday and today went with a little action adventure thrown in the mix.

Yesterday I was waiting for Ridgebacks to go in after Borzois when a man walks up and asks me if I own a dog named Raimi.

Your heart ever stop?

Apparently when I left Raimi in his expen with a roof and 8" pegs securing it to the ground I was committing the Cardinal Raimi Rule sin. That is: Never leave Raimi alone in an ex-pen while you walk away with another dog.

As I had walked away I could hear him barking. The barking stopped after a few minutes. All was well, or so I thought. This nice man tells me that Raimi was caught in the agility area while looking for me. Raimi, had he used his nose instead of his brain (which we all knew wouldn't end well), he probably would have run right past where I was standing watching the Borzoi. So when he got out he took a left instead of a right and found himself with the agility people.

Fortunately he is very friendly and his rescuer said he was pretty easy to catch and was now in a crate across the way from my tent and what did I want to do. Well, I had to go in the ring right away but figured I'd probably lose so wouldn't be long and then I'd go collect him.

All seemed well, I went in with Rory, promptly lost and then waited outside the ring for a minute when over the loud speaker comes "Would Raimi's Mom please come to the Show Secretary's table?" So off I went to collect my idiot.

There was Boy. Looking very alert and interested in all the goings on. Apparently the nice people needed their crate back. I said "You naughty Boy" and of course he went manic. While the manic joy was playing out Rifka's Mom ran up to me and said they need me for puppy. Well, that can't be right, we lost our class. What she meant was they needed me for Reserve ... which I missed because now I have a manic boy, and over-excited Rory, a person holding a lead who did not want to hold the lead of a manically over-joyed Boy(because he's very strong and she didn't seem to have much of a clue about holding a large breed who was manically excited) and she doesn't want to see me disappear with the lead. Not sure why - it's not as if I couldn't hang on to my dog, return the lead to the Show Sec. when I had everything under control and she could get it there. She was well meaning but just added to the confusion.

So finally we got it all sorted, she got her lead back and everyone is safe.

Today was the same except the Raimi adventure was confined to him barking in the truck while I showed Rory.

Rory needs to mature, grow into his legs and head and we'll see in a few months how he looks for his next show. I've no doubt he'll finish his championship but not as a puppy ... my dogs need time to grow up ... Raimi's not even grown up yet!

I'm not displeased with Rory; he lost his class each day to a structurally sound more mature puppy. Happily I saw this same puppy go on to get Winners Dog two out of the four days over a Open Class Male who already has his championship points. A nice win for a baby puppy and a good brag for his breeder!

Karma did very well getting Reserve Winners Bitch on Sunday (she lost the points to an already finished senior puppy bitch) which is gratifying as the bitch entry was 5 total - a nice showing for the girls. Adine - Karma's mom - hopes to handle her and I think it's an excellent idea! She will be much more relaxed and enjoy herself more with Mom at the end of the lead.

Lastly good luck to Rifka who is moving to British Columbia in a couple weeks and I'm sure she'll have a blast at the BC shows - keep the pictures coming! It was great seeing her and I'm excited to watch that pretty girl mature.

Saturday, August 2, 2008

The Lost World

I have two slumbering beasts on the couch - they are both gently snoring. What a big day for them both. Well, not really, it was a long hot day but neither did anything of note.

I didn't sleep well last night with Rory waking up every hour or two so he could follow or sniff one of the cats as they did whatever cats do at night. Up at 6:30am because I couldn't take the fussing anymore and off to the show for 9am. 9am? Why 9am when Ridgebacks aren't on til 1pm - well I was to help with Pulis and they are on at ... almost noon. Someone got their timing wrong and had us at the show about an hour and a half earlier than necessary. You'd think after almost 40 years of showing dogs my mom would have a good idea about timing.

So there we were nice and early and Rory was such a good boy. I knew that my baby boy and the two girls in junior puppy didn't have a hope before I completed my first circuit of the ring. The judge didn't offer Rory more than a passing glance even on the first go round. Some days judges just don't like what you've bred.

So Mary Keats of Australia show giving clubs who hire you will get no entry from me ... with no hard feelings. I don't think it's poor sportsmanship to decide not to enter under a judge when you know they don't like what you have; with today's rising entry fees and gas costs it's just economical. I have no idea what she was looking for(I gather it was more mature dogs since mine are slow to mature and look like a bunch of gangly cone headed martians) but it definitely wasn't Rory, Karma or Rifka.

Or perhaps I'm bitter because I'm really tired, have a headache, am sun-burned, a little hungry and I was at the show way earlier than required. Maybe a donut will fix my outlook on life. Donuts have a way of cheering me up.

Oh and big thanks to Jim and Barb Kruse and Jim's mom (sorry I forgot her name) and Mungo's Mom Daniela and kids for coming to watch us lose. Especially to Barb for the gorgeous bracelet meant for good luck but as it turns out would have come in more use yesterday according to yesterday's judge!!

Friday, August 1, 2008

Judgement Day

What a long day ... and it's not even over yet. I was up early to head off to the show with Raimi in tow. I decided to bring him just because I could and he waited patiently in the truck while I completed my judging assignment. The hardest class was the 12-18 months class as I had some really nice dogs in it. Ultimately the Saluki I chose from that class was my Best in Sweeps - lovely mover and a very nice dog. I think I did well as the dogs I put up the Specialty judge also chose as some of his best class dogs.

We hung out for a while watching the classes, then I went to have lunch with the judges, then to shopping and then back to watching some judging. We saw Karma and her sister Kenya at the show and Raimi was beside himself because they were 'Guuurrrls'.

I left earlier than I'd intended. I don't really let weather affect what I'm doing and I don't spend much time thinking about it - just deal with it. There is only one thing that will result in a change of plans and that is wind. The sun was shining, there were no clouds but damn me the wind started gusting across the show grounds and I said "Enough". I'm not sure why it bothers me so much but I stayed to watch the Ridgebacks and then Raimi and I hit the road to go and pickup Rory.

My my my. Little Rory has grown up a bit in three weeks. He suddenly has body, a head and figured out what his feet are supposed to be doing ... like matching the size of his body. Raimi is wiped out and does not want to play with little Rory so they are now both fast asleep on the couch.

Tomorrow we will enjoy a day at the show with little Rory and Raimi will tag along once again for moral support.