Wednesday, November 3, 2010

JRTCA Nationals

Kiwi and Cactus

Grandmother Cairnbrae Image and Granddaughter Inseguire Keepsake
Although this post is slightly delayed in coming I can assure you that the excitement of the 2010 JRTCA Nationals has far from dulled at this house. At the end of October Kiwi and I flew to Ottawa to meet up with Sandra and the Brockwood Terriers for the drive down to Gettysburg Pennsylvania. Our trip was a relaxed one and I enjoyed Sandra's company immensely as I normally make these long trips alone. Kiwi travelled very well and, as usual, settled in to the hotel quickly.

Traveling with just one terrier was also a unique experience for me and while it was much less hectic I will definitely bring a few more to the 2011 Nationals. The decision to leave everyone else at home was not one I made lightly but the logistics of sending 2-3 more terriers by plane cargo when it is winter here was just not feasible.

The National Trial is 3 day event with racing on Friday, Working and Puppy Conformation on Saturday and Open Conformation on Sunday. This was the first yer the trial was to be held in Gettysburg PA and picturesque setting could not have been found. Gettysburg is a beautiful city rich with history and the trail site was no exception. set in the rolling hills surrounding the city a backdrop of fall colors surrounded us as we kicked off the 2010 JRTCA Nationals.

Friday morning saw Kiwi and I up bright and early for racing. With so many terriers in attendance racing has a whole day devoted exclusively to it. This was the first time Kiwi and I had ever experienced multiple heats and multiple runoffs before the divisional finals and while I knew she was pretty fit there was defiantly going to be a LOT of racing for her that day. Kiwi has never been officially "trained" to race, I honestly just popped her in the box in Nebraska so she would settle down little for the conformation ring later that day, but she loved it so much we continued to enter. she has steadily improved over the course of the year learning to wait patiently in the starting box, so as to have a cl en start , and that the whole goal is getting to the other side of the finish hole first. Kiwi loves to run though, loves it, and the Nationals would put to the test everything she had learnt throughout the year. The flat races went well and Kiwi earned herself spot in that final. An unlucky draw saw us in box 1, meaning the longest wait until they are sprung, and her start suffered little for it. she managed to come in a respectable third but that is not enough to make the final championship runoff - only 1st place finishers get the chance to compete for that.

After a short lunch break, and a little shopping on my part, we were back over at the lanes for the hurdles/steeplechase portion of racing. True to the versatile nature of these terriers they are required to be exceptional on the flat as well as over jumps to qualify for the championship. This has always been Kiwi's event, she seems to excel over the jumps and always moves up a few placings from her flat races. My heart was in my throat as I watched her win her heat, then have to re-run as two of the dos in the race got sidetracked with each other. she repeated her success in her heat and we were in the final, in a must-win situation to earn a spot in the championship race. I loaded her into the box and crossed my fingers as they sprung them. she got a clean start and maintained her position at the top of the pack the whole race. Over the last hurdle, and just before the hole, Kiwi showed her determination to win by accelerating even faster and ducking in a length the better! Our first National blue ribbon!!

I spent the next few hours waiting for the championship run off alternating between excited and nervous. Kiwi is n exceptional athlete but these are the best of the best and it is just a honor to be in their company. Finally the time came and we loaded the three competing terriers into the box, the flat winner from the 9-12 mo overs, the flat and hurdle winner from the 6-9 mo overs won by the same do, and Kiwi. This final was to be run the first half on the flat and the last half over hurdles so as to give everyone an equal chance. Before I knew it they were off, packed together as they raced down the lane. They hit the first hurdle in tight bunch, Kiwi in third, and took the next two about the same way. When they hit the final hurdle and Kiwi saw the lure disappear into the hole she kicked into another ear and sprinted away to claim the 2010 title by 3 full lengths! I had tears in my eyes when I picked her up from the catchers, I was so proud of my little girl.

The euphoria lasted the rest of the trip. Saturday morning came way too early, as the second day of any trial seems to, but I was not nearly a nervous I have been walking Kiwi into the conformation ring. she showed beautifully and even with a hue class of puppies remained focused until the very end. I was thrilled when she was picked out in the top 6 and even more elated when she received a third behind two very nice terrier as she had even more exceptional terriers behind her. Beauty, brains, and athletic ability - what more could I ever ask for?

With all our main events over and just some fun ones left I spent the rest of the trip cheering on my friends and oohing and aahing over all the beautiful white dogs surrounding me. I had the opportunity to meet Sadie's mother Image for the very first time and spent most of my Sunday with her tucked under my arm. My other big thrill of the weekend was to watch Kiwi and Glenlidi Cactus Flash be expertly handled by Penny Jukes to a win in the matched pairs class. Cactus is a stunning dog who went on to take Reserve best Open do on Sunday and is Kiwi's identical twin in many ways despite the fact that they are only distantly related. What a wonderful trip it was to see all my friends from both sides of the country, not to mention Canada, and make some new ones. The memories will hopefully last me the long, cold, Saskatchewan winter until I can get down to Nebraska again in the spring and start my 2011 season!

The True Cost of a Dream:
20 Thousand Miles
10 Oil Changes
16 Nights in a Hotel
2 Rental Cars
4 Plane Tickets
6 Dogs (give or take)
3 Months off Work

Winning a National Championship - PRICELESS

Monday, October 11, 2010

Duck, Duck, Goose!

As fall, and with it winter, fast approaches I have been sorting through all my summer shots. Some of the best times we have had this summer have been down in the pond at the facility where I board my horses. Sadie has LOVED the water as long as I can remember and will use any excuse to go for a swim. More than once when she was out while I was working with a horse she would take off, full speed, down to the pond for an unauthorized dip. Both Cali and Riley, having been exposed to water before, were excited to fetch things out of the pond and all this eventually led us to invest in some lovely neon-colored plastic fetch toys. Of course we would own 3 by years end, one for Cali, one for Sadie, and a bigger one for Riley.

Having such convenient access to the pond also allowed us to introduce the puppies to the water. Kiwi was hesitant at first but once she discovered that the water was simply part of the greater game of fetch she would dive right in. Tovy, always the surprise, did not even hesitate for a moment the fist time I brought her out and jumped in after the lure like she has been doing it her whole life! Unfortunately Patton was still too young by season's end to have the confidence to leap in after the older dogs but he did wade right up to his chin in his attempts to recover lures just off shore.

All in all this pond was the sight of many summer memories for the Inseguire gang and we will look forward to spring and the chance to play in it again!

Sunday, September 26, 2010

JRTCC Nationals 2010

The JRTCC Nationals Trial was held this weekend in Paris Ontario, only 45 short minutes from where we have been staying. This is the premier show in Canada for Jack Russell Terriers and the competition is always fierce. Top kennels from Canada and America come to compete for the coveted titles of JRTCC Champion and Reserve. Unlike the typical JRT trial which is two - one day trials, this is one two-day trial with only one shot to win, and one judge to impress. The girls, as always, did not disappoint.

Saturday was Racing for Kiwi and Veteran Conformation for Sadie. Eight thirty am saw Kiwi bright eyed and bushy tailed anxiously awaiting the start of racing, and me desperately wanting a second cup of coffee! All of that exhaustion from a 5am start to the day would soon be forgotten through as Kiwi put in an impressive performance to win Over Puppy Racing Champion! As he day went on it got cooler and cooler and wetter and wetter. Miserable weather for a dog show but the girls kept warm and dry in the comfort of the heated car and it was only I who had to suffer the elements trying to make sure we would be in the right place at the right time. I was shivering by the time Sadie's class was due in the ring and wrapped in a blanket we waited outside the ring to be called in. Sadie is as close to a push-button show dog as they come, you simply put her on a lead and walk off knowing she will be strutting her stuff beside you. In the ring she simply stacks herself and shines and I have been spoiled all these years having her at my side. Even with the inclement weather she never missed a beat and earned herself the honor of Best Veteran bitch and the Reserve Veteran Terrier Championship!

By Sunday morning all evidence of the previous day's miserable weather had disappeared save a few dew drops that would burn off shortly in the crisp fall sun. Today was Open Conformation for Sadie, her curtain call in this division as Kiwi will take her spot next year, and Canadian Bred Puppy Conformation for Kiwi. Sadie was once again simply lovely and even though she was the oldest terrier in the toughest class she still managed a top-3 placing at this National event! A true testament to how wonderful dog she really is! A short while later and I was back in the ring with her daughter Kiwi, who is to say the least little more difficult to show. Kiwi has an incredible mount of exuberance and a 3 second attention span. This is not to say she is not incredibly showy, she is just a terror to handle. The goal in the show ring is to show your dogs best attributes at all times one can imagine how difficult it is to get a 9 month old Jack Russell puppy who has other ides to stand pretty for any length of time! Despite all this Kiwi showed enough flashes of brilliance to capture the Canadian Bred Puppy Championship! I am always proud of my girls but I was particularly thrilled by this weekends affirmation that our terriers can compete with some of the best!

Sunday, September 12, 2010

Another Year Comes to a Close

This weekend marked the end of the fiscal flyball year for 2010. It was a year of ups and downs but on the whole I have to say a pretty good one. Cali debuted in Souris, MB in October of 2009 when Sadie came into heat a little early. Despite having absolutely no practice passing, or running with dogs in the other lane, she was wonderful and earned her first two titles, FD and FDX. The next tournament was in February and after a winter of working on her box turn Cali came out and ran in the sub 5s right off the bat. She has been solid ever since. This tournament was also Sadie's first back after having her puppies and she ran well until a border collie from her team went AWOL and went after her. This was the beginning of a grueling 5 months recovery process that, while frustrating at times, taught me a lot about bringing a dog back from being attacked and rebuilding confidence. Topher (Inseguire Christopher C) also debuted for the Lloydminster Hotdoggers this weekend and earned his FD and FDX title. By years end he and his handler Donna would earn 3700 points and set a PB of 5.2!

Shortly after that tournament came the decision to switch flyball clubs. This has always been about the dogs for us, and while we do it for them we need to consider our enjoyment as well. Flyball is our hobby,we do it to kick back, relax, and enjoy some time with our dogs and teammates a few weekends a year. We are highly competitive when we line our dogs up to race but once we walk them off the mats we leave all that behind. Finding a club that shared our outlook was not too hard and we will be forever grateful to Furry Flash for allowing us to join in their fun!

This last year with them has been awesome. Cali has held a full-time height dog position all year and earned a whopping 6200 points and a PB of 4.7. Sadie recovered to enough to run a few races and earn her FM (5000pts), and while she is not yet back up to full speed I am confident that in time she will get there. Riley even made his debut after 3 years and has been solid as a start dog posting times in the 4.2-4.5 range. None of this though could have been done with out the guidance nd support of Ken, Christine, and the entire Furry Flash club. It is going to be hard to top this year but with both Kiwi and Tovy to look forward to running in the future we just might!

Wednesday, September 8, 2010

Northgate 2010

Spending a little time in the East definitely has it's advantages, one of them being much more access to JRTCA trials. Since we are out here anyway we decided to make the quick hop to New Jersey for the weekend and attend the Northgate trial for the very first time. Held at Doug and Susan Tack's place it has to be one of the most beautiful venues for a trail I have ever seen. Their farm is cut into the side of a mountain and sprawled across woodlands with trees so old I could not even begin to guess their age. It was breathtaking to say the least and set up wonderfully for terrier trials, with the racetrack a permanent fixture and ever thing easily accessible. Friday night was a lovely BBQ and social at the house and I had a wonderful time socializing with old friends and meeting new ones.

The competition in the East very stiff and such a nice venue and a well run trial attracts the best of the best in the terrier world. Saturday morning racing came early but was a lot of fun! Kiwi was second in both flats and hurdles to the very fast Farmcliff Sarah so she did not make the finals but the exercise paid off and she was somewhat behaved in the conformation ring. I have to admit that I always feel a little nauseous before I walk Kiwi into the ring, the combination of knowing she is pretty nice terrier and her being a terror to show makes my stomach do back flips. She has so much energy and enthusiasm that she does not always show herself as well as she could and that is where my lack of handling experience (comparatively to these kennels that have been in this business for 15+ years) are not always the best combination. Thankfully Martyn Hulms is a forgiving soul and saw through all her antics awarding Best Bitch Puppy and a few minutes later Overall Puppy Champion! I could not have been more elated! She beat some very nice dogs and to have her be puppy I bred and raised just made it that much sweeter! Sadie carried on the winnings taking Best Veteran Bitch, and held her own with the much younger dogs in the open conformation classes.

Sunday morning saw us back at the racetrack bright and early with young terrier who had now spent the bulk of two days in her crate and was more than a little anxious to get running! Once again in the flats she was second to Farmcliff Sarah but not by much. A rematch in the hurdles gave a few tense moments but Kiwi prevailed a length the better and earned herself spot in the over puppy finals. She seems to really excel over the hurdles and as luck would have it that is how the finals in terrier racing are run. This particular trial chose to remove the last two hurdles making the race a half and half and meaning it would be a much tighter finish as Sarah tends to be better on the flat and Kiwi better over the hurdles. A post draw to the outside and a good break put Kiwi in a great position and she battled it out with Sarah every step of the way. She really put her heart into the race and managed to hold off the rest of the competition and win Over Puppy Racing Champion! Although she did not fare as well in the show ring that day the versatility she showed me this weekend taking Championships in both venues once again speaks volumes to the abilities of this little girl!

With that success we are now on our way to Canadian Nationals and hope to repeat at least some of it the last weekend in September!

Friday, August 20, 2010

Go East Young Ladies...

Kiwi is still learning how to break fast but boy does she come on strong at the end!

She may not be ahead yet just give her another few feet!

It has been a long time since Inseguire attended a trial in the East, not since Sadie was a very young dog in fact, and it was time to come "home" to where my love of terriers began. Although I acquired my very first "Jack Russell" in Alberta more than decade ago it was not until I moved out east that I started tending JRTCA trials. It did not take long for the terrier bug to hit me and when my first special girl was taken from me all too soon I knew that my life would never be complete without a terrier in it. I loved my little short legged "puddin" Russell but I knew that I wanted my next one to be of show quality and suitable for breeding. After searching around I purchased Sadie from a breeder in Pennsylvania, although she carries an Ontario kennel name as her mother was purchased on what is known as a "breeders contract" which in short means the first litter whelped from the female belongs to the original breeder. It is much more complex than that but that can be the topic of it's own blog post one day. Back on track, a women from New York state, Michelle Ward of Little Eden JRTs, offered to bring 9 week old Sadie from Pennsylvania to her place in NY and shorten my drive to pick her up substantially. This was my first encounter with Michelle and I will never forget being in awe of just how much he knew about these little white dogs. She spent a good two hours with me educating me on what was in store for me now that I had joined the ranks of JRT breeders and armed with this new knowledge and a wonderful new puppy I drove the 3.5 hrs home ready to set the world on fire.

Sadie and I travelled up and down the East coast together, showing when we had time, but mostly she kept me company as I moved around for work. She always did well in the show ring and was my constant companion. My work schedule kept me from breeding her though until I moved back out West and that is when "Inseguire" was really born. The two litters she has produced to date have really put us on the map and it was time to come back to where it all began and show everyone just how far we have really come.

Many of the faces were new to me but there were some familiar old ones, including Michelle who had not seen Sadie since she was a baby. It was so great to see everyone again and have the opportunity to show of my pride and joy, Kiwi. That little puppy is really everything I could ever hope for and more and she did me proud winning Best Overall Puppy again on Sunday and much to my surprise, Over Puppy Racing Champion as well! I is not too often that you see a conformation dog cross over into racing, which surprises me because correct structure should be an asset, and Kiwi did it with style. The dogs that come to this trial to run are some of the fastest in the country and after working out the kinks on Saturday (this was only her 3rd time racing after all!) she had things down pat and easily put away the competition on Sunday. She loves racing, the way Cali loves flyball, so I my just enter her for Nationals in both arenas if things work out. Sadie was, as always, solid in the show ring never placing worst than 3rd against some of the top dogs/kennels. She also won ribbons in barn hunt and lure coursing- her 2 favorite JRT sports!

Even though we had none of our regular gear, and had to borrow n ex-pen to house Kiwi, we made do and had a great time! The hospitality was fantastic, the weather cooperated nicely and the chairs, shade, and cold drinks provided by new friends made the whole experience all that much more enjoyable. I look forward to coming out this way again, hopefully sometime soon.

Wednesday, August 4, 2010

Taking the Plunge - Dock Dogs 2010!

Inseguire attended the Dock Dogs competition in Prince Albert, SK. Dock Dogs is a competition where a dog runs off a 40 foot dock placed 2 feet above the water and are judged on the length of their jump. Basically it is a long jump competition for dogs. Sounds simple? Well getting your dog to actually jump off the end of the dock proves to be a real challenge. All our dogs love to swim and spend 3 days a week or more retrieving things out of a pond. They will splash and dive in without hesitation all day long, but asking them to jump 2 feet down off the dock is a completely different story.

My biggest motivation to drive down to give this a try was Sadie. She adores swimming and you never see her more excited than when she is retrieving things out of the water. She did not disappoint me as it only took a time or two and she was leaping off the end with very little hesitation. The rest of the crew, however, was a little more reluctant. I was hoping Cali's drive would overcome her hesitation to leap but with no luck. She would happily jump in off the ramp on the side of the dock but wanted nothing to do with leaping off the end of the dock it's self. After trying, unsuccessfully, to get her to jump I asked the Dock Dogs crew if I could get in the pool and try to coax her in that way. They looked at me in my nice shorts and t-shirt and laughed, saying if I wanted to hop in the cold, cold, water I was more than welcome. I had no swim wear but luckily I had an extra pair of pants in the car so into the water I went. I stayed in for both Riley and Cali and was eventually able to get them to jump in, although Cali needed to jump onto my shoulder first and then into the water. We even got the puppies, Tov and Kiwi, to jump in off the ramp and fetch up the toy.

When it came time for the competition Sadie jumped off just like she had in practice, run to the end of the dock, stop, think, leap in. With time, and some more practice, I am hoping she will learn to make a nice smooth run off the end. She was very excited each time it was her turn and really enjoyed herself. Cali was excited to chase her ball but just could not muster up the confidence to jump off the high dock solo so after her 90 seconds was up I let her get it from the ramp. It was much more important to me that she enjoy herself and have a good time then force her to jump off the dock it's self. Riley was much the same way as Cali and having had some good practice jumps with me in the water I am satisfied that with time he will learn to enjoy this sport.

Much to my surprise as we were packing up and saying good-bye I was told Sadie won her Novice division (even against the big dogs!). This was just icing on the cake as she loved every second of the time we spent in, and near, the water. All in all it was a great day, despite being overcast and raining, the dogs came home tired and happy and I came home with a lot of fun memories and maybe a new game to play with my dogs.

Thursday, July 1, 2010

MAWTA Trial 2010

Once again Inseguire made the trip to Nebraska for the 2010 edition of the Mid-America Working Terrier Association Trial. We always have so much fun at this trial in and out of the ring. The people are warm and welcoming and many of our friends attend, without fail though we always manage to make a few new ones of the course of the weekend and this trip was no exception. Much of Nebraska had flooded in the week prior to the trial which meant we were not able to use the usual venue, carp were swimming where the conformation ring normally is! Not to be thwarted by mother nature Patti, the trial organizer, found a fair grounds not to far out of town and moved everything there. It was a lovely site and while we all missed the shade the big trees at the old site provided ez-ups helped shelter us from the 90+ heat.

Day one was hot and humid by 8am but I was determined to race the puppies that had been cooped up in the car for the last 2 days and were no longer interested in sleeping at night. Patton ended up being much more interested in playing with the other young pups in his heat than running so once the lure disappeared from view he and two other youngsters stoped for a little play session in the middle of the track. This of course lead to three puppy owners hoping the barrier to encourage the little dogs to keep running. lol. None of our dogs have ever raced before so I was not expecting much from them other them to get them out to run around a little. I loaded Kiwi into the starting box with the though that she would likely spend more time trying to remove the muzzle they are forced to wear when racing than actually running. She did just that for the first second or so after they opened the gates but then noticed everyone was getting away and picked up the chase, passing quite a few of them on the way to the finish hole. The next class for her was hurdles and while she still did not break well she had a much better idea of what she was supposed to be doing and came in second. These two placings allowed her a spot in the final to run for the championship and lo-and-behold she came in second there too netting her Reserve Puppy Racing Champion behind a dog almost 5 months her senior!

There is always a rather long wait while racing finishes up and conformation starts so I had the opportunity to catch up with some old friend and meet some wonderful ladies from the south. I ended up spending much of the trial with this gang and socializing and talking terriers and as it turns out they had dogs that carried similar bloodlines to my own. I also had the opportunity to purchase some gorgeous leashes from Terrier Essentials before my classes started. I have been needing another show leash and a larger martingale for Sadie and Kiwi for a while now and found a couple of stunning braided kangaroo leather leashes, as well as some leather martingale tie out leashes, not to mention the martingales I have been needing.

Conformation started off with a bang with Kiwi winning her class and then going on the win Best Bitch Pup and Overall Puppy Champion. I was so proud of my little hooligan! Cali showed very well in her first class as an adult and made the ribbons in a very large, tough, class despite the heat knocking her out a little. Sadie is a veteran in the ring and always makes me look good as she pretty much shows herself and took 3rd in another large, deep, class. A few games of find the rat later and I brought the, all back in for the family class where Sadie won best Brood Bitch and Produce! When it was his turn Patton, being as adorable as ever, took Colored Terrier Champion. A pretty successful day all around.

I was definitely tired by the time the alarm went off on Sunday morning but with how much Kiwi enjoyed the first day of racing I could not miss the second. Thankfully it was a little cooler and Patton ran a little better but was still irritated that he had to wear a muzzle. Kiwi on the other hand had the game thoroughly figured out and won both her regular heats to land her a spot int he championship race again. After a rough break, due mostly in part to not paying attention, she made up a lot of ground on the same older dog who beat her the day before and was once again the Reserve Puppy Racing Champion.

Conformation went incredibly well again with Kiwi winning her class, Best Bitch Puppy, and Overall Puppy Champion again. Cali and Sadie both pinning in their classes. Sadie won Best Brood Bitch and Produce again and went on to win Reserve Best Family, and Patton took Reserve Colored Terrier this time. The last class of the day was a Matched Pairs Class which is very popular in Britain and on the advice of john Broadhurst who judged day 1 we entered Kiwi and the dog who took Best Open Terrier both days, Glenledi Cactus Flash. Both of these terriers share a paternal grandsire, Conquest Scorch, and have a very similar look about them which was reaffirmed when they won Reserve Champion Matched Pair.

A great weekend all in all of shopping, socializing, coolers, and dogs, what more could a girl ask for really.

Monday, June 28, 2010

Home Games

We had two major accomplishments at our "home" tournament in Moose Jaw SK June 12th and 13th. Sadie earned her FM and Riley finally earned his FD! Sadie, while running with PDQ, earned her 5000 point title and the right to call herself a veteran of flyball. Riley though stole the show. After 3 years of unsuccessful training we finally had the opportunity to take over the reins on his training and with the help of Furry Flash he made his debut that weekend! He was a wonderful boy and when he ran he did everything right in the lanes. We are still keeping him in a very part-time spot so as not to overwhelm him but he was a star all weekend and made no mistakes. A HUGE thank you to Furry Flash for helping us get him over the final hump and giving him the chance to prove himself! Hopefully this is the start of many more wonderful thing to come for this sweet gentle boy!

Wednesday, June 2, 2010

Spring is finally here

After much rain and miserable weather this last week it may finally be safe to say that spring has come here at Inseguire. Although they live as house pets our terriers enjoy spending much time outside during nice weather sunning themselves and playing. I have managed to grab a few candid shot over the last couple of weeks during the nice days. It is difficult though as I often have a few terriers of one variety or another mauling me to throw something, and if not a terrier it is a lab/weim mix who just wants to PLAY! The puppies are starting to look almost like adults now, and while I adore their puppy cuteness I am very much done with everything else that come with raising 3 puppies at once! (FYI to anyone even considering this for themselves - DON'T! lol). I do love them though and am excited to see what they turn into as they head rapidly towards adulthood.

Monday, May 24, 2010

Winds of Change

Donna and Topher

Since the last post Inseguire has attended two flyball tournaments, the first one in Warmen SK and most recently in Coaldale AB. In the interim of posts we have moved all our dogs over to Furry Flash from Moose Jaw, the team Cali was on loan to. Flyball is something we do for our dogs, not the other way around, and the politics of a big club can sometimes be overwhelming. That being said we were overdue for a change and Furry Flash was gracious enough to "adopt" all of us.

Warmen marked our first tournament with our new team and proved to be a lot of fun. The lower keyed environment allowed both dogs and people to relax and just enjoy the fun of racing. Sadie finally ran cleanly, and while she is no where near her former self she has given me hope that she will one day get there again. The whole reason we got into flyball was to give Sadie something to do after the move from Ontario and to have her sidelined due to fear was just heartbreaking for me. There is still a lot we need to work on, like her current defensiveness when running, but with perseverance I think we will get there. Cali, as always, was rock solid and eked out some pretty impressive races as the anchor dog. She is a competitive little dog and never ceases to amaze me how hard she will push to stick her nose in front at the wire.

The real star of the weekend though was "Topher" (Inseguire Christopher C) who earned a whopping 1552 points in a single weekend! He was listed full time with his home club, the Lloydminister Hotdoggers, and as a back up/relief dog for an open team but when the open team pulled their other height dog early on Saturday he ended up running double time. This is a lot for any dog, but especially for the little guys. Thankfully on Sunday the open team found a dog to split the height dog position with him and despite all the extra work he held up both teams to a first place finish in thier respective divisions. All the racing barely seemed to phase him and he ran a new PB of 5.477 late Sunday afternoon. We are so proud Topher and his handler Donna has done an amazing job training and conditioning this little man - way to go Donna and Topher!!

Two weeks later saw us in Coaldale AB for the Redline tournament. Only Cali was running in this one as we thought it best not to overwhelm Sadie now that we were finally on the road to recovery. We did however get to take the puppies into the lanes after racing on Saturday and play recall games. Kiwi was impressive, having only ever seen the jumps once before she did full recalls over all four of them completely ignoring the dogs playing in the other lane. Her focus is outstanding and I am excited for her to grow up so we can teach her more of the game. Tov was the big surprise though. She is amazingly driven and has a fierce tug drive which enabled her to do her very first recalls like a champ. Patton was a hit with everyone, and while he still does recalls for food he charmed the heck out of everyone he met and was a little Casanova all weekend.

The racing itself was great. "Bug", the world's most adorable border collie, made her debut and performed like she had been running her whole life. Bug, Tripp, Dusty, and Cali set a new Furry Flash club record of 18.9, with room to improve and shave time off that the next tournament. Most importantly we had a lot of fun and Cali earned her FDCh-G on the weekend - catching back up to her brother Topher after his amazing weekend in Warmen.