Thursday, August 30, 2012

Rainier 2012

 “The world is a book and those who do not travel read only one page.”
– St. Augustine 

Kiwi and Sadie

This year the gang and I traveled to Washington to attend the Rainier Hunt Classic Trials just across the border in Everson WA. Our first trial in the far west the drive was spectacular through the rocky mountains of Alberta and British Columbia. Rainier is a small, but well put on, trial and we had the opportunity to meet some people and see some terriers we have not seen before. The girls did very well, finishing no worse than second in every class they were entered in all weekend. Cali and Kiwi made the final ring both days in conformation and were beat for Best Bitch by a couple of lovely dogs. Sunday I had to enlist the help of a few hands as I entered Sadie in the rarely-available Open Veteran conformation class and when she won that meant she, Kiwi, and Cali all made the final Bitch ring. I could not be more proud to have had 1/4 of the terriers in the final ring that day belong to my kennel! Sadie was also as tough as always in the family classes with her daughters Cali and Kiwi by her side she was family champion Saturday and Reserve Family Champion on Sunday.

left-right: Sadie, Kiwi, Cali with
Castle Pines Baron, Barons daughter, and Forget-me-not Mickinley

Inseguire Warden also made his show ring debut this weekend turning 4 months on the Saturday of the trial. He showed very well for being such a baby still and while he was not overly keen on the collar and leash part of things he very much enjoyed the meeting the judge part and the standing pretty and getting cookies part. He started his show career off with a bang and took home Best 4-6mo Dog Pup both days as well as Reserve 4-6mo Puppy Champion both days.

Inseguire Warden

On the performance side of things little Loki is really learning the ropes in Go-to-Ground and pulled on some spectacular times in her championship class. She is still working on sticking with the quarry even when blocked and not going and looking for another way to reach it - a trick her mother Cali is very well known for! Kiwi finished second in both flats and hurdle racing both days to the ultra-fast Kachina and Sunday when we decided to let Stash have a whirl at the racetrack he impressed us all by winning the over males hurdle race and going on to be the Reserve Racing Champion!

Woofgang Stash winning the Over Male Hudles Race

The big highlight of the weekend came mid-afternoon on Sunday however when I had the honor of showing our new boy Woofgang Stash in some of our first Working Terrier classes. The Working Terrier division in the holy-grail of terrier showing. Being in a breed club that emphasise the working aspect of our terrier the best and highest rewards in the show ring are reserved for those terriers that have proven themselves in the field and as such admitted entrance to the Working Terrier division. Stash, the veteran that he is, showed beautifully in his class and I needed only hold his lead as he won that class over some lovely terriers. From there it was onto the best dog ring where once again he faced off with some stunning examples of the breed. I waited, with baited breath, as the judge went over each terrier thoroughly and deliberated carefully before she announced that the reserve went to the lovely Diggin West Razzle and champion went to Stash! A little break to watch the girls compete and we were right back in against the female champion and reserve for best working terrier. Four outstanding examples of the Jack Russell Terrier, all having proven their grit in the field in front of a working judge, and now competing for top show honors. The judge had each pair, winners together and reserves together, walk off and then switched them up. She again went over each dog and I think you could have heard a pin drop as she whispered the ring steward her decision. You could have nicked me over with a feather when they announced that the Working Terrier Champion that day was Stash and although I did nothing more than hold the end of his leash I was honored and proud to be the one other side of it! What a great weekend, full of great memories, and a fantastic way to cap off our regular trial season and prepare for Nationals in October.

Woofgang Stash held by judge Sand Brown
with his ribbons and perpetual trophy for
Best Working Terrier

Saturday, August 11, 2012

On being a breeder

I want to cultivate the seed that was placed in me until the last small twig has grown.
- Kathe Kollwitz

People often ask me "how can you bear to let your puppies go" or sometimes in the equine world I also frequent "how can you even think of selling your horse". The answer is plain and simple, joy. My dogs, and horses, bring me immense joy. The kind of joy that entangles itself so deeply into your heart and soul that to remove it would be to remove all of yourself. I am who I am today because of the animals who have come into my life and taught me the lessons of being a participant of this world. I, being a breeder (and sometimes a equine broker), have the very unique opportunity to be able to gift others this same type of joy and, in doing so, receive it back ten-fold.

If you own one of my puppies you may or may not know that I candidly watch you from behind the scenes. I share in your joys and frustrations and am often moved to tears when I watch you succeed with a puppy that came from me. I have more than once caught myself entranced in a moment as an owner leaned down to gently kiss the top of a head of one of my grown puppies in such a tender, loving, and intimate way and thought to myself, "how lucky am I that I can be a part of that". When I have a bad day, or am feeling a little down, I seek out photographs I have collected of my owners and their puppies (my extended family album so to speak) and find peace in them.

All of this came back to the fore and was driven home this weekend when I saw, for the first time in almost a year, my gentle sweet Indy and his new girl so madly in love with her horse. I was taken by surprise when a friend sent me a picture, captured with her cell phone, of him being grazed by a toddler on the busy show grounds. I didn't even realize until a tear worked it's way to the surface and found a path on my cheek just how happy that single image made me. Later that day when his new owner excitedly accepted her fancy 3rd place ribbon in a big class I was humbled by the knowledge that I had some small part of that.

So to all of you who own, or will own, an animal that has come from me know that you are forever entrusted with a little piece of my heart. Your celebrations will be my celebrations, your frustration my frustration. I will always be there to cheer you one, hold your hand, and give you a hug if you need it for you have something of mine so precious that words can never do it justice:

I have in you planted the seed of joy and the fruit it bears will feed us both for many years to come. Plant that little seed in the place where sunshine abounds and water it frequently with love. Harvest it as often as you can and know that every time you do I feel it in my heart.

Saturday, August 4, 2012

Inseguire Warden

Life is a lively process of becoming.
- Douglas MacArthur

Inseguire Warden 14.5 wks

I could not be more pleased with the way our little Warden is growing up. At almost 4 months he is showing all the signs of quality I has hoped for from his linebred pedigree. He has the sweetest temperament, never far from my side, yet he is feisty and outgoing, and mischievous. His outstanding structure is highlighted in his lovely long neck, strong head, and fabulous front end his pedigree is so well known for producing. I wish I could take more credit for this lovely boy who proudly bares my kennel name but he is more the product of Michelle Ward's Little Eden Terriers and her dedication to quality in this breed than anything else. When I did this mating I wanted something not directly related to my females but still with enough similarities in pedigree and structure to compliment our bloodlines. My fingers are crossed that Warden is it! He has a long way to go yet to fulfill the expectations of his ancestors but he is well on his way. He will make his show-ring debut this month at the Rainier trial in Washington state and I am pretty excited to hear what the judges think of him!