Saturday, June 22, 2013

We did it!

The results are all in for the ASCA Year (June 1 2012-May 31 2013) and my very own Thumper is #1 for the year in Merit standings. This is entirely the doing of a wonderful talented handler, Maria Neff, and HER handler (LOL) Debbie Neff, who took care of organizational details like travel planning, entries, and so forth.

 He is home with me now, for Competition Obedience training and some summer fun, but will be out here and there for AKC and ASCA, and we'll be at ASCA and USASA Nationals!
Thanks all!!


Sunday, June 16, 2013

And Vay-cay starts

Came home from Michigan with Thumper and turned around pretty quickly to go to Vermont for Camp Gone to the Dogs with him and my old man Flash. As it happens Julie Rigby, Favor's owner (from the last Ribbon litter, by Press) decided she wanted to have 2 dogs at camp and one of them could be Satin if I agreed, so with the proviso that she would be HERS for the week I loaded her up as well an off we went.

The week's weather following humid and stormy conditions on arrival day the Sunday, was spectacular for the first 4 of 5 days of camp, low 70's, dry, sunny, chilly night. In short, perfect for man and beast. All 3 dogs had a marvelous time with my main concentration being positive motivation training for competition Obedience for Thumper, and just some fun training stuff and one-on-one hangout time with Flash. It was a celebration-filled beginning of the week as well and Flash celebrated his 12th birthday on June 2 (TWELVE!!!! Unbelievable), me my 59th on June 3, and Satin and Favor their 2nd birthdays on June 4. (They celebrated in their own way by having a little bitch fight. Oops).  Anyway Julie sorted the girls out and we came to the realization that they are their mother's daughters. Just had to avoid too much arousal while n lead together to avoid escalating to launching onto one another.

Anyway a few photos to show the week. Already booked for next year. And now planning on entering Thumper in Obedience at ASCA Nationals. (The clock is ticking...).
My friend Lisa's 'Abby' moving some sheep.

Satin's sis Favor.

"Does this wet Vermont meadow grass make me look fat?"

Favor turned 2 this week.

Favor moved some sheep

Thumper moved some sheep. Bark-circle-bark-circle---

Satin moved sheep too.

Lisa and Abby await their turn on the sheep.

Ribbon son Teddy, from her first ltter, was there as well, along with his housemate Lila, Thumper sister.

The end of the ASCA Year

Have done some travel since the last post, as the ASCA year wrapped up May 31. Thumper went to Wisconsin to the Rock River Valley shows the weekend of May 10-12, where he went BOB 3 of the 4 shows, under judges Flo McDaniel, Ronnie Bates and Bev Eichel.  The week following, Maria made a quick trip to the Florida Panhandle ASCA shows where Thumper was able to pick up one BOB win (judge Diane Keedy) despite some iffy behavior due to his developing a crush on one of the females in the ring with him. (That's our excuse, at any RATE!).

Thanks Flo McDaniel!

Thanks Ronnie Bates!

Following Florida Thumper and Maria went to Michigan for their final weekend together as a full-time team. They started with 2 AKC shows in Kalamazoo where Thumper went BOB under judges Keke Kahn and Peggy Biesel-McIlwaine.
Then on to Centreville MI where I went to watch Thumper finishe out his year with Maria and bring him home after. ASC-MI does a mammoth 9 shows on Memorial Day weekend and also on Labor Day weekend, plus performance events (I am only counting the conformation shows!). So the breakdown was, of 9 shows, Thumper BOB x4, BOS x4, under judges Kim Cochran, Bruce Caldwell, Liz Gibson, Mary Quam, Gail Karamalegos, Richard Klatt, Cherrie Cannon and Glenda Stephenson. The marvelous Aria (Ch. Sazbrat Enamoured), our main competition all year long, was there as well so we were trading off wins (Aria with 5 BOB's to our 4). Well, if we are going to compete, we are thrilled it is with such quality as Aria exhibits. We had fun.
Aria going for Thumper's bait. The noive.

Aria and Thumper

Once around the ring (x9)
Aria, definitely #1 ranked bitch for the 2012-2013 ASCA year. She was hard to beat! I am glad we were not sharing the same rings every single weekend!

Thank you Glenda Stephenson!
Thumper and Aria, just for fun.

Then it got ugly.

And so Thumper's full time year with his magical handler Maria came to an end. I won't pretend I am not absolutely THRILLED to have my baby back home but I am forever in debt to the Neff team for their endless support and work toward our goals this year, and for their friendship as well. Maria is a true talent, as I time and time again saw her pull a terrific performance out of a dog that sometimes lacked focus or  interest. Virtually every single weekend they were out traveling and showing in all sorts of conditions. I am so glad my dog could be her first full-time special , and so glad SHE could be his special handler.

It will be a couple of weeks before all the final months'-worth of ASCA shows are entered into the ASCA record books. Once that job is complete we should know Thumper's final position in the standings. We know who the Top 3 will be (Thumper, Aria and Jasa Hatcher's Memphis, out of California). The final order is to be determined. Stay tuned!