Another National is “in the bag” so to speak and what a busy National it was. Not only were there my eight entries, but there were another 8 dogs also representing the kennel, so lots of classes to watch!
Of course the trip would not be complete without the usual “disaster” – this year it at least wasn’t auto related 🙂
So pour yourself a coffee, sit back and read on the saga of the “Great Diamond Heist of 2017”.
No specialty seems to be complete without things going wrong. It has been a trend, however, that the more that goes wrong, the better the resuts are in the end. If I can forget my clothes or have a breakdown for some reason the dogs seem to do better 😆
The first disaster, as usual, was U-Haul. Every year I reserve the trailer in plenty of time. Every year U-Haul manages to screw up the reservation. This year, they never contacted me with a place to pick up the trailer. When I realized it and called, there were no 5×8 trailers to be had in Orangeville, since it is the weekend all the students are moving home from college. As well, although my reservation showed a charge for 10 days ($179.95), they had only reserved a trailer for one day, April 29-30. So once again I neeeded to spend hours on the phone trying to straighten out the mess. A trailer was finally located for me in Owen Sound, and I drove up to get it. As usual, once it was hitched up the lights didn’t work. 😡
For once though, karma was on my side. As the clerk was trying to change the reservation to give me a 6×10 trailer for the same price, someone came in to return a trailer 3 days early! The clerk checked it in and we were able to snatch it since it wasn’t immediately booked out!
Angelika had hoped to see some Canadian wildlife on this trip, especially a moose and a skunk. Unfortunately (or maybe that is fortunately) moose don’t venture this far south. And the only skunk we came across was a pancake on the QEW I tried to avoid!
When we got to the Duty-Free shop to pick up some “supplies” for the week, the odor of skunk was in the air. I told Angelika to have a good whiff, and be thankful we weren’t closer to the source.
As we got to the border crossing I grabbed my passport folder, and Angelika’s passport and handed them to the Border Agent. He opened my folder and said “It’s empty!” I immediately panicked thinking I had somehow taken it into the house. The agent asked what was in the trailer and if I knew the license number, which of course I didn’t. He walked to the back to get the license, and when he returned said he smelled a skunk. I told him we smelled one back at Duty Free – he said if you smelled it there, and I smell it here – it must be on the trailer! And it was….it followed us all the way to Huron.
The agent then asked for my license as identification and told us to go inside for secondary inspection so Angelika’s passport could be stamped. I parked the van and grabbed the dogs’ binder off the dash, and my passport fell out. I remembered the customs agent had asked for the dogs records on the way back last time, and I must have put the passport into the binder without its cover. So a minor disaster was averted. After fingerprinting Angelika to make sure she didn’t rob any banks we were processed and allowed to proceed.
The rest of the trip was uneventful, except for the occasional whiff of Pepe Le Phew and we arrived at a decent time, got the truck and trailer unpacked, and left the trailer a ways away from the rooms to hopefully air out over the week.
Jack and I tried something new this year. I have not been in an obedience ring since 1991. Jack needed to take up something that was fun and would build his confidence. As a result, we took up Rally. We had a half dozen lessons in the fall, and then started to do some practice at home in the weeks before the trial.
My armband number was 5 meaning I was the first dog in the ring for the Novice A class (numbers 1-4 are never given out). However, as the classes ran backwards from excellent, through advanced and ending with Novice A, I actually had the chance to watch other teams in action.
We finally got to our turn and it turns out I’ve got a future obedience star on my hands. I spent the last three weeks before the trial working on “down” and “down-stay” because I didn’t realize that they were in the group of signs that could be used for Novice. It turns out it wasn’t needed – neither sign came up in either trial. We were first in the ring for Novice A, and I thouight we had done pretty well. Someone told me my score was 94. Later I was told we were running in 3rd place. So what a surprise to find out that Jacks score was changed to a 96 which at a quick glance appeared to be 2nd place. Not so! Jack was tied for FIRST place, and when all the qualifiers were called into the ring – he won on time!
Trial 2 Jack rocked another 96 score, however this time another dog scored a 97, so he earned a 2nd place. I’m very proud of my little Rally Star!
Each night I took a picture of our trophy collection, and this was the first night’s shot.
Wednesday was Sweepstakes and Megan day starting with Veteran Sweeps. The day started on a great note!
The young boys showed well, but unfortunately weren’t in the ribbons. The evil twins though did very well!
Hope and Susie placed second and third respectively in their large sweepstakes class!
And Day 2’s trophy picture
Thursday was the boys turn. There was no love for Guinness who is going through the “brown bag” stage. Rico unfortunately is taking after his father who took a long time to mature and looked small compaared to the other dogs in his class.
In the 12-15 class Taz earned a fourth and his brother Sully appeared to be in contention also.
Chronos and Angelika won the Amateur Owner Handler class.
Jack showed well in Bred by Exhibitor but again there was no love (I guess I should not be exhibiting!), and Gryphon placed 3rd in the Open Dog class.
And although he gave it a valiant effort, Dragoon placed second in the Veteran class, meaning he would not go on to the Best of Breed competition.
So at the end of the day this is how our ribbon collection looked.
Friday was the girls day – and they had a great day!
First Susie won the 12-15 month class!
Then Hope came second in the Bred By Exhibitor Class!
And then Jolene won the Open Class. What a thrill to have two of the class winners in for Winners Bitch. While she didn’t follow in her momma’s pawprints, Jolene went on to Reserve Winners Bitch, for a 3 point major to finish her championship!
Finally Dolly was in the 9-11 Veteran class, and placed third. She looked great for a girl who has been out of the show ring for many years.
And the final counts for ribbons and trophies:
All of this could not have been accomplished without Angelika helping out the entire week, and Tim and Tracie presenting the kids to perfection. What a great team, to make the kids all look their finest, and a team of great dogs who get to come home which is the best prize of all!