Welcome to The OBay Shelties blog! Our blog is an honest diary of our life with our dogs along with news from Obay shelties around the world.

Thursday, March 29, 2007

Hex and Indy 3 jump pull-thrus at Chippenham Agility Show

I hope this works! I am trying to use You Tube to see how the videos look.

Here is a comparison of Hex and Indy doing a three jump pull thru sequence at Chippenham Agility show. I told Nicky I need work on these! She made them look easy. But even worse, at the UKA show, they had three jump PUSH THRUS which I just could NOT do. I am doubtful I can do them at all! hehe I guess I shouldn't write this as now all the judges will throw them in just for me!

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Spring has sprung

We don't have many good photos of Hob-b so I took the opportunity today at lunch since the flowers are blooming. Unfortunately Hob-b won't stand for photos as everytime I told her to stay she layed down! I guess all the work I have been doing on down stays for her dinner has worked! Once she gets her coat back I will try to get some standing photos with Dennis' help.
But even laying down she is gorgeous!

Good Luck at the AKC Agility Nationals

Good luck to my sister Terry at the AKC Agility National this weekend. She will be taking her rescue sheltie Keeper. Keeper was rescued thru our fantastic Long Island Sheltie Rescue and this will be his first agility national.
Good Luck Terry and Keeper!

Monday, March 26, 2007

UKA Agility weekend

Dennis and I (and all the dogs) spent the weekend camping out in the caravan at a UKA Agility show. UKA is the new "alternative" agility organization here in the UK. It was develped by Greg Derrett and his wife Laura to compete with the Kennel club agility. The KC agility is a win-only progression so the UKA is a nice change. UKA allow progression with points gained with clear rounds as well as placements.

It was fun to get the caravan out for the first time. Although it was cold (brrrr) the caravan was nice warm and toasty. Except for around 2am on Friday night when one of the propane tanks went dry. Poor Dennis had to get out of bed and go out into the cold to swap tanks while I stayed nice and warm under the duvet. What a good husband I have!

Anyway, we had an awesome weekend. (And as much as I have grown to hate the world "awesome" I can't think of another word right now!) We had 4 OBay Shelties competing this weekend. All 4 won multiple classes and all 4 made it to the Royal Canin Finals in July. Wow! With all the sadness lately it was nice to just run my dogs and enjoy the weekend.

Hex and brother Indy won just about every class they were in. Hex went for 7 clears out of 8 runs and 6 first places. She only got one 2nd place in snooker due to my not going for full points. What a star! Indy just flew around every course and I think went 7 clears out of 8 also with almost 100% first places. Nicky and Indy are just on fire!

I need Nicky to come down and teach me how she handles 3 jump pull thrus and push thrus. (three jumps in a line like a serpentine but instead pushing thru the gaps) We had 3 jump push thrus in two classes with Zen and we just can't do them properly! I wish I could post courses on the blog so I can get suggestions from people. I certainly will be setting up those sequences this week to practice on! But I have video clips of Nicky handling a three jump pull thru with Indy from last week, so I will post that this week when we get the videos sorted out.

Zen and brother Chi also won almost all their classes. Except for the one they were competing against each other in and then they went 1st and 2nd! I don't think they had as many clears as their little siblings but were pretty darn close.

We have no videos from this weekend. Dennis has been taking a course in ADOBE PHOTOSHOP and wanted to take some action shots with his camera. He got some really good photos and I will post more when he gets home from London tomorrow. For now here are some tasters...

Indy the micro sheltie says size doesn't matter!

Hex just looking too cute for words!

Zen just being Zen........

Chi being very handsome....

And finally I cannot believe they let one of those "Hoodies" into a posh agility show! We need agility ASBOs....

Hex the super sheltie

This is a photo of Hex with her trophy from a few weeks ago when she won the C-side Challenge final. I needed a nice sunny day to get a photo of her.
And here is another photo of Hex with all her trophies earned so far this year!
Isn't she adorable?

Thursday, March 22, 2007

Happy 8th Birthday Monty!

Happy 8th Birthday to

Danish Agility Champion Toven The Full Monty


Little Monty might not be known for his own performances. But he is well known for what he has produced. In limited breedings he has produced 2 agility champions and two Agility World Team members. All his puppies have an intense desire to work and an amazing drive to run fast!

Yet Monty himself has not done too badly! Monty has been shuffled around a bit. Initially owned by Toni Mapes as a potential show dog, Monty was just not "enough" for the show ring. He is a little boy under 14" at the shoulder. I had seen Monty and just fell for him and Toni let me take him home when he was just under 18 months old. I started playing around with him in agility and he took to it very nicely. Then the big move to England happened. At first I thought Toni wanted him back as she wanted to be able to use him for breeding. So I brought Monty back to her and just before leaving him, I burst into tears. I didn't want to let him go! Poor Toni, she thought I didn't want to take him to England and I thought SHE didn't want me to take him. What a lack of communication! I blame it on the stress of moving!

So that day, Monty came back home with me and began his amazing journey. I am so grateful for Monty as he produced my amazing girl Zen. I cannot imagine my life without her; she has given me so much love and so much fun.

Monty now lives in Denmark with Johanna. He is quite the international boy! In Denmark, he has two certificates towards his breed championship and has finished his Agility Championship. Even better, he is being used for breeding with some really beautiful girls. He is producing some pretty puppies that can work. We decided that Monty was better used and had more opportunities in Denmark. Although Dennis and I miss him, I have decided to stick to girls only from now on.

For the past year or so, Monty has been running agility with Johanna's friend Marianne. What started as a little fun has turned serious!!! Monty was part of the gold winning Danish teams when he competed with Marianne at the Nordic Agility Championships! At 8 years old, I think Monty as found his favorite agility partner in Marianne! They are just going from strength to strength. Go Monty, you rock little man!

Below you will see why Monty was named "The Full Monty". His favorite position is on his back with his legs spread! That's my boy!

Wednesday, March 21, 2007

Weekend stuff: training, trials and sewing needles

This past weekend was a busy one. On Saturday we went to a training day at Sue's sand school. It was taught by Nancy who also owns little Kizzy. It was a great session and everyone seemed to enjoy it. What I liked about Nancy's teaching was that it wasn't all about "handling", she was into training the dog. But then again, that is my strong point so that may be why I liked it! haha I like to try and teach the dog to do most of the work, I guess in some posh agility circles that makes me a lazy handler!

Nancy talked alot about teaching the dog to collect itself before turns and gave some good methods to work on this. I have been lucky with Zen and Hex as this is a strong point for them; their weakness being that they have a harder time going on ahead. I guess after running Pax, who turns like a Mack truck, I worked extra hard on our turns. Or, maybe, they are more natural at tight turns than Pax.

Anyhoo, everyone seemed to enjoy the training day. I even heard some comments that people were saying it was one of the more informative sessions they had been on. That will be really cool for Nancy to hear. I will go to most training session at Sues that I can get to. It is so close to home and it is just good practice for Hex and Zen. And Sue makes a good lunch! But, in reality, so many training days are not that informative, they are more like run-thrus. Because really how much can a trainer teach you in 3 hours with 9 people to train. Also, due to the large number of participants you sometimes don't get much done, it is alot of standing around and bull-shitting with other participants. But I did think Nancy's was well worth it and I am not just saying that because she reads my blog!

Here are some photos from the day. These are not the best photos, I actually have some really good ones that Dennis is working on enhancing with his new prowess in Photo Shop. I will hope to post them on another day and also offer them to their owners. These photos below are funny ones or interesting training ones!

Here is Sue's older BC Buddy more affectionately known as Buddy the Bast***. You can see why..

This is George the Golden. He is a young boy and is doing well in training. But you can see clearly that he was some rythym issues in the weave poles! What a trooper that he stays in the weaves when obviously he has to work so hard at it. Bless!

This is a young Vizsla named Boris. I thought this shot was funny as it looks like his ears are tied up in a bow!

This is a young BC cross poodle (yes, for my american friends reading this, they do these crosses on purpose! ) named Chip. They make lovely shaggy fast agililty dogs! As you can see in this photo of him weaving.

The funny thing is that at the training day we worked on a few things that I actually used at the show on Sunday! I like when that happens! Once I get the videos from the Chippenham Agility Show uploaded I will post them along with our good news.

Now after the long day at Sues, we went out for dinner with our neighbors. It was a dinner planned to thank one of our neighbors for helping us set up our wireless Internet. It was 4 couples for dinner at a local pub. The dinner was scheduled for last month, but had to be cancelled due to everyone having the flu! Unfortunately, it was rescheduled for this weekend and we didn't find out about it until 3 days before! Uh-oh! It wasn't the best time for me to be socializing having been out all day training and then thinking of getting up the next morning at 4:30 am for the drive to Chippenham Champ show. But the dinner was good and it was good to meet the 2 couples that we hadn't met before. At least if I see them in Sainsburys' I will recognize them now! They live on the other side of the field from us and I can occasionally hear their horses and donkey, so I am sure they can hear my dogs! It is quite a long distance but the sound travels because the field is so open.

We had to leave the dinner early (well early for English people!) and said our good-byes at around 11pm. When we got home I was getting ready for bed when Hex comes into the room with me. She is rolling something around in her mouth and I can hear clinking noises against her teeth. Usually this means she was picked up a pebble and is rolling it around in her mouth. I glance at her and see a glint of metal in her mouth and realize it is a sewing needle! I scream for Dennis and grab Hex's muzzle to open it up. At that point I think the needle is already headed down her throat. Dennis comes and I have him pry open her mouth while I look in (not an easy prospect when dealing with the wicked one!). I am able to feel the tip of the needle in the back of her throat and somehow get a hold of this slippery little thing. Which, it turns out, is also attached to a long piece of thread. Holy sh**! I give Hex the biggest hug and know that we really we lucky with this one. If she had not come in and shown me, she would have swallowed it and we wouldn't have known until she showed some sort of symptoms. And even then, who would think "Oh it must be a swallowed sewing needle and thread" Yikes, it is too awful to think about.
Sunday was the long awaited for Chippenham small/medium Champ show. Unfortunately, Zen did not win the champs.. boo hoo. But more about that another time. Hex was a star but I will blog more about that in another post! This post is too long already....

Tuesday, March 20, 2007

The saddest news

It has taken me a few weeks to be able to sit down and write this. And it still kills me to put it into words. Somehow it makes it all too real....

Sadly it was found that Zeus,the little boy of Zen's litter, was ill. It turns out that his heart did not develop properly and it was struggling to keep up as he started to grow. The specialist vets advised his family that nothing could be done to help him; no surgery or medication would help. So his owners decided not to let him suffer and he was let go before his symptoms became worse.

It doesn't seem right that Zeus should be gone. He was such a bright little boy, so happy and willing. He was so beautiful and so reminiscent of his grandfather Monty. We had such high hopes for him. But most of all, he was loved. For his entire short life, he only felt love. For that I am grateful.

All our sympathies go out to Gert and Kirsten who adored little Zeus and had to make the devastating decision to let him go. They adored little Zeus and gave him the most perfect home and we know they miss him terribly.

The joys of breeding, huh? Yeah right.

Wednesday, March 14, 2007

Hex at C-side 2007 Video

Hex at C-side

This past Saturday Hex finally earned her keep. We ran at the C-side show in the Crystal Challenge Final and won! Hex had qualified for the final back in November.

She won a gorgeous crystal trophy (her first!) and even better, she won CASH (50 pounds!). I think this may be my first time winning money in agility!

Thanks to Lian for the video clip. We can't get fancy with music as it was in a different format, but you get to hear all the dogs barking in the background. So turn down your volume!

Tuesday, March 13, 2007

Never take yourself too seriously!

This is too funny and a reason I shouldn't be left to surf the internet for too long....


Sunday, March 11, 2007

Zen's Crufts Championship Agility video

Crufts 2007 Agility Championships

Well Crufts 2007 is over! We had a great Crufts!

Winning the medium team on Thursday was great. I do love to run at Crufts! It is a great buzz competing with all the spectators cheering.

This morning we ran the Championship Jumping. A lovely course that we should have run clear. But a handling mistake by me caused an off-course and an elimination. Bummer! But I was still proud of Zen and how she handled the course.

This afternoon was Championship Agility. (video to follow!) Zen attacked the course with her usual enthusiasm and we won the class! Her time was the second fastest time out of all height dogs and I was thrilled. Luckily this year they actually had a presentation of trophies and ribbons for the placements in the qualifiers. So Zen got to take center stage and receive a lovely crystal bowl engraved with

That's my girl!

I was disappointed not to be able to run in the finals on Sunday night but overall had a great Crufts 2007 and already looking forward to 2008!

Friday, March 09, 2007

Crufts 2007 Medium Team Agility video

Crufts Medium Team 2007

I am just downloading the videos from yesterday's medium team event at Crufts. What a blast! It is just so much fun being out there on the green carpet with all the spectators. I just love showing off my dog. Zen is the best, I was so proud of her. She looks so little next to the other dogs. But she still does her best and makes me look good! She seemed more relaxed this year and that makes me feel better.

And, Wow, what a fabulous team I was on. Disney was the boy amoung the pretty girls and he did wonderful. As usual, those merlie border collie girls were fantastic. I can hope that our runs on Sunday in the championships go as well as yesterday! The carpet was a bit slippy, so I hope the judges keeps that in mind when the courses are built. Other than that, the new arena is great. Even though it is off on it's own at the end of the buildings, the spectators were still there. It seemed almost full each time and it holds 6000 people!

Dennis again went above and beyond in his videoing. He put together the video of all 4 runs to Toni's favorite song for Minx. I will try and get it downloaded soon.

Monday, March 05, 2007

Videos and stuff

As you will see on the last few posts, Dennis is getting good at putting videos together! There is no stopping him now. Now I just have to remember to bring my video camera everwhere!

It was so great to see Hex's video compilation. She reminds me so much of Joy, just in a black package! I really miss Joy and am grateful that I have Hex to make me smile. Whatever I ask Hex to do, she is eager to do it; what a fun dog she is. She has dabbled in breed, obedience, flyball and Heelwork to Music. But agility is our main event and she is really coming together in that. I was unsure how she would compare against some of the faster dogs in competition here; but she seems to be doing OK. On Saturday, she finished 2nd out of 115 dogs in jumping and 3rd out of 80 dogs in agility.

We had a really good day of agility at the Mid Downs competition on Saturday. It was the first real agility show of the season for us down South. Zen competed in her first KC show since having puppies. She is definitely on form and ready to run at Crufts. We are competing on Thursday in a team event and on Sunday at the Championships. I can't wait, I am so psyched! (All the Jane Savoie fans will recognize that statement, but it is really true!) Agility at Crufts this year will be bigger than ever. They have moved ALL the agility events into a larger arena that seats 6000 people. Considering how crowded it has been all the other years, I think there will be that many spectators for agility everyday. I just hope the noise level is not over the top and that Zen can hear her commands. I want to make it thru to the final on Sunday night and get a chance to have Zen on TV again. That would just be fantastic.

This will be my 6th year competing at Crufts. The first year (2002) I showed Whizz the border collie in breed. The second year (2003) I showed True the sheltie in breed. Then Pax competed in agility in 2004 and 2005. Now it is Zen who competed in agility in 2006 and this year 2007. Next year, I want to be qualified to show Hob-b in breed and Hex and Zen in agility. Goals!

A Hex Video Montage