What else does one do over Easter, but enter some Rally Trials. We've done almost no training at all this year and my ankle injury about 6 weeks ago really hadn't helped with our preparations but off we went. I'm really glad we did.
On the first day, on a max'd out course (maximum number of signs, with a maximum number of the most difficult 'Excellent' signs) including stations I know are not Mischa's strong suit, she did me super proud with a qualifying pass and a score of 80/100.
I was so relieved and pleased she had passed but had no idea until presentations at the end of the trial that Mischa had also taken 1st place on the course! I was astonished as thats not a high score by any stretch of the imagination. But I think its a testament to the difficulty of the course that a score of 80 took 1st place. It really was a tough layout. That pass also gave Mischa her 3 passes for her Rally Excellent Title. I'm so proud of Mischa and she's now probably retired from sports except for the odd outing maybe to keep her young at heart.
On Day 2, I decided to leave Mischa at home with her hu-dad. She tends to prefer it anyway. I was so nervous, as I always am, but I have no idea why. Dolce aced his course. A couple of minor errors for enthusiasm (and a typical 10 point deduction for incorrectly performing a station by taking an additional step - yep, its that tough in Excellent) and he passed with a score of 88/100. Yep, 'Dolce' only lost 2 points. Each was after a jump as he gets so excited that he bounces in front of me before returning to heel. But i'll never discourage his enthusiasm and will happily take point deductions if he's happy to be there though I might try to tidy up his returns for future trials. We were complimented several times over the weekend for Dolce's 'very promising' / 'lovely to watch' work ethic. He was a star and now has his first pass in Rally Excellent. I need to work on keeping him in the ring after the course finishes as he thinks we should be running for the rewards as soon as it ends. But I was just so happy with his work, I kept kissing him and telling him how good he was for hours afterwards. He loved all the attention and especially the treats. As usual, both nights saw me driving thru the McDonalds Drive-Thru for 'Nuggies' as their ultimate reward for dinner.
Passes for Dolce and Mischa today in Rally trials at Hastings & District Obedience Club.
We haven't trialled in about 12 months and we've only been back to Obedience classes twice in that time. On top of that I was sick last week so didn't get the chance for that last minute practice I'd been planning on.
Still they did me very proud.
Mischa scored a 94/100 in Advanced B. I put her in this class just to brush off the cobwebs and give her a practice run before tackling the Rally Excellent course. As timing went she had a 1 dog breather between runs but she was on fire and there was no stopping her. Mischa scored a 97/100 in the Rally Excellent course and earned her first qualification. So proud of this beautiful and intelligent girl. She just keeps rising to the occassion.
Dolce gained his 2nd pass in Rally Advance with an 88/100. I cost him a few points when i forgot to complete a station correctly and elected to take the penalty and do it again so I was so happy with him for scoring so well on the rest of the course. He made some noises at me along the course as he was pretty happy to be there. I was laughing at his woo's and grumbles (Especially the grumbling when we had to redo the station i got wrong). Had a great day out although we didn't get home til it was dark and cold.
It was an epic weekend of showing for us with 6 shows from Friday through Monday with a day off on Sunday. Results were pretty amazing actually and we're really happy with how our dogs went.
The dogs have had an incredibly long time away from the show ring with the exception of the NSW Specialty a couple of months ago, so it was quite a big change of pace to suddenly be showing for consecutive days, and at very late shows with us spending nearly 12 hours at the grounds for Friday and Saturdays shows.
It was my first time handling Aslak again since the NSW show and I messed him up in the Friday AM show, with him taking 2nd place (of 2) in his class. By the afternoon show we were working as a team and Aslak won his class and was also the Reserve Dog Challenge winner.
Megan handled him for the rest of the weekend and he continued to do really well, winning his class and another Reserve Dog Challenge, before taking Minor Puppy in Show at the FLCV Specialty.
I'd entered the Spitz show months ago and bumped Aslak up into the older class to avoid clashes with Fenix in the Minor class (who was absent on the day) and he did pretty well, taking a 2nd place (of 3) against older competition. He didn't miss a beat all weekend and is so easy going we just love seeing this little guy doing so well.
Summer also did really well on the weekend being awarded 1 x Best of Breed, 1 x Runner up Best of Breed, 2 x Reserve Bitch Challenge and Opposite Intermediate in Show at the FLCV Specialty. She was a little star the whole weekend too and was very happy to come home and receive cuddles.
Mischa was also entered as she enjoys earning treats and showing off, with practice shows (and 2 x Neuter of Breed) on Saturday and taking 2nd place (of 2) in the Neuter Bitch class at the Specialty. She won a bottle of Chardonnay but as she's too young to drink, we'll toast her when we open it later.
Aslak has gone home to Megan and we won't see him again for a little while as his next shows are the Border Challenge weekend at Albury. We are sure he and Megan will have a great time.
We grabbed a few candid (phone) photos which aren't great quality but the dogs don't mind, as long as there's treats involved.
Last year, the Finnish Lapphund Club of NSW decided to hold Pointscore competitions. For those not familiar with showing, Pointscore competitions are sponsored by breed clubs and are held at nominated shows throughout the year. Points are allocated to the breed winners (Best of Breed, Challenge etc) and accumulate through the year.
The NSW club decided that they also wanted to promote sports achievements as well as show wins and so they set about dividing up all the sports into categories/qualifications and titles and weighted them each accordingly. They elected to have both a National and NSW State winner.
16 dogs competed from all over the country and in various fields: Herding, Tracking, Obedience, Rally-O, Agility.
I'm very pleased to say our beautiful cream delight, Mischa (Au Ch & Neut Ch. Armahani Bloodstone Bilaidit RA), took out the honours for NSW. She also came 3rd nationally to Armahani's Emmi (Mischa's grandmother) and Louis (the highest titled performance and show Finnish Lapphund in the country) so she's keeping fantastic company.
Pretty amazing, considering she only competed for half the year, as we then moved states and didn't compete any further for the year.
Here she is with her ribbon which was delivered at the Dog Lovers Show by her 'other' favourite human, Shell.
The FLCNSW's inaugural specialty show has been and gone. We entered the show mainly to show support to the club, not actually expecting to attend, even entering Summer who is woefully out of coat after having a litter in November last year. But at the last minute we decided to make the trip. We'd entered all our dogs but took 4 up for the day (3 to show) and were met by Lexie (Summer x Dolce daughter) also competing on the day.
It's been almost a year since we've been at a show and there were a few exuberant moments with the dogs so excited to be out again that they forgot their show training.
We had a nice day out with some nice results.
Aslak Av Vintervidda (Imp NOR) awarded 1st place Baby Puppy Dog (of 2) and Baby Puppy in Show. Not bad for his first show. We hope his success and enjoyment of showing continues.
Caleebra Armani Acqua unplaced in the Baby Puppy Bitch class (of 5). She was happy to have the judge go over her, happy enough to move, but staying still in a stack is still a work in progress. She takes after her mother, in that respect.
Ch. Lecibsin Sametti (Imp UK) awarded 3rd place Intermediate Bitch (of 6).
Ch & Neut Ch Armahani Bloodstone Bilaidit RA 2nd place (of 2) Neuter bitch after skipping around the ring in her general excitement to be showing again. She was also awarded Best Coated Neuter (of 3).
Alleria (another Summer x Dolce daughter) also came along for the day to visit and spent most of it wrestling with all the other dogs, including Lexie and Aslak.
We were packed up and in the car straight after the show and headed home, arriving just after 2:30am.
The next day was a quiet one as everyone recovered.
We have a few more shows coming up over the next few months with our new boy Aslak hitting the show scene in Victoria
Lappy 2nd Birthday to our beautiful girl, Mischa Aus Ch. Armahani Bloodstone Bilaidit. Here she is with a new giraffe toy courtesy of her Aunty Mel, brother Ahti, Quinn and James. Our poor girl is feeling a bit hormonal and was enjoying a lazy day with cuddles and napping on the bed.
Mischa and Dolce went for their Eye Exams last week. Dolce passed without a problem.
Mischa, however was diagnosed with GRD, a moderate form of Retinal Dysplasia. It's a very subtle case, and the specialists have assessed that Mischa's eye sight should never suffer because of it. Whilst it may be caused by trauma or infection in utero, Specialists believe Retinal Dysplasia to be an inherited condition, though there are currently no genetic tests to check for GRD.
Because of this we at Caleebra, together with Jacqualine Lincoln at Armahani don't believe it's worth the risk, and have decided that Mischa will not be used in our breeding program. It is a sad day for all of us. Mischa is a gorgeous Finnish Lapphund with great structure and movement. We'd always believed she would be a great mother since observing her post-season 'phantom' pregnancies where she devoted all her energy to painstakingly 'nesting' and 'nursing' her 'puppies' (toys).
We will devote Mischa's future to her first love, which is training, of ALL sorts.
We had our first obedience assessment day at the Queanbeyan and District Dog Training Club.
I'm happy to announce that they both passed and will be progressing to the next level mid July.
Dolce was the standout today and was just pipped for 1st place, taking out 2nd with a score of 91/100.
Not bad considering the amazing amount of distractions today.
Mischa also did well, but found all the 'stay' work a bit too boring. We will have to work on teaching the little miss some patience. On a positive note, we did discover today that Mischa has a mean commando crawl.
There's a pause now in the classes until mid July which gives us time to enjoy a few shows and maybe attend some flyball training.
Home to the infamous