Showing Up & Getting Home

Yesterday as I drove to the show I kept thinking about what a different experience I was having traveling to a show than Marti. The trip from Stevensville, Montana to Lewiston, Idaho is just over 200 miles -- and almost all of it is along one river or another. It is also a trip through mountains, and I saw more deer than cars through about 100 miles of it.

I wanted to illustrate this point about the difference between driving to a show in Montana/Idaho and driving to a show in southern California -- so here is a picture I stopped and took of the view I had as I drove...

And here is a look at the Lochsa River, which was my companion on the left for many, many miles...

There is something about the natural world that gives peace to the soul -- to be surrounded by the vast wilderness when my insides are churning like that river was a calming reminder that there is more -- much more -- than turmoil. I am so blessed to live where I do.

And the only time I had to slow down was for the deer and turkeys crossing the road -- my kind of traffic jam.

I love dog shows. And it has been a while since I showed in breed (beauty pageant) -- last fall, maybe? I admit it is not easy to transition from Zoey to anyone else -- with Zoey it was shocking when she didn't win, and let me tell you -- that is super fun.

But now it is Syd's turn and she is also a very nice girl BUT she has undivided attention on me -- this means she turns her head and looks at me, and that means she is cranking her front end around and as the judge said, "she is not doing herself any favors." In other words, it makes her (nice) front look crappy. UGH.

I have worked on this at home and she targets straight ahead (as opposed to looking at me) -- this is the first show since we have worked so hard on this little issue and I see the correct behavior has not transferred to the show ring. This is nothing more than information I need to make changes in my training protocol -- and this morning before the show I will have Syd trot directly at ten people who will then hand her a cookie -- that is my emergency, last minute training plan.

So Cooper and Syd both took second place in their classes, as I said. Cooper needs more coat and to stop looking for his mom but what a nice boy he is!!! However, it was Harper B for Big Hit who was the favorite. I did feel as if I were showing a corgi because I just have to walk and she trots so it took forever to get around the ring but oh my -- ADORABLE!!!! And so fun to have so many kind comments about her from both judges and random people -- super excited about her future :) And most important -- she had FUN.

It is just nice to have a break and to hang out with dog people and to show off my "art" -- which is the dogs I breed. And Cadi was ever present, whispering to me about perspective and I listened and was so grateful just to be there with my dogs and people I care about...

And then off to Motel Six in Clarkson, WA -- I had no idea that Lewiston, ID is on the border but obviously it is. BEST Motel Six ever -- I will definitely be back to this show and Motel Six next year. Starbucks across the street, Costco in the rear, and Albertson's next door -- plus a clean room with frig and microwave and lots of grass outside -- and Jennifer and Cooper two doors down -- it doesn't get much better :)

Harper B for Best Girl is enjoying the toy she won...

And just fun to have two very easy, sweet girls on this trip...

And I agree with Elizabethanne -- that was a wicked visual distraction for a draft test -- poor Zaida! But here is your draft tip for the day -- the dog does not have to even notice the visual distraction!!

Here is what I do -- I figure out where the visual distraction starts (by watching other teams and/or asking during the walk through) and then I give the "look at me" command right before that point. If it is a moving visual distraction, I both give the "look at me" command and have the dog sit until the moving visual distraction is finished -- works like a charm, and perfectly within the rules. Allowing the dog to watch -- while moving forward -- a fast moving visual distraction is just a set-up for failure so strategize for success!

Thinking good thoughts for everyone today -- no matter what you are doing!!!

Later -- and Home

What a great weekend -- because we got to do things with our friends -- two and four-legged! Here is Harper B with her favorite Auntie Jennifer...

Syd won the bred-by class, and Cooper was Reserve -- no points but lots of fun! Here is Syd posing by the Lochsa River on the way home...

What a wonderful girl she is -- perfect temperament, smart -- and pretty! Well, I think so...

And that drive is AMAZING....

I hope your weekend was wonderful -- and amazing!


by Marti Simons on Sun, 04/22/2012 - 08:36

Wow! Our drive to the show is scenic also. Not in a good reflective way. Thursday and Friday the scene was a moving parking lot of traffic, and yesterday, no traffic, but the show is in City of Industry. So southeast LA and industry. Not an attractive picture. There are trade-offs for having a dog show within commuting distance almost every weekend.

Hopefully everyone has a fun and successful day today. And for enquiring minds yes, my shiner looks worse today.

by Jennifer G. on Sun, 04/22/2012 - 21:40

You all saw it...right here in print...ha HA hahahaaaaa all you "other" aunties!!!!

by Barb on Sun, 04/22/2012 - 21:44

Lookin' good favorite Auntie!! Syd is beautiful in her pictures. Crazy judge...Where are the AlexMesa/Cooper pictures???

by Jennifer G. on Sun, 04/22/2012 - 23:07

Well, I didn't actually see Alex or Mesa all I owe some picture next week I guess:)

I hope your day went well!!!!

by Elizabeth on Sun, 04/22/2012 - 21:49

I'm glad to see that even when the girls go frizzle-free they still have whiskers!

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