Wednesday, September 30, 2009

Licosateria Mai M'SADIE Gold

Sadie (aka Mercedes) joins her new family today! The house is very quiet without her.

Monday, September 28, 2009

A good way to end the season!

I was worrying sick all last week about Sizzle being unwell. The same old story again, upset tummy, he looked very fed up, tired and miserable since last Thursday. He gone off food for more than 48 hours. I have taken him to see the vet for more blood test and fecal test but results came back NORMAL. I also spoken to many people to find out how I could treat him, then came this Sizzle saver Rosie vet. Rosie is not a vet but she has dogs for years and she is very experienced with lots of thing, dogs related of course. Rosie asked me to try him on panacur, believe it or not, almost immediately (two hours later) after the panacur, Sizzle suddenly bounced back like he has never been ill before! He was begging for food and chasing the puppies again! WooHoo.
On Saturday night, he look well enough to do agility so I thought I can go to Suffolk 5 Rivers with him? We were up 4am (crazy!) on Sunday morning to go to Suffolk 5 Rivers. It took us 2.5 hours to drive there. This is his first Kennel Club Open Show debut, so I will go and enjoy myself. Never! I was like a nerves bag. If you could recall back in August when Sizzle misjudge the jump and jump into the wooden pole and got a mouthful of blood at the KC Festival? We have some problem since, he will either go under the jump (which he prefers) or go around the jump, especially when the jump is set in the corner (like a pinwheel or a jump on the left or right after the contact); also he becomes more aware and go slow and steady now. I guess he is worried that he will jump into the pole again. We didn't do much of training since, I thought I will give him a break to recover/forget about the accident but NOPE, sheltie nevers forget anything! On Thursday, I took him to our weekly club training, he still went under the jumps and he isn't as keen as he was before. So, when we arrived at the show yesterday morning, I was still debating if I should run him or how to run him.
He has the first class in the morning, the Graded 1-3 Agility. I walked the course many times and the more I walk, the worrier I get. He has the running contacts, there is a sharp turn right jump after the A Frame, I don't really want to start it that way, I was hoping there is a jump straight forward after every contacts for a baby dog. Sizzle handled himself nicely, eventhough he looked hesitated on the upplank (A Frame and DW), otherwise he covers the ground very well. To be honest, when I ran him, I didn't think he was fast, I know he can be so much faster (and smoother) than that, I was so nervous and I wasn't sure what I was doing when I am in the ring with him. I probably watch him like a hawk! Isn't that terrible?
When I finished the last jump with him, I felt a big relief! I don't care we went clear or not, I've just done it. I played with him (reward) for a little while before I can calm myself down. Some of my agility friends were telling me it was a good round and some even kind enough to go and check our time for me. Yes, he went into the lead! And stays there! I wanted to shout out loud! My GOD! Our first show and we have won it. It wasn't a small class, I can tell you. 133 dogs but 80+ dogs in Grade 3, so he has beaten all the other 80+ dogs!
Actually that was a bad thing though, all morning I got so emotional, so many people coming up to congrats me (how nice!). I nearly miss walking his jumping course. It was a nice jumping course with a little difficult weave entry. When I was walking the course, I meant to be in front of the jump before the weave to guide him but when we ran it, I was behind the jump. I must have forgotten what I was supposed to do so he went into 2nd pole. Other than my stupid mistake, he did the jumping beautifully, especially the bit after the cloth tunnel, the gap between the jump was tight and he turned really well. I am so please with him!
Later in the Helter Skelter class, it was purely my laziness. It was a big course, a long way round and up and down the hill. It was very hot and I cannot handle the heat. I got so tired and lost my mind. I wish I didn't run him as I might have put him off. He is one good little boy, I enjoyed running him and queing in the small class is so different to the medium. All new experienced!

The photographer took this photo of Sizzle doing his weave, he looks like a spider to me! I always think he is a double strider but not until I saw this picture and watch the video again and again. It looks like he started with double striding and got faster and doing single striding. I have not seen a small dog doing single stridiging before.

Other than Sizzle going from Grade 3 to Grade 4 this weekend at Suffolk 5 Rivers; Saturn also surprised me by going Grade 6. Our first class was the Jumping, we've got eliminated in that class, he was hyper and not listen again and doing his own course! When we did our agility round, he was calmer (a bit too calm), I determined to get him to do his contacts by pointing at the bottom each time he was on it, so I know we went clear when we finished. I never even think about getting a place in that class as I feel we were slow, so I didn't go to check his time. We went straight to Helter Skelter from the Agility, he went clear in that, then we went for a good walk and forget all about checking his time.

As we were about to set home, I heard me and his name being called for presentation. I thought it could be the Helter Skelter class but it turned out to be he WON the Grade 5 Agility and that take him up to join the big boys in Grade 6! WooHoo! I feel good, really good!

I know I have a long list of winter projects for the boys!

I did ran Sing but he wasn't himself. He wasn't up to the challenge this weekend, then I saw him taking his paw up. I guess he needed a longer rest. The physio is still on holiday, maybe I should change to another one rather than waiting for her to come back.

Licosateria Mai POSH Gold

Posh (aka Porsche) is the first one to leave us to join her new family in Norwich. Hopefully she will make Sally and her family very happy.

Saturday, September 26, 2009

more puppies photos!!

Yesterday, we have The Hennessy Family came to visit the girls. The Hennessy kids are the best kids you can have to social with your puppies, Ryan, Sian and Ailish are so gentle with dogs and I am so lucky to have Ann and her children coming to play with the pups whenever I have a litter of puppies, maybe Ann should think of hire out her children to puppy owner? Or do you think I could convert Ann to have a sheltie next time?

The Hennessy + Sing's family

Sing's Family

Ann and her children are the best puppy massager, all the pups look chilled on their lap and they all fell aleep after a while:

how chill can you be?

Ailish with Skye (aka Ferrari)

Sian with daddy Sing and his little girl Sadie (aka Mercedes)

Samber gives Ryan a kiss to thank him for socialising with her babies

not puppy related but I like this Kung Fu kid!

Thursday, September 24, 2009

Saturn's agility run and some photos and the jumping course

I forgot to post this video together with my agility news. Here are two video clips from Saturn's agility run on the weekend. On Saturday, he missed all his contacts, I thought he got his DW but the judge raised his hand so obviously NOT! He looked much more happy then. On Sunday when he got all his contacts, he was much slower and he actually slipped before jump #10. I also noticed I keep pointing at the contact on Sunday, I don't know if that makes him think he should do his contact?

Here are some photos taken by Ric Yates at Thatcham UKA show on Friday, Colin was at work so video at all. These are all from the Steeplechase classes. I like to see/compare how tight my dogs turn:

Sizzle in the Beginners Steeplechase

Both Sing and Saturn are in the Novice Steeplechase

I think Sing turns so tight that save him some times!

this is the Graded 5,6,7 Jumping course we ran at Stour Valley, the plan is not as it scale, I just draw it with memories! The first weave entry cost a lot of dogs having a fault and most dogs went into the wrong end of the tunnel, Saturn was the one got eliminated at the tunnel. The tunnel set so close to jump #8, when Saturn landed, he was already in the tunnel.

Wednesday, September 23, 2009

agility news and Sizzle update

We have a good agility weekend. We went to a local UKA show on Friday, both Sing and Saturn won their classes. Sizzle's tummy is playing up again, I ran him in the Steeplechase class, he wasn't his usual speed, he was rather casual, I think he did it because I want him to, poor boy and bad mummy! He got a 2nd in that class.

On Saturday, we went to Stour Valley, eventhough I haven't have first class in the morning but I have to go early because I was helping. Stour Valley is a very nice friendly show. I managed to help and run two dogs in few classes. Sing surprised me with his first win towards Grade 7! WooHoo! For my non-UK friends, we need 4 wins (at least 2 in agility) to go up to Grade 7. Sing won the Graded 5-7 Jumping. It was a big surprised as I never dream Sing will have a jumping win. I didn't even go and check my time after I ran my dogs, I went straight back to help in the ring. Later I heard from the tannoy that my name and Sing's name being called to realised he won the class. It was very emotional for me. I was crying all the way to get my trophy and cried all the way back to the ring I was helping. It was a tricky course, lot of dogs got trap with the weave entry (you need to weave twice!) and tunnel entrance. Sing was listening and I managed to do a lot of front crosses in this course, I know that slow him down but I heard there is only 2 clears in this class! Saturn got to run the same course but he got eliminated for going into the wrong end of the tunnel! The person that won Grade 5 had a time fault! Can you imagine how tough is that course? Sorry no video, as Colin went missing!

Sing did alright in the agility, he came 4th and Saturn got faulted at every single contacts, so 15 faults in total! In the Jumping pairs, Saturn pair with his usual partner Bracken. Brax did a fantastic round but Saturn messed up the weave! He was so fast that he missed a couple of poles! Sing was pairing with the new kid on the bloack Ziga. Ziga won the Agility and went up to Grade 4, this is only his 2nd show! That was a smashing round and he won by quite a margin! Ziga and Lizzy worked brilliantly in the pair and did some baby mistakes, Sing also messed up the weave! So, no places but we all having great fun together!

We finished early but I continue to work a bit before setting home to play with puppies!

On Sunday, we went to Trent Park. It was the last Eukanuba mini/mixi pairs heat of the year. Sing wasn't looking good that morning, he looked a bit stiff and he was slow in the Jumping. When we did the agility round, he almost trot along on the DW, then I know he must have hurt himself again. I was right, he pulled his shoulder again, the same one that he had pulled two weeks ago. I was trying to contact the physio we used to go to but she was away. I am resting Sing, only lead walking for him. It is a torture for him, he thought he did something wrong and he thinks this is a punishment! How can I explain to him this is for his own good?

Saturn for a change, becomes an angel. He won the Combined 3-5 Jumping by a BIG margin! 6 seconds! It wasn't a tricky course but again, lot of dogs got caught in the weave entry and the tunnel. Saturn has not even look at the tunnel this time and he did the snake and push through perfectly. Should I squeeze Colin again? He went missing when I ran Saturn, so no video! Arrrgghhh ...

In the Agility run, he surprised me by getting every single contacts! He did his 2o/2o on the DW and when I released him, he was still glue to the contact! I wonder if I confused the poor dog again. I just don't seem to understand what we are doing now. On Saturday, he missed his contacts and today he did all his contacts!

In the Eukanua mini/mixi pairs, it was a fast course again, no tricky bit at all, we came 7th. Hopefully we accumulate enough points to take us to Crufts next year. So far, we have 2 x 2nds; 1 x 13th; 1 x 10th and 1 x 7th.

What about Sizzle? I can't explain why he still has upset tummy. He has been on and off having upset tummy and everytime when he has his upset tummy, I rest him and do no training. He has been quite poorly since Thursday, he keeps stretching his stomach and with loose toilet. He cannot hold his toilet at night for the last few nights and every morning we woke up with his mess everywhere in the house, poor boy! I have taken him to see the vet and we did some tests and all the results came back today to say he is NORMAL, no problems. Weird! I am getting more and more frustrated about this. I just don't know how to treat it. I can't keep changing his food. I have tried out a few brands and it makes no different. His first KC debut supposed to be this Sunday but I don't think we are able to make it as Sing and Sizzle are poorly. It is good to have a weekend free from agility.

here are the pairs video from our weekend:

Tuesday, September 22, 2009

daddy's girls - 7 weeks already and all CEA clear!

The girls and the boys are keeping me very busy for the last few days!! I can't find time to do anything anymore, let alone blogging!! I am not complaining as the girls are too gorgeous and I just want to spend every minute with them.
These gorgeous girls turn 7 weeks today. I took them to Stone Lion Vet in Wimbledon to have their eyes tested this afternoon, they all CEA clear! WooHoo! I shouldn't be surprised as I expect all Sing's babies should be eyes clear but it is good to know that they are all clear!
These girls are getting more and more energetic. They all develop differently, they seems to grow overnight and personality/chracter started to show from 6 weeks. Samber's role has changed. She don't feed them anymore but she plays with them a lot when they are out in the garden. She is not keen when they are indoor. I guess the lounge is too crowded to run around.
I have taken quite a lot of good photos of the girls but just haven't have time to edit them (reduce size), so please bare with me, I will try to post them once I have time, now here are a few:

mama Samber wacthing over the girls' play

I just love this photo of mother and daughter! So sweet!

do you call this agile? Shame that she is not going to an agility home!

she is the most photogenic one

were you calling me?

travel in the car

we had a good agility weekend, more about that later ...

Wednesday, September 16, 2009

more photos

It is still very windy but dry today. I managed to get the puppies out in the garden for half an hour. The girls just love to go out, they ran around like a lunatic. It is impossible to catch them so I have to watch them carefully as we have a big fish pond. Dogs are amazing, they could sense all dangers, even just a pup. Everytime I saw the girls ran around, I thought they will ran into the pond any minute but they seems to know it is dangerous and their emergency break by the edge of the pond is just ridicolous!
the gorgeous parents! I am not bias but I think they are beautiful pair!

taking a family photo is never easy, the parents are so fedup with their kids!

uncle Sizzle is always happy to play with them

the girls still like the slide, they have been run up and down the ramp, for fun!

sorry folks, gotto post this picture, Porsche looks so funny!

I always start the tug game with one pup tugging at it, then another join in ...

... then they do it themselves

Ferrari loves her tuggy, in the mad way!

I think I prefer to have 2 pups or 4 pups as one is always get bully by the other two! It is unfair!!

play fight!

Ferrari is very cute, every night just before her bedtime, she loves to suck this little fluffy toy, then fell asleep.

Does this picture looks familiar to you? Yes, Zap was like that. Mercedes is most like him.

daddy's girls - 6 weeks

Can't believe these girls are 6 weeks old already! They certainly are more hardwork than Zap, at least three times harder!! Unfortunately the weather turned very cold this week, these girls are dying to go into the garden but I can't let them go out in the cold and wet weather. This also restricted our outing to the supermarket and town. They have been travel in the car with me to our weekly training and in the evening to the tube station to pick up thier grand-dad! They are getting used to the traffic now, after standing on the roadside watching the world goes by for the last week. All three girls are great tugger, I started tugging with one of them, then the next one join in, then another, so they ended up with a three way tug (I am out of that picture)! Again, Ferrari is the strongest! She would not let go at all, so everytime I have to let her win the tugging game. We also started the clicker this week, shelties are so greedy, so they have no problem learning the clicker at all. Ferrari is more advanced, she offered me a few behaviours already, mainly jump onto the wobble board and the skate baord! Once Mercedes & Porsche heard the clicker, they will both JUMP up on my lap to grab my finger full of squeeze cheese!!! I was struggling to find them some tiny collars, I had bought quite a few small collars at agiltiy shows and none of them are small enough for the girls. I managed to buy three very small pink collars for these princess at Paws in the Park and they start wearing them on Monday, they all hate it when I first put them on, they tried to get it out from their neck but Ferrari soon realised it is not going to happen, so she gave up! I guess she is too fat and lazy. Mercedes & Porsche still tried to scratch it every now and then but I am sure they soon get used to it.

little red hood Mercedes

Porsche is so cute with her little red heart cap on

what do you think about this fat girl?

Monday, September 14, 2009

Sing is making history!

Sing is making history!
To my knowledge, he is the first ever sheltie to do Dash 'n' Splash.
and in STYLE!

all smashing photos were taken by Steve Collins of momofoto

Everyone who knows Sing knew how much he loves water! He is not just a great swimmer but a good diver too. If you remembered I have post some photos of him diving into the freezing cold pond in Richmond Park last Autumn? Whenever we walk anywhere with lake/pond/water, we MUST let him get in there to satisfy himself, all weather! His breeder Paula said, he is a fish in disguise! How true is that?

Dash 'n' Splash sounded like a new sport but I rememebered seeing them at Hop Farm, Paddcok Wood many many years ago when we first started flyballing. I told Colin Sing will love it but we never get around to try it out or do it. People that have been there knew what I mean. The queue is always very long and you can quece for hours. With a dog like Sing, I will go mad as he is not just bark in excitement but wind! How could you stand in the queue with a dog barking and winding for hours before it is your turn?
Anyway, Agility and Flyball occupied all these years and we slipped our chances year after year. This year, I know our circumstances has changed, with mum and nephews staying with me, two litters of puppies, European Flyball Championship ... etc, agility sounded like the last thing on my list, so I decided I will make an effort for Sing and his Dash 'n' Splash.
Eventhough Sing loves water but we have never try this sport before and know absolutely nothing about it. Luckily they have a training day on Friday, so I booked in the morning for Sing and afternoon for Sizzle.
We got there nice and early on Friday morning and it was very quiet at Hop Farm, very unusual. As everytime we visited Hop Farm, it is always so crowded with lots of activities. This weekend, they have lots of doggie events, from agility, flyball, Dash 'n' Splash, GunDog Scruffy show, Canine Cross ... you name it, they have it, basically an all dogs related show!!
On Friday, lots of campers arrived and set up for the weekend. The pool is not crowded (open for pre booked training only) and we have plenty of time to ourselves. They have two small pools and the main one for Dash 'n' Splash. The small pools are open to the public to have a go and the main pool is for invitation only. As we have not done this before, we got to go to the small pool to see how Sing performs. The rules for the beginner (or dog have not done it before) needed to be on the lead to start with. Sing does not like to be restricted, so he wasn't keen to swim with someone holding his lead, I guess he thinks that I am not allow him to swim. I normally put him on the lead when I do not want him to swim. After a couple of go, I told the trainer if he can allow him off the lead and Gwain was very nice and kind and took his lead off, "splash", he is off and swim happily. Gwain was happy and said to me I can take him to the main pool. WooHoo!

So, off we go on the main pool. That is a different layout to the small pool. It has 30 feet long platform/runway and a 40 feet pool. The drop between the platform and the pool is only 2 feet, so you do not have to worry the dog gets hurt when they splash. The TOP dog is called Dash, a black lab cross with a pointer but he looks more like a lab, leaner and taller. He is holding the UK and European record. He jumps 28.5 feet!

The first time Sing and I were on the main pool, I don't know what to do or expect but he jump straight in but short distance, so Gwain told me to take him down the runway, I only went 1/4 back and he already dive in a good distance. Gwain was very shocked with Sing's talent. Oh Yes! Can you imagine a sheltie swimming? Let alone diving? Anyway, Sing attracks a lot of attention this weekend. We did try a few jump from different distance, he started off well with 14 to 15 feet then ended up the day with 16.5 feet. Amazing, isn't it? I can't believe he can jump that far! My estimation was 12 feet the most but how wrong was I?
I went home happily on Friday, with high spirit! I didn't do Sizzle as he wasn't happy and is not well. We went again on Saturday morning for the heat. You need to jump a certain lenght to get qualify for the Final. Once again, Sing proved he can jump further and qualified with 16.5 feet! In the Final, you can have three goes, one for practise and two for competition. Sing didn't need the parctise, his first jump was 17 feet! 2nd jump was 16.6 feet when his coat get wet and heavy! He ended up 3rd place behind Magic, a cocker spaniel jump 19 feet and a springer spaniel jump 17.5 feet, both of them are at least twice the body lenght of Sing! I am so very proud of him!

On Sunday, Sing looked tired in the morning but when he saw the pool, he got so crazy and dragging me to the platform. His performace wasn't as good as Saturday, he had 4 runs but he managed 16.5 feet as his best of the day. He actually slipped on the last run (you can see on the video). When he quiet down, I can see him limping and a little lame. Luckily we have a vet in one of the flyball teams, she kindly have a look at Sing and told me he has pulled his shoulder so NO Final for us! I was disappointed, Gwain and Kate were disappointed and the public was disappointed but I would not risk my dog. I know I will go back to do more in the future but we have a splashing time.
Sing did get a lovely 3rd place rosette and a rope ball and a small bag of Purina dog food. I bought him this towelling cool coat to reward him, that also keep him dry and warm.