Halò to all my bonnie lassie friends we met on our Scotland trip.
We left to Fife on Thursday evening after picking up Colin from work. It was a very long journey, at least 480miles each way! We drove for two hours, then have a rest, carried on for another two hours; we settled the night in the car with the shelties at a services station passed Preston. It was not a comfy night sleeping in the car but we couldn't leave the dogs in the car on their own and all the travel lodges won't take more than two dogs!
We "woke up" around 5am and carried on our journey. Thanks to the wonderful "Motorway Walks" guide I bought last year. They have listed so many walks throughout the country for drivers and dogs. We stopped at Haidrian's Wall to stretch all the legs! Of course, we only did a short walk rather than the 84miles.
the shelties and their daddy at walk
we were walking along the riverside, we met a guy with his spaniels, he told us there is an Otter Family lives in the river and he has seen them two days in the row, different times in the day. I was hoping we are lucky to see them but I don't think they are very impress with Sing running in the water, so they didn't show up and we haven't have time to wait for them. Hopefully next year, we can meet the Otter Family.
Sipzie is a so happy to be out of the car!
We crossed the Scottish Border quite early on Friday morning, as we were not in any rush. We found another walk on the way to Fife. We stopped at Castle Dangerous! Why it is called Castle Dangerous, I don't know, that's what the book said and the name sounded interested so we decided to go there! It was a lovely walk. Friday's weather was a bit of mix bag, cloudy/drizzly/windy/sunny ... We were very lucky, each time we stopped to walk the dogs, the rain stop too, eventhough it wasn't sunny but it was dry enough for a walk.
The KNIGHTs Shelties @ Castle Douglas
the shelties are so happy to be able to run around
Each time I see them so happy running around chasing each other, I wish I could move to Scotland and have this beautiful places to let them run free. They truly belong here!
Saturn has been a very good boy, eventhough he has his eyes on the sheep but he knew he is not allow to herd them, he just watched ...
I know I am bias but he is such a handsome laddie!
there are sheep everywhere and they are not scare of the dogs or human
we spent a good two hours walking casually in Castle Douglas, the shelties were very happy. They were so well behaved around the sheep, it gave me the confidence to take them for more country walks and country holidays!
After the walk, we carried on our journey to Fife. Nikki kindly offered her house for us. I was so glad that we have a comfy house and bed for the night after a rough night in the car. Thanks Nikki! Later, Yvonne and her mum came to join us; then Bob & Janette pop in with wee Bailey, truly shelties heaven! You got to be a sheltie lover to enjoy an evening like this. There were EIGHT shelties from different ages in the house!
Unfortunately no early night but when we got to bed, it didn't took us long to fall asleep. We were up again early on Saturday morning to drive up to Kingdom of Fife Agility Show. This is my first time competing in Scotland. The showground was lovely, the field where they set up the rings were fantastic. The grass was nicely cut, no uneven bits, very much like bowling green. That is the BEST outdoor ground I have run!
The whole show was quite relaxing, no rushing at all. I have entered Sing in one Agility class; Saturn in an Agility and a Jumping class; Sizzle in the Champ. Saturn got to run in the Agility first, he was awful, hehehe ... jump all his contacts! Naughty sheltie! Then, Sing got to run the same Agility. For some reason, he went around the 2nd jump, I guess I probably push him too much that went around the jump and came back to jump the right way (!), I thought we got a refusal for that, so I didn't work hard after that, it was a challenging course, we just ran casually and I did a stupid mistake to get him eliminated! Then, I found out he wasn't faulted at all! Duh! Saturn later won his Jumping by a good margin. It was quite a challenging course too. I am really please with him.
Sizzle ran well in his Champ. We started with Agility qualifier, it looked like an easy fast flowing course. We watched many large dogs and medium dogs got faulted and eliminated, that made me think it's probably not such an easy course after all. I just have to go for it. Sizzle was a good boy, maybe the Scottish air did him good, he went off like a rocket. He ran very well and even stick to his see-saw. It was one of these heavy see-saw that worries me but I need not have to worry at all.
Then, later in the Jumping qualifier, the 2nd tunnel (blue tunnel) caught so many eliminations and I was worried too. I dare not push too much. I was hoping he stay close to me and be responsive. Again, he was a good boy and I managed to do what I want to do eventhough there were a few wide turns.
Sizzle got 3rd in the both qualifier rounds and he was second last to run in the Final. I wasn't confidence with the course, the jump in front of the DW was so inviting, it was the spitting image of our last Champ at Agility Club. My worried is Sizzle will only see the obstacle in front after the DW, that has becomes our weakest point! Surely, I wasn't hang back enough and not pulling enough ... he took the jump and we got eliminated! And later, he kept going into the 2nd pole! We were practicing the same entry on Thursday at training and I cannot understand why he still went into the 2nd pole after my second attempt?
Overall, I am very proud of my wee man. This is the first time we got into the Final, hopefully next Champ, we will have three clear rounds!
Sizzle's Champ run at KOF:
I've got to meet up with some Scottish sheltie friends and had a good sheltie talk! We managed to get some of the them for a photo before we left home:
left to right:
Saturn, Sipzie, Seagull, Sing & Sizzle of The KNIGHTs Shelties
We were at Agility Club this weekend. I am fed-up with towing so decided to travel on each day. It wasn't a bad journey for us, probably the closet venue, just under an hour.
Saturday was a very busy and stressful day. I have Champ class with Sizzle and at the same time, the Crufts Team qualifier was on! The weather didn't help either! It was very foggy and drizzling all morning. The rain was so persistent, when the Champ class started at 9am, the ground was wet and muddy. They started the Small Champ Jumping first, I was more prepare this time, just in case the caller shouted my name, I knew there is nothing serious happen. Luckily the caller Liz is my friend and we knew each other. She didn't call my name but came to tell me she will tick me off the list, how nice!
Sizzle misjudge his pacing (or was it too slippery?), he hit the first bar. Luckily he is so lightweight and the bar didn't drop but then he has to adjust himself in the wet condition. We managed the tricky bits and poor Sizzle fell over after jump #13 eventhough I tried not to turn him tight around the wing at this condition. We went clear in this qualifier round. WooHoo!
Then, we got eliminated in the Champ Agility qualifier round, the tunnel in front of the DW was too inviting for him. I looked back the video and knew that I didn't call him early enough to turn him. I leave it too late. I am still working on our timing! Otherwise, he ran lovely in this round. I think I am getting better with Champ? Our first Champ, we got two eliminations; this is our second Champ, only one elimination; maybe I will have two clear rounds in my third Champ? Hahaha ... am I too optimistic? I am very happy the way we both run the Champ though, he was a real good boy. I thought he would be a wimp after fell over at jump #13 but he was so good to continue running :)
our Champ run:
After the Champ, I have to concentrate on our Team run, this is the last qualifier for us, neither of our Small nor Medium Team has qualified, so there is some pressure somewhere ... The Medium Team was on before the Small. Sing got to run for the Medium at this qualifier. Normally I would run him 2nd or 3rd but don't know why I decided I want to run last, maybe I do like pressure? Or maybe I was too tired rushing around the Champ class? Anyway, when I got Sing, our Team was ready to run and I haven't even compose myself to run in the Team mode yet! Luckily we go last but I can tell you that I was nervous when I see the three dogs in front of us went fast and clear! Zen started off the Team well, super fast clear round; followed by Smo & Tyler, these two has superb running contacts, when Lisa grab hold of my baton, Sing and I went. He was such a good boy, he knew his job too well, I don't have to worry at all. I told myself, CLEAR, CLEAR, CLEAR. I knew my only worried is his running DW, we haven't been practicing that at all, so finger crossed he HIT the area and he did that beautifully, 4 paws in the contact area, you cannot fault him for that!
Colin managed to captured Sing's run only; when the Team ran, he went away to fix the car alarm. He thought someone has tried to break in to get to the dogs when the alarm went off, by the time he got to the ring, he saw me and Sing on the line, so sorry we didn't have the whole Team run:
Unfortunately our Small Team picked up 15 faults and didn't get to qualify:
Saturn didn't do well in his Agility and Jumping in the morning, he has a lovely A Frame but decided he can fly and took a big leap over the DW! Bad sheltie! I didn't get to walk the Jumping, so we went unsteady clear in that round. Later, he made up for it in the Jumping Pairs with Smo, we came 2nd!
Smo & Saturn pairs:
That sum up our Saturday. I think we finished around 3pm but we stayed to cheer for Brodie in the Medium Starters Final. You can read all about him on his blog.
We were back again on Sunday, this was a mad day. I had Agility with the medium boys, Saturn again wasn't up for it, Sing ran nicely but went into the wrong end of the tunnel :( Then I went to help at the ring for a bit, then went to run Sizzle in the KC Olympia. It was a nice flowy course, Sizzle ran clear but had so many wide turns:
After the KC Olympia, we went to run the G6-7 Agility. It was a tricky course that Sing ran at the Medium height. I never thought Sizzle would get around it as I saw so many fast dogs made mistake. Unfortunately, he was flat and didn't go his usual speed and we managed to clear it! He got a 3rd place!
After that, we have nothing for ages ... I went back to help at the ring a bit then wander off a bit, taking Sipzie around the rings and play with her ... it felt like ages when we got to run again. Saturn got his massage from Sara, hope that at least loosen his muscles a bit, he was stiff, sore and tight.