8/24/08 - 9/2/08

Scott and I started our week by going to the Great North Woods of New Hampshire to camp. The plan all along had been to take Valeska and one of the baby V's. We did not decide which baby to take until the day before we left. Vince was the lucky camper. While on our trip we looked for animals by car, foot & canoe. Like his mom Vince did very well in the canoe. The most exciting animals we saw  were two bald eagles and a silly loon. Danielle stayed at our house and took care of the animal while we froze at night in our tent. Thank you Danielle for helping out.

Wednesday we groomed the dogs for the Canadian National and taught classes. Thursday we hit the road with: Valeska, Circe, Eve, Kit & Kermit. We arrived at Jeff & Amber's house late Thursday in Shubenacadie, Nova Scotia. They have a cute little house and a wonderful kennel setup for their Miakoda Siberians. Friday we took the dogs sight seeing. We saw Burntcoat Head which has the highest recorded tide in the world. Friday night we went into Halifax for the pizza social and to listen to Karen Ramstead's talk. It was the 5th time I had heard her talk, and Scott's 4th time, we both still enjoyed every minute of it.

Saturday was the National Specialty. What a busy day. We woke up at 5:AM to tend to the dogs, load up,  and drive back into Halifax to the show grounds. Eve was the first one to go into the show ring, since they started with puppy sweeps. Eve had never been on a show leash, and had no show ring training. All in all I thought she did great. She acted like a nice show dog, standing real well and not pulling on the leash. Eve has been going through a weird stage with her front, where she throws her front everywhere. I was proud that she was still able to take 4th place in her sweepstakes class under Karen Ramstead. Scott handled a few dogs for our friend Gail. He took Osceola in for veteran sweeps and took 2nd place. Then Scott took in Sky for the Working Dog sweeps. There was 10 in the class and Sky won the Working Dog sweeps! I think Gail was pleased.

The regular class judge, Vince Buoniello, started his judging at 10:20. Vince judges like no other judge we have ever shown to. He judges EACH dog to the standard by using a score card, and never judges the dogs to each other. I took Kermit in Bred By Exhibitor. I had spent weeks training him to get him just right. I was so proud at how well he did. Unfortunately we did not win, but we did place. Scott took Sky in and won the open class. Scott went back into the ring with Sky to battle it out with the Bred By dog. The bred by dog was nice (from Karen Ramstead's lines) and he ended up taking Winners Dog, and Sky took Reserve Winners dog. I should also mention that Curly, Eve's dad, took 2nd place in the open class. Then Scott took in Osceola for the regular veteran class and won.

Next we moved onto the girls. I knew I would soon have to take Valeska into obedience so I had Scott take Eve into junior puppy (6-9 months). Eve took 3rd place. Then Scott went into Bred By with Circe and took 2nd. 1st place went to Orion's beautiful daughter Vixen. I went into Novice B with Valeska. She missed her sits, so I know she is coming into season. All in all it was not bad though. On the long down I could see that she was uncomfortable laying on her stomach. Last week she had a fatty tumor removed from her belly and she has 4 staples. I think the staples were bugging her on the down, she popped up at the last second on the down and just sat there, so we did not qualify. Jeff showed Tymber in open, she is bald from having pups, but still took 2nd. Vixen ended up taking Winners Bitch!

During the lunch break I changed out of my suit and into my jeans since I figured I was done. Scott had to take Osceola in for breed because he won the veteran class. The juniors were being judged in another ring, which meant that a couple of people did not have handlers. Rosemary Hooker asked if I could take in her female champion just to play with her. I did not have time to change and I took her female champion in for fun in my jeans. Vince judged all of the dogs one at a time and then called back in his cuts. I was surprised when I heard that I made the second cut with Adela. Vince worked us hard and the outcome was Winners Dog taking the breed (Best Of Winners & Best Bred By), Winners Bitch taking Best Opposite Sex, Pippin (Orion's son) took the 1st Award Of Merit and Adela took the 2nd Award Of Merit and Best Puppy.  Osceola went back in with Scott and won Best Veteran.

Scott was to then take Kit into the regular show, but the show superintendent gave us the wrong number and the judge would not let her in. I was not a happy camper, and my red headed temper really showed.

That evening we went to the dinner and heard Vince's talk. After the talk Vince let us see the score cards. He rates them like a report card. Even though Kermit did not win he still got an A+, so that made me feel better, he thought he was narrow in the rear and over weight. Eve was an A, and he did not like her front. Circe was an A+. I checked the scores of all the Orion kids and grand kids and they were all either an A+ or an A++. Curly also got an A+, he thought his rear was too cow hocked.  I had also gotten a call from Jenny who owns Orion's grand kid Polar. Jenny showed Polar down in the states for the weekend and she took Winners Bitch (and even 1 Best Of Breed) all three days. So it was a weekend for the Orion kids and grand kids!

Sunday I did not show Valeska in obedience. She was uncomfortable on Saturday so I figured she would not be any better on Sunday. Scott showed Kit in open and won his class and took Reserve Winners bitch. It was Kit's last show. She is afraid of big dogs (Great Danes, Bull Mastiffs, etc.) so we are not going to push her. Her anxiety over the big dog fear shows too much in the ring. We then went to the Waterfront Boardwalk in downtown with Jeff & Amber. We had a good time enjoying the sights and eating ice cream at "Cows" which has the best Ice Cream in all of Canada. Then we drove home all night long.

We arrived home early Monday morning. Scott drove the whole 12 hours so I had him lay down while I did the chores. We then went to the last day of the Hopkinton State Fair. It was a lot of fun, but we were so tired. I almost fell a sleep during the pony pull, so once that concluded we went home to feed dogs and sleep.

Tuesday morning we had our first run of the season. I love fall training!

Big thanks to Angie & Whatleigh for taking care of the dogs while we were gone, and to Jeff & Amber for letting us stay with them.