Finally Autumn has arrived and temperatures are nicely lowering enabling us to get out for lots of runs, we usually run the dogs four times a week and dogs are increasing fitness and we are having fun training single leaders with Mars and Zinny who are doing a smashing job. We are using two different forests making the most of the lots of turns in one which is a few hours drive, and the straighter trails of our local forest 30 minutes away. We hope the combination will work well and prepare the dogs for our first race planned in Suffolk which is a combination of fast trails and tight turns.
Early in the month Mars and Zinny had a second visit to Chief BVA eye pannelist Ian Mason and we are delighted there is no change and we have two 0/0 scores including tests for glaucoma. The scheme is a means of identifying inherited and non-inherited ocular conditions and we are super pleased with the result. Zinny also had her hips tested by Sharon Loades and scored 4/4.
The leaves are starting to fall and woolly jumper and socks weather is upon us. We have had a busy Summer despite taking a break from shows, the new van is now suited and booted with new dog cages and we are getting some sensible enough temperatures to run dogs and we all enjoyed the first runs after Summer on the Thetford trails with good friends and we took the opportunity to passenger on other excellent dog teams. Pickle and Zinny enjoyed their seasons and we are glad they will be over in time for the race season! Work not flirt girls!
We were really pleased with the fitness of the dogs after their summer break due to temperatures, I think our last run was on the 24th June, and we now concentrate on training and building fitness and having fun. Whilst we were in Thetford we visited our dog's chiropractor, Helen Lightfoot for a doggy team MOT before season starts and called in to Forstals for new harness fittings and other equipment made by Ali Koops at SASS Sled Dog Equipment. We are looking forward to getting our dogs out on different trails this season and having lots more adventures!
Heat wave continues in the UK and for us Southern folk so the harnesses have been hung up in exchange for more free runs for the sibes. Pickle has joined the others dogs by removing her jacket for the Summer and we are all looking forward to some rain and colder temps. We are keeping busy with working on the new husky travelling hotel.
I was honoured to be asked to judge the Siberian Husky Club of Great Britain stakes classes at the Three Counties Showground this month and enjoyed a really quality entry. My critique is below.
I would like to thank the Siberian Husky Club of Great Britain for the honour of the invite to judge the stakes classes yesterday,15th July 2018 and to the exhibits for the privilege of their entry. I was spoilt with the quality of the entries.
Junior dog or Bitch (4,0)
1st JOHN'S Azgard Kampa For Alepenkye
Feminine grey and white bitch with happy, mischievous expression, typical foxy head, almond shaped, correctly set eyes and good ear set. Light on her feet and moved with ease, was shown well and in good condition. Super Prospect
2nd SNELSON'S Salazka’s Mr Abernathy
Masculine, monochrome and white chap enjoying his day. Very balanced proportions with great angulation front and rear and showing plenty of reach and drive on the move, moved true, with purpose. Correct slope of croup. Well-muscled. Very nice boy, just preferred head type on 1 today.
3rd WAKKER'S Barking Brooks Mountain Mist At Ceannabeinne (imp, USA)
Monochrome male with a delightful, keen expression. Good angulation and balanced front and rear, nicely arched loin and correct croup, feeling the heat in this class today and just did not move as his well as his angulation suggests.
Limit Dog or Bitch (10, 3)
1st COOPER'S Janskcoo’s Strength ‘N’ Honour JW
Classy grey and white bitch with typical foxy head. Everything in moderation and so balanced. Nicely sloping pasterns, correct croup. Excellent shoulder and rear angulation, well supported with muscle and covered the ground of the large outside ring with ease, grace and purpose. Quality Bitch.
2nd KEEN'S Norste Dusty Miller at Nashanessen
Impressive white male with a mischievous, alert expression, nice depth of chest, great shoulder angulation and had superb reach and drive, complimented by hard muscle he moved true, with power and happy purpose. Very nice feet and slope of pasterns. Super boy.
3rd SMITH & MARCH'S Janskoo Echoes In Eternity
Pretty grey and white bitch with the most beautiful foxy head and gentle expression, good arch of neck and correct angles front and back, moved well but did not have the reach and drive of 1 & 2 in this class today.
Open Dog or Bitch (10, 2)
Stunning quality of entry in this class making some hard decisions, all very worthy exhibits.
1st KEEN’S NASHANESSEN’S STANLEY
Masculine agouti and white, with typical foxy head, loved his moderate bone and overall proportions and was a picture of power and balance. Moving true, he was light on his feet and ate up the large ring. Great feet, nice slope of pasterns and bend of stifle. Very nice boy.
2nd PLATT'S RYKALOV SPARKS AT WIGHTFLIGHT
Striking agouti and white male with a happy, keen expression. Another impressive boy with a well laid back shoulder, he covered the ground well showing reach and drive, he powered around the ring with ease and purpose. Superb feet. Being super picky today, preferred the bend of stifle of 1.
3rd GRISBROOKE’S AZGARD SPINDRIFT
Splendid agouti and white male, loved his foxy head and mischievous expression. Well balanced with great shoulder angulation and rear, good feet and correct sloping pasterns enabling him to cover the ground with power and ease. Nice arch of loin, correct angle of croup, everything is there, look forward to watching this boy mature.
Louise Evans (Demoneira)
A productive time is being had this month at home getting the dogs out for nice runs when temperatures allow and lots of secure free runs in the field. We have sold our old husky bus and we are busy converting the new van into a husky hotel in time for race season. Dogs are all at various stages of nakedness so they have had their summer bath to encourage coat removal before it gets really sticky down South and had their worming treatments. Lots of kennel admin and general dog yard maintenance replacing chewed parts of their jungle gym and for our dignified oldies have added new lower platforms, so they can still royally survey from a height but that height is easier to access. We celebrated a birthday this month with our youngest Winterdance, Cassidy Squidge turning seven! Happy Birthday Cass!
We are looking forward to the race season but we are also really enjoying this down time with the dogs, with no time pressures and nothing scheduled in and not planning the long drive to a race site, accommodation and the very important weekend hob heatable food prep! As I get older I really value time and Summer gives us that time. Dogs still get out for runs but everything is much more relaxed and it is so good to get that balance. This fine madness is a lifestyle we have chosen and love because we are passionate about the dogs but as in nature, balance is key.
I write this however, knowing that as soon as the days start to draw in and the temps are regularly cool that we will all be very ready to start the race season.
Pickle enjoying her fourth birthday with a paddle at Loch Morlich, Scotland
We were delighted to enjoy a visit from Zinny's breeders ( Thunderfeel Seppala Kennels) who came to visit from Michigan, USA and we all enjoyed a lovely week in the Scotland, starting with a road trip from the flatlands of England to Scotland. Our base was in the Cairngorm mountains and we visited the West coast of Scotland and had an adventure to the wonderful Isle of Skye. Dogs enjoyed runs at Feshiebridge and country walks and it was just a really fun week with like minded people and great to chat with experienced dog folk who can bring a different perspective to running and living with the breed. Zinny was pleased to see her ol' ma and pa again and it was an amazing break away in a beautiful part of the world.
After our trip the dogs took a visit to see Helen Lightfoot chiropractor for their end of season MOT, Helen has owned and worked Siberian huskies for over thirty years so knows what strains to look for in a working dog. Mars is now back to best and our other dogs had a few minor tweaks keeping the hard driving dogs in tip top condition.
This month we purchased a new, shiny husky bus and we will now be spending the summer turning the interior into a husky and human travelling hotel ready for next season.