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.
Lovely start to the month when we found out that Mars placed third in the Scottish Siberian Husky Club Top Dog Awards and Zinny placed joint fifth in the club's Puppy Awards. Mars was also top ten Siberian Husky in the UK, placing 9th with the Siberian Husky Club of Great Britain Awards.
With very limited showing we are really pleased!
This month we enjoyed a weekend of shows and camping with the dogs, starting with Matt going back to home to his native Wales at the WPBAW where we showed under Siberian husky breed specialist judge Julia Simms (Snowspeeder). Mars won a very strong limit class, Zinny placed fourth in junior from a large junior entry and Pickle fourth from twelve quality entries. We had a lovely time camping with friends and dogs and took a trip the next day to the SHCGB Champ show, Mars, Zinny and Snikadoo at his second ever show all got placed in a large entry under breed judges Ali Koops and Julie Foard.
1) Evans’ Eversepp Arizona at Demoneira: Really liked this boy, he pushed hard in the challenge too. Outmoved all the others in his class, nice stride with good reach and drive, well muscled and well constructed. Nice turn of stifle, good tail set, nicely sloping pasterns and good lay of shoulder. Nothing flashy about this boy, just a good honest dog, what you see is what you get! Had a super expression, when he decided to use his ears!
Mars wins first place in Limit under Breed Specialist Julia Sims (Snowspeeder) at WPBAW 2018
Showing for us in a nice day out with our dogs and getting the opinion of breed judges we respect and we have been delighted with the feedback we have been given on our dogs and this has confirmed how we want to move forward with future plans, we want to keep that wonderful drive & attitude that can only be proven on the trail but also want to keep type and the breed traits that makes a Siberian a Siberian, not any other breed. Our real happy place is on the trail with the dogs, so we will be taking a break from showing over the Summer and concentrating on enjoying as many hook ups and runs that temperatures allow down South, in preparation for a full 2018/2019 working season.
We are counting down the days for race season!
Show pictures courtesy of Yvonne Davis
Beginning of March saw the arrival of the 'beast from the East' cold temps and snow from Siberia so nothing for it than for the Siberians to have some fun snow days at our local trails! Sadly travel conditions in the South West meant that we decided not to risk the drive to Suffolk for the last race on the BSHRA Calendar but the dogs and humans had a fantastic time. We took a trip to Crufts under judge Penny Evans with Mars, whilst an in season Pickle stayed at home with Matt, we left Zinny at home too as it's a long day especially for young dogs. Every dog has his day and nothing for Mars this year but we had a really fun trip and we are so proud of him. Lovely picture from Yvonne of Mars strutting his stuff on the famous green carpet.
Ring to trail - Pickle, Zinny, Mars & Kara
Very busy month, dogs have been enjoying the colder temps and we finally had some dry runs recently which has made a welcome change for us all! We are running two teams in training, the younger, quicker dogs and concentrating on building up positive experiences for Zinny and a veteran team that have a wonderful time together. Dogs are at a really good level of fitness and we have been alternating distances for the younger team from 6 miles to 3 miles and including nice controlled passenger rig training with the younger four dogs.
This month saw a trip up North to complete a Kennel Club requirements of a dog show Judge rules and regulation seminar and exam which was successfully passed and was a really interesting day.