Wow, what fun we had at the fabulous 5-day cluster in Mobile … the Gulf Coast Classic Dog Show was spectacular and Annie and Lilly both did so well. Annie won several Reserve Winners Bitches in her 12-18 month class, and Lilly won Winners Bitch at 5 different show as well as Best of Breed Owner Handler out of the Bred By Class. Thank you so much to the amazing judges who appreciated how special these girls are and for your kindness, thoroughness, and positive atmosphere your provided in the ring for dogs and handlers alike: Patricia Trotter, Charles Trotter, Polly Smith, Charles Olvis, and Dana Cline. Lilly just needs 2 more points now to finish her Championship, then we are going to pursue Scent work (as per her request lol! She loves it (conformation not so much but she tries for me because she loves me and wants to please!). She and her sister, Princess Buttercup, are enjoying their classes with Cindy at "Use Your Nose". Look what this fabulous sport can lead to! https://www.wbrc.com/story/38575497/cancer-detecting-dogs-sniff-for-clinical-partners/
Here are some scenes from last weekend's Mobile dog show!
Owner foolishly entered 3 dogs in a Rally Obedience trial the end of August. My dogs are smart! They can cram learn. Then, realized that KK should not enter if she is indeed pregnant and her breeding with Champion Hill Country's Bazinga "took", so that's wasted money. However, I'll make her train as if she's going, just to keep her active. Tonight was Macintosh's and Miss Dior's 1st session. (They've finished their championships in conformation, so trying to keep them active and add some more titles AFTER their names.) Macintosh has already received 2 qualifying scores for Tricks so he is working on the tricks titles, but he has not done Rally.
We're modeling our cram training sessions after KK's (another blog) and tonight was our first one ... the "Mac 'n Cheese Session". I tried a few new things I've learned since KK's training (such as making sure to have a goofy, delightful, huge smile on my face for the "watch me" ... a trick I learned from Jancinthe Bouchard last spring .... you want to provide a fabulous face that the dog enjoys delighting in!) Miss Dior had a blast but, surprisingly, Macintosh did not learn as quickly and did not enjoy tonight's training. I did it outside and dusk was approaching, so perhaps that scared him a bit. I'll train inside tomorrow with him. Here's some footage of Miss Dior .... she rocked it and I think she's going to be GREAT at Rally.
It was a HOT day to be in a float in Alabama but we came prepared with cooling pads, ice bags, fans, and lots of water and MAN did those girls look cute in their pink tutus! We had fun being a part of this great fundraiser for the Greather Birmingham Humane Society.
Wow, what a great time we had at the Tunbridge dog show. Lilly won BOS, WB, BW almost every day but the final day, Princess Buttercup won under Dana Cline. It was so wonderful meeting amazing pug breeders and pugs in a different part of the country. There were some incredible pugs and I was so glad to see some representations from some older lines such as the Cado pugs. Biggie (Hill Country's Puttin' on the Ritz) was there all 4 days, so of course no Best of Breed, but it was nice getting Best of Opposite Sex to Biggie!
Lilly and Princess Buttercup have been participating in the Birmingham Obedience Training Club's nose work class and Lilly absolutely ROCKS. I think we have found her special thing, but we'll also keep working on her conformation. I can't get over how much they love this sport!
At just 8 months with limited showing Miss Dior received her AKC championship in conformation. Many thanks to Judge Don Sutton for appreciating her and awarding the final major she needed. She has many points toward her grand championship as well, but we are taking a break from conformation to do some obedience training and earn some titles after her name as well as before :)!
In March, 2019 Miss Dior and Lilly went to NC and participated in their 2nd cluster of shows. Just like her mother KK, Miss Dior looked at the judge like such a little Diva. Both girls had fun visiting a farm en route home where they saw their 1st goats and pigs!
Wow! What an exciting trip to Tallahassee, Florida for the pups' 1st official show (for points). All 4 girls participated in 2 shows Wednesday, and the Thursday, Friday, Saturday shows, and Miss Dior and Annie participated in the Sunday show. We couldn't have handled so much without the help of Jancinthe Bouchard, Shannon Halley, and others (thank you SO much for helping us show these lovely girls!) and we LOVED the fact that EACH of the girls were recognized by different judges. (Thank you for appreciating these special pugs!) They ALL won their class, Miss Dior, Lilly, and Buttercup won Winners Bitch, (Miss Dior now has 7 points toward her championship), and Buttercup won Best of Winners AND Best of Breed Owner Handler! At just 7 months, these girls are off to a great start!
Working multiple jobs (pianist, teacher, Wag dog walker, lecturer, composer/arranger, author etc.) makes it difficult to find training time for the pups. So, with a big cluster show coming up, the puppies are going to do 10-day boot camp which we'll document here.
Train the Trainer
Day 2 - begin station training
As a musician, I love to use music throughout life …. I love to clean house to Vivaldi or Salsa, I love to decompress with Blues or Bach etc., SO, each station except for #1 has its own music, of course!
1) Basic Skills = silence, (as we need to hear the clicker)
2) Workout = For treadmill work, what better song than "Too Fat Polka"?
3) Table = Too Sexy (we'll combine Table work with Down and Back)
4) Leash Work/Down and Back
5) Grooming = TBA (probably Miss America Theme Song!)
Here's the "workout video" we'll be using.
Pickwick's Forever is Now (Princess Buttercup) - Training Session Day 2:
Pickwick's Thrill on Blueberry Hill (Lilly) - Training Session Day 2:
Since Lilly and Miss Dior are going to be in the ring at the same time (Bred by Exhibitor), Jeff and I are going to try to start training together some. Lilly was all about hopping with him today and Miss Dior only wanted to look at me. Annie wanted NOTHING to do with the treadmill! In fact, Annie didn't feel like training today period lol.
The hi-light of Westminster for us was definitely when Miss Dior got stuck under the tv stand! But we all had tons of fun cheering for Biggie pug (Macintosh's cousin!) even if he had to share the win with a fluffy Havanese. Today was a jam-packed day with 4 "other" (non-dog) jobs so, when evening came, and it was the last and only available time to train, we decided to watch the Westminster Toy Group instead …. and hope the girls picked something up just by watching TV (LOL).
Rainy days and pugs do NOT mix. But, thankfully, I had an umbrella for the pups to do our numbers. Baths in the morning because HANDLING CLASS tonight with the Birmingham Kennel Club. (They have been on break most of the pups' training lives --- November-mid Feb --- so the pups haven't had any classes except the one when they were 4 months, right before the classes went on break.) SO, needless to say, they were not prepared. I was honestly a bit surprised how fearful and timid they were (Miss Dior was barking at all the other dogs … other side of the coin of fear) and all the pups' (except Annie who has had lots of classes and shows already) went DOWN. So sad. This means, we've got to up the outings game and we're going to attempt to get the girls out to ALL of the 8 available locales (and more if you include Brew Pubs!) …. 4 nearby pet stores, Home Depot, Lowes, Academy Sports, Another sports store. AND, I need to prepare some even more tasty, high-incentive treats for these outings. No photos or videos from the Handling Class since we were SO busy handling 4 dogs. Annie did great, though!