Tuesday, July 24, 2012

Can't think of a clever title ... FCR Specialty

Amanda took this photo ... apparently Kaleb has a road named after him near Vancouver.

I haven't posted until today, because I don't know where to start. When I'm overwhelmed I just freeze. But here I go - I'll try my best to sound coherent.

The FCR National was awesome. Like I said in my previous post - it wasn't about getting ribbons, it was about K. We met so many cool people and gorgeous dogs. Conformation is so subjective and that is what is hard about it - JUST the dog is being judged, no amount of training can prepare us for it really - hell, he hadn't had a show lead on in 2 years, and we literally just went in the ring once I put it on. In Sweeps on Thursday, he was not the judge's cup of Tea, and got dumped. Come Friday during the main Specialty classes I was unsure what to expect yet again. He was in a line-up of beautiful Veteran 9-11 boys - these are not your average overweight, limping old dogs - these dogs are all still working - yep, all of them. Mrs. Hutchinson started with the 4th place winner and went up, so you can imagine my stress when there were 3 dogs left standing there - and only one was 1st place. I was ready to leave the ring as I was sure we wouldn't be picked - like the day before ... but low and be-fricken-hold - she picked KALEB!!

 Holy shit he won.

I almost pooped my pants. But instead I cried and gave Kaleb a kiss. What an honour. I've never hugged so many people in my life.

So since he won his class we got to wait around to go in for Best of Breed - he has made the final cut before in previous Specialties - but at 10.5, I was pretty sure he was too old to keep up with the young'ens in the final lineup. What a testament to his breeder, and his lineage in striving to create a TRUE Dual-Purpose dog. 10.5 still in working condition, never really been a day lame in his life.  This breed is one of the few that is the same dog in the field as it is in the show ring. Working ability is VERY important, and the dogs in the BIS ring had MANY MANY titles behind their names. At the Banquet the Judges mentioned this as the key thing that makes this breed unique and special - and breeders take HUGE amounts of pride in this fact.

Oh and then Kristi stopped by with the Collie Nation!!!! Finally Gyp felt at home with some of her kind. It was great to see you Kristi!! (photo by Kristi)

Rex and Gyp the Zombie Collies who were going to eat our brains
... Lou and K the long lost brothers and "The Pug".

OK sorry for the side track ... on to Best in Show!!

Long story short - Best of Breed was a stunning boy named Dash that I drooled over a few times over the weekend, who Kristi also picked out of the crowd in 5 minutes of being at the show :) The judge then had 4 "JAMS" (Judges Awards of Merit) to pass out to dogs with the qualities she was looking for from the final lineup still in the ring. Three were given out and she had one more in hands, and holy crap she walked towards Kaleb and gave us the HUGE rosette!

That is a moment I will never, ever, ever, ever forget. I would have pooped my pants, but I already did that earlier in the day. This time I just smiled and teared up and did a little jig (in my head). The Best in Breed / Best of Opposite / Best of Winners and the 4 JAM dogs got to do a victory lap around the ring - it was so cool. Kaleb had no idea, he just liked the fact he was given free treats and people were clapping for him :)

Stay tuned for the next blog post 
... our downtown Vancouver adventure ...


Taryn said...

Sounds like it was a great day! Congrats!

Diana said...

Congrats thats just awesome. I think you need to give yourself credit too. You got him to the vet quickly and saved his life with the torsion. Congrats again.

colleen said...

I used to take Lickman Road to work everyday when I lived in Chilliwack :) Very suiting for handsome boy, Kaleb!

Abby (Doggerel) said...

Congratulations to you and Kaleb! How very special!

Unknown said...

Congrats to both of you! It is a wonderful feeling having a stranger reconfirm what you will never forget...you have a very special boy.

Nicki said...

That's fantastic!

Kristi said...

What a great road trip in honour of a great dog. So nice to see you and Amanda and your pack. Lou and K-Man pretty much seemed like long-lost brothers from another mother!

WigglyZack said...

Wow, what a great trip. Congrats Kaleb!!!