Wednesday, December 31, 2008
Diva had the very best life possible, as do all Sue & Dave's lucky dogs, which, since Diva joined them, came to also include several rescue German Shepherds and a blue rescue Sheltie. Diva had a lively and fun personality and she will be missed.
Diva as a youngster winning a Puppy Group, BW & BOS.
Diva at home with her buddies Bear, Jewel and Spook.
Diva's only littermate, Ch. Whitegates Windfall - "Rocky"
Diva's dam, our beloved "Bunny", Ch. Whitegates Deja Vu - July 29, 1992 to November 23, 2003. By Am. Ch. Tall Timber Far Out Frisco ROM/ROMC ex Calabar Opening Night ROMC
Tuesday, December 30, 2008
I've included a picture of our tree, I did try to get one or more of the Sheltie girls to sit in front of it but they wandered off in disgust...
We had all manner of weather over the holidays, from snowstorms, freezing rain, regular rain, fog, windstorm, complete with power failure and a big melt. Now the snow is coming back. Yes, the weather widget you see on the right is accurate. When I first put it up there I would watch it. It would say "snow" and I'd think HA!! no it's NOT snowing....then I'd look out the window three minutes later and it is snowing... I've learned to trust it! On the right is a picture showing a bit of our kennel building and runs in the snowfall just before Christmas. Yes, we had the entire kennel painted this summer and did a lot of other work on it including a new roof and new doors.
Lots of birthdays coming up in January, our "birthday month"! In the meantime, all the very best for 2009 (wasn't it just 2000 yesterday??) to all our friends and family!!!
Tuesday, December 16, 2008
Some time later, Lori decided to get a second Sheltie. We had just bred Lacie's dam Sizzle again, to Ch. Imperial Aberdale Bold Image. This time there was a litter of 5, all girls, three blues and two tris. Lori and Chris had their pick of the available puppies and while tempted by the blues, wisely decided on the larger tri girl, who would match Lacie better in size. "Jovi" went home with Lori, Chris and her half-sister Lacie at 8 weeks old. Our own Ch. Whitegates Icing On The Cake, "Sugar" is from that same litter.
Lori has been doing agility and other things with the girls all along, they also often accompany her to work. She had told me about Lacie's skateboarding, but I really didn't give it a whole lot of thought until I got these pictures of Lacie skateboarding at KidzFest in downtown Toronto!!! Lori has been doing demos with a group with her girls, and Lacie's skill at skateboarding is a real hit! Jovi is learning to skateboard, Lori tells me it's hard for them to understand the "pushing" they need to do to start and keep going. These are pictures of the girls at the demo for KidzFest at Yonge Dundas Square! Note Lacie's form on the board and how she sets herself up perfectly on it. How great is this that these girls are showing the public what well-bred, well trained, predictable purebred dogs can do! AND I do have to say they are also great PR for blue and black Shelties! I could NOT be more proud!
Jovi & Chris, Yonge Dundas Square, in front of the Eaton Centre
A perfect recall
Lori tells me that Lacie loves her skateboarding so much, that when she sees kids skateboarding out on her walks, she gets beside herself with excitement. So much so that Lori often asks if Lacie can ride a board and Lacie does a few zooms around on her borrowed board, dropping a few jaws! I've asked Lori if she could video her, and when she does, I'll be posting it here!
Friday, December 12, 2008
Today I went to the Credit Valley Dog Show. For many years, the largest show in Canada. They even used to have it in the Skydome! In those days, in that huge venue, the crowds were so thick, if you didn't elbow your way to ringside early, you couldn't get there in time. Entries of 60-70 Shelties and close to 300 in the Herding Group. Now I know today was Friday, and yes, the entry is bigger the next two days, but it's still a completely changed show and atmosphere. At first, I thought I had my days confused and maybe it was really Thursday (set-up day), not Friday. But no, this was the show. Here are pictures of the grooming area at 11:00 a.m. No problem finding a space!
The Groups kind of look like Sanction Matches did in the old days, more than a bit thin. There are still some very nice dogs being shown, usually Specials with handlers. It's the end of the year though, and some of them are looking pretty tired. Not much in the classes in any breed. There was supposed to be 10 Shelties entered, six were shown. But at 10 dogs, that was the second biggest breed entry in the show!! Too many class dogs in many breeds had no business being in the show ring and are extremely unlikely to contribute to the advancement of their breeds. It was actually really very sad. How depressing it must be to judge these shows.
I did enjoy talking to people I haven't seen in a really long time. Best In Show was just about to go in but I decided to leave and get home to the dogs (who I must say, looked pretty good to me!) instead of staying to watch BIS. I had planned on going again on Sunday, which has the "biggest" Sheltie entry at 13, but I'm not going to bother going back.
At this rate, how long can it last?
Sunday, December 7, 2008
This was an amendment to prevent mixed breed dogs from competing at CKC events, or in any way being "registered" by the CKC. It would keep Canadian Kennel Club events and the registry for PUREBRED dogs only. And the members of the CKC voted against it. I'm stunned.
Now, before all the oodles and oodles of doodles and poo mixes appeared on the scene, I would have been somewhat open to mixed breed dogs in CKC performance events...MAYBE. I would have to consider the fact that people WOULD and DO put breeds together just to get the fastest flyball dog or the best agility dog or whatever. Border/Borders, Border/Jacks etc. are nothing new to flyball. Maybe it isn't "wrong" to breed JUST for faster/higher/stronger and nothing else.
But the proliferation of "designer dogs" .... two usually POOR specimens of a breed put together and labelled with a cutesy name and a big price tag, is just irresponsible and indiscriminate. Usually touted as "non-shedding" and healthier than purebred, they are often neither. But they sure are popular with JQP! Apparently, the majority of voting CKC members are okay with them also.
All the pictures with this post are apparently Sheltipoos/Sheltidoodles OR what we used to call them, MUTTS. The "breeder" (designer?) of these Sheltidoodles used to breed Shelties, but now sticks to these, 'cause ya know, they sell.
One more slide down the slippery slope for the purebred dog.
Saturday, December 6, 2008
It's been a LONG time since whatever grade we studied parliamentary government in school. Like most people, "prorogue" wasn't in my vocabulary. So, I've spent a lot of time this week reading and watching so I can decide for myself what's really going on and how I feel about it. I hope everyone does the same, because whatever side you might find yourself on, you need to know why you're there.
Mr. Harper makes the Coalition out to be some sort of "coup d'etat". IT'S NOT. It's exactly what happens in a parliamentary democracy. Perfectly legal. Not only merely legal, but considering we had an election just six WEEKS ago, it's also the most (only) responsible way to handle the current situation the government finds itself in. Minority governments have fallen on non-confidence votes before. Many times. That usually means an election. Well, just weeks ago we had an election that put the same minority Conservative government back in power, at a cost of $300,000,000. That very same election put the *majority* of SEATS in the House in the hands of *other* parties...the Coalition. Since we are in an economic CRISIS, at a time when our government needs to co-operate and get things DONE, it's NOT the time for an election or frankly, for prorogation of government. The Coalition was (is) a way to make things work in this very CRITICAL time for our Country and the world, until such time as it's prudent to spend another $300,000,000 and have another election.
I understand that people don't want Stephane Dion as PM. I agree with that, no argument. I think the man is smart, but he's lacking image. (Yes, he's a geeky nerd). But, he's the leader of the opposition so he's the one (or maybe not, if he steps down before the end of January). I can live with him on a temporary basis. I really do believe he has the interests of the country at heart. I *KNOW* that Stephen Harper does not. He has forgotten his words "I promise not to govern as though I have a majority." To shut down Parliament at this critical time for six weeks is grossly irresponsible. As Justin Trudeau said, it's like "pulling the fire alarm when you're about to write an exam you know you will fail". He is putting the importance of his own job ahead of the welfare of the Country and the people of Canada. He has completely alienated any support he had or will ever have in Quebec.
There is no-one out there that is pointing the finger of blame for all of this anywhere but squarely at Stephen Harper. Listen to what the elder statesman Ed Broadbent had to say. People like Mr. Broadbent have been in politics their entire lives, I found them to be worth listening to. I didn't just read and listen to left wing politicians either, I read and listened to some of the bluest material I could find (and realized I am firmly on the left side of the line).
It's important, it's historical. The election in October had the lowest voter turnout in Canadian history (I hope those who sat at home and didn't vote aren't the same ones who now want a "vote" on the Coalition!). There is a global economic crisis going on, we owe it to ourselves to get it right. Mr. Harper has at the very least been firmly warned that his bullying is not going to work. I can only hope he will radically change his tune. We need a stable government that can work together, now more than ever.
Friday, November 28, 2008
white mounds. I learned to feed them BEFORE I crossed the road to get the mail, or 14 turkeys crossed with me! I would worry if less than the 14 showed up, but the core 14 always seemed to make it eventually. One morning I got a bit of a shock to find 23 of them out there! Terry said it was like "The Birds" and if I kept feeding them, we might wake up one morning and 200 of them would be staring at us! But the core 14 were the ones who stayed. Except for the MESS (turkeys poo... A LOT), I really did enjoy them. Last winter was one of the most brutal on record and I felt very sorry for them. When spring finally arrived, I was treated to the males in the flock fanning their tails and dragging their wing tips on the ground, strutting for the hens. Mating season was starting.
Saturday, November 22, 2008
Tuesday, November 18, 2008
Sunday, November 16, 2008
Another nice part of the resort was the Marina Village. This has shops and restaurants and also connects to the large Atlantis Casino. The marina has many private yachts pulled up to slips. At night they're all lit up and really something to see, you can even see inside many of them. Some are HUGE. They all carry extra vessels (like speed boats, etc.). All are named, of course, with their names in lights. My favourite yacht name was "Incognit'eau". What a way to see the world!
And dogs, so happy to see ours when we got home! Not happy about the snowstorm we got that night nor the power failures or phone being down. It's better in the Bahamas!
Wednesday, November 5, 2008
Then, I heard from Cynthia Charbonneau of Cynchar Shelties near Edmonton, Alberta http://www.geocities.com/cynchar1/ that her girl Ch. Cynchar's Blackeyed Pea just had a litter of EIGHT puppies by our Willow Cove's Prize Patrol - "Mason". There are *SIX* girls and 2 boys!
Now, Cynthia even put on her website ahead of time "I'm hoping for all girls", and I almost choked when I saw that, because it would surely mean an all male litter for me if I were to do the same! But obviously Cynthia's luck is far better than mine and someone is listening to her! The puppies are all black of course, and all tris. Maybe that's why I never did get the black girl I really wanted, because of being reluctant to do an all black breeding. So, good for you, Cyn, for doing it and getting exactly what you hoped for (and then some!). Cynthia says some of them are even flashy! We're excited to see how they mature. Proud papa Mason will be 10 years old on February 1st, he's produced some really nice puppies and we hope Cynthia's pups follow suit! With mom of the litter being the dam of the RWD at CSSA National 2008, a bright future should await them.
This beautiful Indian summer day is only half over, but it's already a good one!
Thursday, October 30, 2008
So now, I've been looking at, and reading, some other blogs (a lot are photo intensive, I like those too). If you look up above here (dark blue strip), and click on next blog, and next blog, well, you don't know what you might find. Some are on a particular topic. Some are a cyber-chronicle of a family. Or even on one facet of a person or one single topic. Some are anonymous, and some, the authors are totally public. Many are really beautifully set up. Some are *really* well written, and I do appreciate and envy that! So with that last thought in mind, check out http://margaretandhelen.wordpress.com/ . Particularly if you have Democratic leanings!! This blog is allegedly written by two female friends (really one to the other) in their 80's, one in Texas and one in Maine, about the current U.S. Presidential race. Supposedly the blog was set up by Helen's grandson.......but see what you think! Whoever is behind this blog, and wouldn't it be wonderful if it really *IS* the old girls, I've really enjoyed it and have been reading it since the beginning. Don't forget to read the older posts first! I mean it. Really.
I found another blog I really like through a link on the Margaret and Helen blog. http://yeswecanholdbabies.wordpress.com/ Many pages of some absolutely fantastic photos! These will make you smile!!
Enjoy looking at blogs? Try blogsurfing at http://bloggerschoiceawards.com/ . Check out the winner in the Best Blog of All Time category - a talented pair of wedding photographers right here in Toronto!
Thursday, October 23, 2008
Tuesday, October 21, 2008
Today we received the nicest and most complimentary note from Barbara Linden in the mail. We had sent her a picture of Tiffany's win and she wrote to thank us. In her note, one of the things she said was "I have to say that her movement and soundness is, without a doubt, one of the most impressive I've seen in this special breed of ours." How very nice of her and such an uplifting note to receive on a really dreary day!
Now a little bit about the "girls" that share everything with us! We have the four oldest girls with us in the house. Netta (far right), her two daughters, Holly and Brooke (the blues), and Tiffany, the orange sable amid all the bi's. They're all getting on in years and they're most definitely set in their ways! Dinner time (5:00 p.m.) is the big event of their day. So big, they start getting ready for it at 2:30 p.m. Any movement around the house, particularly around the kitchen, is closely supervised by all. The closer to d-i-n-n-e-r-t-i-m-e it gets, the better my chances of being tripped by one of them, as my every move is closely monitored. Daylight savings time requires extreme patience for all of us as we try to wait that extra hour! For all those hours of anticipation, the noise level and excitement while dinner is actually prepared, to the 2 minutes it takes to eat it, to the mad scramble afterwards to lick someone else's empty bowl....it's all over until the next day.
Tiffany is the newest addition to the "house girls" ...much to their disgust. They put up with her, but they are the same family and she isn't, and it's very evident in everything that happens! Different things set them off, so that the three relatives will all react to the same thing while Tiffany lies there looking at them like they've lost their minds, the things Tiffany reacts to draws no response from the other three. Tiffany is a "close talker".....when she's excited she will bark, bark, bark inches from the the face of the other dog, follow them, close-talking the whole way. She does this almost exclusively to Netta, because they're both dominant and if Netta gives in to it, then it's an excuse to maybe scuffle a bit. If they do, Tiffany always ends up giving in to Netta.....but she just can't resist pushing her buttons!
Now the sleeping arrangements....there are 4 dog beds in our bedroom (crates?!! these girls have no idea.....oh wait, only for Holly and only during a thunderstorm so we don't end up wearing her all night). They pretty much stick to the same spot....although it is a bit of a musical chairs "scramble" over Brooke's bed...just a mat, really, but everyone seems to like that spot, especially Tiffany, who pretends she doesn't see Brooke standing there hang-dog if she doesn't get her mat. Miss Tiffany, who has her own "matching" couch in the kitchen in front of the fireplace. She arranges herself on a pillow she won at a dog show. If you want to sit there you definitely have to ask more than once! I guess Tiffany really is the stick that stirs the pot with these house girls! We do love each and every one of them dearly even with their sometimes neurotic little old lady habits.....the oldies have always been my favourites!!!
Monday, October 13, 2008
Thursday, October 9, 2008
Debbie and I reminisced about how disappointed we were when Peggy was sold, but in fact, she ended up in the right place to make her lasting contribution to the breed.
Wednesday, October 8, 2008
I said I'd cover each one of our current dogs on their birthdays, and Max is first! Five years old already!! I found that we had no pictures of him except for his finishing picture when he was nine months old! (Not surprising for us..!) So....this one was taken yesterday afternoon with not even a brush run through him. Max wasn't originally intended to stay, but through many different circumstances and twists of fate he did stay, and it was soon evident that we couldn't be without him! He was a lot of fun to show. In my mind's eye I see him standing on the grooming table with his butt towel on, almost wagging it off, his face looking up at me "wow, this is great!!". He loves being groomed, the brushing especially. In fact, Max loves everyone and everything. He's probably the most even-tempered Sheltie I've ever had, the same happy boy in a loud, crowded, strange place as he is right here with us. Happy 5th, Billy-boy! May you have many, many more!!
Tuesday, October 7, 2008
Friday, October 3, 2008
Porky at 3 mths - first 2 shots and at 4 mths, last shot
I've heard some comments lately, "we don't want to go back to the past, do we?" or even that the past doesn't matter. And while we can't go back to the past, and maybe it doesn't much matter, I think it's interesting and maybe even important to look at some of the dogs that have influenced the breed. Some of these dogs would be quite welcomed "back to the future" if it were possible!