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    The Chute is Dead, Long Live the Chute!

    As of today, most of the major agility organizations in North America have decided to remove, or at least suspend, the chute (also known as closed tunnel) as an agility obstacle. I am happy that it has been removed. Although my dogs haven’t been injured by it, there are countless others who have.

    The title of this post refers to the question: What obstacle will be the next chute? There are two meanings to this question: a) will another obstacle be deemed too unsafe to keep, now that the chute is out? and b) what could replace the chute to maintain diversity in obstacles?

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    Juno Italian Greyhound

    Juno Earns AG.I.J. Title and No.5 Agility IG in Canada 2015

    On July 22nd, 2016, Juno earned her final two out of three qualifying scores for her Agility Intermediate Jumper title with the CKC. Once again, the Whippet Club of BC hosted a fantastic little Friday evening trial. She is now at equivalent levels in CKC and AAC agility, although CKC agility is admittedly more forgiving so I expect we will continue to progress a little faster 😉

    Our Top Dogs certificate also finally arrived in the mail. Juno was the number 5 agility Italian Greyhound in Canada in 2015! Granted, there may only be five IGs doing agility… but we will take it! We had only just started in CKC agility when those scores were tallied so my goal is to crack the top three for 2016.

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    The Hounds Try: Agility

    “The Hounds Try” is a way for me to chronicle all the fun sports and activities I try with my dogs. This is the second entry, and I will admit that it is a little anachronistic. If you have even briefly skimmed this blog before, you will know that a couple of the hounds have been trying agility for awhile now. In fact, Juno has even earned herself a few titles. But, I didn’t want to skip writing about one of my favourite activities. And besides, one of the hounds, my whippet, is new to agility. Continue reading…

    Mars Wins Best Puppy in Group / Has Six Points

    We’ve only been to a few show weekends now but Mars did particularly well at the Nicola Valley Kennel Club show on June 26 and 27. Handled by Laura Baratta of Stormhold Whippets (Mars’ sire’s owner), Mars won Best of Breed under judge Kathleen Anderson-Wulff and then Best of Breed and Best Puppy in Group under judge Walter Pinsker. On July 8th I handled him in Vernon where he won Winners Dog under judge Tom Nesbitt. He now has a total of six points out of ten towards his Canadian Champion title. Continue reading…

    The Hounds Try: Conformation

    Since I plan to try out all sorts of new and different sports and activities with my whippet, I decided I will try to chronicle them in a way that might be useful for other beginners. I will add updates to these posts if I learn anything else that is new or helpful and, as always, please feel free to share your own tips and tricks in the comments! Continue reading…

    Juno Finished Her CKC Novice Titles

    After just a few short trials, I am thrilled that Juno has earned her Agility Novice (AG.N.), Agility Noive Jumper (AG.N.J.), and Novice Points and Distance (NP.) titles with the Canadian Kennel Club. Even more exciting was her earning all six remaining qualifying scores in a row. Yay skinny! Almost all of the CKC agility in the Okanagan is organized by the Whippet Club of BC so a huge thanks to them for making this trial happen. Continue reading…

    Welcome Marsanne the Whippet!

    After lots of deliberation and research, we decided to bring a Whippet into our lives! Meet Marsanne (aka Mars, aka Jetstream Marsanne Veraison). His parents are Tristan (AmCh CanGCh Burnt Sienna Red Mountain) from Stormhold Whippets and Cheekie (AmGCh NSBIS Can Ch Jetstream Forgetmenot Tigerpaw). He was born at Jetstream in Southwestern Ontario and then made the long journey out to BC like the rest of his new family (just a little later)!

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    Another Visit to Banff

    We took a family trip to Banff again this year. It has always been a popular choice, even when we lived in Ontario. This time, though, we could actually bring the dogs as we live close enough to drive rather than fly.

    The temperature was great but unfortunately a huge wildfire across the border shrouded most of the mountains in smoke so we couldn’t quite enjoy them in all their glory.

    We made the best of it though, even tackling Cory and Edith Passes. I found it a little challenging, having not hiked for awhile now – not to mention that I am a chicken so I don’t really enjoy rocks sliding out from under my feet when I am up pretty high.

    (This is the part where I tell you that, despite the blog name, you won’t find any hardcore hiking stories or tips here – Sorry!) Continue reading…

    Tips for Driving Long Distances with Your Dogs

    The dogs and I survived our cross-country move from Niagara, Ontario, Canada to the Okanagan Valley in British Columbia. From one wine region to another (my partner works in the wine industry – we moved for a job opportunity), we took a somewhat leisurely five day trip which included stops in Chicago, Illinois; Fargo, North Dakota; Regina, Saskatchewan; and Banff, Alberta. The drive went without incident, except for quickly tiring of the prairies (sorry, Saskatchewan!). All of the cities we visited had character and did not disappoint. Even better, a little planning went a long way in making the dogs comfortable and giving me peace of mind. Here are some things to make sure you consider before driving long distances with your pet:

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    Border Collie Agility

    Last Agility Trial of the Summer / Outdoor Trials

    Last weekend, Juno, Oliver, and I travelled to Innisfil for what will likely be our last agility trial of the summer due to our upcoming move from Ontario to British Columbia. It was also our first outdoor trial and in a new location so I had lowered expectations. I knew better than to enter Oliver in a trial on grass. He gets the zooms about 50% of the time at indoor venues. I’d expect 100% for outdoors. Juno earned a Q in advanced jumpers so she has very quickly moved up to the masters level. I wouldn’t be surprised if she achieves her Masters Jumpers title before her Advanced Games or even Advanced Agility Dog titles. She has great focus when running a course where she can just go go go. I learned some valuable lessons for outdoor trials and, generally, what we need to work on before we get back into competition in the fall.

    I also got some great photos!

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