Category Archives: Spirit

Father’s Day C-WAGS Fun

We spent this morning at See Spot Run having some fun sniffing. The dogs both did great passing 7 of 7 runs. Spirit earned her Level 1 Scent Ranger title (CW-ScR1) and her scent Detective Ace title (CW-SDA) and Brodie also earned his Level 1 Scent Ranger title.

Big thanks to Anneli, the Judges and volunteers.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, CW-ScR1, CW-SDA, CWAGS, CWAGS Title, Nosework, Spirit

Blind Track

We did our first ever blind track today and  I am still flying high hours later. It was 283M and had 2 articles. It felt so weird not knowing where the track went and trying to trust and read Spirit’s body language. There was a cross wind that confused her in a couple of places but she was able to work out the puzzle. So darn proud of her ❤️🐶❤️.

 

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Spirit, Tracking

We are Sniffing Again

Corona_CWAGSWe went to our first nose work trial since March.  It was a C-WAGS trial hosted by See Spot Run Doggy Daycare.  It was so nice to be around our “dog people” again.  It was a small trial and everyone was very careful to practice social distancing.  The host had everything setup so that you didn’t have to touch any surface or door and you could get in, search and leave the building without coming into close contact with anyone.  Really well organized.  We haven’t done any CWAGS practices and only one SDDA in two months so I was very surprised to see how well they just jumped back into the Sport. The dogs  qualified in 6 out of 6 searches.  Spirit did a Level 1 Ranger, two Level 2 and one Level 3 search.  Brodie did a Level 1 Ranger and a Level 3 search.  Big thanks to our Judges, volunteers and fellow search teams for a great day.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, CWAGS, Nosework, Spirit

Cheezie Afternoon

IMG_8143

Look at all the dogs focused on Don’s cheezie with puddles of drool falling from their jowls.

I love throwing goodies for Spirit to catch.  She is such a piggy that she overreacts and misses all the time.   Brodie on the other hand rarely misses no matter how bad the throw is.  This is a great slow motion video of one of Spirit’s epic fails.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, Spirit, Tilly

The Dogs are Tricksters Now!

We got a bunch of mail today.  Both Spirit and Brodie got their Novice, Intermediate and Advanced Trick Dog titles.  We still have to learn a few tricks to get their Excellent titles.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, CKC Title, Spirit, Uncategorized

Honouring Sophie

IMG_0553Last summer we learned that Spirit’s Mom Sophie had been diagnosed with Histiocytic Sarcoma, a very aggressive and incurable form of cancer.  She put up a brave fight against this horrible disease until she crossed over the rainbow bridge on October 16th just days short of her 8th birthday.  Her family posted this picture of her on Facebook and shared with everyone how much a part of their lives Sophie was with her loving personality.  She was also the foundation bitch of their kennel.  It just touched my heart.  When we got home from our vacation at the end of October, I immediately started working on a wall hanging to reproduce this picture.  I recently gave this fabric mosaic to Coreen and Steve of Tailspin Bernese Mountain Dogs to honour their beautiful girl Sophie.

SophieMosaicGCH Werlwind’s Playing With Fire

Sophie Oct 25/2011- Oct 16/2019

1 Comment

Filed under Mosaic Quilt, Quilting, Spirit, Uncategorized

Busy Dog House Weekend

We spent the last 3 days attending Barn Hunt and C-WAGS trials. So proud of both my kids. Between the two of them they earned 3 new titles and 10 Q’s

Brodie got his Barn Hunt Instinct and Novice titles as well as his C-WAGS Level 2 Scent Detective Ace title (RATI RATN CW-SDA). He also got his first Q in Barn Hunt Open and 40 points towards his Barn Hunt Crazy 8’s title. He earned a Q in C-WAGS Scent Ranger Level 1, Scent Detective and Scent Investigator

Spirit is too big for the Barn Hunt tunnels but she Q’d in all 3 of her C-WAGS runs today

Leave a comment

Filed under Barn Hunt, Brodie, CWAGS, CWAGS Title, Nosework, Spirit

Iron Paws Social

IMG_9710.jpeg

Our Edmonton Iron Paws group met for a social in our beautiful river valley this evening. Afterwards I took Spirit to McDonalds for an ice cream cone. I didn’t even get one stink in’ lick before she deep throated the entire cone. I didn’t even have a chance to pull away from the drive thru window before it was gone. She sure entertained the drive thru staff. She is one happy girl….no sharing with Mom 😉😂🐾🐶  I did manage to capture a few pictures of our Cani-cross.

IMG_9705.jpeg

IMG_9698.jpeg

 

Leave a comment

Filed under Iron Paws, Spirit, Uncategorized

Happy 5th Gotcha Day Spirit

10690273_792657884121930_1905243957312635571_n.jpg

Leave a comment

February 4, 2020 · 18:09

Frosty the Berner

84621798_10158140696722652_7891530617127436288_n.jpg

Leave a comment

January 26, 2020 · 18:13

Resolution Run and Iron Paws

We started 2020 off on the right foot by participating in the Running Room’s Resolution 5k.  We like to do this run every year as a renewal of our commitment to remain active throughout the year.

The dogs and I also signed up for our 2nd Iron Paws.  I have a couple of injuries that will prevent us from  doing much kick sledding so I signed us up for the recreational canicross category instead.  The Resolution run also counted towards our runs for the 1st week of Iron Paws…..bonus!!

Leave a comment

Filed under Canicross, Iron Paws, Kick Sledding, kicksledding, Races, Spirit

C-WAGS Christmas

We spent today at See Spot Run participating in our last C-WAGS trial for 2019. Brodie earned two Level 2 Q’s. Spirit whipped his butt by not only earning two Level 2’s but also her first Level 4 Q. Thanks to Judges Deb, Christina and Robbi.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, CWAGS, Nosework, Spirit

C-WAGS Mail

Spirit has had a great sniffing week.  First she earned her SDDA Games Champion title on Sunday and today we got her C-WAGS Scent Investigator (Level 3) title in the mail.

SpiritCWAGS-CW-SI

Leave a comment

Filed under CW-SI, CWAGS, CWAGS Title, Nosework, Spirit

Another Games Champion

I just love this big goofy girl. She does not do scent work for the love of the game, she does it because she loves engaging with me and seeing me get so excited when she finds the hide and, well lets be honest here….she has an intense love affair with food. We’ve had more than our fair share of struggles along the way. I used to say that if we could just make it to our championship I would be thrilled. Then it was maybe a Master Champion title was actually possible. With each milestone we reached she showed me she could do it and that I underestimated her. Then came Games. Once again, I sold her short. At best I thought we had a chance of getting our Aerial title but that was it. Yesterday we earned our Games Championship. In so many ways this title means more to me than when her younger “brother’ Brodie became the first dog to earn a SD-GCH. For him it was relatively easy and somewhat expected that he would, at least at some point, get the title. For Spirit this is a real achievement….she actually got 3 Speed Q’s…if you’ve ever watched her search, speedy is not an adjective you would use to describe her style 😉. Moral of the story…..dream big and trust your dog 💜💜💜

She is the first Bernese Mountain Dog to get this title and only the 6th dog of any breed to earn it. If you think about it, that is pretty amazing for a breed that is not associated with scent work. She is now officially known as:

Tailspin’s Winter’s Spirit RI SDIN, SDDA: SD-MACH SD-GCH, C-WAGS: CW-SI

 

Photo courtesy of Ryan-Ann King

Photo courtesy of Ryan-Ann King

2 Comments

Filed under Nosework, SDDA, SDDA Champion, SDDA Games, SDDA Title, Spirit

We got SDDA Mail Today

Brodie was the first dog ever to earn a SDDA Games Champion Title.  So proud of my little Golden sniffer.  Spirit is one Q away from getting her Games Championship and hopefully she will earn that Q this weekend.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, Nosework, SDDA, SDDA Champion, SDDA Games, SDDA Title, Spirit, Sporting Detection, Sporting Detection Dog Association

Mani-pedi Day

What a beautiful late fall day. We are supposed to get up to 11 degrees today. I took this opportunity to give the dogs a good brushing and mani-pedis. They went from polar bear feet to this. We are supposed to get very cold next week 😢😫

This is just a fraction of the fur that I got out of Brodie and Spirit.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, Spirit

First Snowfall

We had our first snowfall of the season. Brodie and Spirit seemed pretty happy with all the white stuff.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, Spirit

We Got Lots of Mail

Our mailbox was overflowing with mail for Brodie and Spirit.  Starting with Spirit, she got her CKC Scent Detection Instinct Title (SDIN) and her SDDA Aerial Games Title (SD-GA).

SpiritCKC-SDINSpiritSDDA_SD-GA

Brodie received his CKC Scent Detection Novice (SDN) and his Chase Ability Excellent (CAE)

BrodieCKC_CAEBrodieCKC_SDN

SDDA Games Aerial (SD-GA), Games Speed (SD-GS) and Games Distance (SD-GD)

BrodieSDDA-SD-GABrodieSDDA_SD-GDBrodieSDDA_SD-GS

as well as his C-WAGS Scent Investigator (CS-SI).

Brodie_CW-SI.jpg

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, CKC Chase Ability Program, CKC Title, CW-SI, CWAGS, CWAGS Title, Nosework, SDDA, SDDA Games, SDDA Title, Spirit, Sporting Detection, Sporting Detection Dog Association

Halloween C-WAGS Style

We spent the day at See-Spot-Run participating in their Pre-Halloween Howler scent detection trial. Both dogs were on their game qualifying in 7 out of 7 runs and we had a great time.

Spirit got two Level 2 and one Level 3 Q which earned her a Level 3 Scent Investigator title (CW-SI).

Brodie also earned two Level 2 and one Level 3 Q. He ran his first Level 4 search and qualified. So proud of both of them. We are so lucky to be able to participate in scent detection under three different organizations with different scents and rules (C-WAGS, SDDA and CKC)

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, CW-SI, CWAGS, CWAGS Title, Nosework, Spirit

SDDA Nationals

I am so glad that we were able to combine our family visits with the Sporting Detection Dogs Association’s inaugural National Challenge Cup. We had a blast meeting so many wonderful people,talking dogs and sniffing.

The festivities started on Friday with a lovely wedding. Esteemed Judge Doug Teeft and his fiancé Cathy tied the knot. Their cake was appropriately topped with German Shepherds.

The Games trial came next. Originally I had signed Brodie up for all 4 games but since that time he has earned all 4 titles. I substituted Spirit in the Speed component since she needs two more Speed Q’s to get her title and championship. Since we had already paid, Brodie ran in the remaining 3 games for the heck of it. Spirit nailed Speed and Brodie Q’d in Aerial and Distance (18 seconds WTG).

Then came the Team component. We didn’t have a pre-arranged partner so Stacy Barnett and I partnered up. She wanted to split the areas up and not call a hide until the other dog came in and confirmed it. Since we already have our title I was happy to follow her plan. Unfortunately that ate up a lot of time. We had successfully called 3, Brodie had sourced the 4th hide but Brava couldn’t confirm it so we timed out. Oh so close. In NACSW they don’t have to be as exact as SDDA when they call their hides. Brava was able to say there is something somewhere around here but I had to bring Brodie in to pinpoint the exact location before I was able to call each of the hides. Although we didn’t Q (only one team did) it was an honour and pleasure to search with such a well known and respected participant, Judge and international nose work instructor.

The Nationals started Saturday morning with each team doing 4 searches (exterior containers, interior and 2 interior/exterior combos). In 3 of the 4 searches we found all the hides for full points plus bonus points. We only found two of the 4 hides in the last interior/exterior combo but since we found the two hardest hides we still earned decent points. Our two afternoon searches weren’t quite as successful. We nailed the exterior search but NQ’d on the vehicle search which cost us a maximum of 30 points. At the end of the first day we had 182 points which put us in 9th place overall

Saturday night was the banquet. We shared a table with Jane book and several of her students and had a wonderful evening. There was a very interesting speaker with 40+ years experience training dogs and handlers all over the world. He talked about how scent behaves and how he approaches a search.

Sunday morning we had 3 searches. They upped the ante by reducing our search time to only 2 minutes each. My amazing boy nailed all 3. Watching him work just made my heart sing. How lucky am I that I get to play sports and share my life with this smart, athletic, goofy and handsome boy. I could have gone home at that point completely happy with our performance.

All of a sudden people where hugging and congratulating me and I didn’t know what was happening until I actually saw the official results. Much to my utter shock, we ended up placing 4th overall. Holy cow….completely unexpected.

The top 12 teams got to participate in the finals. The dogs ran in reverse order of score so we were the 9th team to search. There were 2 search areas, 3 hides in each and only 2 minutes per search. We all started fresh with zero points.

I listened to lots of clapping and cheers for the previous competitors. By the time it was our turn my mouth was dry, my palms and forehead were sweaty and my stomach was doing flip flops. We were way out of our league competing against scent work teachers, judges and some of the best in our sport. When I walked up to the vehicle search and saw the crowd of spectators my hands started shaking. Scent detection is usually a solo sport with just you, your dog, the timer and Judge.

Our first search was not stellar. We missed the first hide right at the front corner of the trailer, found the second inside the bed of the trailer and then moved on to the second vehicle. Brodie picked up the odour and worked it back to source but we timed out just as I called alert.

Thank goodness we had a couple of minutes to wait before we started the exterior search. I was able to sit down, stroke Brodie’s sweet soft forehead and practice some deep breathing to try and relax. I told myself to calm down and forget about who else is searching and how many people are watching and judging us. Just focus on my boy and enjoy ourselves. It worked. We nailed all 3 hides. So proud of Brodie. He is the heart and soul of this team.

We ended up finishing in 7th place, way exceeding any of my dreams. We got a lovely ribbon and a bag of swag.

I wish I could have had a do-over on the first search but that’s how it goes. Valuable lesson learned. Forget about everything else and most importantly trust your dog!!!!

1 Comment

Filed under Brodie, Nosework, SDDA, SDDA Games, SDDA Title, Spirit, Sporting Detection, Sporting Detection Dog Association

More Games Titles

Games night at the Manitoba Scent Detection Trial is over. Thanks to our awesome Teams partner Michelle and Neuman, Brodie and I got our 3rd Q and earned our Teams Title. I think that makes us the very first to get all 4 Games Titles 🏅🏅🏅🏅.

Spirit earned her Distance Title giving her her 2nd games title. She completely surprised me by earning a Q in Speed. Anyone who has seen her search knows that speed is not her forte….slow and steady is her mantra. We called the last hide with just a millisecond to spare.

Thank you to all the volunteers, hosts Michelle & Diane and our Judge John-Marc Dugas.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, Nosework, SDDA, SDDA Games, SDDA Title, Spirit, Sporting Detection, Sporting Detection Dog Association

SDDA Games Champion

We had a great weekend at the Alert K9 trial in Pilot Butte Saskatchewan. We started with Games on Friday night. The first component was speed, the only Q Brodie needed for his third Games title and the championship. He nailed it. According to the latest stats as of 2019SEP08, no one has 3 titles yet so he could be the first dog to attain a Games Championship but we won’t know until the updated stats are available. We were lucky to be paired up again with Darla and Jetta in Team which resulted in our 2nd team Q. Spirit ran both distance and aerial and Q’d in both.

Brodie and I did Elite on Saturday and Sunday. Our streak of passing 2 of 3 components continues. So close😉. No teams passed elite either day.

Big thanks to host Christina, her amazing volunteers and Judge extraordinaire Kathy Hansen.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, Nosework, SDDA, SDDA Games, SDDA Title, Spirit, Sporting Detection, Sporting Detection Dog Association

C-WAGS Back to School Trial

We spent the day at See Spot Run participating in a C-WAGS scent trial. We had a great day sniffing and hanging out with great people. Brodie was entered in three rounds, one Level 2 and two Level 3, and he qualified in all of them. He earned his Level 3 Scent Investigator (CW-SI) title.

Spirit ran in two Level 3 rounds and qualified in both.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, CWAGS, CWAGS Title, Nosework, Spirit

Sniffing Long Weekend

After Spirit’s emergency surgery on Tuesday, we never thought we would be going to Red Deer to compete in the Little Nose that Knows/Canine Coaching Sporting Detection trial.  The Vet said we would be surprised at how quickly Spirit would recover but we never expected to be going to a scent trial 4 days after her surgery.  We waited until 4:30am Saturday morning to make our final decision.  Spirit was happily eating, peeing and pooping so we decided to go so that Brodie could play.

Brodie competed in Elite on Saturday in the biggest group of Elite competitors that I have ever seen.  Unfortunately not only did no team title, not a single team passed even one of the three components.  Sunday was a much better day.  Several teams passed 2 of the 3 components but we were the only team that passed the first two components and had an opportunity to title if we got the third one.  Brodie was doing really well.  He found two hides in the exterior search where there can be 0 to 3 hides.  We had less than 1 minute left in our search and he pawed at a picnic bench and I blurted out Alert so fast….sadly too fast because immediately I knew that it wasn’t a hide it was a distractor.  Lately Brodie has started pawing at distractors (which is his alert at source) so I have been trying to wait to make my call to make so that I can be sure that the rest of his body language also leads me to believe that it is the hide and not a distractor.  It was so disappointing being that close to a title and missing it.  Ironically I think the Judge was even more disappointed that I was.  He came up to me at the end of the trial to tell me what a wonderful partner Brodie is and how well he searches for a young dog. We ended up with a 2nd place in Interiors and a 3rd in containers.

Over the weekend, every time I came to take Brodie out of the car for a search, Spirit got all excited thinking it was her turn.  It broke my heart to see how disappointed she was when I said Brodie’s name instead of hers.

Sunday afternoon we had the games searches.  Brodie was entered in Speed, Distance and Team and Spirit in Aerial.  Brodie passed the Distance search to earn his Distance title but just missed the Speed component which would have given us a Games Championship.  Our partner in the Team component false alerted early in our search so we were done for the day.  The Aerial component was run last.   I went on the walk through to see the search area and discovered that all the hides were hanging up against a wall and they were all at Spirit’s nose height.  I spoke to the Judge and told him about Spirit’s surgery and how she really just wanted to get out and “play”.  I said I would just let her walk slowly by the hides and not worry about passing or failing…just giving her a positive end to a crappy week.  We were the first team.  She strutted down the side of the building wagging her tail and walking with the classic Berner prance.  It was so wonderful to watch her.  To my surprise she went straight to the hide and did a brilliant indication. She was so proud of herself.  It was her 3rd qualifier in Aerial so we walked away with a Title.

Many thanks to Samatha and Kristina for holding the trial, all the amazing volunteers as well as Judges Jean-Marc Dugas and John Mairs.

1 Comment

Filed under Brodie, Nosework, SDDA, SDDA Games, SDDA Title, Spirit, Sporting Detection, Sporting Detection Dog Association

What a week!!

We have been on quite an emotional roller coaster this past week. All of a sudden Spirit could not put any weight on her right hind leg. There was no warning, no obvious accident or injury that could explain what happened. Our Vet checked her out and thought that the problem was with her spine. It was likely putting pressure on a nerve. We got pain meds and anti-inflammatory drugs and an appointment to see a Chiropractor. A couple of days later Spirit started throwing up repeatedly and refused to eat or drink. The only time this has ever happened was when she had an obstruction in her intestines almost 3 years ago. We took her to the Vet again and sure enough x-rays showed two masses. We started with barium and X-rays to see if there was any movement of the objects. The last X-ray of the day showed some movement so we decided to take her home for the night and come back in the morning for another X-ray. She had a rough night. It was very clear that she was dehydrated and getting weaker so they decided to do surgery ASAP. They had to make two incisions to remove each object which turned out to be chunks of bone 🦴. They sent me these pictures of her in recovery and one of the bone chunks.

Update 2019SEP03  It has been a week since the surgery and if you didn’t notice the shaved spots on her front legs for the IV’s you would never guess that anything had happened. She is her happy, smiling, tailspinning self again.

Leave a comment

Filed under Spirit

CKC Scent Detection Titles

ShibaCKC-SD1

Yesterday we got up bright and early to drive to Calgary to participate in the Shiba Inu Club of Canada’s Scent Detection trial at the beautiful Spruce Meadows.  It’s a good thing that Spirit went first because the temperature soared to 30C later in the day.  She found the hide in 10.61 seconds earning her Scent Detection Instinct Title (SDIN).  By the time the Novice teams started it was unbearably hot outside.  We started with containers and Brodie had it sourced from the start line so we finished in 8.19 seconds.  By the time we ran the exterior searches, the search area was in full sun.  Thank goodness he found it in 33.54 seconds.  We finished with the interior search inside the barn.  Brodie found the environment very “smelly-licious” and wasn’t as focused as he should have been.  He found the hide in 33.54 seconds.  Only 6 teams passed all 3 searches to earn their Scent Detection Novice Title (SDN) and thank goodness we were one of them.  The majority of the teams failed on the hot exterior search.  It is very difficult for dogs to scent when they are panting so hard.  At the trial 2 weeks ago 20 teams passed the Novice test so the heat really appears to have been a factor at this trial.

Big thank you to the Shiba Inu Club of Canada, the volunteers and Judge Kelley Ladouceur for a great trial.

ShibaCKC-SD2

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, CKC Scent Detection, CKC Title, Nosework, Spirit

Spirit Got Mail

Just getting caught up on our mail and found all of these titles that Spirit has earned recently in scent detection/nosework.  She has been a busy girl.

SpiritSDDA_SD-CH
SpiritSDDA_SD-MACH
SpiritCWAGS_CW-SD

Leave a comment

Filed under CWAGS, CWAGS Title, Nosework, SDDA, SDDA Title, Spirit, Sporting Detection, Sporting Detection Dog Association

Who’s bed is it?

Is it any wonder that I don’t sleep well 😉😂🐾🐶🐶🐶❤️❤️❤️

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, Family, Spirit, Tilly

Busy Trial Weekend

82187869-016A6958-207

Photo Credit:  Bev Holoboff

On Friday night we braved pouring rain, thunder and lightning so that Brodie could participate in a CKC Chase Ability run. We didn’t get home until almost 10pm and didn’t get to sleep until closer to midnight by the time we had unloaded and reloaded the dogs.

Our alarm went off at 3:15am so that we could drive to Calgary for Spirit to compete in the first CKC Scent Detection trial in Alberta. Her first two runs were perfect. On our third run we heard the dreaded “I’m sorry”. She has a bad habit of alerting at the fringe of odour rather than following it back to source. Too bad, we headed back to Edmonton with 2 qualifying ribbons but no Novice title.

Sunday morning we were up at 6am for a 45 minute drive east of the city to attend the final day of the ALCA speed demons trial. Brodie ran 2 Sprinters and 1 CAP. He managed to get two new personal bests on his Sprinters. He is the fastest male Golden Retriever in Canada running 42.33 km/hr. There is one female Golden who is faster than him at 42.5 km/hr…..so close!!!

At the end of his last Sprinters run he slid through a muddy slough and came out looking like this

Brodie qualified in all 4 of his runs this weekend.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, CKC Chase Ability Program, CKC Scent Detection, CKC Sprinters, Lure Coursing, Nosework, Spirit

Another CWAGS Title

Today we spent another great day at See Spot Run competing in Brodie’s 3rd and Spirit’s 2nd C-WAGS trial. Brodie did two Level 2 and two Level 3 runs and Q’d in all 4.

Spirit did two Level 2 runs which gave her her 3rd and 4th Q to earn her Level 2 Scent Detective Title CW-SD.

Thank you to Anneli of See Spot Run and Judges: Robbi Bitner and Dana Gallagher.

Leave a comment

Filed under Brodie, CWAGS, CWAGS Title, Nosework, Spirit