2012 so far!

Well doesn’t time fly quickly these days? I can’t believe how long ago it was since I last did a blog. I am sorry but I will try and get them on more regularly and if any of you want to email me your news I am still always happy to find out what they are up too and how well they are getting on.

So Jan was taken up by India, I had a fantastic time but missed my girls like mad. It was great fun working with all the different types of dogs from village, street, owned, stray, adult, puppies, kennelled, we worked on search and rescue, service, guide, pet and everything in between. It was a privilege and a pleasure to meet not only good dogs but a new group of people who hopefully even though we are spread all over the world will keep in touch and swap different training tips and advice, and you never know we may meet up in the future on some other dog activities somewhere in the world!

The worst bit was being away from home when it was the pup’s birthday – I relived everything that had happened the year before from remembering Amber the first ever Meinweg pup to enter the world right the way through. I have to admit I did have a tear in my eye most of the day when I thought about my special little nine.

Fen and Moss spent the time away in kennels whilst I was in India – now that sounds harsh but they had a great time and it meant that they didn’t have to spend three weeks in the house from 7am – 5pm doing nothing but waiting for daddy to come home, it also helped ease the pressure for Wayne as he only had the two old girls who are happy to spend the day sleeping! Moss and Fen had three weeks in a working gundog kennel that is owned by a friend and they spent their days working the land and sleeping the nights dreaming of working the land. They had a great time and didn’t miss home at all, I think Wayne secretly missed them but he would never admit to it!

When they came home they just entered the house like they had never been away and settled straight back into home life, though I think they miss the hard work of the field. Luckily they hadn’t realised I had been away as they went the day after I left and came home the day before, Bronte and Kira on the other hand gave me the cold shoulder when I got back and didn’t want anything to do with me, they were totally daddy’s little girls!

I was straight back into work and training and Fen had her practice sessions for her Kennel club good citizen’s bronze level, she had to miss a few of the training as I had to help train the others in the group but it all came together in the end when she achieved all ten requirements and passed the Bronze.

The gundog training was now in full swing again and even though we had decided that Fen really wasn’t cut out to be a gundog as the instinct didn’t seem to be there we decided to stick with it as she did enjoy it.

Early Feb we had the bad snow and the last practice show before Crufts was cancelled but it did mean that Fen got to play in the snow as it was the first time she had ever saw it – well that’s not completely true, when they were very young about 5 weeks old all the pups got to play in a flurry which we had when we had them all but it didn’t settle like it did this year. She had a fantastic time.

A couple of weeks ago I did my hands on judges confirmation and movement assessment exam and I am pleased to say I passed, I took Fen as she was the dog I pointed the points on and she was such a good girl. It was also a chance to run Fen around the ring as a pre Crufts practice. She stood and moved lovely, things seemed to have come together and she has really matured in the last month. A nice all round dog that I am pleased to own and even more pleased to have bred. A friend offered (now I say offered but I kinda forced her to do it!) took her into the ring and stood her and moved her for me. It was great to see her like that as normally I never get to see as I am handling her. She looked stunning and moved fantastically. I have to say I had a tear in my eye and was very proud though a little disappointed at the lack of loyalty on her part and was happy to go off and work for somebody else without even a glance back for me!

We went for a lovely walk with another friend and her boys around an old walk we used to do years ago before moss and fen where even here. It was great to catch up and Fen had a fantastic time chasing and playing with the boys, she again surprised me as one of the boys flushed a covey of birds up, I had just finished telling my friend how uninterested Fen was at game and didn’t seem to even notice the scent as she took off and quartered the ground where the birds had been, none of the other dogs winded it but little fen searched and searched till I had to call her back!

Then Friday just gone brought us the biggest dog show of the year, we qualified at our first show all those months ago and Fen was finally the first Meinweg to enter the green ring. She was bathed and groomed, clipped and cleaned, I too was suited and booted and good to go. The pre Crufts nerves got to me a bit, Fen entered the building as if she had been there a 1000 times before. The hustle and bustle didn’t bother her at all and she sat on the bench just waiting for her class to go in. We had a pre practice stand and even a pre practice move and she was ok but I really wasn’t expecting to get a place. Just being there was enough for me and lots of people commented on how lovely she was. The support team turned up and stood on the side lines, lots of friends came to wish us luck which meant a lot to realise how many people back team Meinweg as its now being called.

Our time came and I entered the ring, I was so excited that he nerves just vanished. Fen stood perfectly for me, we moved and it felt like a dream to run her around the big ring. She again stood like a perfect show dog whilst the judge ran her hands over her and then she again moved with only one little Fen moment when she decided to get a little excited but she soon calmed down and we continued the run. She stood again even though there was a very loud high pitched noise which grabbed her attention and she wanted to turn around and find out what it was? The dogs started to get pulled out 1st, 2nd, 3rd then Fen, the judge had actually picked Fen as her 4th place dog. I filled up, and started moving forward, team Meinweg cheered very loudly (not normally done but hay scream from the roof tops team, I was inside!) My smile was from ear to ear, 5th place lined up and my shoulders where so broad and Fen was on tip toes feeling very proud of herself as the line up was called out. We left the ring ten feet tall and I’ve still not come down from cloud nine and I don’t think I ever will!

Today we have been gundog training with peter and yet again my little show dog has done me proud! That dog that I thought had no natural instincts has yet again proved me so wrong. She hunted the ground and covered it all, found and pointed the scent of a bird (something she will learn not to do as she gets more experience on game) a bird flushed ahead of her to which she sat instantly to the whistle, Peter threw a cold pigeon as a reward and she didn’t run in she waited for me to send her, she collected and apart from dropping it at my feet instead of giving to hand was near perfect delivery. She then hunted on quartering the ground like she understood finally what it is all about. She retrieved dummies and cold game all nicely and hunted the remainder of the ground. I could ask for nothing more from a 14month puppy over a weekend than that

I’m so proud and hope that this is the start of a great all round future for my little miss orange the ugly biff thick dog…….but not anymore!

Enjoy the pictures.