On my last blog I wrote about, to AKC or not to AKC, well since that time; ever the adventures; move over Christopher Columbus because the Winters have set their sails to yes a new land! The land of the American Kennel Club!
With apprehension, I filled in the required entry forms and had our Handler/Agent in line. Although we were ready to swim in the AKC pond, neither Rob or I were ready to go into the pond! Kim, our handler for Luna, was so excited to show a Poodle. Her history as a handler was all larger breed dogs with little hair maintenance. This is where I was able to be involved! I must admit to nerves as I prepared Luna for her debut. Bathing, blowing dry with meticulous care, hair straight and scissoring, more scissoring and yet even more scissoring! I felt like I was cutting each strand of hair separately! She looked amazing and she was still happy! Now that is a feat!
Indigo was going to the eye clinic and hopefully achieve his CGC at the 4 cluster, Amana Colony shows. Indigo being a multicolored poodle, is not allowed in the conformation ring. The Parti color is disqualified, but that's another blog for another day. I wanted to "Show Off" our handsome boy. So he too went through the exact same drill. My thoughts were if he looks like a show dog, acts like a show dog.......he's a show dog! You know that old saying, "if it looks like a duck, quacks like a duck....it's a duck!"
We loaded up the trailer, had a dog sitter for the rest of the group, and off went the Long, Long trailer on yet another road trip, to yet another dog show! We hooked up the trailer in a rain storm, like yellow beacons on a stormy sea our rain slickers stood out in the darkness. The rain didn't dampen our spirits......well, actually Rob was a little testy but I was able to cheer him up as we drove out of the rain. Unfortunate for us, we arrived at the RV park in the dark. I had assumed (wrong thing to do) that there would be street type lighting, Instead it was dark and hard to find our slot. I had never seen so many RV's and Trailers! Finally backing into our space; not that easy, but we managed on the third attempt! Now for the hooking up, leveling and dog xpens, all in the dark! It reminded me of the hide and seek game in the dark. One flashlight.....note to self....NOT enough! but another one! At this point of the game, our enthusiasm was waning....no arguing....just that silence, as each one concentrates on the their task; meanwhile the dogs are still in the car watching us. I'm sure they were thinking....."Get those xpens up! Forget the trailer! I need to stretch my legs, eat and nature is calling!" It's like the kids saying, "are we there yet?"
Soon all was right on the good ship Winters. Lights.....check.....Water....check.....Sewer hooked up.....check......xpens up......check. As we sipped a glass of wine, under the night sky; poodles content in their pens we checked our compass and set our sites due north.....the AKC ring!
I won't bore you with all the details of shows, but to say we were very proud of our little Luna and Kim was thrilled on Luna's performance. At 6+ months she took the puppy class and winners bitch in all 4 shows. The highlight was to see Luna in the same ring up against....dun dun dun dun....On the cover of Poodle Variety this month! GCH Darwin's Hearts On Fire! I have to admit just watching 'Flame' move in the ring IS Breathtaking! I must confess I was rather a paparazzi.....not a stalker as my husband claimed! It was inspiring and Sarah Perchick, Flame's handler, was gracious enough to sit down and let me interview her! That article will be in a future edition of the "Parti Line Newsletter".
Rob DID make his debut as well! Kim wasn't able to stay for Monday's events; Rob donned his suit and entered into the AKC ring. He did a great job, abet nervous and came home with 4 ribbons!
We ended the Labor Day weekend with Indigo getting his CGC! He was a hit with all the show attendee's and people working. No one understood why he wasn't allowed in the AKC conformation ring, but the rule stands. He also passed with flying colors his eye exam! Luna walked out of ring with lots of ribbons and a Best Puppy award! We are very proud of our Luna girl and Kim Ketelsen for her wonderful presentation of "blue belle".
All in all, we didn't sink, we swam and even dove into the deep end of the AKC pond!