I was born and raised in a whelping box. No, truly I was. My parents have been breeding and showing Best in Show and Best in Specialty winning Chow Chows my entire life.
As I grew, I became more and more determined to be inside the ring assisting my mom. She quickly realized keeping me entertained outside the ring without locking me in a crate was near impossible and I officially became her little ‘assistant.’
A couple years later, she decided it might be nice to find a smaller breed for me to get involved with and thus I got ‘my’ very first dog, Miata, a Silky Terrier. I showed Miata in the breed until I was the proper age for Juniors. At thirteen I got Jimmy, a pretty Silky, that became my first real ‘specials’ dogs. At the time I was still showing in Juniors but my interest in it quickly faded away as group placements with Jimmy increased. Antonio quickly followed after I retired Jimmy and he became my first multiple group winning dog. By seventeen I was well and truly hooked and decided that the breed and group ring was where I wanted to be. Since then I have handled countless dogs of various breeds.
Towards the end of my twenties I took on a spunky little Silky named Chewy. He was quite the handful but I honestly enjoyed every minute we spent together. We accomplished so very much in his career. Winning a number of incredibly stacked Toy Groups at large clusters, countless group placements, Amazing National wins such as Award of Merit (2009), Best of Opposite (2010), Top Twenty (2010). In 2012 we decided to play at a couple of shows as a Veteran and won an Award of Merit at the Garden, a Specialty Best of Breed (Silky Terrier Club of Central Florida) day after the National and Best of Breed at the AKC Eukanuba National Championship. It was an amazing ride, in fact my last official ride as a handler.
Enter the Border Collies
I have always admired my mother and her vast accomplishments as a Breeder/Owner/Handler, for well over a decade my sister and I have helped her with breeding decisions and whelping litters but it wasn’t until I was heading into my mid twenties that my desire to accomplish the same surfaced. My sister and I also had the opportunity to show Basset Hounds for nearly fifteen years for a long time breeder (50+ years), she became a dear friend and I will be eternally grateful for all the knowledge she generously gave us. Okay maybe it was more like the knowledge she ‘drilled into’ and ‘quizzed us on’.
By my mid twenties I had met, trained and handled countless breeds but I always had a deep appreciation for the Herding and Working dogs. This love ended up bringing a gorgeous Greater Swiss Mountain Dog named Tabitha into my life. She finished quite quickly but we soon found ourselves drawn to adventures outside the conformation ring. We tried weight pulling, which Tabitha adored, then we decided to try herding. Tabitha was a bit unimpressed by this adventure, I on the other hand was fascinated. More so after I saw the way the Border Collies worked. Over the next two years I did extensive homework on the breed. Prior to this I had been previously exposed to the Border Collie through Wally Rice and his boy Sam, so along with my research I started to pester Wally about particular dogs and lines. I got my first Border Collie in 2008. The rest as they say is history. I’m still an avid student and I am still fascinated by the sport of herding. So fascinated that I take five hour round trips for classes with an awesome trainer and now have my own flock of ducks and hopefully soon sheep in which to do homework on. I’m hoping to have my heart dog Morgana and her daughter, Ysera ready for our first and hopefully only slightly embarrassing debut for herding at the 2016 BCSA National.
Arcane is something that is mysterious, a knowledge that is known or understood by a rare few. I’d like to say something really smart and profound about how this meaning applies to me and to the Border Collie, actually give me five minutes and I probably could come up with something. However, I’m a geek, I read fantasy novels, play fantasy games… I’ve always loved the word and it’s meaning. It’s as simple as that. 😀
Just for Funnzies: