Last week was the PBGV National Specialty in Kerrville, Texas. Kerrville is located in the Hill Country, which featured beautiful views and wildflowers. (Also lots of gun shops and restaurants that put bacon on veggie burgers, after all it’s still Texas………)
The national began with agility on Tuesday. The site was indoors on relatively clean dirt (not bright orange to stain PBGV legs) with nice equipment. Unfortunately it was 90 degrees and the site wasn’t air conditioned, but being out of the sun helped a lot with keeping dogs comfortable. There was a match offered on Monday night, but I had opted not to run the PBGVs because of the heat and the fact that they would be doing twice as many runs as usual on Tuesday. I regretted this decision briefly when I had some zoomy runs in the morning from dogs who had been traveling for 3 days, but was glad I had opted to conserve their energy when we were still making time at the end of the day. Gromit, Salsa, Spice, Muse, and CC had some qualifying runs. Little CC was the surprise star of the day with a 4.4 YPS High in Trial run in jumpers. She hadn’t done agility since the 2017 national, but I find myself wondering if we should try it again. This year’s agility trial was bittersweet, since it was the first year that Chili didn’t get to play. She still gets excited every time I pick up an agility leash, but really doesn’t have the stamina anymore. I’m glad that her granddaughter’s name will have a spot on the club trophy for High in Trial.
After agility we moved to the YO Ranch hotel for the rest of the show. On Wednesday morning, the show dogs all got baths to wash off the agility dirt. The Regional obedience and rally trials were in the afternoon. Salsa did a nice job in veterans obedience and won the class. It was nice to see her having fun since showing in open obedience had become really stressful for her. Spice, Gromit, and Muse all qualified in rally excellent and advanced and Wally managed a Q in advanced also. This was Spice’s 7th RAE leg, everyone else was entered in rally for Triathlon.
Thursday was an early day, beginning at 7 am with obedience. Gromit was only entered in Novice B for this show and he did a great job, qualifying and winning High in Trial with a 186. This gave him his Triathlon Q. I was happy that Gromit worked as well as he did, because we had effectively lost a month of training when Elf came into season in March. Salsa had another nice run in veteran and qualified in rally along with Spice and CC. The rally Q qualified Salsa for triathlon. We showed in breed Thursday afternoon, but didn’t have a lot of success.
Friday was really long, but a lot of fun. It was the first time PBGVCA had offered a scent work trial with nationals. The trial drew an impressive 111 runs, but started early and ended partway through dinner (literally, we were walking through the awards banquet on the way to the search area…..). Because of the one dog per handler rule, Dave helped out and handled some of the dogs so more of them got a chance to play. 12 year old Maya was the only dog to compete in Master and earned her first leg in containers. Wally got his first excellent Qs in exterior and interior and Alice finished novice container and got advanced interior and container Qs. This was Muse, Gromit, and Spice’s first trial. All 3 got Qs in interior and handler discrimination and Muse also got a container leg. After Friday, Spice and Muse had also qualified for triathlon and Wally and CC had beginner triathlon Qs. After scent work, I taught a novice trick dog seminar which was a lot of fun and resulted in quite a few new titles.
Saturday was the National Specialty day. I was the evaluator for Canine Good Citizen, which ended just before Sweepstakes began, so not much grooming happened but we had a great day anyway. Gromit won the Bred By Exhibitor dog class and went on to Best Bred by Exhibitor. His mother Muse won the 7-11 veteran bitch class and got an Award of Merit. Both dogs had significantly more coat and less styling product than the vast majority of dogs in the ring, so it was nice to be taken seriously by a breeder judge.
We spent a couple extra days in Texas before heading to Missouri to do agility and scent work at Aussie nationals, which starts tomorrow.