Spectator report from Obedience Championship, Dog Day

By: Susan & Gemma Henshaw

We were lucky this year to get a good deal on a hotel quite close to the NEC so not too early a start on Friday morning and just a junction up the already slow moving, busy M42 and we arrived at the venue in good time. Walking across to Hall 5 at about 7.40am there were plenty of people and dogs milling about the concourse, quite a few of them it seems trying to find out just where they were supposed to be going.

We made our way round, avoiding the cumbersome toe crunching trolleys, to where today’s competitors were setting up their benches with good luck cards, banners and balloons, always a very colourful display which really does give an expectant buzz about the place. After dropping off some card to friends we had plenty of time to grab a coffee and take our seats ready for today’s competition to start.

Just after 8.15 the handlers came into the stand to watch a run through of the heelwork from some of today’s ring stewards, quite a flowing round, starting off in fast pace but not too much of it then there is a zigzag laid out in tape in the corner of the ring near the entrance, the ASSD down will be given on the zigzag, and a large circle which is worked in slow, then normal and has the ASSD sit position on it, nothing to trick dog or handler which is always nice to see.

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Inter Regional Competition Crufts 2014

By: Susan & Gemma Henshaw

Thursday 6 March 2014 and we have the first day of this years Crufts Dog Show at the NEC in Birmingham and the start of the Obedience competitions. Obedience is at the heart of virtually every dog sport/hobby from Agility and Flyball to Canicross and Breed Showing and this year is a celebration of 60 years of Obedience Competition at Crufts.

To kick off the four days of Obedience we have the Inter Regional competition sponsored by Our Dogs. Seven regional teams select a total of seven dogs plus a travelling reserve to compete in classes from Beginners to Class C, each team is restricted to a total of two border collies/working sheepdogs and three of any other single breed, so we always have a good variety of breeds strutting their stuff in the ring. This year those other breeds included, a Standard Poodle, Staffordshire Bull Terrier, Spanish Water Dog, Newfoundland and a Rhd Ridgeback. Giving the competition a re-vamp from previous years a non-standard exercise has been included in each class, hopefully giving spectators and handlers just a little something different to enjoy.

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Looking forward to Crufts Championship Obedience 2014

By: Gemma Henshaw

So here we are once again, just under a week before a good many of us make our annual pilgrimage to Birmingham for Crufts 2014.

In Obedience we had a much better year, weather wise, in 2013 than in the previous year meaning that all scheduled Ticket shows went ahead, although at least one did have to re-schedule as a result of the weather, The ground for the Midlands BCC two day show and the Border Collie Club of GB’s one day show, was under a thick blanket of snow and the decision was made on the 25 March to cancel all three days, luckily they were able to re-schedule to the 15 September at Birmingham.

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The British Obedience Championship Scene Pt 4

By: Susan & Gemma Henshaw

A bit of a delay in writing this last report on the 2013 Championship season but all the delights of Christmas and New Year crept in and pushed this slightly to one side.

So a look at the last set of Championship shows from 2013 and the teams who have qualified through to Crufts 2014.

Starting off on 1st September and a journey north into Scotland for the East Kilbride DC show, many of the judges remarking on the superb hospitality shown to them by the club, the catering also had to be first class judging by the many excellent remarks made by all who were there. Margaret Harvey was in charge of the bitch ticket today and awarded her 1st place to Karen Davies and ‘Ob Ch Stillmoor Celtic Banner’, working a superb round, ‘all exercises carried out with accuracy and attitude’. The dog ticket judge Sharon Dunstan’s top spot went to a delighted Jackie Duck and ‘Ob Ch Tyefold Xander’ their first ticket win of the year.

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Scenar Therapy for Dogs

By: Susan & Gemma Henshaw

Development –

A team led by Alexander Karaseu developed the Scenar system, which was primarily used in their space programme as a means for astronauts to tend to any injuries whilst in space, although many doctors and scientists remained sceptical of its use. But then the economic climate in Russia led to doctors seeking non-pharmaceutical methods of treating their patients.

The Scenar system was put to the test in hospitals, clinics and by ambulance medics and they found Scenar had the effect of reducing significantly the need for surgery and long term use of drugs, and in recent years the success figures have been quoted at 80-90% across all medical conditions.

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Book review: Collie Psychology by Carol Price

Review by: Ellen Sellers

Inside The Border Collie Mind
It has often been said that the Border Collie is the breed that has it all – brains and beauty. Initially bred to herd sheep, over time the Border Collie has developed into one of the most varied and versatile of all breeds, proving to be an expert in a huge number of fields including agility, obedience and working trials.

However, despite their many obvious talents, the strong instinct, drive and sensitivity of this breed has meant that the Border Collie is certainly not the most straightforward of dogs.

In this book, Carol Price, canine behaviour specialist and Border Collie expert, helps us to understand the intricate workings of this special breed’s brain. Covering a wide range of topics from the history of the breed, to understanding herding instincts, the reason behind obsessive and manic behaviour and providing the recipe for raising a problem free dog, this book is enlightening for even the most experienced Collie owner.

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Obedience Championship Scene 2013 – part 3

By: Susan & Gemma Henshaw

As the evenings are drawing in its getting very close to the end of the Obedience shows for this year so time for another catch up on who’s been winning their ticket to Crufts 2014.

Sunday 14 July and the host show for today was Winchester DTC, looking through some of the judging reports it is described as a show that treats judges like royalty, has a relaxed atmosphere with good sized rings for the competitors and is run like a well oiled machine. Stella Henstridge was judging the Bitch ticket today and her top spot went to Mary Ray and ‘Ob.Ch. Red Hot Foxy Music’ who ‘showed first class heelwork and confident set exercises’. Dog ticket judge Sandy Wadhams awarded her first place to Bev Hughes with her lovely boy ‘Ob Ch Gwynfair Bear Necessities’, who gave a round of total commitment with flowing heelwork and completely faultless set’s.

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Obedience Championship Scene 2013 – part 2

By: Susan & Gemma Henshaw

So it’s catch up time again and on 1st June we saw handlers travelling across the sea to Northern Ireland for the two day show held by Lisburn & District DTC, described by various judges and competitors as a dog show venue with a lovely relaxed atmosphere. Judge Dave Howell awarding his top spot in the dog ticket to Linda Rutherford and her stunning ‘Sixela Rumr Has It’ – first ticket win for this pairing and a great future seems to be in store for this youngster. Making it rather a good weekend Linda also took the top prize in bitch ticket with ‘Ob Ch Colliewood Confidential’ under judge Sue Howell.

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Obedience Championship Scene 2013

By: Susan & Gemma Henshaw

A series of articles on what’s been happening in the Championship Classes this year – this article covers March to May

This years Championship season should have kicked off with the Midlands Border Collie Club’s show on March 30, but this year the weather decided to coat many parts of the country with snow, with many areas suffering a complete ‘white out’.

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Elegance, style, verve, drive, flair, accuracy, panache, fast, sharp, power, speed, teamwork, precision….

By: Kamal Fernandez

Not words normally associated with Competitive Obedience, but all very much applicable. The ministry of funny walks, the boring poor relation to other canine activity, the serious sport! Nothing could be further from the truth when talking about the true essence of a sport that is fun, enthralling and inspiring!

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