March 29, 2010

Lonestar Trial

The Horsetooth Team went and ran the Lonestar Trial east of Dallas this past week-end.

The Open was HUGE. Flier at 150 yards, left hand retired at 350 and the long retired at 450 yards. 99 dogs ran this test and only 20 could come up with the birds. I had 2 of the 79 dogs that did not.

Miikka tried her guts out. She has been tense in training, as I mentioned and her hunt patterns had been stiff and she just wasn't relaxing. After pinning the flier, I sent her for the "short" retired and she hunted...and hunted...and hunted. Very relaxed, tail up and working her butt off. She came up with the bird, and I was so darned proud of her effort. I sent her for the long retired and she just didn't punch far enough and ended up hunting in no man's land. I was sure happy with her effort.

Darbi pinned the flier and SMACKED the short retired. She then took a bad line to the long retired that looked like there was no recovery from, so she was handled to the long bird. Again, I was so proud of her effort.

All I ask is that my girls try and try they did.

Darbs and I ran as test dog on the land blind and she gave a great effort again. Good momentum and she took every cast. She looked happy running it.

Next trial is in a few weeks in Kansas.

March 24, 2010

Turq Marking

I ran Darbi's son Turq (Prime x Darbi 2008) on a marking set-up yesterday. We did two doubles. Man, is he nice.
Turq is presently done his yard work and has started working on cheating singles in the water. He water attitude is remarkable.
I attach the link to youtube. I thought it would be better to see the video in a bigger screen than the blog allows.

or click on the title "Turq Marking" to take you to the video.

March 22, 2010


Elmingo's Little Man "Zink"
The little guy I know as "Red Collar".
Her sure looks like he likes his birds.

Zink now lives in Utah.

March 17, 2010

Morning Snooze

Mother and daughter enjoying a morning nap.

March 14, 2010

Training Update

Just an update on how the girls are doing.

Darbs has been in Texas with Kenny since January. She has been training like a bear and is looking really good. Great momentum, good attitude and she is generally doing all that we're asking of her. Kenny says she has been consistently one of the best dogs on his truck so far this year and she is ready to win an Open. She has learned to do the HUGE marks that we see more of in the US than Canada and she is doing great on her land and water blinds.
Biggest issue we are working on with her is that sometimes she can be lazy and not put in a 100% effort. I struggled with this training her for years, but since Kenny gave me the tools to combat any lack of effort, she puts in way more good days than bad now.

Initially shocked coming back to full time training after raising a litter and sitting on my couch for so many months, Miikka is coming along nicely. She is starting to mark like we know she can and her blinds are coming along. Miikka has always been a bit of a head swinger, so we are doing lots of singles with her to prevent this, as well as hone her marking. Her water blinds, one of her strengths, are almost back to where they were last fall. She'll be ready to run the next trial we are entering (two weeks).
Biggest issue we are working on with Miikka is still her whistle stops. She slips whistles when stressed OR if she's too loose. It's a fine line with her. We are also working on getting her relaxed as a whole, she's a bit tense coming back to training. She's as birdy as they come, but she also worries if she's always doing the right thing.

Now that her plate and pins are out, we need to keep her exercise restricted for another week or so. She is the cutest thing ever, and she is DYING to retrieve, but it's not time yet. She is mostly housebroken and is learning manners in the house. She sits on command, comes very well. She has no limp and does not favour her leg whatsoever.
Biggest issue with her...trying to keep her from overdoing it on her little leg. One more week and then we can stop worrying (as much).

March 13, 2010

Fun in the sun

Had some fun with the girls after training today.

Darbi (l), Miikka (r) and my friend Lois' dog Indy watching the throw into the pond.
Apparently Indy is the only dog that knows what "sit" means.

Darbi looking a little crazy-eyed while making a retrieve.

I also took some nice profile pics of the girls.

Libby enjoying some time in the grass sans metal devices or bandages.



March 10, 2010

No More Metal!

Libby and I went back to Texas A&M today for an assessment and x-ray by the ortho team and a re-bandage.

I was stunned when they brought her back out two hours later with no plate and pins!

The ortho vets showed me her x-rays and said that her bone has healed! He said puppies this young are "bone-growing machines".

Libby is wearing this fancy dressing for 2 days and then it can come off completely. It is there to prevent infections while her pin holes heal and scab over.

I was instructed to keep Libby restricted in her activity for the next week or so, and then she can be a full-blown puppy again!!
I can't wait!!

I must say, she has been amazing through all of this. She never messed with her bandages, she was patient with dressing changes and she tried to charge around on her leg like nothing was wrong.

The staff at A&M are also amazing! Libby had incredible care there. The first year ortho resident came in today on her day off when she heard Libby was booked in. Big thanks to them.

March 9, 2010

Flip Your Lid?

So, Libby's name is final.

Elmingo's Flip Your Lid

How did I come up with such an odd name you ask?

Well, some history.

"Elmingo" is not an original name. It was the name of the racing stable my grandparents had when I was growing up. According to my grandpa, Elmingo was a combination of Flamingo and Elmhurst...two stables they were involved with many years ago.

I am pretty proud to use the name Elmingo as my Grandpa is in the Canadian Thoroughbred Hall Of Fame and there is a Hazel Wright (my grandma) stakes race in Canada. My grandparents introduced me to my love of horses, and I am still a big horse racing fan to this day. (Hint: both Zenyatta AND Rachel Alexandra are running this week-end!) honor of the history of Elmingo Stables, my dogs are named after racehorses owned and/or bred by my grandparents.

At Full Tilt was a handy horse and Red Hot Rumors was a neat horse that got his name due to getting some severe burns when he was a yearling. He grew up to win some races too. So, after racking my brains of years of horse names, Flip Your Lid came to mind. I need to call my grandpa to ask him more about this horse, as I don't remember much about her.

As an aside. How is Pedro you wonder?
Pedro is the 2 year old racehorse I own a share of.
He is at the track training and hopefully will make his first start in the next few months!

March 6, 2010

Darbi at Red River

I'm at the Red River field trial in Texas. Having a great time.

Darbi did a very nice job on the combined 1st/2nd series.

She pinned the flyer and then had to pick up a blind before getting the remaining two marks.

For the blind, she had to slice the corner of a pond and then come out under the arc of the flyer to the blind. She got in the water way fat and needed 3 whistles to get back on line and then finished off the blind nicely.

She then nailed the last two birds of the test. I thought she may be dropped for her poor initial line on the blind, but Kenny was hopeful she'd get carried as her marks were so good.

She got dropped. Oh well. She had a ton of fun.

Here's a video of Darbi getting the go bird. I originally posted a video of her smacking the long retired and then I tried to post a video of her getting the short retired, but you couldn't see anything but a moving dot on the horizon if that, so I switched to this video. Hopefully it works better. It shows a bit of the test anyways.
(PS-Yes, she crept a was too funny for oh-so-serious Darbi to do that).

Libby is having a grand time at the trial too! Everyone, of course, is asking about the blue bandage on her leg. She's meeting lots of new people and is a very bright, animated and happy puppy. Someone put it best when they said "she is SO expressive!"

March 4, 2010

No Bandage

Libby went for a dressing change today and she is doing great according to the vets.
Her leg wound is clean and healing nicely. Her jaw looks great and is without pain as well.
The biggest issue I'm having with her right now is getting her to take it easy. She's like a bucking bronco when on a leash.
Here is a pic of her leg in between the dressing change.

March 3, 2010

Libby's Leg

Libby spends most the day in her x-pen while we're training dogs. She is wonderful in there. Quiet and content. She doesn't bother with her bandage at all and there are enough people to keep a close eye on her just in case. A short video to show how great she's doing with her leg...she even feels good enough to scratch with it!

We're off to Texas A&M in the morning for a dressing change and assessment on how she's doing. And then off to the first field trial of the season for us! Darbi is entered in the Open and Miikka is not running. She needs a few more weeks in training after 4 months off raising a litter and sitting on the couch.