Thursday, February 12, 2009

Kyrie and London, Take 2!

I just had to snag a second and post another double-shot of our girl Kyrie next to her ancestor, London the Littlest Hobo! She has a more feminine head and the photos are not perfectly matched, but I think she has come along since the last one!!

The old photo:

The new photo:

We love our Hobo girl!!

The Hutto IABCA Show!

At the end of January Zak and I took Leo and Kyrie down to Hutto, TX, a few hours south, for the IABCA Winter Sieger show! This is held at the Triple Crown canine events facility, which is INCREDIBLE! Here is Kyrie looking at everything before she gets out of the Element:

Kyrie only participated in Show 3 this weekend, because we were a little short on cash this time. She came in third behind Leo and Christi Tanon's beautiful Bruno, who is growing up into a gorgeous dog! Following are the judge's comments:

"Developing well, slow maturing. Needs self confidence in ring. Coat: Good Texture! Head still developing, scissor bite, dark eyes, ears erect, deep chest with moderate bone. Back angulation: Well Angulated. Topline near level with slight slope. Well set tail, movement a little close in front. Rating: SG-1." The SG-1 rating means Kyrie will get a young adult Champion title from the IABCA if she gets another two of those ratings! We will need to be sure to show her in June and see how she does!

This place was so amazing that I made time between shows to take pictures! I wish we lived closer to Austin, I swear I would be here every weekend! Here is the front of the main building, where the rings were set up. Every weekend there is some sort of dog show, obedience or agility trial, or other canine event!

They had a big yard for all the dogs to do their business off to the left of the entrance, complete with handy pooper scoopers. Further beyond that were rows of at least six kennel buildings--I assumed for when people had their dogs stay at the facility for training. There was also a big Grooming Center just down the row from where we were parked:

To the right was a playground for kids, to keep the little ones busy while their parents and dogs were being trained! Off to the left of the playground was the Pro Shop, which was not open while we were there but which carries all sorts of dog equipment and supplies.

There were kids playing at the playground on Sunday, while their parents participated in Schutzhund events in the HUGE outdoor events field!

Here is the beautiful driveway, leading off toward the main road. In the other direction is the entrance to a "Dog Adventure Trail" for members only. They looked to have more than a few acres of fenced woods, hills and trails for the dogs and their people to explore!

Finally we close with the beautiful sunset over the hill Saturday evening. Thanks for sharing your wonderful facility with us, Hutto!

For more details from the show--including how our other Shiloh, Leo, did--step on over to Leo's blog!!

Wednesday, February 11, 2009

Kyrie at Work!

Around October we noticed that Kyrie's personality was changing, moving away from the happy-go-lucky frenetic puppy we were used to. Tina had always said that Kyrie was the more cautious type, more inclined to watch and figure things out, less like Leo who was just a rambunctious people-lover. Sure enough, Kyrie was growing up!

One of the side effects of this very alert and reactive period--some people call it a fear period, but it's really just the dog growing out of the oblivious puppy phase--was that Kyrie started to display a more aloof and sometimes outright shy nature. We didn't want to encourage the shyness, so we launched a triple-pronged socialization plan! Phase one of the plan was for me to take Kyrie to work more often, to remove her from her "safe" home environment and expose her to new people. So I took one of our extra baby gates to work, and Kyrie accompanied me a couple days a week for a few weeks in a row. During that time we did notice that she became better about meeting new people, though she was still a very submissive girl and did not like people to "loom" over her (she is much more likely to approach when they kneel down to her level) and she preferred to have me greet the people with her. When we were not encouraging my co-workers to visit, she would park herself next to my chair, just like in the picture!

At one point later on I was talking to Jessica of Strauss Haus Shiloh Shepherds, one of our excellent ISSR Licensed Breeders. She told me about her own aloof, high-energy girls. It turned out that Jessica's girls had gone through this same phase that Kyrie was going through, at the same age! I was very relieved when I found that out. Jessica encouraged us to keep working with Kyrie and said that if we continued to socialize it would all work out just fine!

Our two other socialization methods included attending a big dog show in Hutto and enrolling Kyrie in Obedience class! Read up: the Hutto IABCA Show!