Aug 262013

A warm day at Newton Tony today – what a lovely venue with such welcoming and pleasant people. Jo Cadzow and Simon Hunt put on a really well organised day and were fantastic hosts to Andrea and me. It was a real joy to appear here again. The dogs performed well although, once again, Poppy was not on top form, deciding to eat the sausage instead of retrieving it (she did it here last year too!) and doing a few other totally uncharacteristic things, which probably passed unnoticed by most. In addition, both  dogs were affected by the heat and lacked the usual energy levels. Despite this, our performance met with warm applause and attracted many lovely comments afterwards. For me, Daisy was the star, performing just beautifully, not only showing off her basic obedience skills but her gundog abilities as well – I’m so proud of her talents at such a young age.

Had a really interesting cross section of questions afterwards, ranging from a couple whose collie bites them regularly (with recent scars to prove it!) to someone who said “How do I stop dogs barking?”. It was only after I had been speaking for a minute or two that he said “Oh no, they’re not mine, they belong to my neighbours and they’re getting on my t**s!”.

Met some really interesting people afterwards, including Mike who was showing his Harris Hawks and his owl. We got chatting and I mentioned I had always wanted to work a spaniel with a Harris Hawk- and it’s going to happen! He’s invited me up to Pewsey and, in exchange for some help with his pointer and cocker, he and I are going to work dogs, ferrets and birds together against the rabbits once the harvest is in. Can’t wait. An idea for future shows perhaps ….?

Bit of a break now until our next appearance in our home village of Codford on 7 September followed by Warminster Carnival the very next day. Time to regroup – and reducate Poppy, in particular. But now that I have received most of the shooting dates for next season, the truth is that I’m now looking forward to finishing the show season and swopping canvas dummies for a bit of feather and fur!

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