Liberty won another two points toward her AKC CH title over the weekend, leaving her three single points remaining to finish. There were seven girls competing. Thank you to handlers Erin Hines and Bill Buell and thank you to Judge Ms. Nikki Riggsbee.
Wolfhound entries at the all-breed Santa Barbara Kennel Club shows on Aug. 30 and 31, 2009, were supported by the Irish Wolfhound Club of America. To support the club, we entered.
We had no expectation at all of winning. Yes, honestly! We just wanted to be part of the fun. The day was so hot, we nearly didn't go. But Liberty was keeping cool in the air-conditioning, so off we went. We wanted the fun of showing our beautiful girl to esteemed wolfhound breeder-judge Joel Samaha.
She was the youngest girl there, still considered a puppy, in the 12-18 month-old class. So we didn't think she would be a contender.
We were wrong.
She went Winner's, with 4 girls present, for one point toward her Championship title. We were so thrilled!
It only got better.
The winner's dog had earned two points (there were five dogs). So when we went in the Best of Breed ring we thought we were competing for Best of Winners, two points.
It only got better.
The Winner's Dog beat three male champions to earn Best Opposite Sex to the beautiful Best of Breed winner. Eight dogs! A three-point major for him! Wow!
Then our Liberty beat the Winner's Dog, for Best of Winners.
Liberty's journey toward her AKC championship title continued at the Channel City Kennel Club show over the July 4 holiday weekend. Thank you to Dr. Eric Liebes for awarding her WB and Best of Winners in a tough competition.
She earned another point.
Thank you to handler Erin Hines!
The tally so far:
3 points, Judge Elliott Weiss.
1 point, Judge Lee Canalizo
1 point, Judge Eugene Blake
1 point, Dr. Eric Liebes.
Liberty is our resident firecracker and she celebrated her first birthday on July 4.
Liberty's journey toward her AKC championship title continued over the weekend at two all-breed shows in Chula Vista.
She was the youngest Irish Wolfhound competing, 11 months old and in the 9-12 class.
That stopped no one.
She won Winner's Bitch on Saturday and we thank our judge, Mrs. Lee Canalizo, for such a lovely win.
She won Winner's Bitch on Sunday and Best of Winners, and we thank our judge, Mr. Eugene Blake, for choosing her and also for awarding her Best of Winners over the Winner's Dog.
We were very privileged to have such respected hound judges at this show. We were thrilled they appreciated Liberty and how she represents the hard work of Glenamadda, Starkeeper, and Limerick kennels.
And we were very fortunate to have the talented Erin Hines handling Liberty.
The show each day was a lot of fun. The grounds were wonderful, the rings on well-groomed grass, the weather was overcast and not too hot or too cold, and we loved chatting with our wolfhound competitors. We came early and stayed late.
Liberty's journey so far:
3 points (a major), Orange Empire Dog Club, age 6 months, thank you again to our judge Mr. Elliott Weiss.
1 point on Saturday
1 point on Sunday
total 5 points! We're so proud of our puppy for these achievements.
The Goal is 15 points, including two major wins of at least three points each.
A jet was flying over this a.m., and making a lot of noise. Blake began barking from the back porch. We decided to go and see why he was barking. After all, we've been having lots of rattlesnakes lately, and indeed, last week a snake had somehow made its way onto the screened-in back porch. Blake wasn't barking at the jet. He wasn't barking at a snake. He was barking at something outside. It was something outside the chainlink fence of the back yard. We let him outside, and immediately saw what he was barking at: A big brown bear! Blake charged the bear, barking ferociously. The chainlink stayed between them. The bear fled, running so fast it crashed into the bushes. Good boy, Blake!
Liberty looked beautiful to me (no bias of course) at the annual Hound Classic, where she had many positive, new experiences. She turned 9 months on the 4th and so is now in the 9-12 month puppy girl class. On the second day, she came in reserve winner's bitch! We thank our Judge, Borzoi breeder Ms. Robin K. Riel, for this wonderful recognition of Liberty. Ms. Riel also gave our Verity a wonderful Best of Breed win last year when our girl was a new champion. We thank her for appreciating the girls' movement and type. Read the online catalog here.
Happy birthday on Feb. 16 to all the V litter: our beloved Verity, and her littermates Victoria (with her breeders in Canada), Veronica (in Australia), Victory (in the U.S.), Venus (in the U.S.), and Canadians Vegas and Velvet!
Wow, it's already been three years, gang!
Here they are, only several hours old on that amazing day three years ago, photo courtesy of the hard-working co-breeder Dr. Susan Prokopenko (Glenamadda).
At the time she ONLY had litters U, V, AND W!
Verity (co-owned and loved by Pat Murkland and Verity's co-breeder Jocelyne Gagne) is the one in the middle with the red yarn collar.
Liberty is now six months old and so, we went to our first dog shows for a fun outing, for socializing, and practice. So far, she thinks dog shows are all about being inside buildings. She loves the treats, gaiting around the ring, and shopping for toys.
At our second weekend out, at Orange Empire Dog Club, Liberty won her first points toward her AKC championship title!
She won Winner's Bitch, Best of Winners, and then BEST OF BREED over three champion specials. A THREE-POINT MAJOR at six months old.
Best of all, she had a fabulous time!
We're still in shock. Wow!
Many thanks to Judge Elliott Weiss, to handler Erin Hines (and of course to Bill Buell), and congratulations to Liberty's breeders, Dr. Susan Prokopenko, Jocelyne Gagne, and her father's breeders, the Souzas of Limerick.
Blake continues to amaze at age 2.5 years, as he matures into a gorgeous young man. Not that we're biased or anything. (Grin) He is still very puppylike, as right before these photos were taken, he was enjoying a good roll in the grass. He has a very happy personality! Here he is gaiting with his co-breeder Jamie Souza Bartlett:
Here he is going away:
All Photos by Pat Murkland copyright 2009
Thank you to Limerick (Janet Souza, Linda Souza, and Jamie Souza Bartlett) for my beloved Blake!
Thank you for being so kind to me and to Merlin's daughter, Verity. Thank you for sharing your enthusiasm for wolfhounds with me. Thank you for your support and for your pride as Merlin's daughter succeeded beyond my dreams in the show ring in 2008. We hope you are with Merlin now, together ... as you will be in our memories.
This video was posted by Karen's friends on YouTube: