Saturday, 30 May 2020

Long Time No Post

Where do I begin? So much has happened since I last updated our blog and the past few years have seen my wildest dreams come true. From competing abroad for Team GB to introducing a new addition into the family, it really has been incredible.

Crufts 2018

Crufts 2018 was a huge success and the dynamic duo took the YKC ring by storm. Ethel came 6th in ABC agility, 6th in under 18 jumping and 2nd in team agility alongside our four teammates. Not to be outdone, Earl helped me to win my category of the Groomer of the Year.

OJAC 2018

OJAC 2018 was absolutely unreal. We came 2nd and 3rd in the individual rounds to become the overall individual champions. To top it off, we came 1st and 2nd in the team rounds to become the overall team champions alongside our three teammates.

EOJ 2018 Netherlands

Representing YKC Agility Team GB at EOJ 2018 in the Netherlands was one of the best experiences I have ever had. The team spirit was extraordinary and we all had so much fun out there. Ethel did me proud and we finished 27th/100+ overall in our individual category. In addition, our team came 6th in team agility and 9th overall.

Ethel's Agility Warrant Gold

This was the year that Ethel acquired enough points to achieve her gold agility warrant. I am super proud of her for coming this far. Next up, platinum!

IMCA 2018 UK

Representing Agility Team UK at IMCA 2018 in the UK was another extraordinary experience and the atmosphere was truly special. We achieved a bronze medal in team jumping and finished 4th overall alongside our three teammates. The combined results of the UK IMCA and PAWC competitors also made the UK the most successful overall country at the event.

Paleo Ridge Raw Dog Food

Excitingly, this was the year that our awesome sponsors, Paleo Ridge Raw Dog Food, started sponsoring us. We are super grateful for their continued support and Earl and Ethel are absolutely thriving on their natural and nutritious diet.

Crufts 2019

2019 witnessed another successful Crufts for the duo and I. Ethel came 4th in ABC agility and 6th in under 18 jumping and Earl helped me to come 2nd in my category of the Groomer of the Year. They never fail to work their magic in the YKC ring.

OJAC 2019

OJAC 2019 was definitely a lot quieter than 2018. However, we still managed to come 2nd in individual agility and 1st in team agility. This little dog never lets me down.

EOJ 2019 Switzerland

Representing YKC Agility Team GB at EOJ 2019 in Switzerland was and always will be my favourite and most memorable experience to date. Ethel was her usual awesome self and we finished 26th/84 overall in our individual category. Our team also came 7th in team jumping and 13th/33 overall.

Agility Club

Returning home after EOJ was by no means fun. However, coming 2nd in the international tour at Agility Club definitely eased the post-holiday blues.

IMCA 2019 Spain

Representing Agility Team UK at IMCA 2019 in Spain was fantastic. Ethel went clear in individual jumping and picked up an unlucky five faults for pinging the dog walk contact in individual agility. A misunderstanding meant that we had to rerun individual agility; luckily, we managed to pull off an identically impressive second run.

BAC 2019

The flying ferret found a brand new gear at BAC 2019, resulting in 5th place in the speed jumping final.

Senior Agility Team GB 2020 Squad

Due to our success as a part of YKC Agility Team GB 2019, we were selected to be a part of the Senior Agility Team GB 2020 squad. This is my first year on the senior squad and I am excited to get a feel for what it is like.


The most exciting part of 2019 was introducing little Arrow into the family. Arrow is a Working Cocker Spaniel and future agility superstar and I cannot wait to see what the future has in store for us.

OJAC 2020

OJAC was our first major event of 2020 and we won team agility and jumping to become the overall team champions alongside our three teammates. Our team has been competing together for three consecutive years and has never left the event empty handed. This was my last eligible year competing at OJAC and by far my absolute favourite.

Agility Team GB 2020 Squad Day 2

The combined results from the second Agility Team GB 2020 squad day placed us 5th overall and qualified us for the win-on-spot final at the performance weekend. I am super proud of our partnership, especially considering that this is our first year as a part of the senior squad.

Crufts 2020

2020 marked another year on the YKC podium at Crufts for the duo and I. Ethel and I came 3rd in pairs agility alongside our partners, Abby and Smartie, and Earl helped me to come 3rd in my category of the Groomer of the Year. There is nothing quite like Crufts!

I hope to find enough time to update our blog more regularly from now on. Stay tuned!

Monday, 1 January 2018

Happy New Year 2018

Happy New Year everyone!

One of my New Year's resolutions for 2018 is to make the time to sit down at the computer and start posting regularly here on our blog again, and I'm determined to stick to it. I look forward to making the most out of and hopefully growing our blog over the year.

So, here's to an awesome 2018! We can't wait to see what it holds for us!

Monday, 25 December 2017

Monday, 18 December 2017

It's Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas

Earl and Ethel had so much fun in the snow we had last week, just in time for Christmas!

We have our paws crossed that we get some more snow this winter!

Who else has had snow where they are?

Friday, 15 December 2017

Dog Vegas - 09/12/2017

I had an awesome day at Dog Vegas running Kelly on Saturday! She may be a challenge, but when she listens to me, she's amazing to run and such a fun little agility partner! Getting her consistency up isn't a quick process, but with hard work and never giving up, I can feel us improving the more we work together. It's onwards and upwards for us, and I always feel honoured to have been chosen as her longterm handler.

Kelly and I in front of the giant annual Christmas tree at Oakridge arena.

We won one of our jumping classes with an awesome clear round, which was quite a pretty tight course but really enjoyable to run! Kelly listened to me really well and didn't put a paw wrong, and I couldn't have been happier with her!

We came 4th in our other jumping class, which was a very smooth course and ideal for a speedy dog like Kelly. I loved blasting round the course with Kelly, and we were less than half a second behind 2nd place! She listened really well again and clearly had a whale of a time! Now we just need to push even harder in an attempt to lose those precious couple of seconds that kept us from the win!

We also had a very close helter skelter run, which is basically a jumping course minus the weaves, and usually follows a circular pattern. We gained an unlucky 5 faults when Kelly burst out of a tunnel, took a jump and was unable to slow down enough for a sharp turn and skidded past the correct jump! I brought her back and sent her over it, and we continued the run gaining no more faults. I was really happy with the run, however, as she was really speedy and mostly consistent.

One of her agility runs was awesome, and would've been clear if I hadn't have put her back on her a-frame contact. She got the contact, but I'm sticking to criteria with her and making sure she always stops in the 2-on-2-off position on every contact. Not long ago, she wasn't getting any of her contacts whatsoever, and now she's getting just about all of them thanks to sticking to criteria and making sure she knows what is expected of her. Now to continue putting this into practice with the goal of getting her to stop of every contact on a consistent basis. I believe we're not too far off that point!

Our other agility run was slightly crazy. Strangely, it felt as though the old Kelly had returned! Kelly wasn't listening to me like she was in all her other runs, but I understand that dogs will be dogs and she's bound to have some runs, and even some days, like this. I kept her going and completed the course in the end. Sometimes you have to take one step back to take two steps forward, and when I look at the big picture, we're definitely taking those forward steps. Luckily this wasn't the last run of the day, and we managed to finish the day on a high note.

I just love Kelly's drive and enthusiasm for agility, and running her is helping me to be a better handler and dog trainer, and for that I am so thankful. She's helping me learn about running a very fast dog, and running a different height to small. In a similar way to when I used to run Earl as well as Ethel, I also have to switch both physically and mentally from Ethel mode to Kelly mode when running both at the same show, as they're both so different to run. Overall, I've seen a huge improvement in Kelly's agility since when I first started running her, and I'm beyond determined to keep the improvement going with her! Onwards and upwards!