Wednesday, April 22, 2009

The Joys of Evaluating Puppies

So, Elli's 6-month birthday came and went on Monday. Ash helped me get some good pictures of Ell on the grooming table. Since she's now eligible to be shown, I need to decide whether to scrap showing her altogether, show her this summer out of the 6-9 mo. puppy class, or wait for her to mature a little more and then see how she looks before deciding whether to show her.

Complicating the decision is the feedback I've gotten: Elli's breeder thinks she looks very good and balanced, though agrees that her chest needs to drop some more. Two other breeders who have looked at Ell haven't liked her at all. Two others thought she was very pretty and emphasized that puppies who look big and impressive at 6 months are often overdone when they mature (a sentiment I kinda share). I'm waiting for comments from two other breeders to whom I've sent Elli's pics.

Elli's front:

Elli's front is probably her worst feature, and since fronts are a big part of Cardigan breed type, this isn't great news. However, her legs are put together correctly, and I do think I see her chest dropping a little from where it has been. The biggest negative I see here as that looking front-on, you can really see the rounded rib-caged, rather than the ideal egg-shaped rib cage.

Show side:

Elli looks decent from the side. She has good rear angulation, and again I can see where the chest is starting to drop. She has a nice length of neck and a decent topline -- not ruler straight at the moment, but it WAS ruler-straight at 8 weeks of age and I believe it will be again once she's done growing.

Right (non-show) side:

This photo shows the slight rise over the loin but, again, I think that will level back out as she finishes growing. I wish the white markings were on the show side instead of this side!!


Nice rear end. I had her feet placed a little wide which I didn't realize at the time I stacked the photo, but she should look decent going.

Picking up the tag from Maggie...

1. Are you a male or female: Female
2. Describe yourself: Mercurial, busy, eclectic, dog-crazy, revolving door of obsessions.
3. How do you feel about yourself: Depends on the day. Some days great, other days not so much.
4. Describe your parents: Dad is gone and very much missed. Mom is... difficult.
5. Describe your ex boyfriend/girlfriends: Fleeting.
6. Describe your current boy/girl situation: Married with pets.
7. Describe your current location: At work, in my cube. But it's a deluxe, corner cube with a window. Does that count as improvement?
8. Describe where you want to be: Home playing with the dogs, or reading, or writing, or watching Stargate: Atlantis DVDs, or at a dog show... anywhere but here, basically.
9. Your best friend(s) is/are: Awesomely dependable, always there for me. Couldn't ask for better.
10. Your favorite color is: purple.
11. You know that: I should be working rather than doing this.
12. If your life was a television show what would it be called: "What Have You Done Now?!"
14. What is the best advice you have to give: Don't settle. Don't have a fall-back plan, because then you'll fall back.

Monday, April 20, 2009

Partners in Crime

"Dude, I can't believe you said that!!"

"Admit nothing. They can't prove a thing."

Friday, April 17, 2009

And then again...

Boy, ask ten people for an opinion and you'll get ten different answers. So, two weeks ago at the shows in Springfield, the two Cardi breeders I asked to evaluate Elli weren't all that whooped about her, citing many of the same "flaws" that I did. Bummer.

Then, at a kennel club meeting last night, I had two OTHER Cardi breeders look at her, and they both really like her. Aargh. Of course, this shouldn't surprise me, considering the judges are much the same way, each liking different things.

Ah, dog shows. More or less a crapshoot.

However, I'm feeling less discourage than I was two weeks ago. I guess the moral of the story is that we just need to see how she grows up. She may end up being the foundation of Smalltyme Cardigans after all.

Memo to self: Insert some pictures into the blog when you're at home this weekend.

Mr. Murphy visits today

First it's the laser printer emitting a high-pitched squeal and then asking for a service call. Then it's the Risograph machine greedily gobbling up NCR paper like it grows on trees. Which, um, I guess it does.

Date Night tonight. My turn to plan and pay. I have no clue what we're going to do, and I've got very little money with which to whatever this nebulous thing turns out to be. Might have to resort to putting out.

Thursday, April 16, 2009

Re-Media-l Communication

So, I have this one co-worker that I absolutely cannot get along with. No effective communication whatsoever. Seriously, it's like we are not only from different planets, but from different solar systems, different galaxies, perhaps even from alternate realities. Today, I finally learned why that is.

He doesn't have TV.

Now, this is not to say that anyone not currently in possession of a television is from outer space. I mean, there are probably some aliens out there picking up on our airwaves, giggling over our pseudotechno-babble while we try to explain how a hyperspace drive works. Who else would watch Rock of Love?

No, it was the way he announced it, all smug and morally superior, like only knuckle-dragging, unevolved Neanderthals would deign to watch television. Why do these people assign some particular virtue to the decision not to do something? I'm sure he thinks he's setting some great example for his kids. Nevermind that those kids are not going to get the cultural references bandied about by their peers, or be able to participate in the lunchroom discussion of whatever the week's preteen Omigod!Squee!! is. Surely that opera he dragged them to will be an effective substitute conversation starter.

TV can be a wonderful, shared point of reference; east coast, west coast, north, south... we can all talk about the series finale of Battlestar Galactica, or debate the comparative virtues of this year's crop of American Idol hopefuls. It gives us a common cultural language and provides something to discuss on the elevator beyond the mortally exhausted topic of the weather. Why is it some supposed revelation to cut oneself off from that avenue of communication?

Whatever. So, co-worker: Nice breeze today, huh?

Really, American Idol?!

Seriously? You're using The Save on Matt Giraud? WTF? I will go biblical on someone's ass if Adam ends up getting booted next week after this tomfoolery.


Wednesday, April 15, 2009

The Corgis made me do it!

...or, rather, the friends and family who are sick of hearing about them ad nauseum, along with all of my other random musings, TV obsession, and general weirdness. So hey, why not start a blog and display same on the internet?

The Cardigan Welsh Corgi nationals are taking place this week in Topeka, Kansas. I'm not able to attend this year, and am green with envy of all those who are. But freaking Kansas! Really?! Can I even get there from here?

So the dogs and I are home here, muddling through another work week. For me, mind-numbing boredom. For the dogs, all-day playtime at Grammy's house. I think they have the better deal!

Ian showed down in Springfield, MA two weeks ago and picked up 3 points on Saturday (his THIRD major) and Reserve both Friday and Sunday. Not a bad weekend's work. That makes twelve points in total. Just three more to go!! How neat would it be to have titles on both ends? A nice CH. to go with his CD!

Training for Open obedience continues. Ian has a rough idea of how to do everything, but he insists on picking up the dumbbell by the end instead of the middle. At this point, I'll take a points off if he'll just keep ahold of it the whole way in.

Elli, the 6 month-old baby of the family, is going to be an awesome agility dog. She can run circles around her brother and can turn on a dime. She was supposed to be a show dog and my foundation bitch, but it doesn't look like she has a future in the conformation ring at this point. Damn! But what a fun girl! She makes me laugh every day, and she's going to be hell on wheels when it comes to performance events.

Still need a show girl, though!!!