Favorite Gifts

Maisy, a Manny x Glory puppy
My favorite gift is hearing from the families who have Acadia bred shelties. Every year you guys come through and keep in touch. You are the BEST. Thank you, every one.


Merry Christmas and Happy Holidays

Glory is closing in and just needs a major


Today Acadia Infinite Spirit earned his CGC- and Finn herding in June 2010

Acadia Infinite Spirit, aka- Finn , and Kathy earned the CGC (Canine Good Citizen) award today. Congratulations! Finn was born in Februrary 2010. He is one of the "future stars" and I am already enjoying reporting on his and his sister, Xena's successes.

This video is of Finn herding when he was just 4 1/2 months old. To see more videos of Finn herding, and Xena doing agility, visit our site on YouTube http://www.youtube.com/user/acadiashelties


Powerful Chewer!

Toltec, our Rhodesian Ridgeback, is only 11 months old- and still a puppy. He is a powerful chewer and quickly consumes anything "sheltie sized".

The Buster Cube is a great toy that dispenses treats as the dog rolls it around. The one pictured on the right is "sheltie size". Notice the teeth marks. Toltec can pick this whole cube up- and- as you can see- do serious damage. Today I got him a "Ridgeback" size Buster Cube. He can't pick this one up- perfect! He loves this game. He uses his feet a lot- and this cube is perfect for the "kicker" . I have found that shelties don't like the "cube" shape as they are not "kickers". They like to use their noses to "roll" and the cube is just not that good for "rolling". I have a ball that is the same concept. They prefer that. I didn't get it out as I thought that Toltec would find it too easy.


New *C-ATCH* Champion Acadia Cierra Like A Rock, AXJ, NA, NF, RN, HT

The C-ATCH is the CPE (Canine Preformance Events) Agility Trial championship. Nicky is owned by Merrylee and trained in agility by Arlene. Congratualtions!!!!

Phyllis reported that Rain got her first Qualifying agility score- in NADC Tunnelers.


A Good Thanksgiving Weekend- Glory Wins again for 2 more points

Glory was WB again on Monday for another 2 points bringing her total to 9. I am keeping my fingers crossed that she will finish her championship this calendar year.


Acadia's Crowning Glory wins a major

Today Glory won a major at the Chesapeake Kennel Club under sheltie breeder/judge Mrs. Janet Turnage Nahikian. I am SO THIRLLED! This brings her 1/2 way to the Championship. She now has 7 points, 1 major. She needs 8 more points and 1 more major.


Great Competition Homes: Morene Brown

L-R, Kaibab, WIT, Mike, Morene, Cache

Morene was my agility training when I lived in Tucson. I couldn't have asked for a better teacher! When I lived in Tucson Morene had a lab, a whippet and a sheltie. At that time I was training Tucket, Valerie and Payson in agility.

In 2000 shortly after I moved to Pennsylvania, Morene called to see if I had a puppy to share with her. I was expecting a litter sired by Payson out of Molly, Valerie's litter sister. There were only two in the litter, and the male had a tail that didn't reach his hock, so I knew that he would not be a show dog. I was able to call Morene and say, "Yes, I have your puppy"- even though he was only a few days old. Morene named him Kaibab.

Morene's fun and clear training helped Kaibab become the first TRIPLE agility champion, all breeds, in the city of Tucson. It takes a very special dog to be able to compete successfully in all three of these venues as they all highlight different skills and abilities of the dogs. It also takes a very special trainer to be able to train for each of these venues. Officially, Kaibab is MACH. NATCH, ADCH Acadia's Candidate, HSAs. The MACH is the AKC agility championship, NATCH is the NADAC agility championship and the ADCH is the USDAA agility championship.

Morene's passion is agility, but due to Kaibab's interest in sheep, Morene met Sue Bradley and allowed Sue to train Kaibab to the Herding Started title on the A course with sheep. The duo of Morene and Sue allow Acadia bred shelties to excel in multiple venues. When Morene called to say she was ready for another puppy, I was ecstatic!

WIT, aka- Acadia What Ever It Takes, HXAsd, AX, AXJ, is sired by Molly's son, Show Low out of Valerie- thereby doubling on Tucket (the mother of both Molly and Valerie). Morene takes her time training a new dog. She is never in a hurry to get titles, but rather waits until she knows the dog is ready and will enjoy the experience too. Knowing she trains this way, I shouldn't have been too surprised when she called to say that WIT had gotten a leg towards the herding EXCELLENT title at his FIRST herding trial, but I was. Again, it was Morene's willingness to allow WIT to train with Sue in herding that enabled WIT to shine in this venue.

I had thought that the accomplishments of Morene and Kiabab were outstanding (and they are!), but I couldn't have imagined the joy of what was to come. WIT not only completed the HX title on both sheep and ducks in three straight attempts, but he was High in Trial at the ASSA National Specialty Herding sheep trial and Reserve High In Trail at the ASSA National Specialty duck trial He has 6 pts (out of 15), the necessary two 1st place wins and the major towards the Herding Championship (HC). I would be willing to bet that WIT will be the first Acadia HC/MACH.

As luck would have it, Morene is sold on Acadia bred shelties. She has two more- Acadia's Microburst, OA, OAJ, Mike, a Canyon x Kiara puppy, whose first agility trial was the ASSA national specialty and he placed first in both Novice Standard and Novice Jumpers with weaves . Morene's youngest, Acadia's Hidden Treasure, Cache, is a Rincon x Faith puppy.

Kaibab turned 10 this year, but he is still competing in agility. His role now is that of "teacher". Kaibab is a very honest dog and will work for anyone. Morene now has Kaibab teaching her students the handling skills needed for some of the more advanced maneuvers. Once the student is clear about their own body language, they can begin to work with their own dogs on the advanced skills with the confidence that at least one of the pairs knows what they are doing.

It takes Great Owners and Great Trainers to make Great Dogs- and I am Thankful to have quite a few of them sharing their lives with Shelties from Acadia.


Thankful for...

I say this all the time, I love dogs! I am thankful that I can (still) live a life full of dogs. As we experience our “Great Nation” incrementally handing over our rights to freedom and the pursuit of happiness- I can say that Thanksgiving, 2010 – we still have the right to own and breed dogs. For this, I am the most Thankful.
I love to breed dogs, but it is the Great Owners that make breeding dogs so much fun. YOU- are my extended family! I LOVE to see and hear about your successes and disappointments (but mostly successes :-0 )


9 month old Xena is doing 15 obstacles

Linda Hall called on Sunday to tell me about Xena. Xena is one of the Rincon x Faith puppies and this week she will be 9 months old. If you click on Xena's Label to the right- you will get to see a few videos of her as a young puppy. Linda has been training Xena from the moment she got off the plane- but this past weekend Xena really showed her accelerated training.

Linda went to a NADAC agility trial to compete with her two older dogs. Xena went along for the socialization and experience. One of the nice things about NADAC is there are LOTS of classes to compete in and each one is very different. In AKC there are only 2 classes- Standard, which is jumps, weave poles, tunnels and 3 "contact obstacles", or Jumpers which is just jumps, weave poles and tunnels (no contact obstacles).

At the trail that Linda was at, a class called "Tunnelers"- (because every obstacle is a tunnel) was the last class of the day. Linda stayed to help the club clean up, and when most everyone was gone, she asked if it would be OK to run the course with Xena. They said yes and Xena ran a 15 obstacle course under course time!!!!!!! How GREAT IS THAT!

Linda had to send her from one tunnel to the next, making sure she took the correct entrance, making sure she took the correct TUNNEL! It is not easy to do a course where all obstacles are the same- but it is even harder when the dog can not see you most of the time (because she is inside a TUNNEL!). Changes of course, become more difficult and your signals must be clear and the dog must understand, or they "pop back out" the same way they went into the tunnel. Linda was amazed at the maturity level and work ethic of Xena. True- Xena has work ethic and drive- but it is Linda who is developing the mental mind of this dog and making Xena the working partner she is becoming. Congratulations Linda and Xena- I KNOW we will continue to be reporting GREAT THINGS about you two.


10-20-2010 I just had to post!

So I missed posting on 10-10-10, but I happen to think today's date is better! 10-20-2010

It's a good thing Lori sent me this really cool picture of Cache (tri in back) and Tryk (sable in front). The legs are exactly the same! What a great picture- perfect timing Lori!
Cache is owned by Morene Brown (owner of WIT, Kiabab and Mike) and Tryk is owned by Lori Grega- both in Tucson, AZ. Cache is from the Rincon x Faith litter and is a littermate to Xena and Finn and Tryk is from the Manny x Glory litter.


New *HX* for U-Ch. U-CD Linden Acadia Stacked Deck, CDX, HIAsd,*HXAd*

Penny had a GREAT fall weekend! She and Show Low completed the Herding Excellent title on the A course with Ducks (HXAd). Penny writes, "Yes, it finally happened. An Accomplishment I never thought I would see-all because of this wonderful, devoted, and talented dog! No matter how many times I mess up, he gives his all every time. And a score good for first place, over some Herding Champions in the class!!"

Show Low is WIT's father.



Acadia Whatever It Takes, HXAsd, AX, AXJ wins a Major towards the Herding Championship

Most of the AKC Championship titles require a dog to defeat other dogs and earn "points" to earn the title. The number of "points" awarded at each trial or show depends on the number of dogs that successfully compete that day at that trial/show. The more dogs defeated in a day, the higher the points. The maximum number of points that can be awarded at any one trial/show is 5.

In order to obtain the Herding Championship, a dog must earn 15 total points, win at least two 1st place wins, and win a major (between 3-5 pts). Remember, majors are a reflection of the number of dogs defeated that day.

WIT placed first, and was also High In Trial, at the ASSA National Specialty Herding trial this past spring. That was his first 1st place win. There were only enough shelties for him to earn 2 pts towards the championship- but it was a necessary 1st place (and- being the National- they were the best shelties from around the country!)

Today WIT competed at an "all breed" (well- all herding breed) Trial and again he placed 1st in the Advanced Class. This time the entry was large enough that he won 4pts towards his Herding Championship. He has now gotten all of the hard parts out of the way and he just needs "points" to get to 15.

Shelties are not known around the Herding circles as being a "power breed" and it can be very difficult for them to win 1st place when competing against Boarder Collies- but WIT has not been told such tales. He IS a powerhouse and he can keep up with the best of them. He will do Whatever It Takes!


Acadia Serenity and __??__ at 10wks

I am keeping two puppies. One is from the Ch. Grandgables The Frat Boy x Acadia Peaceful Garden litter. That puppy's name will be Acadia Serenity, call name "Serena". The other puppy is from the Ch. Grandgables The Frat Boy x Acadia Presence of Mind litter. I would like to use "Presence" in the registared name, but I can't come up with anything I like- and I don't have a call name for her yet.


Cassia's puppies have a spa day

Cassia has 2 girls and 1 boy. Today they got a bath and blow-dry, their ears done, toe-nails trimmed- the works! They look so cute now!


puppies are almost 6 weeks



Payson has a little bit of a tooth-ache and he is being treated for it. I just love this picture because despite the fact that you can see where his tooth is bothering him, it depicts his beautiful head. He has the smoothest, cleanest head I have felt on a sable. (by the way- for you non-show people, "smooth" and "clean" do not refer to coat length or non-dirtiness- they are what we "show" people say when talking about the bone structure of the skull).


on the lighter side of Life- and death-

On the lighter side- Eden, who had been bred to Brother (Ch. Grandgables the Frat Boy) was due to deliver the same week that my father died. When my sister called and said, "get home now-" I loaded Eden into the car too. When I got to the hospital, my father was already gone, but I wanted to stay with him a while. Of course the rest of the family had been there for most of the day. About an hour after I arrived my mom was ready to leave, so my sister said, "I will go home with Cadie." To which I said, "as long as you don't mind sitting next to Eden- who is pregnant." The nurse who had been caring for my dad said, "you have a pregnant dog with you?" I said, "yes, and I am thinking that she could deliver tonight." "Well I have never heard THAT one before!" she said. Eden waited until that Wednesday- and had 4 girls.

Her sister, Cassia had also been bred to Brother. She had 2 girls and 1 boy. This picture is of all 7 puppies. As you can see, one of them is a mis-mark. I have never had a white-factored, mis-marked puppy before. She can not be shown in conformation, so she will be available to a pet home.


Dogs like to go on vacation too

George and Shirley sent this message, "We just had a special travel experience with MacDuff. We decided to escape the heat and humidity in Philadelphia by driving up to Lake Placid, NY late last week......... MacDuff went everywhere with us. Walks along Main Street-watching out for traffic but not upset at vehicles- sitting by our chairs at meals- accepting frequent admiration from other guests, hotel staff and others. He even met a female sheltie (11 yr old) who he liked but kept at a distance. He really disliked a noisy Yorkie, however. He much prefereed people. He even offered a kiss to people that spoke to him with the right measure of adoration, especially ladies. MacDuff continues to be an outstanding friend and companion. We had not anticipated just how much he would enjoy our mountain vacation. He had a great time. "


R.Regner Arvidson 7/30/1929- 7/26/2010

My Dad passed away this past Monday. Here is a link to his obituary. Yesterday would have been his 81st birthday. I got a balloon and Mike and I went out to one of our pastures and let it go. Then we laid in the grass and watched it until we couldn't see it anymore. It was so peaceful- so quiet. I really enjoyed the visual "letting go".
Our family was lucky. We all got to tell him that we loved him before he died, and he was active and "living" right until the end. I don't think any of us can ask for anything more- except maybe never to have to say, "good bye".
There are so many things I have to say about him, but at the moment I can't. His memorial service will be held Aug. 15th and I hope you will all indulge me by allowing me to write more about him then. Maybe by then I will be able to recount a few memories.
It was just last year that my parents celebrated 50 years of marriage. They took us all to Nantucket- here is a link to the blog post I wrote last year. The picture was taken during that celebration. I hope everyone thinks their parents, siblings, family is really special- I know that I do. I love you, and miss you Dad.


Part of the Village

The trip to Costa Rica was an organized tour through a company called EF (Education First). They bill themselves as “helping students and teachers with International Travel”. My friend Joan Stone is the Spanish Teacher at Lewistown High School and every other year she takes Spanish students on a trip. She invited me along because she knew I would really enjoy the ecological diversity of Costa Rica. One of my roles on this trip was that of “friend”.

EF offers packaged trips and they lump all of the individual groups from various places in the country together thereby making it possible for small groups such as the 6 of us from Lewistown, and the 3 from Alabama to all have the same complete experience as that of a larger group. Our tour group (of 50 people) ended up with students, teachers, parents (and me) from 5 different schools and 3 different states. We had an assigned tour guide and an assigned bus driver. One of the schools we were traveling with was from State College, PA- which is only ½ hour from Lewistown. That group did a daily blog of the trip http://sc2costarica.blogspot.com/ click on that link to go see more about the adventures of the trip (from a non-dog perspective).

During the first days of the trip when all of the people were getting to know each other, people would ask me, “are you a teacher?”- when I would reply, “no”- they would say, “oh, you are a parent.”- to which I would say, “no- I am part of the village, and I hope I am not the village idiot.” Of course this led to additional conversation. Personally, I do subscribe to “it takes a village to raise a child” and my secondary role on this trip was that of “non-parent, non-teacher adult”. The role of this person in a society is varied and wide, but on this trip it was one in which the authority is not defined, therefore is considered “safe”, and yet, as an adult, is still respected and opinions and permissions are sought. As an adult, there is a small amount of “authority”- and thankfully, our society has not changed so much that even in 2010, this is still true to some degree. My secondary role on this trip was that of “watchful adult”.

In Costa Rica dogs are also still part of the village. A preface:
When I was growing up we had “neighborhood dogs”. These were dogs that belonged to families in our neighborhood, but who were not fenced in or tied up. Two of them stick out in my mind. Pepper, a pure-bred German Shepherd and Zack, a large mix-breed. These two lived across the street from one another and were best friends. They were very friendly, both with people and with other dogs. They would frequently be at the bus stop, or show up while we kids were outside playing (and in those days kids actually had “unscheduled play” where our parents would say, “go outside and play”- and we did). I always gravitated to the dogs of our neighborhood. I would call them over to come play. I would greet them on the street. Kids, dogs-all enjoying the “community” of a neighborhood and a town; for me, those were the “good ol’ days” and something that I genuinely miss today. In keeping with my post titled, “Part of the Village”- I think that dogs and other animals have a lot to teach people. I think that it is very important to have a variety of species as “Part of the village”.

Today, in American Societies, loose dogs are seen as “dangerous”- and people make the assumption that they are “strays” and immediately call the “dog catcher”. Dogs are no longer part of our communities and one of the consequences is that dogs are not properly socialized- to people or other dogs. It is a vicious cycle- dogs are not allowed to be part of the “community” because they might be dangerous, so they are not socialized and learn appropriate behavior, so they respond inappropriately, and are labeled “dangerous”.

Dogs are social creatures. The biggest difference between “domestic” dogs and “wild dogs” (I don’t really mean Feral dogs- I do mean the genus Canis ) is that the social circle of the domestic dog is significantly wider and allows for other species (ie. Humans and often cats).

“Wild dogs” live in packs – a social group that has an established “territory” within which other packs are not welcome! During the “good ol’ days, when dogs were loose in the neighborhood, they didn’t exhibit the strong “territorial behavior” and their social circle was wide and deep. Of course there were exceptions- not every dog was as rosy as I portray, but those dogs were considered “anti-social” and everyone in the neighborhood knew who they were and gave them a wide birth. This included the “social” dogs of the neighborhood who also gave the “anti-social” dogs space.
The behavior of a fenced or tied dog is radically different than that of a loose dog. It was true then, and it is true now. I truly miss dogs in our Society at large and feel that people’s lives and tolerances’ have narrowed as a result of the systematic removal of dogs from the community. I was pleased to find it again on my trip to Costa Rica- but also VERY interested in the view of the teenagers with whom I was traveling.

In Costa Rica dogs also still part of the village.
I love dogs. I think that is obvious, but on my trip to Costa Rica I was reminded of how much American Society has changed when it comes to attitudes towards dogs, and community,-and in my opinion- for the worse. In every town we went to in Costa Rica, there were loose dogs. I wish I had begun photographing them when we were in La Fortuna. La Fortuna is a very pretty town with a large center square. This square is a park like place (may actually even be a park). There were gardens, and benches, and a bandstand. It was in the center of town with the business on the edges facing this town square.

Our tour guide told us this was a “safe town” and that our teenage students could be allowed to explore without adult supervision. All of the adults agreed that the kids needed to stay in groups of 4 or more. During our explorations, Joan and I bumped into students from our bus on many occasions as the town was a fairly small one.

I was pleased to find lots of dogs. They seemed to be allowed everywhere, and the locals didn’t even seem to notice them. I, of course, had to stop to say Hi to all the dogs I could. They would sniff my pants and then follow me. One dog stayed with me for about ½ hour- including following me in a grocery store- no one stopped him- or even seemed to care- except for the other Americans. Two the teachers who were out exploring with me and Joan seemed concerned. They worried aloud that the dog was a stray and was hungry. I thought he was in good weight and seemed healthy. I just thought he was “part of the village”. It turned out I was right. The 4 of us Americans went into another store, dog in tow, and as one of the teachers was wondering about this dog aloud, a person said, “that is my dog”.

In La Fortuna I saw a man standing outside a building with a miniature pincher and a crate with 4 small puppies. I can’t help it- I went over to talk with him. It turned out he was waiting to see a vet. I asked if I could see his puppies and he said yes. They were 23 days old. I picked each up and coo'ed over them. He was very pleased with his puppies. He told me about the mother and the father. These puppies were fat with nice sleek coats, and the mother was calm and in good condition. I enjoyed the interaction and it is one of my happy memories of the trip.

We visited a school outside of Monteverde. The school was grades K-5th grade and only had 26 students. There were also 4 dogs. When we arrived the kids were getting ready for our visit- 10 of the students were preparing for the traditional dance they were going to perform for us, and the other kids were playing on a swing and a jungle gym. The dogs were just snoozing. When we got off of the bus, and took our seats to watch the dance, only one of the dogs came to greet us- the others could have cared less that we were there. Dogs at school- just part of society.

Modern American Attitudes towards Dogs in Society
I began photographing the dogs in Monteverde. Again, they were just “there”, and again, it was the Americans who were the ones who seemed to notice.

It was in Monteverde that I really became aware of the “young Americans” view of loose dogs. Many of the students were concerned that these were “stray dogs” and needed to be “saved.” I did have one conversation with a student that REALLY concerned me about the state of our (American) society. The white dog in the picture had followed a group of our students from the ice cream shop to the bus- a distance of about 400 yards, but around a corner, so not in view of the store from which they came. The student with whom I spoke actually told me that he knew this dog was a stray because it was “covered in feces and mats”- WHAT!!!!!!!!!!!

Look at these pictures. Do YOU see feces? I was actually petting this dog- and this student’s statement made me VERY concerned about the attitudes of Americans towards dogs.

Another student piped in that this dog was thin. I felt the dog (he felt very good) and then felt the ribs of the teenager who made the comment – he was thinner than the dog. I asked him if he was a stray? Seriously though, every dog the American commented on, it was “oh poor dog- I wish we could take him home. “ I think that people today are missing out on the value role that “village dogs” offer. I think the role of dogs in society is also varied and wide, but mostly they teach us tolerance. In a society that increasing claims to be “more tolerant”- when it comes to animals, it seems to be less tollerant to me.