A testimonial for Post # 500

I have to give props to Ivy's wonderful breeder, Cadie Pruss, who I just learned will be relocating with her husband, Mike, to Idaho. I spent two unforgettably pleasant afternoons on the Prusses' beautiful sheep farm in central Pennsylvania, as idyllic a setting as I've ever experienced. Those visits were also memorable for my having been surrounded by a group of the most affectionate and well-loved dogs imaginable, a testament not only to Cadie's breeding skills but to her own generosity and kindness. Those qualities are evident in this photo from her blog of her with four of her champions, Liza, Cassia, Dove (Ivy's great-grandmother), and Genna. I'm willing to bet that getting four Shelties to smile simultaneously is something only Cadie could have pulled off.


A New Adventure awaits in Idaho

Cadie, Mike, the Acadia shelties, Rosie the Vizsla and Emine the Kangal are moving to Idaho. Mike accepted a great job working for the Forest Service on the Nez Perce-Clearwater National Forest and I will continue to work for the Natural Resource Conservation Service in Nezperce, ID. 
Acadia shelties have called Pennsylvania home for the past 17 years, since moving from the great Southwest (Arizona). I have continued to meet and enjoy so many wonderful people who value well-bred dogs, and I really consider myself lucky to have had so much success here.  As I prepare for this move, I am reminded of how much I missed the people and the local dog community in Arizona, and I am already missing the mid-Atlantic dog community, but I find that “dog people” are a good group and there are nice people everywhere. I am looking forward to meeting the wonderful people of the northwest.
Pennsylvania is a state I hope to return to- and as such, we are not selling the farm. We did, however, sell our sheep. That was so hard on me. We have been breeding Katahdin sheep for almost 16 years- and it was a hard day to see my flock of ewes go to a new farm.
On to a new chapter…


Congratulations Penny on being chosen as Member of the Month

The PAWSitive Therapy Troupe is an all-volunteer 501(c)(3) public charity dedicated to sharing registered therapy dogs with individuals in a wide variety of health care and educational settings--bringing comfort, support and encouragement through the unique healing power of the human-animal bond

Congratulations Penny.  You are a dedicated member of the Therapy Troupe, and also the Acadia shelties family.  Tess, Gracie, and Show Low all came from Acadia. Kate is the granddaughter of Show Low. 


NEW MACH! *MACH* Acadia's Perpetual Motion, MX, MXS, MXJ, MJS, XF, T2B, RA

Janet writes, We had an awesome weekend at the Cocker Spaniel Agility trials this weekend. On Friday, Robbie qualified ALL 5 RUNS (Master Standard, Master Jumpers, Premier Standard, Premier Jumpers, and T2B), earning the final QQ for his MACH!!! He went on to QQ again both Saturday and Sunday - he’s never before QQ’ed more than once in a weekend! In all, he Qualified 9 of 14 runs, and those he didn’t Q were still very respectable runs!"

Maybe he QQ'ed (which means he had Qualified in Standard and he Qualified in Jumpers and Weaves- so he Q'ed in 2 classes in the same day, or double Q'ed) on Friday- and then was so rewarded by Janet's positive response that he decided to do it again.  Or maybe Janet was more relaxed the next two days because the MACH was finally achieved.  It is hard to say, but I know that for me personally, once I have accomplished something I had been striving to do, it seems to come so much easier and I wonder why I had been working so hard.    Congratulations Janet and Robbie.  I am so proud of both of you.


The never ending summer- the dangers of Heat

I started to write this on July 27 when we had 2 solid weeks of extreme heat and No rain.  I didn’t get it posted and the temps “cooled off” (from 90’s-100 degrees down to high 80’s).   This past weekend it all came back, and with the heat, humidity.  UGH!
All the vegetation here is dead.  The lawn, our garden, our pastures.  This summer has been one of extreme heat and no rain. 
In all of these heat warnings, the news is still reporting deaths of children in cars.  According to one article I read, at least 23 children have died in hot cars this year.  According to the article, this number usually averages 37 such deaths a year.  That is CHILDREN, not pets too.   When I look at my blog and I think, “oh, I have already written about heat” and then I hear of another death, I realize it is worth writing about.  Last night a women told me that she takes her dogs everywhere with her and she carries an extra set of keys so she can keep the car running with the air conditioner on.   That sounds good, but the reason some accidents are “tragic” is because we thought we were doing things right.  
This summer a fellow dog show participant experienced such a tragedy and 14 dogs died in a hot van in Indiana.  The van had an air conditioning unit powered by an extension cord that was plugged in at a hotel where the person was staying.  The person thought the dogs were cool and safe.  Tragically, a circuit breaker tripped, cutting off the air.  A heart breaking, tragic accident.   While I travel to shows with my dogs this summer, I worry about the heat, and try to plan ahead.
The best thing to do would be to leave the pets at home, but that is not always an option.   Make sure to have plenty of water.  Portable Fans are available for travel.  Some small ones hang on the crates, while other larger ones plug into portable batteries.  Cool mats for the dogs to lay on (in their crates while in a car of course) help to move heat out of the body.  Shade- always, always park in the shade when possible. Windshield and window covers help quite a bit.   Lastly, just don’t leave them in vehicles. 

Stay Safe, fall will be here soon. 


New *NAJ* *NF* Acadia Prince of Parks, *NAJ*, *NF*

Parker completed the Novice Agility Jumpers and Novice Fast (agility) and is alrerady only one qualifying score away from his Open titles. I am so proud of Tina and Parker for competing in agility.  Parker is the pride and joy of Tina's parents.  He is named both for their love of camping, and to honor his dad, GCh. Acadia Prince of Peace, HT, NPJ, VC

Tina takes amazing photographs.  Thank you for sharing them with us.

Parker camping in 2016

Parker as a puppy (2013)


New *MXJ* Acadia Essence of Joy, UD, RE, AX, MXJ

This is Amy's birthday week.  She will be 93!  This weekend she had ALL Qualifying Runs.   In February Amy and Joy earned two back to back UD legs with 2nd placements in classes of over 20 dogs.  I am so proud to have been chosen by Amy for her shelties.


Mothers Make the World Go ‘Round

I think that mothers are the backbone of us all.  I really value good mothers.  I am so fortunate to have a good mother, and I watch mother-offspring interactions all the time.  In my breeding program, I won’t tolerate poor mothers- in dogs or in sheep.  I select for mothers that are attentive, keep their offspring clean, fed, are attentive, and offer adequate and appropriate touch.  Touch, often in the form of licking, is essential to both physical and emotional development.  In a nutshell, Good mothers are the antidote to a demanding life to come.
Today, take the time  to celebrate motherhood.


Welcome Ch. Barwoods D'Lightful- aka- Joy

I am super excited with the acquisition  of Ch. Barwoods D'Lightful.    These past few months I have been so disappointed not to have puppies and I have even begun to worry, and then along came Joy.   My friend and fellow breeder Donna found herself in the position of moving to Hawaii for a job change.  She was not going to be able to take many dogs, so she need to find homes that would love and care for them- but also carry on a well established and successful line.  We are both really hoping that we are the answers to each others prayers.  Now of course we just need to produce beautiful puppies- and Please dear God-  show quality GIRLS!!


April 6, 1996- My very first litter was born

It's official! I have been breeding shelties for 20 years.  That's hard for me to believe.  My first litter was born 4/6/96 to Tucket.  I remember that litter so well. I had chosen the dog, named Chili, with whom I wanted to breed Tucket and was ecstatic when he won Reserve Winners Dog at the ASSA national.  He lived in New Mexico (and I in Arizona), but by the time Tucket was ready to breed he was visiting a handler in Wisconsin.  I didn't know much about the estrous cycle of dogs and I shipped her to the stud dog way to early.

I doubt that handler, who is still showing shelties, remembers my novice excitement and hosting Tucket for an extended stay.  She had 6 puppies- 3 girls and 3 boys. The delivery was a smooth one.  Tucket made everything so easy .  I tried to go to work the next day, but ended up coming home early just so I could sit and watch them.  Fat, healthy, pretty- they were so much fun. I still feel that way about puppies.

Two puppies went back to Connecticut with Tucket's breeder and the other 4 were sold in Arizona. Although I am still good friends with Tucket's breeder, she is no longer breeding dogs.   I kept in close contact with 3 of the Arizona owners, and two of them still have an Acadia sheltie (the 3rd now only has a Vizsla). A little belated, but Happy 20th Birthday to Pepper, Pepper (yes- there were 2) and Red Cloud.


Happy Easter 2016

This picture is of Show Low, who turned 15 this year.

When Mike and I lived in Arizona we would hide the plastic Easter eggs in the house- some in plain sight and some hidden- but all at ground level.  Mike would put a leash on our Vizsla, Copper, and I would leash up Tucket for our egg hunt.  In the eggs we would have a nice smelly dog treat.  The dogs enjoyed the egg hunt and it allowed me and Mike to continue to enjoy a childish tradition.  Both Copper and Tucket have passed on, and we have not trained any of our current dogs to hunt for eggs. 

This morning when I got up and went downstairs to take care of the dogs, I opened the dog food container, and there was a plastic purple egg.  What a wonderful surprise.  Mike had stayed up to hide eggs after I went to bed.  He said they were all up high- so the dogs didn't get them.   What a wonder start to the day.
Happy Easter.


New *NAJ* Acadia's Direct Energy, *NAJ*

Carol emailed that Derek earned his first title this weekend.  His title run was in 21.4 seconds with a yards per second of 4.67! That's Smokin' !


*New Champion* Acadia Independence Day

I got a wonderful text from Mason's handler informing me that he was Winners Dog today for that final major and the Championship.   I always like to show the dogs myself, but I don't like to go to shows in the winter, and Florida has 2 solid weeks of shows.  Lots of full-time handlers go to Florida to take advantage of good weather and multiple shows in one location.

Mason- what's that in your mouth?
Mason was being handled by a friend who professionally handles shelties for a living, and has the advantage of living in Florida.  I am so thankful that happened quickly- she only showed him in 3 shows.Mason is the son of GCh. Acadia Serenity and is her first champion, from her first litter.  These are pictures of him growing up.


When everything feels like gambling

We didn’t win the anything in the Powerball, but I knew that money was spent gambling.  These past few weeks the stock market has been falling, but we know that investing is a gamble.  Mason is at shows in Florida this weekend competing to win that last major for his championship, and sometime dogs shows just feel like gambling.  Cassia was bred and had a litter of 1 in December and Claire was bred and is due now.  She is not pregnant.  Liza was just bred this week and wow, now breeding just feels like gambling.

There are always methods and ways to increase the odds, but at the moment I am just feeling beaten.  If I had all of the money I am spending on the gamble, I would be ahead, but it is not just about money.  All of these risks that we take- all of the gambling is really about hope and excitement.  It is really about the excitement of the future; about the possibilities of what is to come.  

I think I have done everything I could to increase the odds that Liza has conceived.  I think I am doing what I can to increase the odds that Mason will finish this month.  I think I am doing what I can to increase the odds that Cassia’s single puppy will be a future star- but time will tell.  For all of it (especially the money parts), I have heard it’s better to be lucky than good. 


Did you buy a ticket?

It's all the talk- the record PowerBall prize. Yesterday it was $800million and I heard that today it is over that.  The drawing is tonight.

A few years ago my friend Ellen and I drove to Florida in December to show at Eukanuba.  On the way home, I found out the PowerBall prize was some huge amount.  I bought a ticket when we stopped to get gas in Georgia.  Ellen and I spent hours on our drive home talking about what we would do if it was a winning ticket.  We had a great time- and I felt that fun was well worth $2.00. Someone did win and when I heard, "the winning ticket was sold in Georgia" I didn't want to hear any more.  I knew I didn't win, but, I had bought a ticket in GEORGIA and that was as close as I had gotten.

I bought a ticket for this drawing.  I know I won't win, but I have enjoyed listening to everyone talk about what they would do if they won, and I have enjoyed the excitement and anticipation.  I think it is worth the price of a ticket.


New Year's resolutions for your pets

Did you make a new year’s resolution this year?    I have a few “self-improvement” projects I am going to work on this year, and today, the 3nd day of the new year, I have gotten started.  According to a 2002 study, statistics are not on my side; only 46% of people are still on track 6 months later.  It is hard to change bad habits.  Speaking of bad habits, do your new year’s resolutions include your pets?  

  More dogs and cats are abandoned because of their bad habits. 
Housebreaking, barking, chewing and destructive behavior are the primary reasons people abandon their pets.  If your pet could use a “self-improvement project”, then make it a new year’s resolution to help them make the changes.   Enroll in a class, increase their exercise, discover what triggers the undesirable behaviors and you will discover more about your pet.   Training and discovery is fun with your furry friend. We can all use a bit of “fine-tuning” and now is the time of year to start.


Welcome 2016!

I hope that for everyone reading this that 2016 is a Happy, Prosperous and Successful year.   I see that it has been a few years since I have done a year in review.  That is too bad because these past few years have been very successful if success is measured in wins and accolades.  This year Liza reached 100 Best of Breeds, which earns her a Lifetime Achievement Award from the American Shetland Sheepdog Association (ASSA).    That is an achievement I had never dreamed I would reach.  Liza made it easy- and a lot of fun. 

2015 was not quite as successful if measured in puppies.  It was an expensive and disappointing year as each breeding brings anticipation, excitement, and hopes and dreams of the future, and is expensive.  Despite the small litters and misses, we did end up with two boys, Porter and Staten, and two girls, Cheer and Desi, that we are excited about.  I sure hope that 2016 has more puppies for us to share and be excited about.   

Puppies always bring a smile, so I will fill the new year’s 1st post with puppies.