Welcome to the ATB blog "J & A's Brittanys" where we love to write about, share stories, post videos and pictures featuring our beautiful, well bred Brittany family bird dogs. With their established and recognized hunting heritage our dogs also measure up to the breed standard regarding health, appearance, movement, and temperament. Enjoy the stories of whelping puppies, tips on field training, bragging rights on accomplishments, sharing joys and sorrow, announcements and as the name implies - ALL THINGS BRITTANY! With a love of God, family, friends, and dog we welcome you.

Monday, September 12, 2016

TEAM AVATAR UPDATE: Alana & Toph first show points


In case you missed it... TEAM AVATAR
Are the two beautiful hunting Brittanys,
named Zuko & Toph, loved and owned by the Day and Short families. 
Named by the three children who love their dogs and are 'Avatar' fans!


Recently, at the Maine Event 4 day cluster of dog shows in Union, Maine our 11 year old granddaughter successfully handled her family's 18 month old Brittany "Toph" to her first two AKC championship points, also Alana's first points ever. Pictured here with judge Joy Brewster and with me, Alana's smile says it all.  (Photo Credit: The Standard Image).  On September 2, 2016 with a total Brittany entry of 9, they won Winners Bitch out of the Open Bitch class for Toph's first point and then Best Opposite Sex!  They also went on to win Best Junior Handler in Show with a total entry of 4. The next day, they also went Winners Bitch for their second point and then Best of Winners.  As Alana came out of the ring I noticed a few tears falling and wondered if something was wrong.  When I asked, Alana told me she was just so happy!  I hope she always feels this way and never takes the winning for granted.  I appreciate the support and good sportsmanship that's been demonstrated by so very many people towards Alana every time she goes into the ring.  She always takes into consideration the tips and advice, even the necessary critique.

Recently we were pleasantly surprised when a friend pointed out to us that Toph is among those young field trial derby dogs that currently qualifies for the American Brittany Club Shooting Dog Derby Invitational at the Gun Dog Nationals in Ionia, Michigan this fall. She's also nominated for the ABC 2017 Show & Field Futurities.  Here's a great article written by one of Alana's biggest fans which was published not only on the American Kennel Club site but also in the American Brittany Club magazine recently. "Youth Spotlight: One Determined Young Lady" 

These Union, Maine shows are always among my personal favorites.  In fact the theme is "the way dog shows should be".  I like that a lot. My first memories of this particular show are very special to me.  (There was a time John would travel to dog shows with me. I loved (and now miss) those times when we'd go together. He is such a people person, unlike me!  One year we stayed for the entire show weekend in our truck camper.)  They continue to be an enjoyable show venue for me. While Alana and Toph's first show points and the time spent with her was the highlight for me, there was no shortage of reasons to smile.  Alana hasn't shown very often at all, just a few times since she first started in June 2014.  She has done very well though. I really hope that she'll want to continue.  Attending the shows together is fun, especially when she successfully persuaded me to go swimming with her in the heated pool with her at our motel.

Quincy and Julie did very well, picking up two more points towards his championship title.  He has his majors and should finish very soon! It was also the debut of Kennith, a Junior Handler. and his Brittany "Belle".  Belle, Quincy's littermate, is the daughter of Bullet & Thistle. We're all especially proud and happy to support Kennith in their new endeavor.  Julie and I have also created many years of special and fun times together at dog shows in Massachusetts, New Hampshire, Maine and in New York.  Our showing is very limited but more often than not we're in the ribbons when we show.  She's really done great as an owner handler and now as owner handler breeder and I'm proud of her as well! This is also the time to give a huge shout out to Roger & Marilyn Gilman with their Brittany "Ammo", also from the Bullet & Thistle litter. Roger has done a wonderful job showing Ammo over the past year and he too is knocking on the door for his championship title. Likewise, there are pups from each of Hemi & Luna's two litters (Toph's siblings) involved with NAVHDA, AKC hunt tests and also shows in New England and also in Iowa.

I'm looking ahead to the fall/winter show circuit. The Union shows were my first road trip with our new (to me) SUV.  As anyone who works out of their vehicle at a show knows, it takes time to figure out the best organizational scheme.  At one point Alana and I unpacked everything simply to make it more manageable.  Figured out a slight glitch regarding battery life when ours died and we had to call AAA.  I am going to add a couple of clear, plastic totes with lids to simplify our trips.  After showing for almost 10 years, I understand the importance of simplifying.  I've downsized the grooming table which I travel with and condensed my most needed grooming tools, product, etc. so it all fits into one portable tote with wheels.  There's a couple of great Facebook groups that focus on dog show vehicles and set ups. Simplifying the process will result in things being less complicated. I have my sights specifically set on new Kennebec dog crates for traveling. I've watched the videos of their safety tests. My other consideration was Rough Tough Kennels but I feel the Kennebec would hold up better in case of an accident.

Public Service Announcement or in other words, "Look! A squirrel!" I continue to advocate for all dog owners when traveling with their dog to make sure their dog is either crated or seatbelted with a dog appropriate harness system. (Another pet peeve is the retractable leash and also rawhide bones. Get rid of them.)

Thanks for your interest in All Things Brittany!  As always take care and God bless you all, John, Ann, and our awesome canine crew.

PS - We're still planning a winter litter if all goes well.  Gimme & Holly Beth.

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