Weekly Photo Challenge AND Bailey is a Finalist in a Photo Contest!

First of all, I just learned that this photo of Bailey has been chosen as a Grand Prize Finalist in a photo contest! The winner is determined by popular vote which means that YOU can help Bailey win simply by clicking here and then hitting the “VOTE” button.

Please click to vote for Bailey!

I would REALLY appreciate it if you could take a few seconds to vote! Voting is open until August 16th and you can vote once per day. The contest is sponsored by Yakima Racks and the winner receives gifts from Ruffwear (Bailey’s favorite dog gear outfitter), Zukes (Bailey’s favorite treats!) and a $500 Yakima gift card!

In other news, this week’s WordPress Weekly Photo Challenge is One Shot, Two Ways. The idea behind this challenge is to show the same subject from two angles and I have a fun example to share. The following two photos show Bailey flying through the air about to catch her duck. They were taken from two different cameras at the exact same moment during the same jump. Cool, right?

One Shot Two Ways #1

One Shot Two Ways #2

The first photo was taken head-on by a professional photographer (Key4Prints). I happened to catch the second photo from the bleachers at the exact same time… just as Bailey was contorting her body and snapping her mouth open mid-air in an attempt to catch her duck. While the professional shot is clearly a better photo, I kind of like the second shot because it helps you appreciate what a huge jump this was. Bailey ended up winning her division at this event with a 24+ foot jump!

Thanks for stopping by and, again, thank you to everyone that voted for Bailey in the photo contest!!!! (You can vote here: http://bit.ly/146NFcQ )

DockDogs Worlds Recap!

We had a BLAST at DockDogs World Championships!! This invite-only event was basically an awesome dog convention because throughout the weekend we found ourselves continuously bumping into old friends, catching glimpses (or elevator rides!) with reigning World Champions, and meeting new friends (and dogs!) that we’d only ever read about on Facebook. Cool!

Bailey and Annie at DockDogs Worlds

That’s me posing with Bailey. Check out her super-warm “Trover” jacket… it’s like a big red doggie robe!

Much to our relief Bailey enthusiastically jumped during both of her qualifying rounds! We had been worried that she might decide that the water was a bit too chilly and embarrass us by stopping on the dock in front of the big crowds but luckily she brought her ‘A’ game and jumped without hesitation. She wasn’t actually competitive score-wise — 20’8″ was her longest jump — but we had fun nevertheless!

Bailey on the dock

One of my favorite things about Worlds was seeing so many DockDog “Celebrities” in one place. We got to watch all of these current World Record holders in action:

  • Taz, a black lab from Canada (Outdoor Big Air Record and Outdoor Iron Dog Record) and Cochiti, a whippet from Washington (tied with Taz for Big Air)
  • Remi, a black lab from Minnesota (Speed Retrieve Record) and Jordan, a chocolate lab from Iowa (previous Speed Retrieve record-holder)
  • Baxter, a Belgian Malinois from Missouri (Indoor Big Air Record)
  • Vhoebe, a Belgian Malinois from California (Indoor Iron Dog Record)
  • Yeager, a Belgian Malinois from Massachusetts (Extreme Vertical Record)

Yeager actually broke his own indoor EV world record on Friday night with an 8’3″ grab. Yeager competes as part of GoTeam21, an organization that raises awareness for children with Down syndrome. You can check out Yeager online here: http://goteam21.org/.

Road Trip Montage!

The long road trip to and from Dubuque, Iowa wasn’t as bad as I thought it would be. We stopped in Ohio for the night on the way out and made it to Dubuque for the official competitor check-in by Thursday afternoon. I wanted to go through as many states as possible so we made a slight detour into Michigan and then took a route that brought us through Wisconsin on our way into Iowa. Bailey has now visited 13 states! In order they are NJ, PA, DE, MD, NY, VA, OH, CT, IN, MI, IL, WI, IA (just in case you care…).

When it came time to drive home, we left early on Sunday morning and Matt drove us the ENTIRE way home (15 1/2 hours!) with only a few short stops. I helped out by “navigating” and overseeing the selection of numerous NPR podcasts. After listening to that many hours of current events I now feel like an expert on the Israeli-Hamas conflict, the Fiscal Cliff, and a variety of other issues. ๐Ÿ™‚

Bailey and Matt at Worlds

Matt handled Bailey AND did all of the driving on our 1895 mile round trip… nice work!

I’m very thankful that we got a chance to compete at Worlds and we’re already looking forward to the start of the 2013 season next Spring! Congratulations to all of our friends that made finals (and a BIG congrats to Carlyn and Max from Chesapeake DockDogs for their Big Air Junior win!!) and I hope that everyone had safe trips home.

Bailey the water monster

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Watch out Jersey, here we come!

Next weekend Bailey, Matt and I will be joining Delmarva DockDogs for our second annual event at the Ocean County Decoy and Gunning Show in Tuckerton, New Jersey! I loved this event last year because all of the spectators are waterfowl-hunting, outdoors-oriented, dog-loving people and there are hundreds of vendors who are catering to that crowd. For me, that makes this festival MUCH more fun to walk around than a big state fair with aisle after aisle of funnel cakes and ‘fresh squeezed’ lemonade (although those are nice, too..). Last year we saw multiple German Shorthaired Pointers spectating with their owners which was really neat since GSP’s tend to be rather uncommon in the greater Philadelphia area. I’m hoping to meet even more GSPs this year!

My favorite little GSP had a great time at Tuckerton last year, bringing home the blue ribbon in Extreme Vertical and a 2nd place in Big Air. Hopefully the weather won’t be too crisp and fall-like this weekend or else she may decide that it’s too cold to jump!

The Details:
What: 30th Annual Ocean County Decoy and Gunning Show
When: Saturday and Sunday September 29-30, 2012
Where: Tip Seaman County Park, Tuckerton, New Jersey

Do you think your dog would like to try DockDogs? This is a great event for first-timers because there will be lots of practice time and plenty of Delmarva club members willing to help! The cost is $10.00 for an unscored “Fun Jump” or $30.00 for registration in a “wave” which will get you 2 scored jumps and a chance to qualify for finals which are split up into five divisions. Learn more at the DockDogs event page (or just ask me!). ๐Ÿ™‚