Weight Pulling - Demo - Tails on the Trails - September 26, 2009
Here's our demo booth and little weightpull chute:
I borrowed the chute and harnesses you see hanging from Missy. I took two 90lb cinder blocks with me (all I can fit in the car with everything else :)
We were next to the Tails of the Tundra merchandise booth, and while we were setting up both boys got greeted warmly by the Sibe folks, several of whom wanted saddles for them :)
Here's their van - pretty cool, huh?:
Patty's friend found us very quickly and took some videos of the boys. Sebastian was very talky. I got Cinnabar out fairly early to shill for me. He was in his glory with the dogs and the people. The crowd died down while the main event, the hike, took place.
While the bulk of the crowd was off on their hike, I got Sebastian up to the CGC (Canine Good Citizen) test area. My only concern was #8 of 10 tests (Reaction to another dog - Two handlers and dogs approach, shake hands, exchange pleasantries, move on. Dogs can show casual interest). But the other dog was a Sibe, and with northern dogs he's usually fine. He passed with flying colors, not even giving the other dog the time of day!!! Woo hoo, I didn't think he'd pass this until he was about 9. One of the testers said, not to worry, one of her dogs couldn't pass until he was 13. I was so stoked, it felt as good as getting a Most Weight Pulled as a weight pull. I felt like doing a happy dance and singing "Sebastian got his CGC, Sebastian got his CGC".
I was busy as soon as the crowd got back from their hike. In fact, it was hard to take a break at all. Most of the people wanted to let their dogs see Cinnabar or they wanted to pet Cinnabar. Many enjoyed the photo album I put together of weight pull photos, not just of my dogs but of a variety of breeds. My photo of Lido the Italian Greyhound is always a hit with people, as is the photo of Lucy the Beagle. It always opens eyes that it's a sport for all breeds.
Our first to try was a beautiful little pittie. She was a natural. Next was a beautiful Sibe, who also did great, and whose daddy was very interested in getting involved. Many Sibes tried. With only one exception, all the Sibes were a joy to work with getting the harness on, not worrying about a strange lady putting something over their head or touching their legs (I always ask before doing of course). We did have other breeds, a Boston terrier, GSD mix, Mastiff mix and others I'm forgetting. It got very busy for me around 3, when the event ended and I started taking things down. I didn't get out until 4pm. Out of the 25 or so dogs that tried, there's about 4 that were serious about getting into weightpull and I gave them handouts.
Cinnabar was a wonderful Malamute ambassador.
There were 3 women who visited him about 5 or 6 times. They had a Sibe they'd just recently gotten from rescue and he was spooky. On his first visit, he let Cinnabar sniff him but didn't know what to do about it and backed off. He progressed on each visit and on his final visit he initiated play with Cinnabar. Cinnabar was very gentle with him on each visit, approaching him differently than the bulk of the well socialized dogs that he got to sniff and play with.
Then there were all the people that had to hug and pet him, kids and adults alike. Many return visitors. They bought his story that he gets no love at home and lavished it on him.
Here's one of the volunteers lovin' on him:
This man also wanted to spend some time with Sebastian because his markings reminded him of one of his past dogs. I got Sebastian out and the love fest was on. I had warned him that he was a leaner, so he was ready for him. They both had a great time with each other.
Laura, her daughter and Nanook were also there. It was good to see them, this is where we first met them last year. Nook and Cinnabar got to spend some time together. Laura's daughter wanted to spend time with Sebastian, so she got to while he was out. He was very good with her.
There was very little posturing out of him during the day. He did slight posturing at two bull terriers, and a couple of other non-northern dogs, but shut up quickly when told. Good boy, Mr. CGC (can't tell I'm excited, can you?)
They had things to do for attendees all throughout the day. Here's a shot of the ice cream eating contest (one of many fun contests held):
The PA Sleddog club was there giving sledding demonstrations, and a sled maker showed up to show off his wares:
Kudos to Paige, Lee and everyone else from Tails on the Tundra for a well organized, well run event. I hope they raised a ton of cash for the dogs.
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