My Beagles...

Emma and Levi......are 5 months apart. Emma was born 3 November 2004 and I soon realised she needed a playmate. I was very lucky to find Levi within a few months of getting Emma, as I waited nearly two years for Emma!Levi was born 28 March 2005 and was the naughtiest puppy alive! Him and Emma immediately hit it off and became the best of Beagle Buddies.I desperately needed to find an outlet for my Beagle kids' energy, and ventured into the world of agility. It soon became one of my biggest passions, apart from the Beagle breed, and today Emma and Levi are both competing in the top grades. I made a friend in Slovenia, running her Beagle Xsara in agility, and she inspired me to start teaching them tricks. I'm enjoying it very much and hopefully this blog will be as entertaining and inspiring to others, as Xsara's is to me.

Thursday, June 7, 2012

NEW Blog...

My new blog is finally live at

Sunday, April 25, 2010

We are back!

Wow, that is has to take me being sick and in bed for a week and another to come, to find time for my blog is a real shame.

I never uploaded the Austria pics or wrote something about our awesome trip to the AWC 2009 :( For that I must apologise profusely!

Here we are, so many months later, and I almost think it's impossible to catch up now...

So, for now, I will just start posting again, and hopefully *MAKE* time to slowly write something about the lost months.

Sorry for being MIA for so long, I hope you're all still out there and that we'll catch up with each other real soon.

Me & the agility Beagles, Emma & Levi, currently on a loooong break...

Monday, October 5, 2009

5 Months behind...

Oh my, I haven't posted in 5 months! Shame on me!!! It's been such a busy year, but with so many highs, I will have to do another catch-up session soon.

For now, what you've missed, in short... was our National SA Championships end of May, where we had an international judge, Alen Marekovic from Croatia judge some of our rounds which also formed part of our final qualifiers for AWC. Emma was Reserve SA Champion, coming second to awesome cross-breed Benji, winning it for the 3rd year in a row. Emma was the Top qualifier in Medium for AWC. Along with her two Pyrenean Shepherd teammates, brother and sister, Chippy & Lollie, they made history by being the first ever Medium team to represent SA at AWC. More about that later...

In June we had a 6 Champ Show weekend in PE (Port Elizabeth), the town where I lived for the first 17 years of my life. Levi was the star of the weekend, taking home 5 QCs, the most won by any dog on the weekend, and also being overall Medium winner for the weekend. Emma came 3rd overall.

Chinzi qualified up to the Top Grade in PE and also won her very first Contact Agility QC amongst some really tough competition. Needless to say, it was a very memorable weekend of competition.

We travelled to the SADAA Nationals held in Knysna at the beginning of July, and here little Emma once again showed what she can do, by becoming the National Mini Winner for 2009!

August was slightly quiet, except for the KUSA Nationals held in Bloem, where Chinzi's Flyball Team, the Boland Flyers, won the Nationals in a time of 18.66sec. She also became a Flyball Champion that weekend. The rest of the month was taken up with loads of preparation for the AWC in Dornbirn, Austria.

The highlight of the year by far, was our AWC trip to Austria, starting off 12 September... and most certainly, MUCH MORE ABOUT THAT LATER! :)

It was just an amazing and wonderful experience all around, what a beautiful country and AWESOME display of agility!

More later, with pics, I promise!

The day after we got back, we went on a loooong (1000km one-way) road trip to Bloemfontein (crazy I know!) for another SADAA Regional Competition. My little BC Chinzi was so happy to have mom home, she won 4 of the 8 Gold medals she competed for, and Levi won 2 of the others... making our total in the Midi group 6 from 8! What a highlight! :) Emma was very happy to be back on home soil and again, for the 3rd time in a row, won overall Mini dog at Regionals. She also won a Gold, 2 Silver and a Bronze. Chinzi was also part of the winning Flyball team, running a time of 18.34 in very hot conditions, as well as taking home another Silver medal and being 2nd overall in Midi. Levi took 3rd spot overall, with 2 Golds and a Bronze.

That's all for now, let me go sort those pics, so I can start uploading the good stuff! :)

Monday, May 4, 2009

Playing catch-up... PART 3

Hopefully this is the last of the catch-up posts so I can start updating regularly from now onwards again. :)

We had 2 Non-Champ shows on the weekend of 18,19 April, with some mixed results. Both shows definitely marked the start of our winter show season, with the Sunday show definitely a WET one! We got drenched!

Saturday Chinzi had two 5-fault rounds, but ran good times. On Sunday she qualified in Contact, now only needing one more to move up to Top Grade! In Non-Contact we had a very tight and short distance to weave-entry so we missed it, something to train in the weeks to come! :)

The Beagles were average, each with a DQ on Saturday, Levi a clear round winning Non-Contact and Emma coming 2nd in Contact with a knocked bar. On Sunday they both ran good times in Contact, but with faults, Levi winning at 5m/s and Emma 2nd at 4.4m/s, very fast for her! In Non-Contact we had the same weave entry as Chinzi in Grade 2 and Emma took it BEAUTIFULLY, also managing a win at 4m/s, great for her! Levi missed the entry twice and came 3rd.

The weekend thereafter we went on a road-trip to Graaff-Reinet for the SADAA Regional Trials. It was so much fun with friend Rozanne and her Yorkie Rolo being our travelling partners. We arrived on the Thursday already and went for a fantastic walk in the mountains the Friday, photos to be posted later! The weather was cool & drizzly most of the time, but we and the dogs enjoyed it immensely.

Competition started on Saturday and although my boy Levi didn't win any medals he had the best performance overall he's ever had at an RT, remember, having to compete with 49cm BCs over 55cm jumps! He came 5th overall in his Midi group totalling 14 dogs of which about 11 were BCs. He ran the fastest time in Agility once (unfortunately missing a contact) and the 2nd fastest in Agility once (also missing a contact), so not getting placed, but to beat BCs, one of which is Chinzi's gradmother who was in SA team to win AWC a few years ago, that takes some doing! I was SO SO SO proud of my boy! He only had one unfortunate DQ because of being spooked by thunder & flags just before he had to run and he just couldn't listen to mommy and try to be safe at the same time. :( Still his best overall performance ever and one to be proud of.

Emma won mini overall, grateful for that, as we've come 2nd and 3rd many times before, but never managed to win it. She also won a Gold and a Silver in Jumping during the weekend. Along with two Jack-Russels, she was also in the mini team who came 1st.

Chinzi also had an awesome weekend with one Q each in Agility and Jumping 2, and mostly 5-faulter rounds for the rest, dropping a bar here and there. Along with her Boland Flyers Teammates, she won the Flyball to bring home another Gold medal. The team's best time for the weekend was 19.5sec, not their best ever, but still not a bad time.

Between Emma & Chinzi, they brought home 125kg of Montego Classic, our sponsors for the weekend. Thankfully I took a trailer!!! LOL! :)

Playing catch-up… PART 2

KA & Liesbeek Championship shows, Top-Grades only, took place on 28 Feb and 1 March in Constantia. Levi having achieved his dual-championship in November last year, I decided to focus on Emma who needs the QCs. At KA, she unfortunately knocked a pole in the Contact round, still coming first, but unfortunately just missing out on that so needed QC! Levi ran brilliantly to win the Non-Contact QC, his 4th in this discipline, also being the fastest dog on the day. Chinzi did some flyball and enjoyed herself thoroughly, screaming at everyone from sheer excitement!

Liesbeek saw little Emma run a stunning Contact round, winning once again, BUT with very steep course times set, she had 3 time faults, having her miss out on the QC once more. :-( Levi again the fastest on the day, had a dreaded refusal due to a horrible handling error from his mom, having him come 2nd in the Non-Contact this time, but still no QC as the 1st dog going clear also had time faults.

Next up was the 3rd AWC qualifier… and the nerves were shot! Contact up first… Emma missed one! Running faster than normally, that’s probably why. Levi, my all-or-nothing boy again DQ’d and shock horror, Chinzi too! She got stuck in the chute tunnel and when she came out was so rattled that she popped out the rigid tunnel a few obstacles later too and me not at all expecting that ran to layer a straight and she came over the long jump before I could send her back into the tunnel, OOPS! Non-Contact went MUCH better, with all clears from my crowd, only Emma incurring a few time faults.

Chinzi definitely seemed to be back on track with a much better jumping style than end of January and taking less poles, prospects were looking good! We had a fun demo in Dog Jumping on the Sunday, and Chinzi won the Top Grade round there as well. Photo of her with her Cup! Mom’s proud girl!

I have NO idea what got into Emma, but she ran like lighting that day, 4 fast rounds without once slowing down & also starting them fast! Very unlike my girl, but boy was I proud! Just SO wish she would perform like that always & mostly when it counts, as the potential is there! But the feminine mood swings just seems to be our biggest obstacle to overcome. Any ideas???

We had our Yearly Dog Jumping Prize Giving that Friday, and Emma won the Mini Top Grade League for the year, see her with her Cup:

14th February arrived, Valetine’s day, but most importantly, the FINAL AWC qualifier…

In Non-Contact Emma ran the course clear, but had a few time faults, mom messed up Levi’s weave entry to have us end with 5 faults and well Chinzi… mom made a horrible error, as she was AT HER BEST, but we unfortunately have a DQ recorded.

My boy proved to be like a red wine, getting better with time… he ran a STUNNING Contact round, to win his closest competitor normally by 3 seconds! He also won this round in Medium Nationally, being a second faster than the next competitor. SO SO SO proud of my boy! For the first time Emma also ran clear WITHOUT any time faults. Chinzi was also brilliant on a rather easy flowing course with one or 2 tricky parts, but if that bar just didn’t fall!

Final Results came out and for SA Champs (less steep course times and open to ALL dogs, without pedigree)… Levi is 4th, Emma 5th in Medium of 25 dogs and Chinzi 17th in Large from 100 dogs. For AWC (breed registered dogs only) Emma is lying 1st in Medium and Chinzi 10th in Large.

So we will be driving up to Pietermaritzburg (1600km away) for the FINALS end of May. Now it’s train train train, until then.

A LOAD off my shoulders when those qualifying rounds were over… whew, a little bit of relaxing, finally… after 9 weekends of competion in a row, getting up at 5am in the mornings, I finally could sleep in for a change, and it was so enjoyable!

So after a weekend’s rest, we had the GSD Open Show on the 22nd of March and perhaps we were a little too relaxed, as this was one of our ‘not-so-good’ shows. Chinzi had a horrible Contact round, missing Contacts and knocking poles to tally her faults at 25! She still won the round, shocking! Emma ran well in Contact, but jumped to the side of the dogwalk, getting a missed contact… of which I’m not completely convinced, but nevertheless would not have made any difference to her 2nd place. Levi decided to play 1 year old Beagle and ran around like a lunatic on the course not listening to one command from me whatsoever. I ended up carrying him off after his 3rd off-course, deciding he provided enough entertainment for the crowds for one day. LOL!

Non-Contact went much better with Chinzi just losing out on a Q by knocing the 2nd last pole! :-( Mom not wanting to push her already 5m/s speed, stopped running too soon and she knocked as she slightly turned her head back to look where I was. So my fault! Levi redeemed himself with a stunning Non-Contact round, 2seconds faster than his biggest rival. :-) Little Emma had had enough of the hot day in the sun and in her leisurely jog, knocked a pole.

We then had a Championship Show boy did we have good results.

Chinzi won her first QC (Qualifying Certificate) in Dog Jumping, after running a 19.22 seconds with her team in Flyball to come 1st there as well. Levi beat another big rival by 1 second to win his 5th Non-Contact QC. Chinzi had a magnificant day also qualifying in Non-Contact with a beautiful 5m/s round.

Time for another break...

Playing catch-up… PART 1

I guess it’s time to play catch-up! I have not been away, just extremely busy!

So since I’ve last written, so much has happened. Let’s start where I left off in Jan. after our Stilbaai trip…

The SA Champs and AWC Qualifying Rounds kicked off on 24 January, and only having done one full course the week before with my BC Chinzi after her tendon injury, I was extremely nervous!

To my delight, she performed extremely well for a young dog who had only been competing for 2 months and then were off for 4 months. Apart from knocking a few poles, 2 in the Contact round and one in Non-Contact, she ran beautifully, getting all her Contacts and making the high set course times of 4m/s for Contact and 4.5m/s for Non-Contact fairly easily with seconds to spare.

The Beagles, well, they were themselves… Levi DQ’ing in the Contact round, but having a brilliant fast clear round in Non-Contact. Emma had 2 clear rounds, but both with some time-faults.

The courses were fair, nothing too challenging though. The second round on the 31st of January was an absolute nightmare and actually great examples of extremely poor course design. There were horrible angles and handlers had to run around the dogwalk ramps and all sorts which made for very uncomfortable handling. Chinzi once again surprised me, and although she missed her dogwalk and A-frame contact due to very tight turns thereafter with traps staring her in the face straight ahead, and one knocked pole, she excelled in the Non-Contact round to win this one Nationally! :)

With the ‘running around the dogwalk downramp’… for the first time in a very long time, I managed to DQ Emma as the flip out the tunnel didn’t work so well & she went back into it. :( At least Levi responded beatifully and although he very weirdly knocked a pole, something he NEVER does, he otherwise had a good Contact round but sadly due to a bad handling error on my part, DQ’d on a serpentine in the Non-Contact round. :(

The first two rounds were over, and we had a month break before the next two, to catch our breath, train and prepare some more & then finally have our last 2 chances on qualifying.

On the 6th of Feb, I took to the road again, fetching my dear little Kooikerhondje puppy from Mosselby, yup, I got her! :) It was a rather scary experience, as the day arrived there, she didn’t want to have anything to do with me and I doubted whether I picked the right pup some weeks before, as her littermates now were the ones interested in playing with me! Well, Saturday morning, she suddenly changed around and came running up to me, from then onwards we have been inseperable! She’s a stunning little dog with loads of drive & speed, so we can only hope this will transfer to the agility ring at a later stage. For now we are doing tricks, chasing Beagles, playing tug and having all sorts of puppy fun!

So I missed a show on the 7th, coming back with my pup, but most certainly worth it! On the 8th we had an Open Show where I could relax a little and work on what had been bugging. Highlights of this day was Chinzi qualifying in Non-Contact with a beautiful 5m/s clear round and Levi winning Top Grade Non-Contact also running over 5m/s.

The week thereafter we had our club’s Open Show and sadly Chinzi had the most stunning Contact round, knocking the very last bar to just lose out on a qualification! :( She did however manage another qualification in Non-Contact, this time running at 5.7m/s! WOW girl!

Emma had two clear rounds, unfortunately only getting her a 2nd and a 4th placing, Levi DQ’ing in Contact but again having a wonderful 4.8m/s victory in Non-Contact. My boy is getting better and better and faster and faster, YAY!

Chinzi & Levi were the two fastest dogs on the day, so mom was delighted!

Neverending weekends of agility continued into 21/22 Feb when we had our SADAA Regional Trials. Levi stunned me this weekend by winning two medals in Agility, one Silver and one Bronze. Remember, in SADAA we jump different heights, IFCS categories, so my poor 42.8cm boy has to compete with 49cm Border Collies! This to me was an incredible achievement on his part!!! Not only does he very seldom go clear in Agility (Contact) rounds, he also beat quite a few of his much taller BC counterparts on time! All this jumping over 55cm jumps instead of the FCI 45cm jumps he’s more used to. My boy amazed me! Emma was her little consistent self, never featuring in the medals, but still performing well enough to come 2nd overall in the Mini category!

Chinzi did not have such a good weekend… only qualifying in Agility once with a brilliant round, having a few knocked bars in the other rounds, just keeping us out the qualifications.

Before I continue with the Champ Shows and last AWC qualifiers, let me take a break first…

Friday, January 16, 2009

Stilbaai Weekend

On the 10th of January, we all went on a road trip to see Kooikerhondjes in Mosselbay. After our visit to the breeder and litter, we stopped over at Stilbaai, where the beack walk and swimming was tremendous fun for all the dogs.

Leiv busy with his hole...

Chinzi swimming...

Dogs on the horizon...

Levi, admiring his work...

Chinzi, asking for more swimming...

The Kooiker litter...

"My" girl...

Should I get her, or shouldn't I... THAT is the question?! :)

Photos in slideshow courtesy of Gary Killian.

Levi pulling out front in Drag Hunt

Photos in slideshow courtesy of Nico Nel.