Rugby, Parker and Bourbon headed to Louisville last week for the American Maltese Association’s National Specialty. I thought it was rather ironic that they had this years specialty in the heart of Bourbon Country, so it was a must that we road trip our way there so the bitch could come with us.
We arrived in Louisville on Tuesday evening, and it took the dogs all of Wednesday to rest up from the trip. Riding in a car for 9 hours is a good way to tire dogs out! Wednesday evening all three dogs brushed up on their Obedience skills so they could get their game faces on for the Trial the next day. Training session was much needed and everyone was able to polish up their problem areas.
Thursday was the big day, so Rugby and Parker slept in to conserve their energy. Both boys were ready to go by the time the show started at 1:30. Rugby went first in Utility and Open, earning a score of 195.5 in both classes, for High Combined and High in Trial.
Parker was next in Graduate Novice. I was so proud of Parker watching him work in the ring. He was focused, attentive, obedient and happy throughout his performance. He qualified with a score of 193.5 and first place. Go Parker!
The last Obedience class of the day was one that we requested for the boys, Obedience Brace. In Brace, you complete a novice level obedience pattern but with TWO dogs at the same time. We had been practicing this for a week or two before the show, but the boys were still figuring out how to work tied together (they have very different working styles). To make matters worse, we decided I should hide while they were showing so that Rugby wouldn’t be too distracted by me. That was a mistake. He was way more distracted by the fact that I had gone missing than he was by me sitting there. Oh well, they were still pretty good entertainment. And they managed to qualify with a score of 178. We will take it!
Rally was the last thing of the day. Rugby showed wonderfully in Excellent B, but I did one of the signs wrong and he earned a 90 for first place. Parker continued his winning streak earned a perfect 100 score in Advanced B, also for first place! They boys rocked it!
After the Obedience Trial was over, the only thing left to do was enjoy the trip! There aren’t many dog things to do in Louisville (or we couldn’t find them), but we kept busy by visiting the Falls of the Ohio State Park. It was HOT there, and not easy to hike on the drift wood for the people or for Bourbon. The little ones had to be carried most of the way. Tip for those wanting to visit Falls of the Ohio, enjoy the view from the parking lot and don’t bother hiking down to the water.
Luckily, there is a cute little ice cream stand down the road from the park that made the trip there worthwhile (The Widow’s Walk Ice Creamery). The dogs shared their own vanilla ice cream in the shade next to the river.
We couldn’t leave Kentucky without a visit to a Bourbon distillery. On the way out, we went to Four Roses Bourbon Distillery since Bourbon is named after Bourbon Roses, and took some photos of the dogs.
Last stop of the trip was in West Virginia where we picked up the car again and rested up before heading home. Bourbon got a huge kick from driving up the mountain to the cabin for whatever reason. She was pumped when we finally got to our destination!
It was a very successful trip for the Leash Free Living team!Now it’s back to reality, training for the next event!