On 29. 07. 2016 few of our H-puppies and father of the litter already came to the meeting's location, so we drove there to go for a walk and a swim with dogs.
Hideo (Ozzy) was happy to meet his Chessy again, who just ignored him, Hera was happy of Hideo, who ignored her, while mother Heidi and Hideo just greeted each other for few seconds, than they went to do their business further on, i.e. Hideo had to follow the water crazy Chessy and Heidi had to go back into the bushes to collect more seeds with her coat and to dig out the treasure. This was in her opinion the best Birthday party ever, because although she was with the dogs, she was playing alone (she is like her mother Ama).
Heidi did not even notice H-puppies father Eliott and his "sibling" the dalmatian Luke, who joined us later. None of the dogs were interested in other people, they just loved to play in the water and with each other.
On 30. 07. 2016 the official part of the 1st curly meeting in Slovenia, with parents and friends of our H-puppies, started in the morning at Ribniško lake in Kočevje with father Eliott, mum Heidi (left in the morning), sons Haru (left in the morning) and Ozzy (Hideo), daughters Hera (left in the morning), Halma and Hope, father's friend dalmatian Luke and toller helper Daisy.
We did basic behaviour test that can be done once per year (results for the litter is below), discussed it comparing to the parents and among siblings.
After the basic instinctual behaviour test we started with land exercises for SUP with the dog (Daisy was the helper): body awareness exercises, balance exercises, exercises for building muscles and target exercises (towel). After the land exercises we tried how dogs are ready to stay calmly on the surf with the owner.
After the SUP training we did a small break to cool down the dogs in the water and to let the puppies, that did not have the opportunity to swim since they left their nest, remember how to swim (they are all perfect swimmers). With help of happy dummies and Daisy (social learning) some of the puppies and the dalmatian Luke learned how to jump from the dock into the water. All the successful ones had also a short individual training.
At the end we trained things that make problems to new owners, did smaller part of personality test for juniors (average of the tested H-puppies is presented below) and gave to all of the dog-handler teams the SUP diplomas for the memory.
It was really nice to meet you and looking forward to see you all next year, when the puppies will be learning how to search for truffles.
Exercise-induced collapse (EIC) is a big problem in Labradors as well as in Curlies. How the problem looks like, you can see on this video. Bare in mind, that with DNA test, that exists long enough, this problem would be already completely avoided, i.e. no reason to produce EIC affected dogs, even if the trigger never takes place.
According to the Slovene rules and laws we are not allowed to breed in the way that we would produce affected dogs (for recessive trait, like EIC, both genes have to be mutated that the dog has the possibility to get sick, i.e. that he is affected). And even if it would be allowed to breed in the way that we would produce health-problematic dogs, we love our dogs, work with them and find breeding "affected x affected", "affected x carrier", "carrier x carrier" unethical, something like animal abuse (like in the law). So do not expected from us to get a Curly who is like the Labrador on the video.
Affected dogs without symptoms and carriers can be bred (and should be bred to avoid gene pool shrinking) only to clear dogs, no other option. Period.
While clear dogs can be bred to any dog, even untested one.
Probability for each puppy if parents are:
The only Curly in Slovenia with breeding license is Heidi, who is EIC carrier. She was bred to EIC clear male, so the probability for each puppy is 50 % that he/she is carrier or clear. But they are 100 % healthy for EIC, and can work to their max (they can go dogtrekking, can safely swim etc.).
Only through import we can bring into Slovenia affected dogs, while we will produce none. So please stop producing affected dogs, because it is not ethical and not good for the lovely curlies, who statistically have already too big problem with EIC, even if there is a small amount of dogs with symptoms - this is no excuse. And it is not fair to the countries, who try their best to get rid of the problem, to export your "shit" to them, while you import healthy dogs.
For the Labradors in Slovenia the problem is bigger, because the test for EIC came later than the 1st Labradors. So there might be already dogs produced here that are affected. Even worse, they do not have to be tested for EIC, like Curlies have to be to get the breeding license. If they are tested, they get permanent breeding license (if everything else is OK), otherwise they can have one litter. Not a good strategy.
The test costs sth like 40 € - 50 € at EVG - if you need a 15 % discount from old to new clients, just contact us (if EVG will still have that discount then).
Hopefully both mentioned breeds will never get there where Rough Collies are with Collie eye anomaly (CEA): they are breeding "carrier x carrier" to get some clears - majority of the population were still affected few years ago. But they are doing sth, while the Retriever folk in general is not, which is very sad, because especially Curlies do not have wide gene pool to be able to play around without strategy. All Curly breeders would have to have the goal to get rid off the mutation with proper breeding in ~ 5 generations and at the same time not to shrink the gene pool and create new problems.
This year (2016) a good site about genetic health of curlies with all databases has been published.
On 27. 09. 2015 Heidi and Chessy competed individually in bikejoring women in Stražun forest in Maribor, Slovenia. Heidi competed 1st, Chessy last. Barbara got to know the trail with Heidi, so with Chessy she could go a bit more relaxed knowing the trail a little bit more. Chessy was at the end 2.5 min faster from Heidi.
Heidi usually stops immediately when she want to poo, so there is hardly any time to stop the bike behind her. This time happened what we were always afraid off, i.e. there was not enough time to stop the bike, so Barbara hit Heidi's hind leg with the bike. Heidi moved a bit and pooped on. But from here on it was obvious that Heidi had fear and was not relaxed.
With Chessy it was obvious that we train a little bit wrong, i.e. she stopped every time when we passed certain length of trail - the length of stops was there there with our short training trail. When getting closer to finish line, she blocked a bit (like last time), but we managed to get through the finish line a bit better than last time.
We still need to train more and on longer trails with more turns, but the progress, especially with Chessy, was amazing.
Along with Chessy and Heidi we took also Haru, who was amazed by bikejoring starts. He met new people, new dogs, tried vegetarian meal which he did not like much, had fun and came home tired.
Photos from the event are in the slideshow below. Thank you to all the photographers for the photos, organizers for such a nice event, trail on a such a lovely day, and all for the help. It was very nice to meet old faces after a long time.
On 30. 03. 2014 DŠPS organised 2nd memorial of Henrik Sečnik, i.e. dryland sleddog competition. This year there were more categories and also we participated in more categories than last year.
Heidi (CCR) competed in bikejoring open as the 1st retriever breed in Slovenia (1st time with Barbara, with hardly any training), Kala in canicross open, and Daisy (NSDTR) in dogging as the 4th "Slovene" retriever breed (this was her 1st time ever). Heidi has shown big improvement in all aspects (she was even 5 minutes faster than last year), for Kala it was too hot, so we went really slow to be on the safe side, and little Daisy, well, she still does not know that she was supposed to pull.
The organisation of the event was absolutely perfect, food was good, sponsor gave to every competitor usefull things: from dog food, to natural creams and rare seeds. Last are already "underground".
22. 03. 2014 was 1st Slovene dogtrekking in 2014 and 1st in organisation of Slovene trekking league (Slovenska treking liga). The weather was absolutely perfect for the dogtrekking and for the dogs, i.e. not too warm, not sunny, just right. The trail was also very interesting. 1st three check points were pretty easy to find.
The biggest problem we encountered on the trail was long and steep downhill slope from the 2nd to the 3rd check point. With dogs that know how to pull, with big dogs, and with more than just one dog, this was the major energy leak.
On the 3rd check point the organisers offered us water and food (potica, zaseka...). Thank you, it was just in the right time and place.
But the 4th check point was the problematic one. We did not find it. We lost so much time searching for it, that there would probably not be enough time to finish the dogtrekking before the nightfall. We had a bad feeling about the trail from 5th to 6th check point, because it was through the forest without any special paths on the map. The last "problem" was the small dog, that followed us (labrador Heba that was in season) from the start, and he was already at the end of his strenght, far away from home, probably completely lost. So the decision was to call the organisers to pick up 4 dogs (Kala, Heidi, friend Heba and the small dog) and 2 people (Barbara and friend Nika). Huge thanks to organisers.
However, the good thing is, that we were not even once completely lost. Othervise we learnt that you have to unleash the dogs when going downhill, if possible, that you have to unleash the dogs if the trail is very difficult to pass through, if possible, and if the only natural mark for orientation is river, go always near the river.
I have to say, that Nika and Heba are born for this sport (going downhill looked so easy, nice and perfect). If they did not wait for us from the 2nd to the 3rd check point, they would be much faster. Thank you Nika and Heba for the company.
We are hardly waiting for the 2nd dogtrekking to finish it with all check points collected.
Next day, 23. 03. 2014, we went to 4fun RO. Due to the dogtrekking Barbara could hardly walk, turn around etc. So it was very hard to be the handler for the dog that has to do rally obedience exercises.
Daisy, who did her 1st rally exam (RO1), and who responds to all small moves of the shoulder, arm... the whole body, could not understand what was going on. She also for the 1st time did all 15 exercises in one piece, she has not seen the signs till the exam, so she had to check one. However, she has passed the exam on a rainy day and with wet ground (but Daisy does not mind wet and rainy).
Heidi participated on 4fun RO in RO1 class, Kala in RO2 class. Kala performed very nicely (she does well on colder days, like this one), just she did not want completely to lie down onto the wet ground (never happened before - she likes to play in puddle, mud...). On the other hand Heidi has to lie down faster and in one piece (she goes down 1st with arms, holds her bottom up for few seconds, and if you demand also to put down the bottom, she does it eventually - but prefers "bottom up").
Even if the day was rainy and cold, it was a very nice and fun day, where we got the pleasure to see new dog sport, with the "working title" trikarija, being born. Our dogs already know some of the exercises, however many still have to be learnt. At this point, when Kala passsed RO4 (there is no RO5), "trikarija" will start to fill her brains.
22. 09. 2013 DŠPS organised 9th Slovene doghiking/dogtrekking event. Everything was organised super good, a lot of ideas will have to be adopted from this doghiking for the future. Franci Habjan (thank you) prepared 2 trails, shorter 10 km long and longer 20 km long. All competitors were successful on trails, nobody got lost.
The "atmosphere" was perfect as always, also the weather was very good for the dogs (and for the people), the food was delicious, the trail was nice, the description of the trail was perfect, so that we used the map only to estimate the distance and time between check points. For the 1st time in Slovenia there were 2 “live” check points, 2nd was "hidden", the 1st was announced.
Kala could once again put on her smaller harness due to finally loosing some weight. But the harness will have to be upgraded with 2 bands on her fore-chest to stabilise it on her body. But she will have to loose some more weight, because she could not pull the whole distance, because her body could not cool down fast enough. After cooling in the stream near the finish line, she started to pull again. The problem was that she put all her atoms into the work at the beginning, where she dragged Stane behind her until they caught Heidi and Barbara. After this point the dragging became pulling. But if she would have few kg less, she would not have any problems. But she is on a good way of getting perfect, healthy body.
We did not get lost even for an inch. We always read just 1 sentence more and were focused just on the next thing, just like co-competitors (Vesna Hrovat with Rina and Elizabeta Zupanič with Alfa) said. The idea works very well.
Kala competed with Stane, Heidi with Barbara, Pretty went along to cheer up. We all walked the longer trail. Stane and Kala were 8th among men, 2nd among men walkers and got 10 points in the cup, Barbara and Heidi were 2nd among women, 1st among women walkers and got 17 points in the cup.
More photos: here, here, here, here, here and here.
On 07. 06. 2013 we went with Heidi and her flat coated friend Šejk on a long trip to Denmark (Klovborg) to the curly meeting. On 08. 06. 2013 the 1st exam for Heidi was the obedience test with heelwork on a leash and without the leash, with left and right turns, the recall from the sit or down position, a single mark and reaction to the shot (Brugsprøve). Heidi passed with 36 of 40 points and qualified for the field test Markprøve B in the beginners class, which took place for our Heidi a few hours later. The 1st exercise was combination of 5 exercises: single mark on the land, heelwork without a leash to the 2nd station with the 2nd single mark on the land, longer heelwork to the 3rd station where 3rd single mark happened but in the dip water, where the dogs had to enter into the water under an angle (ideally) and retrieve it (always) to the handlers hand. The 2nd exercise was free search of the 40x50 m2 area, where several different sorts of the cold game where hidden. Heidi brought back 4 of them (1 rabbit, 2 pigeons, 1 water bird – with last to game she met in the field for the 1st time and had no problems). The last exercise, which was just the bonus, was a blind of a big duck (the one that Heidi is used to). She got the 1st prize class and qualified for the open class, where there is one very interesting exercise we never saw before, i.e. we are already hardly waiting to start training for the free search when more dogs work at the same time but not “together”. We were absolutely happy that on the field test it was possible to watch how other teams work, so we could learn from them and are already looking forward for the tests next year.
We are thanking to all the judges, gamekeepers, shooters and other participants for all the help and the knowledge. A special thank goes to the Mrs. Brigitte Poulsen for the Heidi’s 1st perfect haircut and for the instructions on how to give a curly a haircut, to her husband Mr. Dan Poulsen, who bred one of Heidi’s GGGmother Dancurl’s Celopatra, GGGfather Dancurl’s Black Bandit, GGGGmother Dancurl’s Asia and for the tip how to select a puppy from the litter which would have a nice coat. Very big thanks go also to the owner of the perfect curly meeting place, Mr. Jens M. Jensen, for the hospitality and allowing us to camp on the site. At the end we are also thanking the Danish Retriever Club for all 3 very nice events, i.e. the obedience test, field test and the certificate show, where Heidi got good.
And not to forget, a very big thank goes to Mrs. Anja Ballegaard Westermann who invited us to the curly meeting, helped to enter the event and showed us new exercises for the Šejk.
14. 04. 2013 Kala and Heidi went to 1st Slovene 4fun rally obedience. Kala started last in RO2 (judge: Sašo Cvek), Heidi in RO1 (judge: Ana Dragičevič).
Kala had lots of fun, did few mistakes: her slalom was not correct (she missed the 1st entrance, Barbara called her back, that Kala went in the right entrance in, but at the end of the slalom she skipped one part of th slalom), before the tunnel she sat down nicely, but after she was sent through, she run towards the next exercise i.e. the seesaw. So Barbara will have to repeat slalom, teach Kala to sit after the tunnel on a distance (she is almost always much faster than Barbara at this exercise), teach her nicer down position.
Heidi, who went through all 30 exercises a day before (she knew few things from obedience, from agility, from tricks, from retriever work, so she just had to go through all 30 exercises for RO1; the only thing completely new for her was the table, onto which she was sent with "back" ("naprej"), "table" ("miza"): this part is OK, but she is not 100 % (she does what Barbara says to her, but she is still not liking the exercises so much as Kala does) i.e. she can stop in the middle and Barbara has to one more "back". On the table she performs any exercise commanded from Barbara from the distance. The recall is also OK. The only thing she will have to exercise more is going into her elegant down a bit faster (she was never slow, her down exercise was perfect, so Barbara did not practise it for a long time, that she would notice that there is any problem), and Barbara will have to stop "swimming" when she is making left turns.
Barbara handled both this time with food in her hand, but just Heidi got reward after many exercises (she did not have any problems because of other people around), Kala just before the start and after the finish line. Heidi had time 1:49 min, Kala 2:49 something min.
This was the 1st hotter day this year (according to Kala) and the 1st day when Heidi took a swim in the pond, when Heidi and Kala did perfect channelling, when they were having their feet wet in the river. This polygon (KD Duplica near Kamnik) has really great place for water dogs (the only problem I was a bit afraid what will happen is the ducks: Heidi wanted to go after them, not chase them, but who knows).
Last year we had 2 Croatian competitors from Zagreb, this time 3 new came from Varaždin :) They are starting with their rally obedience and are collecting the ideas... We are hardly waiting that also they start with their competitions, because Croatia is for us near, we understand their language, so for competing in Croatia there are no obstacles for us.
23. 03. 2013 we went to a workshop for working test to Sokoliči. The instructors were Riccardo Raccanelli (labrador) and Raffaele Navone (flatcoated retriever). This was 1st working test workshop for Pretty, Duffy, Kala and Heidi. Heidi participated the whole time, Duffy and Pretty for a bit shorter time, Kala was just watching. But in the break she practised alone with Barbara (also Pretty and Heidi did).
This was a very good workshop, where we learned a lot of new things. The best was of course the trick with the tennis ball to teach the whistle command stop when the dog is running away from the handler. A brilliant trick!
24. 03. 2013 we participated for the 1st time in working test, which was also the 1st working test in Slovenia that counts for Zlata raca, the 1st with international participation, the 1st with proper judges. We participated with 3 girls: with Kala in out of competition class (0, 0, 4, 0; she did not pass the WT, but she won the class that does not count for Zlata raca trophy), Pretty in beginners class (5/30, 10/30, 4/20, 0; she almost passed the WT) and Heidi in open class (9/20, 17/30, 13/20, 6/20; she passed the WT).
Kala had lots of fun, met her "boyfriend" flatcoat Šejk, did the exercises in Kala's way constantly wagging with her "toller-tail", usually running full speed (just on the memory, which she did not see or which she forgot, she went so slow and in zig-zag, that Barbara just recalled her). She barked, pied, pooped and had a nice time.
Heidi performed better than expected i.e. she worked as she was told too even if there were people around. That was a huge success. She even understands the directions she should go. At the end, she was 5th.
But she went off course with the curly speed i.e. rather slow than fast. One problem appeared, that was not seen for ages i.e. Barbara did not get the dummy into her hand all the times. Till now we thought that Heidi had very good "hold".
Pretty was also nice, but she needs even more training than Heidi and Kala. But Pretty marks better than other two girls, can run much faster i.e. she is perspective young girl.
Results of the 1st WT for Zlata raca, results for Zlata raca after 1st WT, photos of the winners, photos from the workshop, photos from the WT (step 1 and 2), photos and more photos.
On the 09. 03. 2013 there were for the 1st time 2 trails of different lengths: 10 km and 20 km.
Stane participated with Heidi and Kala on 20 km long trail, Barbara participated with Gea and Pretty on 10 km. They represent the 2nd retriever breed (nova scotia duck tolling retriever) in Slovenia, after curly coated retriever, that competed in doghiking.
Curly Heidi and toller Gea are also the 1st Slovene retrievers that competed in doghiking abroad (in Austria, near Vienna).
This time it looked that the orientation on 20 km long trail was not so easy, so many very fast, very good and very perspective competitors got lost. Stane ended on the 2nd place among men, 2nd among men walkers and got 17 points. This result from Doghiking Lisec 2013 was among such good rivals just pure luck that can happen just once per lifetime.
Heidi and Kala were working for the whole length perfectly. For the 1st time they did not pull so much downhill (they listened the command). Heidi was not tired (she never is), Kala was (but she had one week of very difficult trainings in lots of snow). So she got the time off to regenerate.
Orientation on the shorter trail looked much easier i.e. all participants were successful. Gea and Pretty were for the 1st time working without a "rabbit" in front of them. Gea was in the beginning working very nice, could be better, but was a huge step up for her. Pretty did also a step up, but smaller comparing to Gea. However, Barbara was pleased with what they showed even if they did not perform on the highest level they can for the whole time. After few trainings it will be better.
Maybe Pretty's performance was not so OK due to the fact, that she really had to huge harness and Barbara had to safe her from the ropes for lots of times - we have to buy her a new one, the same as Gea has.
Barbara expected that they will be last, but they were 1st. She still does not know how did she catch up the rivals (which are all very good). It sure happened after the phone call of Stane, when he told that all runners got lost. She started to walk faster because she thought that the search action will have to take place. She already new which dogs to take along (Saki and Drobižek, who were the only one rested) and whom not (May is too old, Gea, Pretty, Kala and Heidi might be tired, puppies are still just puppies). Luckily everybody that got lost, got lost in the best possible way i.e. or they have just shortened the trail and missed one of the check points, or they finished on the road near villages where they could be picked up by the car.
This was also the 1st time that Barbara did not fall even once (maybe this was the also the last time).
On this event (that took place from and to our home) we realised, that Daisy really needs extra socialisation with strange people.
More photos are on fb.