Oh the places you’ll go…

9 Mar

Last weekend marked an important anniversary for us… Friday was our 1st anniversary in the world of canine competitions.

Each year our local vizsla club hosts two specialty shows with sweepstakes and an obedience trial held on the Friday before the Belle-City Kennel Club all breed shows.

As we drove home this past Friday evening after an eventful day, I thought about the past year and all the fun places it has taken us.  It all started on Friday, March 4, 2011 – Gumbo and I entered the conformation ring for the very first time!  Gumbo was entered in the two specialty shows and the two puppy sweepstakes.  We did very well considering it was our first show experience ever!  The following weekend, we drove to Columbia, Missouri for the Columbia Kennel Club shows where Gumbo earned his 1st and 2nd point towards his championship.  Wow, were we surprised!  Our second weekend out and Gumbo went Winners Dog and Best of Breed (there were only 2 vizslas entered but it still counts!) 🙂

One week after Columbia, we made our first trip to Kansas City. Neither Ben nor I had ever been to Kansas City before.  This was also our first time staying in a hotel with our dogs.  We have traveled on many occasions with our vizslas, but we’ve always stayed with family or friends.  The hotel was a new experience.  The first night was terrible!  Some intoxicated neighbors decided it would be fun to knock on our door at 2am while shouting at us.  They had actually been very loud for hours. 😦 Needless to say, both Ilsa and Gumbo freaked out at all the commotion!  Early the next morning, Gumbo did not show well due to being tired and “on edge”.  As soon as we returned to the hotel, I spoke to the receptionist at the front desk and had them change our room.  We then moved to a top corner of the hotel away from everyone.  I am not the type of person who has ever sent food back to the kitchen in a restaurant.  I have never asked to change rooms at a hotel.  I normally just complain to myself about people being “jerks” and stay quiet.  I knew this was not an option for my family.  Ilsa and Gumbo needed to feel safe and secure, and we all needed sleep.  The remainder of the weekend was a success.  No, Gumbo didn’t win any championship points at those shows, but we did learn how to travel to an unfamiliar environment, live peacefully in a hotel room with both dogs, and enjoyed Kansas City a little. [Ask Ben how he enjoyed his Z-Man BBQ sandwich!]

A few months later, we traveled to Sedalia, Missouri for another show.  I’ll admit, had it not been for the show, I would never have visited Sedalia!  It is a small, quaint town that hosts the Missouri state fair each year.  While in Sedalia, we stayed at an 80+ year-old hotel with an old timey elevator.  Ilsa and Gumbo both had to cross the hotel lobby, enter the elevator, and ride to the 4th floor to our room.  These were big firsts for us!  (We stayed in a Residence Inn in Kansas City and the rooms all have outside entrances).

Our biggest adventure took us across the country to Denver for Vizsla Nationals!  The entire week of Nationals was an amazing experience and true celebration of our wonderful breed!

Many trips to Purina Farms outside St. Louis, Columbia, Kansas City, Sedalia, Belleville, and Denver… oh the places we’ve gone!  1 year, 5 championship points earned, countless lessons learned.  I wonder where year 2 will take us?  Stay tuned… 🙂



One Response to “Oh the places you’ll go…”

  1. 2browndawgs March 10, 2012 at 5:59 AM #

    It sounds like you have had a very busy year. Congrats on the points. We usually try to get hotels with outside entrances, but it isn’t always possible. I think the outside entrances are easier with dogs. Although ours tend to not sleep well the first night no matter the entrance.

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