A Year and A Month in Review
My year in review starts back in December 14, 2016 when John and I drove to Eau Clair, WI to pick up Riggs one of our puppies out of Glory and Thunder’s 2015 litter. Rigg’s current family at the time couldn’t keep him because of unforeseen circumstances. They tried and tried and finally made the call to me to help them out. We gladly welcomed Riggs back home to Sand Spring Chesapeakes. Riggs was 17 months at the time and still intact, being that we have Gambler who is intact as well and has a case of short man syndrome our best friend and neighbor Roger agreed to house Riggs and have him be his dog and a co-owner with us. Riggs former family still follows along with Riggs adventures and we are still friends, they will always be the reason for Riggs great upbringing.
A couple weeks later we got a call that Preacher needed to come back home as she wasn’t working out in her new home, there was personality conflicts between the two girls that lived together so on Christmas eve Preacher came back to live with us again. All our pups are welcome back home, we hope that they won’t be coming back home but sometimes things don’t work out like we hope and we need to do what is right and take responsibility for the lives we helped put on this earth. We had a full Christmas with Grandma Nellie, Glory, Gambler, Preacher, Guilty and MK all living at our house.
We all rang in the New Year of 2017 together. 2017 brought many ups and a few downs. The winter wasn’t a terrible one so we were able to get out and do some hunt test training. Riggs only had obedience work done with him so at 17 months we had to start out from scratch. Roger along with John and I tackled his training, since we were training him we trained Guilty at the same time since she is 6 months younger. Riggs really wanted to please and was doing really well with his training. Once the weather got nicer and the pond opened up it was time to see what he would do in the water. He hadn’t swum as a little puppy so it took some time for him to figure out the water and now he is like a fish.
February 12th Guilty received her UKC Show Champion title under judge Barbara Burns. Host club was the WI Boston Terrier Association held in Ixonia, WI. She was just a week over her first birthday.
March 9th, Guilty received her Alliance of Therapy Dogs and her R.E.A.D (Reading Educated Assistance Dog) certification. Guilty is doing therapy work at Beaver Dam and Fall River Middle School.
In March Preacher received her UKC Top Ten status certificates as well as her invitation to perform at the UKC Premier this coming June in the Top Ten Breed and Dog Standing show.
Grandma Nellie turned 12 in October of 2016. Over the winter she was having troubles with her back legs. She was showing neurological signs. She would crisscross her back legs, they would go out on her and she would fall over, she wasn’t able to jump on the bed like she could in the past she was slowly going downhill. Her mind was still all there so you could see her give it her all until the night of March 14th,when I got home from work and John let the gang out to meet me in the garage she ran out to meet me and then she just stood there and wouldn’t move. She stared at me and I could tell by the look in her eyes that there was something wrong with her. She was a little old lady telling me her time was up. We spend the next day loving on each other and the night she spent loving on John. They said their goodbyes as I knew when I took her to work with me the next day March 16th, that we would run some tests but I knew in my heart she wouldn’t be coming home. It turned out that she had a heart base tumor and it was bleeding making it hard for her to breath. It was time for her to be at peace. She was an amazing dog, mother, grandmother and best friend. She was our first breeding bitch and gave us 3 wonderful litters. She taught us so much about raising puppies, hunting and living life to the fullest. She will forever be our turd.
May 13-14th Momma Glory came out of retirement for the Dodge County Canine Club show to show in the champion class for a chance to get a leg towards her grand champion title and she took Best Of Breed at one of the shows to receive one leg out of 5 for her title.
In June Guilty received her AKC Therapy Dog Novice title and her Canine Good Citizen title. She completed 10 therapy visits for her title.
Guilty attended the 2017 UKC Premier in Kalamazoo, MI. She tried her paw at lure coursing where she ended the course too early so didn’t receive any passes, she did receive her United Novice Jumper title completing 5 jumps in the novice level. She also won Best Of Breed in one of the dog shows she attended, with that win she got one pass towards her grand champion title and a spot in the top ten breed and dog standing.
Gambler received his AKC Trick Dog Novice and Intermediate titles.
July 30th Sand Spring Lethal Weapon JH “Riggs” received his AKC Junior Hunter title. Host club was the Wisconsin Amateur Field Trial Club, his judges were Richards Andrews and Carol Greenwald.
Then in August Riggs received his UKC HRC Started Title. He went 4 for 4 on his tests. Host club was Muddy Waters HRC.
August 22nd Riggs passed his AKC Canine Good Citizen test while Guilty passed her AKC Community Canine and Urban tests. Gambler and Glory both passed their Canine Good Citizen Urban test.
Over Labor Day weekend Guilty and I set off for Madison Retriever Clubs fall hunt test. She needed one more pass for her AKC Junior Hunter title which she pulled off. She is now UNJ UCH Sand Spring Guilt By Association JH THDN CGCU.
Preacher left our home for her forever home with George and Susie. John and I have known George forever through our trapping and selling of hides. George is retried now and was looking for a chessie. We told him about Preacher he came and hung out with her and took her home. She has been living the life as an only dog, she has been to North Dakota hunting, up north hunting, hunting on the Mississippi river, fishing with George, going to church with George, she spends all her time right by his side. I couldn’t of asked for a better home, I am happy she and George have each other.
Riggs received his UKC Conformation Champion title on September, 11 2017 at Central Wisconsin Kennel Club. This weekend there were 4 UKC shows, Riggs needed to get BOB in three of the shows in which he did. Judges for the shows were Dr. Bev Siglfelten, Jeanne Heger, and Stanley Matsumoto. Under judge Stanley Riggs received a Group 4 out of 7 dogs in the Gun Dog group. Riggs was handled by Tom Pawlisch
The end of September Guilty and Riggs took their American Temperament Test, both passed with middle of the road scores. They have even temperament. “A Sound Mind In A Sound Body”. With Labor Day brings the beginning of the school year so our pet therapy starts up as well. Each session I rotate out the dogs. Gambler, Glory and Guilty all have their titles so I take one each time. I took Glory a few extra times this fall as I knew she would be coming into heat later in the winter and we would be breeding her so she wouldn’t be able to do therapy. Gambler has started back up with the Beaver Dam Middle school kids. He is in one room this year, I have just taken Gambler so far as the kids that need the pet therapy have requested just Gambler come visit as it will help them with consistency. I figure any way I can help these kids make it through the day we will do. I’ve visited some of these kids for 4 years, it’s nice to see the changes in the kids and know that Gambler is helping them out.
This fall once again we packed up our gear and headed off to Saskatchewan, Canada to snow goose hunt. We took all three dogs, this year I hunted with Guilty all week and John had both Gambler and Glory one on each side during hunting. I had a lot of fun with Guilty, this was my first-year hunting with her as John hunted with her last year. We had a successful hunt, made many new memories with our friends that go with us and we got to hunt with one of Nellie’s puppies again. Pearl who turned 10 on Christmas this year hunted with us again and she did an awesome job for a senior gal. Nellie made the trip with us, she hunted with Guilty and I and on our last day of hunting some of her remains stayed behind in the field we hunted. She also was laid to rest in Kerrie’s flower garden. It was her final flight. Part of her and her father Norman are in a place that we will all ways cherish.
We spent the fall hunting and guiding with our dogs at Lone Oak Pheasant Preserve. The dogs loved being able to hunt pheasants with others. The clients loved hunting with dogs that would flush and retrieve, we all had a great time.
Glory came into heat this fall/winter just like we knew she would. I had spent many months researching stud dogs. We made a decision on who we were going to use so we put our ducks in a row and when it was time for the breeding to take place there was an unfortunate turn of events with the stud dogs semen sample so we needed to come up with another stud quickly. When your bitch is in heat there is a small window of time when things need to get done correctly. We decided we would do a repeat breeding with Bear (Guilty’s dad), a surgical insemination was done on December 13th. Everything went according to text book just like it did in 2015 when we did the exact same breeding, it wasn’t until a week later that things went aray and we would be left wondering if this pregnancy would take place. Glory had a reaction and got an infection next to the surgical incision which is assumed to be from the extender in the frozen semen sample. She needed to be sedated and a drain was placed by her mammary glands to drain the fluid that has accumulated. A couple trips were made during this time to have ultrasounds done to make sure she didn’t have a pyometra. She was put on antibiotics and is healing up really well. We won’t know until the second week of January if the pregnancy took so as we come to the last day of this year we hope to close out the teary days and enter into 2018 with smiles, relief, good heath and little brown furry ones.
Thank you to all who follow Sand Spring Chesapeakes, those who support us and share in our happy moments and are there for the sad moments. Life is about ups and downs and without friends and family it would be a lot harder to get through the days so we thank you and love you all. May you all have a blessed and healthy New Year!