When I graduated college, one of the first things I did was start a search for my first dog...
This weekend I went up to the dog shows at the Eastern States Exposition. There's a huge set of conformation shows and also a ton of agility and obedience competition. I went up partly to enjoy the dog shows and to take some notes on agility, but I also went up because Jill's Lush was doing so well in conformation.
I was already making a "brag" ad for Lush to run in the Golden Retriever News since she got her Championship and her Grand Championship at a very young age, so it was nice to see her shown in person.
Jill and I also went to our old standby, West Thompson, for a hike after the shows. I didn't get any particularly good pictures of the six dogs (Finn, Tally, Copley, Lush, Comet, and Jax) while we were hiking, but I did get a nice one of my boys because I got to the trailhead ahead of Jill and had a moment to take a couple of pictures of two dogs who really, really didn't want to wait to start the hike.
On a more pleasant afternoon during my trip to Maine, I paid a visit to my old friend Jill’s brand new farm. It has a lovely barn to house classes for her new dog training school, and the house sits smack in the middle of a beautiful meadow that goes all the way down to a river.
Finny (left) is closer to nine than eight, but he’s still got all the crazy enthusiasm of Copley (right).
the website if you live in the area and need artful, positive dog training. You can also check out her photo galleries on the Facebook page, even if you don’t live close enough to train with her.
This entry closes out the year, and I’m left in the awkward position of feeling a need to look back. We’ve moved to a new town, and I’ve started substituting 5K runs for some of my dogwalks, so there have been noticeably fewer photos this fall. I took some of the best bird pictures I’ve ever gotten, and I still look back wistfully at photos of the time Ojo spent with us.
By the way, in terms of looking back, Copley (far left) has grown quite a bit. You can go back for a reminder of how teeny he was only 11 months ago.
Lots of non-dog, non-bird things happened this year, but this blog has really become my venue for writing about photos, so there’s a large, unphotographed portion of our lives that I don’t talk about here. I wonder how many folks think I just go for dogwalks every day and then to bed. I have a job, though you wouldn’t know it.
Actually, that part of my life has its own blog too.
He’s still a lightning puppy, particularly when a ball crosses his path. I can’t help but wish I still had his white-faced brother by my side too.
One of my favorite things about his looks is how little maintenance it requires. Many show Goldens are brushed out daily, washed a couple of times a week, and trimmed or “neatened” all over. There’s certainly nothing wrong with that, but Comet looks really good without a haircut, which to me better embodies the spirit of a working dog.
In no particular order:
Jax, Golden Retriever
Comet, Golden Retriever
Copley, Golden Retriever
Tango, Golden Retriever
Tally, Golden Retriever
Finn, Golden Retriever
Rumford, Golden Retriever
Leo, Portuguese Water Dog
Jax isn’t a big dog, but he does everything with as much height as possible. He’s always springing and leaping about, and if he notices friends a few hundred feet away playing with a stick, the first thing he’ll do is rear up and get a better look before he puts on the afterburners.