A cool coat for hot dogs

At the start of last summer I was offered a 2nd hand XL Ruffwear Swamp Cooler for sale. It was a bit big for Guinness but by chance a friend had a large one which was too small for her Labrador, thus forth … Continue reading


November & December Dig It Winter Series

I didn’t blog about November Winter Series as it all went a bit pear-shaped, plus with there being one show a month I thought it would be quite tedious to read about each one. So I’m going to combine them … Continue reading


Shrewsbury and Oswestry

So we bit the bullet and entered a Kennel Club Show. I consider this our first KC show, as although we did Adams in January it was inside without weaves, and we weren’t ready for it. So I’ve learnt from … Continue reading


Foxhound Welfare UK

Today I stopped by a Fun Dog Show being held in aid of Foxhound Welfare UK.  There were a number of stalls and fun classes and a parade of Hounds Hunting For Happy Homes.  These Foxhounds are currently being looked … Continue reading


Cheshire Game & Angling Fair

A few weekends ago it was the Cheshire Game and Angling Fair at Peover. This fair has a special place in my heart as it was at this event last year, while helping with Dig It Display Team, that I … Continue reading


Betley Gundog and Game Fair 2013

This weekend I went along to the Betley Gundog and Game Fair for the Sunday. I left Guinness at home away from the guns and out of the sun and instead picked up my camera.

My friend Katie was doing a Flyball Display with her team, the Carry On’s.


They put on a fabulous display and showed the different parts to Flyball; the starter dogs, the breed dogs, how to do change-overs and then finished off with an exciting race!

Next up was a Bird of Prey Display from Rosliston Forestry Centre. Using a few volunteers from the crowd, they had a Barn Owl flying between people and then changed the crowd members and did the same with a young kestrel. The information was really good and it was very easy to listen to.


The best part was the Saker Falcon which flew out low over the crowds and round past the stalls, swooping in to try and grab the bait on the long line and then flying out again.  It stopped for a break and settled into a tree right above Katie’s head. We didn’t think he was going to come out.


The big star of the day was Andy Cullen MBE, a highly regarded gundog trainer. Andy gave some fantastic advice and information about training dogs and showed off a range of different breeds and their uses.


He used quite a lot of young dogs and demonstrated the different levels of training exercises. The best moment was seeing his 18 week old Springer Spaniel! Andy talked about puppy training and how important it is to get your foundations right.

He emphasised on the importance of positive reinforcement and made a point about not needing to shout or beat your dog to make them listen, but you also don’t need to be silly smoochy either. Just be yourself and reward your dog.


Last but not least was Cheshire Canine Services with a protection dog display. This was really entertaining and had a lot of wow moments. Mike Crawford runs the company and led the display, showing us different stages of training a protection dog.


Again their display consisted of young dogs and it highlighted the use of positive reinforcement in their training, especially play rewards. They did exercises with bite sleeves, an attacker with a weapon, crowd control and chase and detain. The pièce de résistance was a mock terrorist attack and one of the dogs jumped into a caravan to detain an attacker. Amazing!


Around the fair there were a handful of stalls with the usual tweed gundog trainer clothing, dog toys and accessories. There were also a few have a go stands such as archery, clay and rifles shooting.

Over in the distance in a different ring Terrier and Lurcher judging was taking place as well as ferret racing, although I walked away after watching them swinging the ferrets around like stuffed toys.  The Scurries competition was a trek away down the hill and  Andy Biggar, top Dog Photographer, had his own set up for special offer sessions. I managed to catch him for 5 minutes to say hello! (Very exciting).


The displays were on twice a day and quickly led on from each other so there was no sitting around waiting. It was a shame that everything was so spread out as it felt quiet around the main arena despite there being quite a lot of people about. The show was also a little sparse on stalls.  However I had a really enjoyable day and there’s plenty of worse things to be doing on a hot, sunny day!  It was lovely to see some friends and get some good photography practise.

There was a good general emphasis on positive reinforcement in all of the displays and I hope some people took note of this (such as the guy I saw pinning his dog down).

A great day out!




Ruffwear Webmaster Dog Harness

During a long hike in the Easter break we came across a number of styles that were very difficult for Guinness to climb or jump over, due to uneven ground on the other side or the height and design of … Continue reading