Well I know its not quite the end of the month but with the current world situation I have found myself with some time on my hands so I thought I would produce the Locksheath news for March a few days early.
I have to say that this month will be a month to remember for lots of reasons but let me start with the highlight that for me was Crufts 2020.  We were fortunate to have five Locksheath dogs that had qualified for entry to this years event, four which are owned and co owned by me.  So we set off on the Thursday 05th March and pitched up on a Caravan/Motorhome club site just a few miles away from the NEC in Birmingham, we travelled up with Cari's Mum & Dad and our good friends Fran & Dennis
The traffic on that day was horrid and the journey took two hours longer than it should have but at least we would be close to the exhibition centre for an easier start.
06:00 and we all set off to the NEC, as we arrived early we managed to get parked a little closer but still a good 15 minute walk with cages picnic and dogs but in no time we were set up on the benches and I nipped over to see Marlon and Silvia to see how he was, all fine and he had been groomed and was ready to be showed by Brooke Burlingham a friend of Silvia's that had flown in from the US.
Fran and Dennis were all set too with Sparky (Locksheath Spark in the Dark).  John (Cari's Dad) and I took some time to practice with Jago as today John would be presenting and stacking Jago and I would run him in the ring. First in the ring was the Veteran class and I watched closely and was delighted to see Silvia and Vito take the 1st place card for this class. Vito is the father of Autumn, Jago and Marlon. just a fabulous result.  
Before we new it the junior class had been called and we would be next in the Yearling class with Sparky, Jago and Marlon, with all entries in the ring I watched closely as all the boys were stacked up in front of the judge, all lovely dogs and the judge placed Marlon (Locksheath Back in Black) 1st, and Jago ( Locksheath Black Ice)3rd Sparky (Locksheath Spark in the Dark) showed really well and was placed Reserve in the class.  I had entered Jago into the Post Graduate class also a strong class and again he was placed 3rd which was fantastic as he was up against dog that were much older and mature than him.  He really did well. All the boys really well and today was good for us all.

I spent some time socialising with friends and watching the remainder of the dog classes, it gives me the chance to watch them closely and study them with more detail, I find that I am getting a much better understanding of the breed and with such large numbers in the ring I thoroughly enjoyed watching them all.

We got together and had our mini picnic all set up on top of the crates which i'm sure drove the dogs a bit crazy being able to smell all the goodies above them, of course they had some treats also.

I apologise for the image quality but I had dropped my DSLR and it had to be sent away for repairs and I recovered an old camera that really wasn't up to the job but at least we captured something.  Cari and I ended the day with a little shopping in the trade stands and then made our way back to say our goodbyes to friends and family as they and we headed off back home.  Traffic was good to us on the return journey and we were back indoors by about 21:30.  Definitely a memorable day and with Marlon and Jago pre qualified for next year and Autumn qualified for life we need now focus on Summer to get qualified ready for Crufts 2021.

Next in was Autumn in the yearling bitch class, Autumn always stands well and today I could tell that she moved well also, I did my very best to show her and this paid off with a 1st place for her.  She really is a lovely girl and i'm very proud of her. She went on to be placed 3rd in the Good Citizens class and again against strong competition.

Next up was Summer in the limit class, Summer showed well but not as well as others in front of her as she was not placed in the cards but she showed really well and always moves nicely for me so I was pleased with her as I always am.  Overall we had the most fabulous day in the show ring and out.

Other News

We attended a couple of local shows with one in Kent and another just the other side of Winchester and then the uk got turned upside down with the presence of the Coronavirus.  it wasn't long that shows were being cancelled due to health concerns and the safety of everyone.  I am an active committee member of the Chichester & District Canine Society and we had a show that was booked and ready to go on the 22nd March and I would have been stewarding one of the rings, but although a tough decision for the welfare of all the committee and the exhibitors it was decided that we should cancel.  and then came the announcement from the Government that we must all stay home and large gatherings were not allowed, and with came the announcements from pretty much all the shows that were booked up to July being cancelled also. although this years show scene will be lost as I believe it will take many months before we return to a normal life it is for the sake of everyones health and the survival of the NHS that as I write are already stretched to the limits with this virus.

Both Cari and I are now working from home and although a bit strange we are managing to work well together but most of all our girls are loving all the extra attention with us being here 24/7.

So I will finish this months news here and hope all that read this stay safe and well and I look forward to bringing more news for April.

Written by Keith Whiting

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