new dog teaches old man a trick or two

Tzuri’s Gold

Trotting a dog around a show ring and posing her to advantage is a skill quite beyond my ken. Thus I was quite relieved when I ran into Tzuri’s breeder (Jose Diaz) at the Gulf Coast Schutzhund Trial / Breed Survey / Conformation Show, and he kindly arranged for a friend of his to be her “handler”.

tzuri with handler

Whew! I thought to myself as I slipped him a fifty dollar bill, I dodged a bullet and once again I can hide my ineptness.

Well, not exactly. Even with expert guidance dogs need to be pre-trained to strut a certain way and then stop and hold a pose which presents their best attributes in profile. It is, after all, a strict written standard of angles and proportions that she is being measured against.


Oh, Tzuri did okay.

For the most part…

I mean, like – it was her first introduction to dozens of dogs of all ages milling about on the show grounds just a few tempting yards from her. She barked and lunged (playfully) for about an hour, then settled down. Then too, I had abruptly turned her over to a complete stranger to maneuver her in strange ways, but even though bewildered and probably feeling like I had abandoned her, she played along the best she could.

Nevertheless, an 8-month old puppy with a mind of her own has her limits – like, when the Judge tries to open her mouth to examine her teeth.

That was embarrassing. The Judge can’t give her a grade unless she has the proper dentition, and Tzuri wouldn’t budge. They had to stop the proceedings and call me into the ring to see if I could manage her, but I had never asked her to submit to that kind of request before either.

Bad behavior notwithstanding, Tzuri got a gold medal and was evaluated in broken English by the SV Judge & Kormeister Helmut Konig as “promising.”

conformation show

tzuri evaluation

“Did you say that Tzuri came in second? That but for a fit of stubbornness she might have been in first place?”



“How many other dogs were entered in her 6-9 month puppy class?”

“Uh, like… one other dog.”

“So if Tzuri came in second, and there were only two dogs in the event, she received a prize for being last?”

“I prefer to say that she was runner-up and that the other dog came in “next to last.”

🙂 🙂 🙂


🙂 🙂 🙂

5 responses

  1. Tzuri the MAGNIFICENT!! oh what a pup. The first picture looks almost like, Hey Dad…..who is the dude at the other end of my leash? But she’s gorgeous, clearly equal to the medal. And toothy on cue or not, I am in her fan club and she’s made me proud.
    You know, eight months is like what, 6 1/2 month human, who when tested are applauded for keep the wings on in the Christmas pagent. This looks at least like tap dancing up the staircase with Bojangles. Bravo the Tzuri.
    You’ll both be looking on this introduction to the big leagues some day whilst climbing ravine and crevasse searching for the lost hiker she has found in the first ten minutes. Promising? I’ll say.


    March 12, 2014 at 8:27 PM

    • I am indeed proud of her, and at the same time I learned how much more I need to train her. The real diehard dog owners have gone overboard with their dogs, and I have some catching up to do. Although I will admit that first and foremost Tzuri is a companion, not a show dog or even a working dog. Our relationship comes first – which means that I am not above spoiling her at times. 🙂


      March 13, 2014 at 9:44 PM

  2. So funny, oops!! And what a great experience !!


    March 12, 2014 at 9:14 PM

    • Great experience in retrospect but I was certainly nervous at the time. I never really know how she is going to behave. 🙂


      March 13, 2014 at 9:40 PM

  3. Way to go Tzuri!!! 🙂


    March 13, 2014 at 10:42 PM

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in: Logo

You are commenting using your account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )


Connecting to %s