Saturday, July 30, 2011


Kata's descendant: - Harpa

This photo is about as perfect as you could find! An amazing dog in an amazing spot. She is wonderful!

If you wish to contact me:


I removed the ability to comment on my posts after some brain-dead idiot %$#@* posted a really nasty comment on a photo I posted with permission from the owner and breeder.

The photo was of a purebred registered Icelandic Sheepdog "teenager" from purebred registered Icelandic Sheepdog parents and was not related to any of my dogs. He was at that gangly awkward age when some of our dogs don't look their best. He is now a gorgeous adult.

The comment was nasty and untrue and meant to hurt me. How do you respond to ignorant, small-minded evil people who comment anonymously?

I removed the comment before the person who owns that dog saw what was said. (The person, incidentally, is a member of the ISAA in excellent standing and would have been shocked at what one of her friends said.)

Friday, July 29, 2011

Kersins Kata NA, NAJ, OA, OAJ

Another new AKC title this weekend.

In the first photo she looks tired and proud. The second one she looks a tad possessive, doesn't she?

Kata finished her American Kennel Club Open Standard Agility title today with yet another perfect score and another first place. The ribbons in the photo are all agility ribbons.

She has now earned her Canine Good Citizen award, her Companion Dog title, her Rally Novice, Rally Advanced, Rally Excellent, Novice Standard, Novice Jumpers, Open Standard and Open Jumpers titles. She is the "It Girl". She has "it".

Click on photos to enlarge them.

We had honestly planned on not going further than Open. We are both, after all, a bit older than most competitors. Maybe we will have to change our minds. What do you think?

Sunday, July 24, 2011

Kersins Kata - CGC, CD, TDI, RN, RA, RE, NA, NAJ, OAJ

Kata earned her third leg for her AKC Open Jumpers with Weaves Agility title this weekend. She qualified in three out of four events, two Open Jumpers and one Open Standard, and finished first in those three. She now has two of the three required legs to get her AKC Open Standard Agility title.

Now it's time for you to play, "Where's Kata".

Click on photo once or twice to enlarge it.

Saturday, July 23, 2011

Heat Wave

Click once or twice on photos to enlarge them. (Double Hemerocallis, Platycodon, water poppy and water lettuce, Helianthemum - perennial sunflower, Coleus and red Nasturtiums)

What's the song? "We're having a heat wave, a tropical heat wave. The temperature's rising, it isn't surprising, we certainly can, can-can."

Kata earned her second leg with a score of 100 for her Open Jumpers title yesterday. My good friend Jerry and my favorite Golden, Olive, finished two titles yesterday: - Novice Jumpers and Novice Standard. Olive is a real agility dog. She loves agility.

Tuesday, July 19, 2011

My Week


I consider myself retired because I no longer get paid cash money for what I do. I am on Social Security and Blue Cross/Blue Shield & Medicare. I worked (for pay) from the time I was 13 or 14 and paid in to SS for the entire time until I officially retired. Although I no longer get paid for what I do, I think I am still very active. I am older than Baby Boomers but younger than many of my friends - which, all things considered, is not a great thing. It may be nice to be one of the "kids" in your crowd, but long term it's not exactly smart.

I watch and can relate to "Men of a Certain Age" but consider them kind of young. I have, as they say, 'been there and done that'.

People who try to phone me always seem to have trouble knowing when I'm available. Although it's not a mystery, they just can't remember when I'm home. (Sometimes I think it's because they don't really care but in reality, I suppose, maybe it's because I am hard to 'find'.)

On Mondays with my buddies, Steve, Joe and Jerry in the OFC (Old Farts Club)I help teach a Fundamental of Obedience and Rally class at our AKC obedience club. We, the instructors, all take our own dogs to the building, arrive about an hour before class starts and work ourselves and our dogs in areas where we need more practice. Kria, Pila and Kata work on agility equipment. Virtually always before we can work our dogs, we have to clean the building from the excesses of the weekend. We vacuum often having all three vacuums going at the same time, set up gating, put empty water and pop (soda) bottles in the recycle bin, replace empty paper towels and toilet paper rolls in the bathrooms,etc. Our class is usually around 5-7 students and with four instructors and seven students they get a lot of attention, both individual and group; we would probably be a bit intimidating if we weren't such nice guys.

Tuesdays are grooming days and one of my dogs goes to the 'Doggy Style" doggy beauty parlor in nearby Clawson. Kata is not so fond of going but the others love it; they can be the center of attention, of course.

Wednesdays I arrive early with my three dogs and clean up one ring; we can have two or three rings in our building depending on the size of the rings. Michelle and I set up the puppy agility equipment in the clean ring and get ready for Puppy class. If I have time left over before class, I work/play with my dogs. Usually there is not much time left.

After Michelle and I have started working with the Puppy class students and their pups, Jerry and Steve come in with their dogs to work with them.

We start Puppy class with about 15 minutes of agility work - nothing that would harm their growing skeletons - and, after a short potty break outside, continue with basic obedience practice followed by a a few minutes of supervised puppy socialization, usually on leash.

The puppies and their handlers are really fun to work with because you have clean slates with them. Most new owners don't realize how much their little pups can learn. It's great to see them, not just the pups but the students as well, make progress.

While Michelle and I are teaching handlers/puppies in one ring, Jerry starts to set up adult agility equipment in the other ring for our 'Fun with Agility' class which he and I teach after Puppy class. We try to introduce the students and their dogs to all the agility equipment during the course of class and practice some moves with the idea of learning but more importantly, having some fun while doing so.

After Puppy class while we are doing Fun with Agility, Steve is working with Marcella teaching a 'Beginner' class which is the next class puppies go to after they are six months old. Some dogs in that class are older and have had no previous training so it can be challenging.

Marcella and Steve also teach an AKC CGC (Canine Good Citizen) class. When those dogs and their handlers graduate they are ready to take the AKC CGC test which I give. Steve and Marcella are great instructors and most student/dog teams that graduate from their class also qualify for the CGC award.

Wednesday evenings Kata and Pila take agility classes on the one night they are offered by our club. Kata is in the Advanced Agility class and Pila is currently in the Beginner Agility class. It takes me more than a year working with my dogs to be ready to enter agility trials at the Novice level. I think we should have more agility classes because they are so popular but what do I know.

Wednesdays wear me out! I arrive at the building around 8:15 a.m and leave for the night at around 8:45 p.m. (I do go home for lunch.)

Our club sponsors two AKC agility trials every year. We also sponsor two AKC obedience and rally trials.

On Thursdays I take a Rally class to get me and Bear ready to enter a rally trial. He has his RN (Rally Novice) title which is done on leash. However, he needs more practice to get advanced and excellent titles which are done off leash so you need more control over you dog. He is in terror of men who have a certain 'look'. I am trying to re-condition him but at six years old I don't know if I will be able to stifle his fears. He loves virtually everyone including most men. (It's just a certain 'look' that some men have that causes him to cringe and try to run away. I wonder why that is.) At one Novice trial, we had a wonderful judge who, through no fault of his own, had that look; we barely made it through the course. Without the compassion and understanding of that judge who recognized the problem we would have NQ'd.

If I enter trials, especially agility trials, I do so for Fridays and Sundays. Going to a trial two days or three days in a row is just too hard now.

Kata is entered this Friday and Sunday in an agility trial Dexter, Michigan. I only go to indoor trials and the building must be air conditioned. Kata and I were in really bad shape after a recent trial in a sports building that did not have AC. We were seriously dehydrated.

When I add my gardening and household stuff to what I do with my dogs, I am quite busy. All the members of the OFC say these are the best years of their lives. I agree.

Now it's time to listen to the news and get ready to go to Doggy Style.

Monday, July 18, 2011

Sultry July day

I'm waiting to hear if the air conditioner in our building is fixed before I leave for class this morning.

Sunday, July 17, 2011

Dogs are Amazing

I couldn't resist this shot of Finn, the adult Newfie, and Sofie, the Icie puppy. (She's alive but exhausted.)

This is always worth a second and third read.

(You may have to copy and paste this into your browser.)

Saturday, July 16, 2011

Vinlands Kani/Yankee/Tryggur

My Icelandic Sheepdog Kani aka Yankee or Tryggur, son of Korpur and Pila, was given back to me near the end of this week. He is from Korpur's last litter. His former owner said the fit wasn't quite right for her home. However, so far he seems to have adapted well in my home. I'm crossing my fingers. Please send positive thoughts my way.

I have been calling him "Tryggur" for the time being. He seems to respond nicely to the new name, perhaps it's because it starts with a "hard" sound. I have always loved that old fashioned Icelandic name and my Tryggur is a great young male. The name fits him perfectly.

He was born on April 15, 2010, my Aunt Kit's birthday, is fully registered in the AKC (DN27524102), the UKC (P641-586), and the CKC (1110387), and has 6 points including one major towards his AKC championship. A couple of friends have offered to finish him. I am thinking very seriously of taking them up on their offer. I have always preferred the action events like obedience, herding, rally and agility but there's something to be said for conformation.

We recently learned how conformation is done and graded in Europe and I think their way of evaluating their dogs makes great good common sense. The judges spend a great deal of time with each dog noting their good qualities and the qualities that need work. Matching up dogs so that one dog's weaker points are matched to a corresponding mate with stronger points to improve the weaker ones and vice versa makes sense, at least to me. Do you understand what I'm saying? I wish we had something like that over here.

I have not decided what is to be done with Tryggur. I would prefer not to adopt him back into our home but I am beginning to bond with him; it might become hard to give him up. I may have his hips checked soon to see what his scores are. I think that may help me decide our future.

I know he carries one b-gene for chocolate-brown, has one at-gene for tricolor, an Ay-gene for tan shades, has great strong double dews on his rear feet that are almost on the ground (take a good look at his right rear foot in the second photo), a nice tail and tail-set, an excellent top-line, good straight forward facing feet, almond-shaped dark eyes, great ears, a nice stop, good strong bones in his legs and feet, long fur, etc. At eight generations he has 120 ancestors and an Inbreeding Coefficient score of 0.488281%; at seven generations there are 63 ancestors and the IC score is 0%; at six generations 31 ancestors and 0%; and at five generation it is 15 and 0%. He carries lots of diversity which would make him an excellent match for virtually any female Icelandic here in North America. I am not an expert by any stretch of anyone's imagination but I do recognize the good points in my dogs - and the bad ones too.

In short, he is Korpur's son and then some! This guy is a serious contender!!!

I have been thinking that it's time to relax; time to focus on performance events. Then along comes Tryggur and I start daydreaming. - - - - - I literally do not know what to do. I'm praying for a miracle.

Friday, July 15, 2011

Binky and her son Korpur

Binky, Pineridgeicelandics Silfra - top, is a beautiful eleven year old Icelandic Sheepdog and mother to my own Alaskastadirs Korpur.

I just heard from Ginny and Ben in Alaska. I had written to ask about Korpur's mom, Binky. She turned eleven on her last birthday March 21, 2011 and is doing well.

Binky's maternal grandmother was "Huld" (IS02811/93).

My own Huld's great-grandmother was the same Huld - Helga let me choose my Huld's name and I chose it because of one gorgeous photo I had seen of that ancestral Huld.

My Kersins Huld was the first Icelandic Sheepdog in Michigan and was the only one until Kersins Kata came a year later.

Huld was also the first Icelandic Sheepdog in North America to earn her AKC Companion Dog obedience title. Kata was the second. Hey, everyone else brags, I need to also! I have many obedience and agility titles on my dogs now. When I have time I will count them. Icelandic Sheepdogs are so intelligent and tractable.

Korpur is a handsome dog; I had forgotten how gorgeous his own mother Binky is. Now I know for sure where he got his good looks. It doesn't really need to be said, but his coloring is indeed acceptable to the AKC and the home country. The standard always said it was OK. Now an acknowledged expert brought into this country for evaluations and training has agreed.

I am forever indebted to Ginny and Ben for the amazing dog they let me have from Alaska. Thank you!!

Monday, July 11, 2011

7/11/11 (d)

Always faithful, always nearby. In heat, sun, rain, snow, sleet, thunderstorms - no, they don't quake - they ache to get out in them.

They enrich my life beyond measure. My best friends.

7/11/11 (c)

This has been an absolutely perfect day to view the garden, which is always a work in progress.

Gardens always are evolving. That's part of the fun.

Click once or twice on photos to enlarge them.

7/11/11 (b)

Click once or twice on photos to enlarge them.

I have started several of my Hostas from seeds that I've collected. It's always fun to see what they grow into. I've also produced Peonies from seeds and I like the plants better than some named varieties I've bought. David and Carolyn also grow their astilbes from seed and get lots of new varieties. I need to try that next!

I am so grateful for my AKC all breed (and mixed breed) Obedience, Rally and Agility club. I know I've mentioned Sportsmen's before. We listen to one another and work together. We like each other!!

I wish from the bottom of my soul that another group I belong to could do the same. Their style is dictatorial and they seem to operate using fear, intimidation, gossip, slander and bullying - in my personal opinion.

7/11/11 (a)


We've had a heat wave lately but today came a light rain and a break, albeit a short one,in the weather.

So we went out in the yard to enjoy some new path-work from the deck and from my bedroom, aka, euphemistically, the entertainment room! ;o)

Just to be clear, that puny little "fence" does not keep the dogs out of the garden. The yard is theirs and they allow me to share it. All of my plants have proven themselves to be dog-tolerant. The dog in-tolerant plants are extinct!! That's one of my rules: - You have to be tough to survive in this yard. The screen over the pond in a later photo is also fairly ineffective. Toads, frogs, damselflies, dragonflies, and, of course, the dogs all come and go at will. I keep fresh water in the dog bowl but they all prefer the flavor of the pond water and the water in trays under the bonsai. It just tastes better they say. They also enjoy the fish food when I feed my goldfish - yup, no koi.

Friday, July 8, 2011


- - - are hard for me - - - -

When I was a boy one of my favorite books was Clementina the Flying Pig. I still have it and I still think it's a fascinating flight of fancy.

Years ago I read Fanny Flagg's Fried Green Tomatoes. I now have a signed copy and just re-read it - priceless. Of course I saw the movie when it came out years ago and I should rent it or buy the DVD but it's an amazing book!! A must read.

Wednesday, July 6, 2011

Brana - Nan and Bob

In addition to herding and agility, now Vinlands Brana joins other Icelandic Sheepdogs as a therapy dog. She has made her final evaluation visit for Pet Therapy and is now a certified therapy dog with Sunshine friends.

Nan and Bob can take her for unsupervised visits to nursing homes, elementary schools and libraries. She did a great job on her evaluation visits and her human companions are proud of the way she has learned another new job that they can participate in with her.

Our dogs are much happier when they are doing something - so are we!! Less kvetching, more joy!

Here's a photo of Brana with a few of her agility ribbons and some other photos of her therapy visits.

Tuesday, July 5, 2011


Totty and I went to my favorite brunch restaurant today for a quiet sit-stay. Frittata should be cloned.

The food is extraordinary; the ambiance inside or outside is exceptional.

- ESPECIALLY THE FIRST ONE - and then use the back arrow to return to the post. You can almost feel the velvet texture of the Moonflower (Datura) leaves.