Page 172 - ShowSight - April 2020
P. 172

                I teach college and am running classes and conducting admin- istrative business largely from home. I already used Zoom a lot in my work, but it’s been an adjustment to hold class with 70+ students hoping the Internet connection keeps itself together! I have can- celled three trips abroad, but I do not expect to have any long-term changes of plan. Nevertheless, I am very aware that my situation is a luxury and many in our community do not have stable options.
All my bitches are in heat! I’m going ahead with at least one breeding I had been putting off. The tough call is that our national got cancelled and is being rescheduled for August. If I breed my bitch special, will she still look good for the national? Will shows scheduled for August even take place? I think at times like these it’s important to think of the future of the breed. The genetic contribu- tion she can make far outweighs a BISS, but still she looks so good right now!
In response to your text, I continue to breed French Bulldogs and find in these last two weeks, even amid the coronavirus pan- demic, that demand for the French Bulldog puppies of my latest litter is high: We sold the last one! And, the forever homes told me that in these uncertain times, the addition of a puppy to their fam- ily was an expression of hope and confidence in our survival of this strange crisis, and that their family was much comforted by the love of their new canine member.
How am I keeping busy? My days are pretty much as they were without planning a calendar of shows. I co-own a wonderful dog and my co-owner and I are staying ready to compete when things start up again.
I am not on house arrest, but I am nearly in my regular life. I am self-employed, live in the country and now it is time to put in the garden. But I find people calling me asking how to do this, or what is the best way to endure such and such. My favorite one is I just tell people, “Make friends with a deplorable, you might need them!”
This is the best part. A couple of years ago I put together an online course for homeschooled kids to learn art. It took two years to design it, write it and produce it so that anyone age ten and older (got a couple of 80-year-olds fiddling with it) can learn which tools and techniques they need to draw and paint. I was going to make tons of money, I thought, but marketing is always the bogey and all I got was crickets. But I have kept it up there, at no small expense, just thinking it should not be wasted. So it is now free and you just click on the link from my regular website and hit “enter”—it is all there. Easy to understand, practical and you need very few supplies to start. You can get more complicated as you go. Kids will find that many of the skills they can acquire with this will help them in all
other subjects! As I said, it is free at Hope to see ya’ll at a dog show before too long!
I have a litter of four-week-old Pembroke Welsh Corgi puppies, so that is a big job. And, since I am a masochist, I also have a five- month-old Sussex Spaniel puppy that I got two weeks before my Corgi puppies were born. So am I busy? You betcha! I wouldn’t be going to any shows for at least a few more weeks anyway.
My typical day involves working at a vet clinic three mornings a week. Then I come home and play with my two adult Pembrokes, the baby puppies and their mother, and the Spaniel puppy (in need of housebreaking). In nice weather, the Sussex and one of the Pems get a mile walk. Comb out the Sussex—his ear fringes are always full of something! Grind puppy food and feed baby puppies (three times per day). Clean puppy area, do dog laundry, rinse and repeat.
I signed the Sussex up for handling class, but it’s been cancelled, so we spend time daily on the grooming table. Grooming, plus learning to stand for exam and check mouth. Good luck with that!
There’s no difference on weekends, except I dremel nails, clean teeth, and comb out the three adult Pembrokes. Baths as needed.
There’s been plenty of training at home! Not as good as being out and about, but it’s what is available. I try to take the Sussex with me when I do go out. He needs the exposure to people and the world in general.
I had already bred my Pem girl when the COVID-19 started, but it wouldn’t have mattered anyway. All the puppies were sold before they were born.
Without dog shows to attend, how am I keeping busy? More time for puppy socializing and training, kennel makeover, re-orga- nize my AKC records and a little gardening. Definitely catching up on Netflix. (Who knew there was so much good stuff to watch?) I have to say, my house is remarkably clean. Maybe for the first time in 20 years, the laundry is 100% done, including being folded and put away.
I definitely was on two weeks house arrest after coming home from Crufts as I had bronchitis. I am far more aware of people close to me, not touching my face and washing my hands about 20 times a day. We spray our mail and packages with Lysol before touching. Along with wearing gloves now when at the store, getting gas, etc. I’ve got a 90 day supply of bleach, Odo-Ban and dog food.
Training is at a far higher level than ever before here—captive audience. I have a couple of breedings I want to do and if the girls oblige me and come into season, yes, we are going ahead. Saying this, I am blessed with a remarkable vet who works with me (we are about 99% c-section), without her I would not be able to continue moving forward.

   170   171   172   173   174