That's how long the local news interview lasted on the six o'clock edition, and three of those precious seconds were focused on the dog.
Belle's first show is part of history now, and we're moving forward. It was a real joy to attend a dog show I have been to almost every year for ten years now as an exhibitor, not a spectator. To show a beautiful, promising dog in the ring was unexpected: in all the years I've attended and watched dog shows I never saw myself owning one of those dogs, but here we are, here she is. And it was a genuine pleasure.
Well, it was raining, but that's to be accepted. It's been raining for months now, it seems. We had a tremendous moral-support group show up, too. Family, friends, even co-workers came to cheer Mrs. Irrelephant and Belle along, and to offer support and pats on the head. Belle adapted very quickly to the noise and confusion, as did Mrs. I., and we even walked away with two ribbons.
I've had a lot of learning to do concerning how exactly a dog show is run and the winners awarded and advanced. If you'd like to learn I'd suggest a search of the AKC site, because I'm not even going to try to describe it, seeing as my own knowledge is still wearinging it's caul. Suffice to say that if you show up for an exhibition and yours is the ONLY dog in it's class you can still be dismissed or simply not awarded anything. The judges are not required to give anything away, and if you don't earn the ribbon you don't GET the ribbon. So it was with some small pride that Belle and Mrs. I won Best Bitch (9-12 months old) and Best of Winners since there were no other dogs competing against us in Regular Class.
We knew our only competition would be fierce, though, going forward. Belle and a four year old Open Class Champion bitch Ksar Majenkir My Fair Lady, "Gwenevere," were the only two Borzoi entered, but we were game, and we were naturally trounced. But, and I'm going to honk our own horns here, we were gracious losers. Gwen was gorgeous, and she was well-shown, and one day perhaps we'll trounce HER. *s* And we were good ambassadors of the breed--we stopped many, many times so people could approach Belle, pet her, and ask questions about the breed and what it was like to keep a 70 pound horse in the house with six cats and a four pound Papilion. Rita taught us that a few friendly words can change a person's direction in life, and we took that lesson to heart.
Piebald is beautiful. Belle is still in what Rita calls "her puppy uglies." Her coat is half adult, half puppy, and half missing, so she looks, as Mrs. I. calls it, "like she's wearing a toupee on her shoulders." But the judge yesterday did compliment Belle on her teeth and her overall presentation, and commended Mrs. I for showing Belle "out of coat." I guess that's a nice way of saying "My gawd she looks piebald but hey, kudos on having the balls to be seen in public with her."
So. Two ribbons to our name, zero points, and another show today at noon, this time against a number of other Borzoi both in and out of Belle's class. If nothing else it'll be interesting, we'll meet some new people, it'll be another good learning experience for all of us, and who knows, maybe we'll win against some other, equally puppy uglies! Pictures and hopefully some video to follow.
Belle, come on, it's time to brush your toupee.