Renee & Spike AG CH 500
I had only been trailing a year or so with my sister Naomi's (at this time I did not own a dog of my own) little Jack Russell X Pom Max when Naomi began caring for an 8 week old Spike ¾ Border Collie ¼ Kelpie for a friend who had rescued him from a vet clinic where she worked at because the farmer who bred them was having trouble re-homing them. Naomi’s friend could not resist him because of his colour even though she already had 4 dogs at home. So she asked Naomi (who also already had 4 dogs) if she would look after Spike until she could talk her husband into her getting another dog.
Of course the husband said NO! But because Naomi had been caring for Spike for a month now she was attached and decided to keep him.
At this stage Spike did not have a name and at the time my nephew Travis (Naomi’s Son) and I were madly into watching the TV show Buffy the Vampire Slayer. Our favourite character William the Bloody who gained his nickname Spike because he tortured his victims with railroad spikes! He was a bad ass vamp but really a big softy on the inside. (Exactly like my Spike)
So at this point my sister Naomi was living on a farm 25 minutes away from Morwell where I live, so every weekend I would drive out to the farm and pick Spike up for training and trialing. I remember my sister Naomi saying to me “you might as well just take him he’s really your dog anyway and I don’t think he likes me or listens to me, he just waits by the gate till Friday till you get here” this went on for 2 years. By this time my dad had grown attached to Spike and said since he is so well behaved (not going thru the terrible puppy stage anymore) that he could live with us. That's when our Trialing career really began.
Spike is an amazing once in a lifetime dog. From a young age he proved nothing was too hard or anything I asked of him be it tracking, obedience, dance, and agility, climbing a tree with me, or climbing a ladder and coming down the slide with me, he excelled at it. And with me only being young, really didn’t know what I was doing so Spike never got any foundation training, it was, here's an agility course, run it!
So Spike learnt to do agility by just doing it over and over and over. Our local dog club was great being really supportive and encouraging with obedience and tracking, but in the area of agility they didn’t have a lot of people interested, there were just a handful of us.
So I would go to trials and watch others and learn, then come back and try to teach Spike what we had seen.
By the time we made it to Masters Spike was 4 LOL. Everyone in Masters was really helpful ESPECIALLY GREG with helping me walk courses and teaching things. We kept plugging along this way with very little training and Spike managed to get his Masters titles. Agility taking a lot longer than jumping because training on my own I was never able to teach him to weave properly. Spike was really starting to do well. He became very constant all of a sudden. We never WON Masters but usually came home with 5 out 8 passes.
So at the start of 2012 I decided to join K9 Agility Club and drive an hour each way for training every week. I also decided to go to the Nationals in NSW where Spike surprised me in making the ADO and JDO finals and running clear in JDO to finish 7th overall. We were having a great year and to top it off Spike qualified for 2012 Top Dog Agility and won it. I still can’t believe it but it was his consistency that got him there so that’s the way I ran it, it wasn’t fast but it was clear.
Then 6 months after winning Top Dog he got his AG CH 500 at a local trial in Bairnsdale. Being Mr Consistent and in the 500 height it took 87 pass cards! To this day Spike still saves my bum, I’ll steer him in the wrong direction he will give me one big Woof and go the right way. He is very forgiving too.
Spike still continues to amaze me now at the age of 7 he is the best he has ever been in all the sports he does. I find myself asking what now?
I am constantly trying to think of new tricks to teach him. One of my favourite tricks is him retrieving me a can of coke.
Although he has his issues (other dogs) I wouldn’t have him any other way, I just LOVE him. Although he looks and seems tough and scary that’s only his fear of other dogs. On the inside he is a big old cuddly mamma’s boy who loves people and any kind of attention!
We are now trying to complete all our masters games titles. We are going to get his TSD titles and also working on his Dancing Champion titles, messing around with UD and doing Rally! I still laugh when I hear my local club instructor say to me “you can’t do too many things at once you’ll burn that dog out“, any other dog maybe but not my Spike as long as he is by my side and he has a job he is happy.
Video of the
AG CH run at Bairnsdale on Saturday 2nd March 2013