What a lovely weekend in Minnesota! The warm temperatures are of great concern, as is the continued drought, but because there is nothing we can do about it (other than worry) we might as well enjoy the incredible weather and hope for the best. Temperatures in the 70s and 80s are about 40 degrees above normal, and we desperately need rain., There is plenty of moisture in the air, too much in fact, but it is not falling as rain, just sitting there making it humid. So strange.
Laurie arrived from Virginia on Thursday, bringing Penny and Amery. Penny was just along for the ride, but her daughter Amery arrived to get ready for the National. We hadn't seen her since she left for Virginia with Laurie last fall, and we were absolutely delighted with how she is developing. We had a Brown Bitch Party at Jess's, with Penny, Amery, Jess's Meribel, their sister Gemma, and my Letty who is not a littermate, but actually a half-sister to Penny, but similar in age to Amery, Meribel & Gemma.
Amery went as the "pick" bitch, but as in so many litters there is often more than one pick. Gemma went to a "watch home" with Heather, because we were not sure how her spotting would turn out. She was a colorful pup with a lot of bone and substance. When I last saw her at 4 months I thought we would just write her off and let Heather spay her, but when we saw her on Saturday everyone agreed that Gemma should have a show career as she very striking and sound, and so exotic she just takes my breath away.
Jess's Meribel stayed with them because they really needed a puppy to take their minds off the health issues of one of their Shepherds. As a first time breeder, Don had grown very attached to the pups and really NEEDED one of the pups to stay. Meribel was not the star of the litter but was a lovely pup with a great personality, and like Gemma has turned out better than we had anticipated.
Such fun! Three gorgeous liver girls from one litter, plus their handsome brother down in Texas. We considered dozens of dogs when we were trying to decide how to breed Penny and finally remembered Cruise. When I first thought of him, we were not even sure if he was still siring pups as we had not seen him in many years, but a call to his owner confirmed that he was still available, and had all appropriate health testing. Point for point he had the things we wanted in a husband for Penny, and his pedigree matched up nicely with some similar ancestors (that's called linebreeding) and many dogs that we knew. And the rest, as they say, is history. More pictures tomorrow.