Shelties Online: The Weekly Online Magazine for Lovers of the Breed

2016 Performance Week: Hoover's Journey

By Rusty Cromer & Debbie Hull (breeders)


OTCH Merlyn Hullston Clean Sweep UDX 3 OM5 GO

The Journey of Ginny Schultz and "Hoover" began on the day that she came to Rusty’s home to conduct the Volhard Puppy Aptitude Test on one of our litters with no thought of getting a puppy. She became completely entranced with our pick-of-the-litter puppy. She really couldn't resist the lively pup that wouldn't stop licking her hands as well as being a star in coming when called and following. He also continued to retrieve one of the test items, a wadded up ball of paper. Ginny advised us that Shelties don't often retrieve during the puppy test, so she knew he was going to be fun and just what she needed. After the test they played fetch and that 49-day-old puppy couldn't get enough.

Hoover healing as a puppy

Ginny asked about the possibility of acquiring him even though she already had three Shelties at home, two of which were actively competing in Obedience. She agreed to keep him in tact so that we could show him in breed, so we pronounced it a “done deal.”

Ginny picked up Hoover after he received his puppy shots and they started training immediately. He went to work with her daily so they could work on heel position on the way to the rest rooms which were about the distance of a good heeling pattern in Novice. They worked on turns, finding heel position, coming when called, retrieving, hand signals and finding things hidden under paper cups.

Ginny and Hoover

Hoover was shown in Breed and achieved some minor points. As he matured, he
discovered girls and all of Ginny’s hard work became second place on his agenda. All of her patient, careful training was no match for the raging hormones at that stage of his life. He had gotten his CD, CDX and UD all within the year that he turned three.

Rusty showing Hoover in conformation

Hoover sired one litter, producing very pretty and highly achieving puppies. One has performance titles and two are pointed.

By this time, Rusty and I felt that neutering him would help Ginny achieve her obedience goals. From that point, it took only two years of showing lightly (just local, no more than two weekends a month) to obtain his OTCH. Hoover loves to show so they still compete for fun. Their journey has been comical and challenging at times but it’s been a pleasure to be along for the trip.

Thank you Ginny and Hoover, we’re so very proud of you.

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