When I started my journey looking for my next agility prospect, I was looking for an oversized sable female sheltie. Donna Colletti of Pinnacle Shelties had a unique litter with color headed whites in it and I followed their growth. All along, Donna was saying this is your puppy, she has the personality you are looking for; I kept saying, “I don't want small, I don't want a tri.”
Lisa Stoddard and Victoria (right)
Even though the package that is Victoria was not what I was looking for, her breeder, Donna, knew this would be a perfect match. No matter what the venue we have attempted, Victoria proves she can do it all and still continues to surprise me in so many wonderful ways! She is a multiple agility champion in AKC and TDAA and has also earned agility titles in USDAA, CPE and UKI. Victoria’s other accomplishments include a breed championship in UKC, her NW1 in nosework and a CAX in lure coursing.
Victoria competing in Lure Coursing (above)
Victoria competing in Nosework (right)
Agility is our sport of choice because I always have a chance to learn and try new things. Victoria and I have the opportunity to meet great people at trials and it has taken us to new and exciting locations. We had the privilege to compete at the 2015 Westminster Master Agility Championship in New York City and to compete in the 2016 AKC National Agility Championship in Tulsa, Oklahoma. I was so proud of how well she handled all of the excitement and situations, especially at Westminster with cameras, noise levels and such large crowds.
Victoria at the 2016 AKC National Agility Championship in Tulsa, OK.
People look at agility as a confidence builder for dogs, but it has been one for me as well. Victoria loves to run agility no matter where, when or the weather. In many ways agility constantly challenges us and helps to build a better bond; it teaches us to work as a team. Even though Victoria enjoys the challenges more than I do, she takes her job seriously while having fun at the same time.
The hardest thing for me about agility is to trust my dog. Because Victoria knows her job I don’t need to overthink and over manage a course. All I need to do is support her, stay connected, trust our agility team and enjoy the ride.