Circles of life and agility with Mark and Karen Laker in 2021

Circles of life and agility with Mark and Karen Laker in 2021

By Mark and Karen Laker

We are off on holiday for two weeks from Friday.

Then sadly Mark’s Dad passed away. Having seen how old age had transformed him so he was no longer able to feed himself, sit up etc. it takes away the edge of grief in that you feel his life was not what he had wanted. With our dogs it is our responsibility to make the decision over quality of life and Mark’s Mum felt it strongly that it seemed unfair for him to continue to deteriorate past the point that a decision would have been made.

A funeral is not great at the best of times but Covid rules made it all more confusing and exhausting. Overall though Mark’s Mum felt his Dad would have felt he’d had a good send off with enough family and friends able to attend, a choir singing his favourite hymns while a CD clip of a brass band he’d enjoyed played.

On the way back from the funeral our van started making strange noises.

One of my customers, Adele had mentioned a few months ago that she’d like to do mixi pairs but needed a small dog partner so I volunteered Pikachu. This gave me the motivation to get her back into agility and enter a show.

With the van not being safe to use and being tired from the funeral the show didn’t look a good prospect.

Adele offered me a lift so at 5:45am we fixed a crate in the back of her car and loaded up with Lucy, Oscar, Pikachu and Chic we set off.

This was my first real show back

It was great to see so many friends, the weather held up, the organisation was good and the courses were fun.

The pairs course worked well for Pikachu but not so well for Lucy. But for our first time competing together it wasn’t a bad performance.

Meanwhile I had felt out of sorts about being in grade two with my young BC. Partly because having had successive dogs winning up to champ for many years now it seems unfair on the grade two dogs to have to compete against experienced handlers and partly because I had not paid attention to this rule when it came out which meant staying in it longer than necessary. I had not appreciated that dogs needed an agility win and for her first season I only competed in jumping classes.

I totally understand that the sport is called agility and so potentially if a dog can not do all the equipment it should not progress but over the years I had enjoyed allowing my dogs to get used to the competition environment without the extra pressure that contact criteria inevitably brings. Chic was no exception. She gained confidence in 2019 resulting in two jumping wins and was going to be ready for agility courses in 2020!

Personally I did not feel joy in going to any ‘covid’ shows so here we were in 2021 still in grade two.

People talk about their old, experienced dogs as being their comfy slippers. Chic is that already or maybe the best fitting running shoes you can get. Either way as soon as I left her on the start line and turned to look at her I felt ready to attack the super course that had been set. It didn’t matter what day it was yet alone what grade – we were there to accomplish our best run. Old habits kicked in, the on/off training didn’t seem problematic and we trusted to what we had done rather than worried about what hadn’t and we went clear.

As it’s a while until our next show it means next time we compete she’ll be in grade three. I can take a few shows to find our feet, work out what we need to get better at and have fun perfecting those skills ready for next year.

I’ve recently reread Write it Down Make it Happen and some strange things have happened that I forgot I’d written down e.g. Chic winning into grade three and getting a red van – but that’s a whole other blog.


Thank you

Mark and Karen Laker

www.agility1st.co.uk/

Nero, Nala, Kai and Ted achieve success this season through a difficult year

By Chelsea-Anne Lee

Thanks again to Ceri and the team for their sponsorship over the past race season. Admittedly like most it hasn’t been as action packed as we liked. However, of the events we went to we managed the following.

  • 1st place DR4O at NATB October 2020 with Nero, Nala and Kai
  • 1st place DR4O at NATB December 2020 with Nero, Nala and Kai
  • 2nd place Checkendon Challenge Team Event with Nero and Ted
  • 3rd place Checkendon Challenge Bikejor with Nala
  • Top 5 canicrosser at the Trail Events Company Exmoor Half Marathon with Nero
  • 1st place season finisher at Newnham Bark 2 Dog Rig Series with Kai and Nala
  • 3rd place season finisher at Newnham Bark Bikejor Series with Nero

As well as some agility top 3 placings for Kai at some UKA and independent shows. 

In the last couple of months we have also welcomed another new rescue to our team, a failed working Kelpie called Wally. Although no good on sheep we are hoping that he will thrive having a job competing in various dog sports with the other rescues over next season.

Many of our clients are first time owners and are very receptive to CSJ food and nutrition advice, as well as the CSJ welcome puppy packs.

Thanks again for your ongoing generosity, especially during this crazy past year.

Chelsea

Find out more about Chelsea-Ann Lee’s dog training business: www.canisconcept.co.uk

CSJ’s pure Salmon Oil – world class!

CSJ’s pure Salmon Oil – world class!

Press release – 24.2.21

Salmon oil is a great supplement for all dogs and cats but not all oils are the same.

Most companies tend to buy in their oil which has been heat extracted and separated by a centrifuge – which can ‘damage’ the product, but not CSJ!

Their highly successful Salmon Oil is unique in that it is cold pressed – so preserving the important unsaturated fatty acids, which can be damaged by other methods of manufacture.

Continuously committed to providing only the best CSJ did exhaustive research in 2012 to source a supplier and eventually found the only company to manufacture salmon oil in this manner.

100% pure from freshly caught Norwegian Salmon then cold pressed within 24 hours CSJ Salmon Oil is highly beneficial by strengthening the immune system, increasing fertility, helping skin and coat and aiding mobility whilst reducing the risk of heart disease.

Now used for many years by successful dog handlers and owners in all fields of canine activity CSJ Salmon Oil has proven to be in a class of its own.

For more on CSJ products visit www.csjk9.com

Or call: 01745 710470

Follow CSJ winners on Facebook: https://facebook.com/specialistcaninefeeds/

Twitter: @CSJDogFood

Instagram: @CSJDog_Food

YouTube: CSJ Specialist Canine Feeds

Are you a dog food snob?

By Ceri Rundle

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You know the ones – the ‘magpie’ people who stand in front of the shelves and pick up the shiniest packs.

No, they don’t bother to read the ingredients or check the nutrients inside. They just grab the glossiest packs with the brightest pictures or the feeds they’ve seen on expensive ads. After all, it’s easy to fall for fancy packaging and think that choosing the most costly food shows you’re giving your dog the ‘best’.

All these ‘magpie’ people are doing is demonstrating that they don’t really understand the dog they love.  Branding is powerful and recognition of a highly advertised logo can unfairly influence your opinion.

Do your research properly

A few years ago, I spoke to a dog owner, whose dog had experienced regular digestive upsets. So, after discussing the dog’s dietary history I sent her samples of the foods that I thought might solve the problem and suit her dog.  Encased in plain bags, all evidence of the name, ingredients and price of the sample foods were hidden. I took care not to tell the dog owner how much each of the foods cost, until after her dog had tried them.  I then waited for her to give me some proper feedback as experience showed me that the price of the food could influence her choice to purchase.

Sometimes cheap can win all the prizes

p_champ_mImagine when it turned out that Champ! Adult was loved by the dog and had sorted the digestive problem out, but was surprisingly reasonably priced. Several owners that I did this ‘blind’ testing on actually admitted  that they wouldn’t have chosen  Champ! Adult, if they had known how ‘cheap’ it was – especially if they’d been paying a lot more money for foods that had possibly caused a digestive upset in the first place.

When you’re testing dog food, anonymity is vital

If you saw what you perceived to be a ‘cheap’ brand, you might not even let your precious dog sully its lips with it. And yet that food might be the one that suits and your dog loves the best.

Basic packaging keeps our prices low

It’s always been part of our CSJ ethos to keep the packaging simple – because then we can keep prices low too.

We regularly review the environmental impact of the feed packaging and need packaging that can keep food fresh during storage and protect from outside elements. Currently the best solution is still recyclable plastic, but we’re always looking for better answers – while keeping prices down.

Moral of the story

flat,1000x1000,075,f.u2If your dog isn’t happy on the food you’re giving, check with our nutrition expert Nicki.  Don’t go on our online shop and just choose the most expensive.

Just fill out the short form on our website to give Nicki information about your dog and she’ll give you an individual recommendation of exactly what feeds, treats, supplements and herbs suit your dog the best and she’ll arrange for food samples to be sent out.

The proof of the pudding is in the eating

It’s what sets us apart from the competition. We don’t spend money on pricy packaging, ads or sales people. We see all the time that other brands just build these costs into the ever increasing  retail price for the customer.

We prefer to have an expert nutritionist on board who can give professional free health advice, to ensure that every dog has the right food for its individual digestive system. We’re all different and so are our dogs. So, don’t be a ‘magpie’ person, be someone who cares.

Make a nutrition enquiry: https://www.csjk9.com/contact-nutrition.asp

Skye is now on the herbs and your food ‘No Grainer’

By Ruth Smith

 

Problem

We have tried all sorts… All I have given up on after Skye seem to be in distress with very bad tummy crap (its like something bites her) with end result always being like her tummy boils over and a stools the just bubbles out. 

She will them go back to just soft stools with another toxic stool the next day.

I seem to be a protein issue as all veg (and nuts she was happy to eat the chestnut that fell from our tree) is fine but if we give her the smallest piece on cheese, chicken, caned tuna or salmon she has a reaction.

Solution – after Ruth talked to our Nutrition Adviser, Nicki

Skye is now on the herbs and your food No Grainer! I have found a stockiest not far from me where I picked up a bag of food from the other Sunday.

We have now been on the No Grainer! for two weeks slowly introduce it with no ill affect.  

Skye stools are sold and the best they have ever been and they don’t smell, she has no pain or discomfit.  

She is just a happy little dog now and loves your food.

I never thought I would get her right and that it was something that I would just have to live with but not any more.

I can not say how happy I am with your product and your services. You have been so helpful and fantastic. 

 

Contact Nicki

If you have any dog nutrition queries, please ask Nicki, our Nutrition Adviser. You can contact her by filling out the short form here: http://www.csjk9.com/contact-nutrition.asp