Two of the clubs we belong to awarded Thunder and Storm plaques to commemorate their new titles.  It is really a nice thing these clubs do for their members.  The larger plaques are from Michigan Flyways Retriever Club for their Senior Hunter Titles. Every member who has earned a field title the previous season was eligible for a plaque.   These plaques have a spot to put a photo.  I just haven’t ordered the pictures yet.  🙂  The smaller plaque is from St. Clair Flats Hunting Retriever Club.  Thunder and Storm received a certificate for their Started titles, but Thunder received this nice plaque for his Seasoned Title.

Award Plaques

And now to follow-up on some questions and comments:

thatjenk asked about Freighter and Thunder’s color and whether Freighter was more reddish than Thunder and if he would lighter up as he matured.  Chessie coloring is always a shade of brown from light browns (dead grass), to faded brown (ash or tan), to dark brown.  A very good explanation on Chessie coloring with pictures is here.

Storm is more of a red-brown.  In sunlight you can see shades of red in her coat.  Maybe you can see it in this picture?

Storm (picture thanks to Storm's breeders Gary and Dorene Irish)

Thunder is a medium brown, but he carries the dilute brown gene which gives a silvering to his coat.  We know he carries the dilute brown gene because when he was bred to an ash/tan dog some of the puppies were ash/tan.  The dilute gene is the same which causes graying of the brown in Weimaraners and fawn in Dobermans.  (Source Chessie Info)  Thunder’s coat can look brown/silver in some light and just medium brown in other light.  Maybe you can see the silver in his coat in this picture.  It was taken with a really good camera.

Thunder (picture thanks to Judy)

This brings us to Freighter.  He was a darkish brown when he was born.  However, as he is growing and his coat is changing to his adult coat, there are some lighter areas.  It could just be the changing of his coat.  Chessie coats can lighten just before they are going to shed them.  Or it could be that he may have some lighter areas in his coat.  That is possible because his mother was tan and his father was a lighter brown.  I guess we will have to wait and see.  This is a picture from yesterday.  It was almost too bright outside for pictures.  I was trying to show how his tail and back-end have some lighter fur mixed in.  If you look close, you might see it.


This is a picture from last Saturday in more muted light.  You can see that he is just a brown without the silvering (yet) and no red like Storm.


On yesterday’s post, Anna asked whether we have ever seen a young dog pick up more than one bumper at a time from the piles.  The answer is yes, all of the time.  Usually our trainer doesn’t correct for this.  His thinking is that when the dog is running a test, there is only ever going to be one duck out in the field so there will be no option to pick up multiples.  He likes to keep the dog’s enthusiasm up when training handling and wants the dog to have success.  When sending a young dog to its first cold blinds he will sometimes salt the area to make sure the dog gets a bumper.  The success is the key.  Again, there will only ever be one duck at a test so he is not concerned that the dog will go shopping at a test.  The only time he may correct for picking up multiple bumpers is if it becomes clear that the dog is messing around and wasting time, but I have never seen that.  Good luck with your training.

I think I tricked many of you with my Wordless Wednesday picture.  I didn’t mean to.  🙂  That was actually Tattoo who belongs to Freighter’s breeder Cindy.  Tattoo came out blurry because he was moving fast!  We have kept Freighter and Nestle apart mostly.  Freighter seems to have quite a bit of prey drive and he needs to understand that Nestle is part of the family.

Many asked about Storm’s upcoming breeding.  We co-own her with her breeders.  The breeding will be their breeding, not ours.  They are responsible for obtaining her health clearances and the expense of the litter.  They will do all of the work and place all of the puppies.  Breeding would just be too stressful for me.  I am not a breeder (although I enjoy learning about it).  Co-ownership is not for everyone; however, in a breed like ours where there are not that many breeding dogs, it is one way that to help preserve the gene pool.  It was never a given that Storm would be a candidate to be bred, just that her breeders had the option if she turned out to be the kind of dog that they wanted for their breeding program and her health checked out.

We hope to train again tomorrow.  I know I am behind in reading/commenting on your blogs.  This turned into a busy week.  I really hope to catch up tonight.  If you have a chance stop by and wish our pal Bert well because he had to have emergency surgery for eating half a tennis ball.  This was very serious stomach surgery.  Take care Bert!  We are rooting for a full recovery.

Have a great weekend!

27 thoughts on “Awards And Follow-Up

  1. I love that first picture of Storm, I can’t even find a word to express how regal she looks. I can see the differences in colorings you talked about, and I see both shades in Freighter. It’ll be interesting to see what his adult coat turns out to be. It’s funny that he sees Nestle as “prey” – did Storm or Thunder ever have that reaction?

  2. What wonderful plaques, even without the pictures they are certificates to be proud of. I’m sure the pictures will be beautiful w/the plaques. Congratulations 🙂

  3. Thanks for the insight about the multiple bumpers. I will go along with what you said with him, as I do see it as him being excited to work. I really should get some videos of him.
    Very interesting relationship you have with your breeder/co-owner. Luna is technically owned by our breeder as well, though the breeding option is opposite. If I want to breed Luna she has to sign off on the male chosen for her… and it is my responsibility financially, though she would most def. help in placing the puppies, and would also be fantastic help in finding a good stud for her. I don’t mind the restrictions she has on Luna, as she has not really taken advantage of it at all and loves the home we provide for her. The decision will have to be made soon about whether i will breed her or not.
    Hope your weekend is productive!

    1. If we wanted to breed Storm, we have the same deal as you do. Her co-owner would have to approve the stud. He has already said we could use Thunder, but we don’t plan on breeding a litter. The thing is, you can learn so much from an experienced breeder. It is great when they are involved.

  4. Ah yes Chessie coloring is not always a given and what you think you are getting. Maia was a beautiful taupe brown when she was born and until she was about 7-8 weeks old then she started to darken to a brown and now I noticed yesterday she is lightening just a bit again 🙂

    You did fool us with your Wordless Wednesday pic 😉

    Congratulations on your awards, awesome!!

  5. Those were some great questions! I love learning more about training, especially in areas in which I have no experience. Storm’s red colour is gorgeous!

    Those plaques are fabulous. What a nice gesture. Congratulations on all your success!

  6. Congratulations on the awards! Its always so nice to have those to remind us of our accomplishments! That is interesting about Thunder, I never realized that he was lighter.
    Leroy carries the dilute gene and the other day when were walking I really noticed that his coat is starting to look a lot lighter than Sherman’s.

  7. Those awards look great!! Congrats 🙂

    It was great to read all the answers to the questions – my Mum often has trouble taking pictures of me if the light is too bright too, she says I kind of disappear cos my coat is so light! Yikes!

    Have a fun weekend,

    Your pal Snoopy 🙂

  8. Wow! Congratulations on Thunder and Storm’s awards! Great explanations to the questions and I can see a little lighter color in Freighters tail. He sure is growing fast! Like Daisy, I loooovve that picture of Storm. What a beauty!

  9. I love learning about different dog breeds. You did a really great job of explaining the coloring.

    I also forgot to mention on that training video you posted. I noticed when the whistle blew that Storm stopped, sat and looked at her handler, how in the world do you train this?

    I think it would be a great management tool for Delilah. 🙂

    1. Teaching whistle sit is a step by step process. Little increments until you put it all together. I will try to find something on the net to point you to. I am not sure I have the expertise to explain it clearly. If I can’t find anything, I will try to give my lay explanation. Next week, maybe?

      Of course as we train Freighter, I will try to follow it on my blog and maybe do more of a “how to” of what we are doing each step. We’ll see. 🙂

  10. Oh gosh and what a dumb ass I am for not saying congratulations! I think even though the dogs have their ribbons it is nice to have the plaques to compliment them!

    Apologies from me, it’s been a long week….:-)

  11. Those are gorgeous plaques that your club gives out, I bet you can’t wait to choose which photos to put in them!

    It’s great that your trainer doesn’t correct for the dogs picking up more than one bumper, as long as they’re not messing around. Anything that shows the dogs are working happily is a good thing, I’d guess. 🙂

    How great for you that you won’t have to be involved in the headaches of breeding Storm, I know I couldn’t handle the stress of that either.

  12. First, thanks for letting us know about Bert. Somehow we missed the post. My heart aches for him and his Vicki!

    You guys look like you are doing great!!! Those awards are pawsome. Congratulations! Keep up the good training.

    Doggy Kisses,

  13. From Bert’s My Vickie

    I just love looking at pictures of Storm and Thunder. The posed shots are regal, the action shots are impressive. Such good looking dogs. It is so fun seeing Freighter each time. I love watching his face change as he grows.

    Thanks for all the well wishes for Bert this week. I am hoping so much that he will be well enough to come home tomorrow.

  14. Hurray for plaques! You guys have worked really hard for those, and you absolutely deserve them!

    That diluted gene thing was very interesting. I always wondered how that work. I’ve been looking towards diluted poodles for grooming competitions. Great for future dying (for all those doggie beauty school nerds)! I’ll be sure to pass on this information to Aladdin’s Aunt who owns a weimaraner. 🙂

  15. Hi! Thank you for your beautiful photos and telling about the colours! Congratulations also for the awards! Have a wonderful weekend with your sweet puppies!
    x Teje & Nero

  16. This is a very informative post! I felt like all of the Chessies were a reddish brown but I guess I am wrong. I can really see the contrast in colors now when I know what to look for in the pictures! Congratulations on the awards as well. Just as your adult dogs have become senior members of their training clubs, your little one is now ready to follow their lead.So much fun and excitement! Can’t wait to see more pictures of Thunder, Storm and Freighter together. 🙂

  17. Wow – Storm looks super red in that picture!

    I had no idea there was so much variance in Chessies’ colours. Okay, maybe that could be assumed, but definitely not the specific classifications of each shade. That link is very interesting – crazy how well the “dead grass” colours really blend into surroundings!

    It will be interesting to see how Freighter’s colour may change as he grows up and sheds. Now I’m curious: for your climate and hunting environment, is there a generally preferred colouring so your dog is better camouflaged?

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