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Rally held Sunday 7th August 2011


Firstly, I would like to thank Colin Brooks for stepping in to Judge the Rally at the last minute due to Melanie Matfin being unable to attend as she had poorly dogs at home.

We all know the weather coming up to Rally day was not great, so for the week beforehand we all kept looking at the weather forecast and hoping for a better day than the previous year. Alas it was not the best it could have been. We spent the day dodging the showers, which at times were quite heavy but as usual everybody just got on with it and found places to shelter either under trees or gazebos. It always amazes me how all the people and dogs that come to rally day really enjoy it no matter what the weather throws at us and it never seems to dampen their spirits.

The Rally this year was very difficult for me due to not having my Mum with us and everyone was so kind and thoughtful. We had two cakes made with a lovely photo of her on them and at the lunch break we gave everyone a slice of cake and glass of champagne in her memory. Just doing that simple thing made it feel like she was enjoying the day just as she had always done.

There were over 100 dogs in attendance, mostly Samoyeds, but other breeds to be seen included an Elkhound, Westies, Whippet, GSDs, and not to mention a Siberian Husky (more about her later). The games classes included a water race, which provided a neck and neck final until the last possible moment and new for this year a musical mystery class.... people kept asking Avis what this entailed and she kept saying it's a mystery until you take part. Suffice to say that the winner was not wearing odd socks, did not have 50p in their pocket and the dog was a Samoyed, which was not wearing a blue lead or collar! I thought the fancy dress was great, especially the Samoyed wearing a very large cardboard cutout of a 10th Anniversary card – brilliant.

Interspersed with the games were handling classes and it was really nice to see some of the children really getting involved with taking their dogs in the ring, which we get less and less at our Dog Shows. There were classes specifically for the Rescue dogs of all Breeds. Colin Brooks gave Best in Rally to Max (a Samoyed) owned by Pat Lupton, who was also declared Best Rescue Dog. Best Rescue Bitch and Reserve Best in Rally was Sashka (a Siberian Husky) owned by Robert & Virginia Hauxwell. It was good to see Max doing so well because when Pat took Max on in May 2010 from our Rescue he was so overweight he could hardly walk and in that 15months she had managed to get him to lose 5kg, which has given him such a better quality of life. Well done to Pat.

This year Carol Walker and Bonny provided a heelwork to music demonstration and Karen Howlett with Friea did an obedience demonstration, both amazing all present with their skill whilst showing that a Samoyed will always put their own individual stamp on any proceedings! Margaret Brooks kindly gave an all day grooming session with any combings going to the stall next to her, where we had wool spinners from the West Essex and East Herts Guild of Spinners, Weavers & Dyers. I did notice how many people really liked this aspect of the Rally, especially those that were not very skilled at grooming and Margaret did a brilliant job, her arms must have been dropping off by the end of the day. The ladies that did the spinning tell me how much they like coming to our Rally and people were very interested to see what happens to the combings.

Over £2,500, was raised for the Samoyed Association Rescue Fund and this money will help less fortunate Samoyeds with health problems, moving them from place to place or paying for them in kennels while we find the right home. Grateful thanks go to all those generous people and Companies who donated prizes and items for the Auction or Raffle. The newly launched Kennel Club Breed Rescue service provided a small prize for each class winner and Fish4Dogs donated bags of treats and other goodies for all those who attended.

Every year I try and thank everyone that helped me put this event together and as usual I have many to thank. So in no particular order:- Avis & Preston Haffenden who work tirelessly towards making this a special day for everyone, Angela Danvers-Smith (our President) & her husband Terry who helps out all day in anyway he can. Valerie Blewitt who came to man the tombola stall even though she was not in good health along with her husband Paul. A big thanks go to my family and friends who travel long distances to help on that weekend, my younger son Craig, Susan my daughter-in-law, Jenny & Darren their friends, doing the barbeque, my lovely grandson Aaron doing the car park and we can't forget Carmen & Leroy. Carmen manning the Cafe as usual with help from another friend of mine, Christine and Leroy doing his now, famous sausage race. It was really good to see Leroy at the Rally has he had recently had a small stroke, but he still made the effort. Well done to him and I wish him a speedy recovery. My eldest son, Darren, and his wife, Alison, along with our other grandchildren, Jenny, Lauren, Holly and Isabella all doing their bit to help on the day. Denize Woodstock for all her wonderful cakes. Diana Thompson & Marianne Giannattasio for doing the Rescue Stall, Jenny Rawlings for her tiger tails. Andy Fry for the PA system. Leah & Paul Ivory. Lorraine Forsdick and Dave Ellis. Lynne Dutton for all the art work on the new china for Rescue and her husband Andrew. It was also nice to see Robin Newhouse of Annecy Kennels as he helps Rescue all year round with kennelling dogs that we have to move quickly.

I would like to thank Olive Hampton and Lee Ross for running the Assocaition Stall again. Unfortunately since the Rally Olive has had a bad fall and is now in St. Albans Hospital. I am sure everyone would want to wish her a speedy recovery and I would like to say that we are all thinking of her. Also, one of my biggest thanks goes to my husband, David, for always being there.

Lastly, a big thanks for everyone that attended the Rally and supported us on the day and those people who couldn't make it but sent in donations, many, many thanks. If I have missed anyone out then please forgive me. Good luck with all your rescue Samoyeds.

Linda Brasier,
Chief Rescue Officer,
The Samoyed Association

RESULTS of RALLY, 7th August 2011

Child Handling up to 10yrs – Mia Pounds with Nanuq
Child Handling over 10yrs – Sophia Giannattasio with Freia
Musical Statues – Oscar Rawlings
Water Race – Oscar Rawlings
Fancy Dress – Casper Richardson

Non Rescue up tp 2yrs – Jack Brasier
Non Rescue 2 to 7yrs – Jazzy Chandler
Non Rescue over 7yrs – Bingley Forsdick

Musical Mystery – Oscar Rawlings
Sausage Race – Keira Sutton

Rescue Dog up tp 4yrs – Casper Richardson
Rescue Dog 5 to 10yrs – Max Lupton
Rescue Dog over 10yrs – Jack Clark

Rescue Bitch up to 4yrs – Sashka Hauxwell
Rescue Bitch 5 to 10yrs – Mia Hauxwell
Rescue Bitch over 10yrs – Sophie Stone

Best Feet – Bella Salter
Best Smile – Jessie Holt
Best Biscuit – Spirit Huke
Best Eyes – Rocky Downer