....A Fairy Tale of a Dog and her Boy

 

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GV bCH. Pinewood's Lil-Shelby of Zion

Once upon a time Tina Barber, breed founder of the Shiloh Shepherds, decided that a match between bCH Pinewood's Lil-Shelby of Zion and Artus would be ideal. After much discussion with Shelby's owner, Pamela McCloskey, it was decided that Shelby would spend several weeks at our home. Pam told our young son Bobby to make sure that he took special care of Shelby.

Thus challenged, Bobby played with Shelby daily. He fed her, took her out for walks, and played ball and frisbee with her incessantly. By the time Homecoming came, when Shelby would be reunited with Pam (and named Grand Victrix), the two had formed a deep bond.

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The much anticipated litter was born on October 1, 1999. Tina was to take pick male, to help recreate Laz.  Bobby was to accompany Tina and me to Long Island to do the litter evaluation  Thanksgiving weekend so he could be reunited, if only briefly, with "his" Shelby.

Unbeknownst to Bobby, Pam had decided to present him with one of the females from the litter.  He was to have one of the pups to raise, if the temperament was right, provided he agreed to a very special arrangement. 

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The litter evaluation began Friday night with Tina doing conformation and me madly scribbling notes that only I could read afterward. Bobby wasn't very interested in the litter but wanted to spend time with Shelby. Saturday was spent temperament testing the puppies. Tina agonized over who T-Rex would be. Tina and I  had found the puppy ("Scrappy") we felt would be ideal for Bobby but Pam DymondWeed had first pick. Pam DW heard the evaluation from Tina and decided which puppy  would be best for her (Daphne).   After what seemed like hours of picture taking, at last it was time.

bobbyandshelbya.jpg (26669 bytes) Pam had Bobby bring the green collared girl into the living room and then sit down. She told him that Scrappy was his--to care for, train and champion. Bobby was in shock.
But what to name her? Only one name seemed perfect for her--Shelby2.  shelbiesa.jpg (34088 bytes)

Normally we start training class in late April, but due to Tina's fire and the abnormally busy schedule we had in the late winter, spring and summer  (litter evaluations in Canada,  Maryland, New York, Maryland, Florida, Oregon and California, with three additional trips to Canada) there were only a few classes. Bobby trained and worked with Shelby2 on his own.  

Homecoming was scheduled for the third week in August. Pam was unable to come and Homecoming was almost in doubt until the last minute. I had spent about 3 weekends at home all summer. Bobby felt that Shelby2 had good movement but he hadn't been able to compare her to others. Usually Tina has us very prepared, but this time we were not. 

On Thursday, Shelby passed her temperament test, taking time out to kiss the "aloof stranger" on the nose. Friday came...the first show. It was Bobby and Shelby2's turn--her very first show--and much to our shock she took Best in Show. She was champion pointed!  

Shelby accompanied us to Gettysburg, greatly enjoying the scenery and hiking the battlefield. 

Then, suddenly, it was Thanksgiving. We were due to go to the Rare Breed Club of Southwest Ontario's show at the International Centre in Toronto. This was our first specialty held in conjunction with RBCSWO   (hopefully the first of many). 

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We rushed on Saturday morning to reach the Centre before the 8 AM specialty was to begin. Before we knew it the specialty had begun--and Shelby and Bobby again worked their magic. Shelby won! The regular shows began and she won BOB again, placed first in group and took Reserve Best in Show. The same scenario was repeated that afternoon. By the end of that magical weekend, Shelby2 had completed her championship and earned a Canadian one. It was with great pride in Shelby and my son that I was able to call Pam Sunday morning and tell her that Bobby and Shelby had done as she asked him to, exactly one year before. He had cared for her, trained her and he had championed her! (And I was very proud to have accompanied the boy and his dog to Canada!)

Shelby2 and her rosettes on Saturday

Shelby and Bobby Take 1st in Group
The tradition continues.... | Shelby 2/Grizz Litter

Shelby/Artus LER  | Shelby/Artus Litter Slideshow

2006 Update

Bobby is starting off on a new adventure; having spent the past 9 years involved with Shilohs in general (winner of the Junior Handling class at his first Homecoming in August 1997, handling Beauty to BOS and BIS wins at Homecoming in 1998 and 1999 and Shelby2 to a BIS win in 2000 plus her amazing weekend in Canada, winner of the first Junior Handler of the Year award in 2001, the owner/trainer/handler of a GV at the age of 13).  A National Honor Society Member, graduating 4th in his class, he is now off to the University of Rochester while Shelby2 waits anxiously for him to return on weekends and vacations.


Shelby and Shelby2 - Homecoming 2004


Bobby and Beauty, 1998 / Bobby and Shelby2 pups 2003

2009

Shelby passed away on March 10, 2009, one day shy of Bobby's 21st birthday; greatly loved, she will always remain in our hearts.

 

 


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