Competition no obstacle for Jonty
'He's got the best attitude ever'ROSA STUDHOLME
Claremont woman Natasha Coulter may have imported a special dog breed from Europe for agility trialling, but it was her bichon cross that brought home the medals.
Ms Coulter brought her pyrenean shepherd Euro to Timaru from Sweden, costing her upwards of $7000, and had hoped to compete him in the Australian National Agility Trial in Sydney last month, along with Jonty, the bichon cross.
However, when she reached Christchurch Airport to fly out to the event she was told Euro could not travel as he had not had a blood test, required for imported dogs.
She was "shell-shocked", but carried on to Sydney with Jonty. It was disappointing, she said.
"[Euro's] just really started now, so Australia was going to be quite a big deal for him."
But six-year-old Jonty didn't let her down, coming away with first place in the snooker final. In that event there are at least three red jumps, each numbered one, and six other obstacles numbered two through to seven. The dog accumulates points based on the obstacle's number.
In the three masters agility heats, he came first, second and third. He was also placed third in the strategic pairs final and third in the teams final.
While Euro is a pure breed, Jonty's make-up is "a bit of a mystery".
"He was an absolute accident. I never in my wildest dream thought I would be running a bichon, but he's got the best attitude ever."
She had been trialling him since he was two. He won the title of top small dog at the New Zealand National Agility Link Association Agility Competition in 2010.
- © Fairfax NZ News
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