Merlin's Magicians Flyball & Agility Dogs
Annie was born to a pedigree Welsh Springer the owner was talking ‘Crufts’ for the litter, pre birth! When presented with 9 black and white puppies she asked “could they be a throw back”! The local farm collie looked suitably smug! I had Annie at 8 weeks old; my friend Sue had Tippi (another of our team) Annie is a lovely, lovely girl, has done good pet obedience at the local club, does Flyball and Agility with Merlin’s Magicians. Registered as Annie Spaniel for KC Agility we have only once tried competing, despite being able to do the entire course with no problems Annie has a concentration problem, a spectator with a bag of crisps was just too good to miss. Our clear round with one jump to go ended in disqualification!
Never going to be the fastest dog in the Flyball team, much too laid back, she competes in sanctioned competition and has obtained the British Flyball Association Flyball Dog Award.
Getting on a bit now she is still a useful addition to the team as she can run with any of the dogs, is especially useful with new dogs as she is very gentle and non threatening , and, what she lacks in speed she makes up for in reliability, with the ‘hard’ dogs she doesn’t take any notice of them just does her usual laid back runs.……………June
Rusty is a Working Sheepdog, he was, in effect, dumped, at 5 months old he was lodging whilst his owners moved house and rather than have him back they went and bought themselves another puppy! So Rusty stayed. Rusty was, still is on occasions, a problem dog. Suffers from ‘fear aggression and looks very threatening when he comes face to face with other dogs, although he has never been known to fight, he does occasionally cause trouble. Loves agility but does tend to rush it and demolish jumps! A fast but not 100% reliable dog at Flyball, has to run last as we can’t trust him to do ‘changeovers’ and occasionally, if he notices the other team will charge up and down barking at them!! Not good, but he does stay in the jumps and has points towards his Flyball Dog award, which we hope he will achieve this coming year 2012.
Despite not liking other dogs, Rusty loves people and beneath his insecurities is a great big softy………….June
Litter sister to Annie, Tippi has the same ‘interesting’ start to life.
Although very obviously sisters, Tippi is smaller lighter, more Collie like than Annie, she is also a much faster Flyball dog. Running last, as she insists on giving any dog running up against her a quick woof, (yes with the ball in her mouth) Tippi has often made up ground and won a race for us. Tippi’s day job alongside her side kick Jack, is greeting customers in her Mum Sue’s Pet supplies shop, usually from behind the till!.........Sue
Jed's mum is a boxer who got out and had a romantic interlude with the local pointer. Jed is the only one of the resulting puppies to be born deaf. He was homed but came back and at the age of 6 months went into rescue. I saw his details and that was it!!! At the time I lived in the Midlands, so myself, my greyhound and my ancient terrier travelled to Wales to meet him. He loves everyone and everything but especially bonded with Lucy Greyhound, so within a couple of days of coming home was allowed off lead as he would follow her example - making his recall training easy. Jed and another dog started Flyball classes together and I am proud to say that Jed actually learned a lot quicker than the hearing dog! He adores Flyball and agility, and he is a Pets as Therapy visiting dog.. Jed is 2.5 years old and has been with me since he was 10 months old.......Georgina
We don't know if Bo was born on the streets or dumped but when he first went into rescue he was thought to be 8 months old. He found a home quickly but within a couple of months was back in rescue after again living on the streets - this time hundreds of miles away in Wales. Bo can be a bit of a handful and a few homes did not work out for him, but in June 2007 he came to live with us as a playmate for Jed. Bo can be a complete idiot in practise - 2 good runs then he goes haywire but I was extremely proud of him in his first Starters Tournament when he brought the ball back to me each time! (Was it the right dog???)………Georgina.
Ollie was a rescue taken from a farmer who intended to shoot him as nobody wanted him. A natural clown he is always doing something to make me laugh, he greets people with a stupid grin on his face and a bone. Ollie loves Flyball and is very fast but has not always been reliable. On one occasion trying to beat the oppositions dog to their box instead of ours!! We are working on distraction and by next year he will be a valued member competing with Merlin’s Magicians……Liz
I do some rescue for Lizzies Barn, take in Cavaliers before they find homes. I was asked to take a Cavalier puppy as the rest of the litter had died. Monty came as a ball of fluff absolutely nothing like a Cavalier! As where he came from they kennelled the Shi Tzu’s next to the Cavaliers I think they might have had a Houdini! Monty is a delight to live with but not the smartest, it took him over six months to learn Flyball, but he has learned, and we now have high (pardon the pun) hopes that he will become a height dog for the team, keeping the jumps down to about 10 inches. Monty is also registered with the Kennel Club as Merlin’s Magical Mop! As I hope next year to have a go at mini Agility with him…..Liz
Pretzel the Pomeranian came from a rescue centre, she is leggy for the breed was hopefully destined to be a height dog for the team, but we were unable convince her to use the Flyball box! She loved the jumps etc but not the box. Feisty little girl who is a ‘real’ dog despite being a ‘Toy’ Enjoys nothing better than an hours run in the forestry with the big dogs chasing rabbits and getting covered with mud! She started Agility but isn’t keen, much prefers to act as ‘Cheerleader’ Does her own thing!
Pretzel had to have an operation for luxating Patella and has been trampled by a Horse!! Like I said she is a feisty little Madam, she bounced, literally, back. Her role seems to have become alarm/guard (don’t laugh you’ll hurt her feelings) she has the ‘Penthouse suite’ top cage, in the van and enjoys nothing better when we camp at Flyball tournaments than telling anyone who ventures close that, this is her place: - )
When I had Thistle, my English Bull Terrier, I didn’t get her with Flyball in mind, I just wanted another Bully, my very favorite breed of dog. It was a baptism of fire for her, she joined me during the time of my son’s illness and spent much of the first three months travelling up and down the M42! A fantastic natured dog, but apart from that nothing like my previous Bully, she has been very difficult to train, stubborn, self willed and pig headed! But… light dawned! Thistle fell completely for a tennis ball, how good is that? Other dogs like treats, squeaky toys etc. Thistle? If you have a Tennis ball she is yours. We started Flyball training with her at Ferryside, she has absolutely no fear of the box, and can do the jumps at an amazing speed. Our problem being, she does the run up, then tends to enjoy flying back down the run over the wings or, disappearing across the field (got the ball which is all she cares about) instead of returning via the jumps! Thistle has been included in teams at tournaments, she became the comedy act. See the Newsletters: - ) But……… Watch this space I think eventually we will have another dog for the Multibreed team here.........June
I am a 4 year old collie - My Dad rescued me from a dogs home - he came to see me one day and brought Diesel and Alfie with him, we just got on really well and I was put in the back of the pickup with my new friends and they brought me home.
I know I am only little but I am big in character and one of my favourite games is playing with peoples feet when they are sitting down I don't know why (maybe it is the smell bark bark!!).
My dad takes me, Diesel and Alfie for a walk on the beach everyday - we are very lucky to have such a big beach to play on and we love it when we meet lots of our others friends on the beach especially when someone brings a ball thrower - we have great races who can get it first.
I have been doing flyball now for about 10 months and really love it - I go with Alfie as Alfies Mum and my Dad are Father and daughter.
Ishka came from Great Dane Adoption, her date of birth is 6th. April 2007 making her just three years old. Ishka is the most Athletic Great Dane I have ever owned, she loves Agility. Trumps, her friend and companion is trying to teach her Flyball! Ishka is also a blood donor and has so far saved the lives of two dogs and prolonged the life of another. Brenda....footnote: She won't need to jump those flyball hurdles with legs like those. Walkies! lol
When I was a puppy a couple took me away from my mum to live with them, after a week they brought me back saying that their children were allergic to me - then I went to another home and they couldn't keep me either but then I found my current mum who I love living with as her whole family spoilt me my life changed.
My best friend is Diesel he is a big dog that I live with and I also live with Sadie. I like my dinner and breakfast on time and I like to carry my bowls around afterwards - and I do have a habit of carrying shoes around I don't chew them but I do some get told off cos I leave them outside when it is raining.
Me and Sadie started flyball about 10 months ago and it is great fun I get really excited when my mum puts my harness on cos I know that it is Flyball time cos it is the only time I wear my harness.
Sadie and I bark a lot when we are near the flyball training place cos we both love it so much. I am 4 now and I have learnt to play flyball really well. I have lovely long walks on the beach with my Grandad which is Sadies dad.
We got Freddie in Easter 2009 when he was approximately 10 weeks old from the Swansea council dog pound as he was no longer wanted and was handed in to them. Megan and I just happened to call in one day for a "look around" and fell in love with this gorgeous "GSD X" puppy. After a few days wait because it was a bank holiday we were able to take him home. He was a companion to an elderly Samoyed called Sophie for just over a year, but is now an only dog. He developed from this chunky GSD X into a leggy collie type dog which we didn't mind at all. He has got beauty, brains, and is an excellent guard dog, but a very faithful companion to us all. He gets on very well with other dogs and loves people, as long as you throw something for him! I've always wanted a dog that I could do agility or flyball with and I have definitely found it in Freddie. By the way, Megan our 6 year old daughter named him after her favorite singer (Freddie Mercury)! I am so glad to have found such a lovely group of people in the flyball team and we look forward to doing more demos at the shows and suchlike and definitely competing next year! .........Debbie
Charlie Brown. I’ve said it before, I’ll say it again! “Be careful what you wish for” I was, as many doggie people do, browsing the internet for dogs, only looking: - ) I went to the ‘Preloved’ site and found ChocolateRoan Cocker Spaniels – Born December 2009 – Offers. I though oooh……. Unsold puppies. Very tongue in cheek, I emailed the breeder and said I was looking for something ‘Free to Good Home for Flyball and Agility’!!! Two or three emails down the line, a month later, Charlie Brown joined my family! It might have helped that the breeder actually knew Brenda, uses the Veterinary practice she works at: - ) Charlie Brown didn’t have a name when he came but I just automatically said “come on then Charlie Brown” and it stuck, suits him. Settled in so well, within an hour was playing chase with Thistle and is now her best friend, no one else will play with my rather rough, ‘Bully’. Walks in the woods it is like having a couple of hyperactive, tear away teenagers on speed, on mountain bikes!! Super temperament, now housetrained (no he wasn’t when he arrived and as an entire male made a good job of marking if not watched) learned the dog flap in minutes. His first night I put him in a crate in the bedroom, the noise was unimaginable!! He screamed (no, he didn’t bark or whine, he screamed!!) the place down, I opened the door he leapt on the bed curled up and, there he has slept ever since, definitely not stupid! Love him to bits, not in the least sorry I answered that advert and, thank his breeder very much for letting me have him. Charlie Brown has started having a go at Flyball. Another height dog? June
My name is ‘Mr. Pepper’, my breeding is cocker spaniel x border collie. I picked my owner when she came to visit the farm one day unexpected, as soon as our eyes meet across the windswept yard, that was it, and of course she fell in love with me at first glance. I was 9 weeks old then and haven’t looked back since!! After some basic training, Elaine (that’s my mum), thought I needed something more to do in my life and introduced me to ‘Flyball’. What was this game, running over some jumps and fetching a ball which is lodged into a hole? … YES what fun!! … I started when I was 8mths old, so couldn’t enter any competitions but this didn’t matter I was having a ball!! Now I am at the stage where we can do ‘starter’s competitions’ as I have reached the grand age of 1yr … so bring it on! I’m ready and willing … Pepper As you can see Pepper is a very opinionated dog, he also likes being around people and having a lot of fuss made of him. We are very glad that he is in our lives’ although my husband Danny says we should have called him ‘Digger’ … if you saw our back garden you would soon know why!! … So thank you Pepper for coming into our lives’… Elaine & Danny
George The Guardian.
George is a 4 year old Labrador. I had him since he was a pup. I suffer from epilepsy and George has the ability to sense the oncoming of epileptic seizures. He’s a guardian angel – physically pulling me out of the bath or barking me out of a bath prior to a seizure. On another occasion he prevented me from picking up an electrical device where the live cable had been exposed. He’s a very special dog frequently alerting that I’ve left the oven or gas fire on. When I have a seizure he lies down by my side keeping me warm and licking my face to bring me around. For the past 2 years he’s been working hard with the Cardiff Dog Training Club to gain his KC Bronze, Silver and Gold Good Boy Citizen Awards. I’m so proud he’s passed these as he was a very anxious pup to start off with and has come along in leaps and bounds from back then. Over the summer I decided to move back to West Wales and started to do flyball with him with the Merlin’s Magicians after seeing their display in a show. He absolutely loves it. Sunday morning comes and he’s parading back and forth from the house to the car as if to say
“Come on it’s time to go! It’s Sunday! It’s Flyball!
I had Roxy a Labrador x Collie at 14 weeks from the local R.S.P.C.A. By then she’d already had a few homes and written off as a “Devil dog” and “untrainable”. She soon however settled in at her new home and achieved the kennel club good citizen award. Roxy is extremely energetic and takes a lot of exercise to tire her out which is what led us to trying flyball, which she took to like a duck to water. We are now working towards gaining enough points to get her flyball dog certificate. She’s obsessed with her tennis balls and loves flyball, she can never wait to take her turn and gets very excited. At home she doesn’t stop either, bringing balls all day to play fetch, she’ll even wake you up by shoving a ball in your face while you’re in bed!
Having lost Freddie's Samoyed companion in spring 2010, by September we were considering getting another dog for company for him. After speaking with June one day, she mentioned that she knew of a spaniel cross that needed re-homing, we made contact with the owner and was sent a photo of him by text, that was it, we had to have him, he looked so cute, just what we've always wanted, a scruffy mongrel! We went to see him at his home a few days later and within a fortnight he was sharing a bed with Freddie! I have found out since, where and when he was born and that his mum is a working springer spaniel and his dad was a scruffy jack russell terrier. He was 8 months old when we had him and had had very little training, fortunately, he had Freddie to teach him, especially how to catch and retrieve tennis balls. We took him along to flyball and he loved it, he has competed in a couple of starters tournaments and in August the BFA Championships. He still has a lot more to learn, but is looking forward to more tournaments next year. He has been a fantastic addition to the family, he loves people and other animals and is probably the cutest dog competing in flyball! Debbie