Do it all Collies! 2021 CCA Most Versatile Qualifiers :: Cheyenne, Wyoming

The Collies that qualify for Most Versatile during the National Specialty each year prove that they can do it all!

The Collie Club of America offers Versatility Awards at the National to those collies that excel in both the conformation ring and performance venues. The recipients of this award must compete and qualify in at least three events during the week of the National Specialty, i.e., conformation, obedience/rally, agility and or herding. This year there were 19 Qualifiers for Most Versatile with the Most Versatile Collie award going to "Topper," TC Riverrun Galatean Wyndhams Top Contender, owned by Michelle Shoemaker. This 3-year-old sable rough dog had the highest qualifying score in not three, but four events: agility, herding, obedience and conformation. (Watch Topper's amazing CCA agility run). There were four other collies that Qualified for Most Versatile by competing in four events, they were Wild Wind's I Think I Love You CD HSAs HSDs RN, GCH Foggy Bay Sealoch Star Chaser, CH Ability's To The Moon And Back and Mountainside Takin' The Love Train NFP NAP NJP TKA FCAT DCAT CA CAA BPD TD PT BN RI RNPairs FDC ATT TDI CGCA CGCU VCX. Of the 19 qualfiers, the oldest was GCH MACH RACH Belfair The Swashbuckler CDX RM3 RAE2 PT MXS MJB OF TKI GV at 11-1/2 and the youngest was 15-month-old Scalloway & Serac's Hold My Quarantini HT PT TKN RATN RATI.

We asked the owners of the qualifiers to tell us about their experience at the National Specialty in Cheyenne. We wanted to know how much previous ring time their collies had, what memories stood out during the week and if they could share any tips with others on how to accomplish this with their collies. We had one fun question at the end hoping to gain a little insight into the character of the collies.

Michelle Shoemaker and Topper :: TC Riverrun Galatean Wyndhams Top Contender

When did you think or know your collie had the potential to be a versatility award qualifyer at CCA?

Michelle Shoemaker and Topper: Mary Jackson of Riverrun Collies called and said she had a puppy that might really interest me. Since my previous three collies had been bred by her and had all become Triple Champions I was very excited to see this pup. Topper came home with me and we began the fun of training and it was apparent from the beginning that he was a special dog. He excelled in every activity and had the energy level and concentration to train various venues concurrently. We began trialing and his energy level just increased with the pressure of the competition. I knew he had the potential to win Most Versatile early on but the strategy of having your dog ready to trial at the highest level in a variety of sports all in a scope of one week is the tricky part. Topper is still a young dog -- just turned 4 at the National but he was really ready to go!

Roxane Jourdain and Tini: I knew from the beginning she was going to be special. She was only 5.9 ounces at birth and half the size of her littermates, but she had the knack and will to live! At 4 months old she started herself on nose work odors by observing my older collie. We took her and her sister on sheep soon after that and she showed some lovely instinct too. I have high hopes for this young girl!

Roxane Jourdain and Tini :: Scalloway & Serac's Hold My Quarantini HT PT TKN RATN RATI

Maria Siebeck and Titan: I was told by Linda Holloway, Titan’s breeder, that he was going to be amazing at everything he tried. I was skeptical at first. After all, how can you know that a 9 week old puppy is going to be amazing at everything he tried. But, Titan has proved that he IS amazing at everything he does. We started off in conformation. We learned together. Despite me never having stepped into a conformation ring before, we achieved his Championship and we are on our way to a Grand Championship. I am proud to say that I have earned every point myself. We both tried out herding. I was terrified to handle him myself in the beginning. I didn’t want to ruin him with my total lack of herding skills. Titan proved to be a natural. I still feel that he has more herding instinct in his little toe than I could ever hope to have in my lifetime. We have had similar experiences in agility. He very quickly moved through novice and open and into excellent. Obedience and Rally are following and we hope to achieve similar results.

Amy Ross and Aries: After five years of only asking him to be pretty I had him instinct tested. When they were done the tester/stock owner told me to "quit wasting this dog in the breed ring." I knew then he was capable of doing more then. Deanna started training him in herding and I started him in obedience and rally. A year later he also started in agility. So at CCA he was nearly 7 and competing in all venues for the first time. It was a team effort!

Linda Marie Ward and Elsa: Almost from birth. I do my breedings planned on beauty, brains, health and temperament as we do a lot of performance along with breed. Elsa was leaping off of porches at 6 weeks old and always willing to learn.

Linda Ward and Elsa :: GCH Sinkona's Dream Catcher CDX BN GN RE HSAs MXP3 MXPB MJP4 MJPB MFP T2BP CA BCAT CGC

Barb Flaherty and Louie: When I saw him work at a herding practice and realized maybe he had enough natural ability to herd. He had already been shown multiple times in the other venues.

Sally Mobraaten and Andy: I like to work all my collies in whatever classes are available -- and they usually do very well.

Deanna Levenhagen and Lark: I initially started training Lark in herding because of her interest and attitude. To complement the herding, I also started training her in obedience. She proved to have a a lot of athletic ability and the promise, so I started training her in agility six months later. She is a much different dog that any other I've trained and has taught me a lot. But, once she showed me the interest in all the venues, I knew that attempting to get an MVC qualifier was a possibility.

Amy Ross and Carina: Carina had potential from a very young age. I am very blessed that she lives with John and Mary Davis who have worked very hard to get her trained and conditioned. I just get to borrow her from time to time and have fun. She has always been a firecracker. Mary once said being in the ring with Carina is Iike running with a loaded gun with no safety. I had an agility judge tell me once that she would be fun once I found the steering wheel and brakes on the Porsche. And she IS a lot of fun. At nearly 7 years young she got to compete for MVC for the first time this year. It just never worked out to try the other years.

Jaclyn Rudebeck and Twister: I actually didn't think we were likely to qualify! Twister was only 2-1/2 years old at the time of this year's National, and due to COVID we hadn't been able to consistently train or trial/show. I didn't really feel we were "ready" to compete in ANY of our performance events, but I didn't want to miss the opportunity to play at the National so I entered herding, agility, and rally anyways. Guess he showed me *he* was ready, even if I wasn't! I'm so proud of how well he handled such a full schedule during his first National. It was a thrill to share the MVC honor with Twister's dam, Belfair Colebrae Perpetual Motion (Tempest), who also qualified!

Joany White and Boone: When thinking about doing the Most Versatile Collie this year with my 2-year-old Boone, I thought back to about 10 years ago, when I participated for the first and only other time with two generations of our little Collie family -- Boone's Granny, Cheyne (starting her performance career at age 9) and his Mom, Beulah. This year, I figured that grandson Boone might be ready to take a shot at qualifying for MVC when he had earned his five breed points and his novice level titles in agility, herding and rally. He enjoys and was able to qualify in all four categories. He even placed 7th out of the 19 MVC Collies and is our third generation to qualify!

Chelsea Bloomberg, Flynn and Tempest: For Flynn, now 11-1/2 years old and my first performance dog, it took me a long time to realize just how capable he was, but he earned his CCA VA in 2016; I didn’t yet know whether he had the endurance to manage that versatility in the intense back-to-back trialing of a National Most Versatile Collie competition. I have thought Tempest had the potential since the day she came home. Her nonstop work ethic and unflappable conviction that she’s amazing were apparent even at 12 weeks of age.

Tempest :: Belfair Colebrae Perpetual Motion CD BN RE PT MX MXJ OF BCAT TKI RATN (photo by Nina Sage)

Debra Waelde and Vinny: Well, when I have a dog that I plan on showing for a while, I like to do more with them than just that. I love herding and the whole aspect of seeing that amazing natural instinct come out. It is so cool to develop that and watch these dogs do the job they are born to do. So when I feel like, okay, we can do this, we go get the PT or HT. I then start working on some basic rally skills -- heel, sit and downs, and go from there.

Connie Sutter and Charlie: We knew when he was 6 months old that he had herding potential, we started very young on obedience. Once his OFA was done we started working on Agility.

Laurie Jeff Greer and Gwen: Probably the week before entries closed. One of my friends suggested we try. We didn’t even realize that you really need all four venues to actually win.

Is this the first time you ever competed with this collie for the versatility at the CCA? If not, how many times has this Collie competed at CCA? What were the results?

Deanna Levenhagen and Lark: I have the distinction of having won MVC honors seven times -- six times (including five consecutive years) with Logan and once with Ranger. But I didn't want these successes to be an expectation for Lark at her first national or dampen the "young dog" successes that are so important. This national was all about having fun and taking pride in the little successes she was having (some of which had nothing to do with qualifying or ribbons).

Debra Waelde and Vinny: This was Vinny's first time participating, but not my first dog to try. Ginger was my first , it took three nationals to get her versatility, she hated rally but . . . she finally gave in and -- Yahoo! -- I was so proud. Tuxy never earned her versaltility, but not for the lack of trying. She did get her PT and RN title but just not at National's -- something always happened, as it will!

Michelle Shoemaker and Topper: I have competed with Topper for Most Versatile twice before but knew we were not in contention to win, due to the fact that he was still in the lower level classes. The performance competition scores are weighted by levels with the more advanced levels offering the chance for higher points. The first time was at the 2018 National in Virginia where he did qualify but he was only 11 months old -- not even old enough to compete in agility. We also competed in Peoria in 2019 but at just a year old he still had to compete in the beginning classes. This year he was competing at the highest levels in agility and herding so the opportunity to win was real.

Roxane Jourdain and Tini: Yes, it is our first national for both Tini and I! We were aiming to qualify in MVC and totally achieved it!

Jaclyn Rudebeck and Twister: Yes, this was our first National together. Can't wait to try for this honor again in Utah!

Connie Sutter and Charlie: This was his first National. He was entered in 2019, but due to COVID, missed that chance.

Chelsea Bloomberg and Flynn and Tempest: I have competed with both Tempest and Flynn once before for MVC, at the 2017 National in Sacramento. We were collectively out of our depth in herding that year, so did not qualify.

Linda Marie Ward and Elsa: I was at the National in Boise in 2006 with plans to show in several events and breed. However my bitch came in season which meant I could only do herding with her. This was the first time I have been to a National since then. It was a wonderful experience to be able to compete in several events.

Maria Siebeck and Titan: Our first CCA national was in Peoria in 2019. He had just turned 2 years old. We were the second youngest qualifier and came in 17th place. Cheyenne was our second National and we came in 4th place.

Laurie Jeff Greer and Gwen: Yes

Amy Ross and Carina: At nearly 7 years young she got to compete for MVC for the first time this year. It just never worked out to try the other years.

Barb Flaherty and Louie: This was the first time.

Sally Mobraaten and Andy: Andy is now 5, of course we had planned on last year but Covid hit. This is his third National. I believe he has been an MVC qualifier each time.

Andy :: GCH Foggy Bay Sealoch Star Catcher CD BN RE FDC AX AXJ T2B BCAT SBN TKA

What is the most memorable thing that happened while you were competing at this year's National?

Chelsea Bloomberg and Flynn and Tempest: Playing with Flynn in the 11+ veterans class in conformation was without question the most meaningful moment for me and a memory I will treasure – although a close second is his absolute chaos PT run that kept me working from the moment we stepped into the arena and earned him high praise from the judge who was delighted to see that kind of drive and movement in an 11-year-old collie. I believe he was the oldest collie to earn his MVC qualifying ribbon this year.

Chelsea Bloomberg and Flynn :: GCH MACH RACH Belfair The Swashbuckler CDX RM3 RAE2 PT MXS MJB OF TKI GV (photo by Kristin Brooke)

Michelle Shoemaker and Topper: The most memorable thing that happened at this year’s National was Topper winning a beautiful painting by Kris Mulligan for going High in Trial at agility. The painting Kris did was a collie doing weave poles but the model collie for the painting was my girl, Gabby! I so wanted that painting to hang in my office! Well, Topper won High in Trial the first day but . . . the painting was offered for HIT on the second day. Topper stepped up to the plate the next day and once again won the Master classes, went High in Trial and now that painting hangs in my office.

Connie Sutter and Charlie: Earning Highest Scoring Optional Titling Class award.

Jaclyn Rudebeck and Twister: Probably our qualifying HT run on day one of the herding trial. I am a very green handler when it comes to herding and he is an incredibly driven dog, which can make for an exciting combination! Judge Terry Kenney had wonderfully complimentary things to say about his speed, power, and instinctiveness, and I was thrilled to have pulled off a Q in the event where I felt least confident.

Laurie Jeff Greer and Gwen: Probably knocking off the icicles from our clothes while attending the herding trial. Herding is not for the faint of heart.

Amy Ross and Aries: The entire experience was memorable for me. To watch him on D course the first days taking 10 goats through the course for his first Q. He was wagging his tail the entire time and it was a joy to watch. At the end of eight days of competition he was still moving out in front of me with power and purpose and made the cut in the BOV ring, tail still wagging. We asked a lot of him and he delivered. Getting the MVC ribbon was very emotional for me. He is already a very special dog and I was so proud and blessed to be able to share this experience with him.

Joany White and Boone: Boone's points going into the National guaranteed his qualifying in conformation. That being said, I was so proud of how handsome he looked with Dona and Taylor! I was so proud when Judge Lynn Butler really looked at him, and the photos of AWCA member Roxane Jourdain (Auriga Photography) highlighted his beautiful face, body and movement. Boone loves working with goats, he was so proud of himself when we finished our course, and I might live to tell about it! Why Boone runs while I walk is beyond my understanding. He's so athletic and eager to work with me, and he even won his class! (Watch Boone in Agility at the National) I'm so thankful for great pics and video by daughters Alden and Orly, who live in Wyoming, and Roxane. These images make me see more than I can notice during our runs, and they give me a deeper admiration for Boone in all four MVC events. I am so proud of my two- and four-legged family and am so grateful for the deepening of all of our relationships. I saw how well they all did, how proud they were of themselves, and how much fun we had. Without a doubt, this was the most memorable part of this year's National.

Maria Siebeck and Titan: CH Ability's To The Moon And Back CD BN RN HSA OA OAJ OF CGC VA

Marie Siebeck and Titan: Coming in 4th place in the most versatile collie competition pretty much topped everything else. My goal was to do better than 2nd to last place, which is where we placed in Peoria.

Debra Waelde and Vinny: So many things -- the National is always so special -- the beautiful dogs, seeing old friends making new ones and the excitement of it all. All of my dogs did great at National this year, but with Vin he had Q'd in PT both days and Rally was next, as soon as he earned his first leg I knew we had qualified, that was exciting. Vin earned his PT. Two legs on RN, Farm dog Certificate, made the first cut in specials and a Versatility Qualifier. Whoo Hoo Vinny You Dirty Rat!

Deanna Levenhagen and Lark: This was the Lark's first national. So everything was a new experience for her and I enjoyed being part of those new experiences and seeing it through her eyes. Probably the most memorable moment was her run on A course sheep. Since she earned her PT title on the first day, I moved her up to Started A sheep for the second day. I knew she was capable of doing the work, but there was a lot about A course that we still needed to train. Unfortunately, the livestock on that day were challenging even for the most experienced dogs. Knowing this was her first time in started, I needed for this to be a positive experience for Lark, but it seemed like the sheep might be too tough for her based on what I had seen in previous runs. In typical Lark fashion, she walked out on the field and said "hold my beer." She not only did good work for a first time started dog, but also completely controlled sheep and completed the entire course. I'll admit to that started run being one of the most memorable herding runs I've ever had with a dog. Her work earned her first place in the large started class. After that, everything else was gravy at the national. However, in typical "hold my beer" fashion, Lark showed me this is just the start of things. She proceeded to get qualifying runs for her first time competing in agility and rally and also showed beautifully in a large conformation class. For a young dog, I couldn't have been prouder.

Lark :: Oak Knolls Secret Desire HSAs PT HT RN (photo by Amy Ross)

Roxane Jourdain and Tini: I'd say there were two memorable moments. One was bumping her up from HT to PT in herding, without any preparation. She absolutely blew away my expectations and gave me a fantastic run. I love her attitude around stock. She covers her sheep/goats well and is extremely appropriate in her pressure. Every judge commented on how amazing she is! The second best moment was being in the MVC lineup with my 15-month-old collie. Tini was the youngest qualifier of 2021, and it was an honor to do this as a first time team.

Linda Marie Ward and Elsa: This is a hard choice between the weather or sitting in the bleachers watching smooths and receiving a call from the superintendent that my bitch was scheduled to be in the breed ring in about an hour and half! The schedule said the next day which was an error. I had no show clothes with me, let alone my bitch trimmed or ready. My friend went back to the house and retrieved my show clothes (lost her cell phone in the process and never found it) as I got my girl ready. It was worth it as she placed first in her class.

Linda Marie Ward and Elsa :: GCH Sinkona's Dream Catcher CDX BN GN RE HSAs MXP3 MXPB MJP4 MJPB MFP T2BP CA BCAT CGC

Barb Flaherty and Louie: Really enjoyed the agility course, but finishing his RE title was fun.

Amy Ross and Carina: Running her in agility was the most fun for me with her. Also getting to watch her and Deanna in the rally rings (they got a High Combined one day). But getting to take home the MVC ribbon for John and Mary was the true highlight. All of their hard work made it possible. Again, this was a team effort all the way.

Carina :: GCH Oak Knolls Burning Secret CDX RE NA OAJ OF CA

Sally Mobraaten and Andy: The most memorable thing, of a positive nature, was being high obedience winner both days from the open A class. I’m thrilled with a Q, let alone HIT. That was very special.

List the order of events that your collie enjoys most.

Debra Waelde and Vinny: I'm trying to think like Vinny right now and I think he would say Fast CAT, then herding, conformation and rally. He would love agility but I just don't have the stamina. I would love to try barn hunt, tracking and scent work but, whew, thinking about it is exhausting.

Roxane Jourdain and Tini: 1) herding, 2) rally, 3) conformation.

Theresa (Sutter) Ballantyne and Charlie :: CH Headline's Golden Marquis CGC FDC ACT I ACT II PT

Connie Sutter and Charlie: He loves agility, then herding. conformation is always fun for Charlie. Obedience is probably his least favorite.

Barb Flaherty and Louie: Herding, scent work (not offered), agility, rally/obedience

Jaclyn Rudebeck and Twister: Twister loves anything involving speed -- we didn't name him after a tornado for nothing! Of the events we entered at the National, herding is probably his favorite, followed by agility, then rally, then conformation. He also loves Fast CAT and barn hunt.

Twister :: Belfair Colebrae Storm Chaser HT NF CA DCAT TKN RATO TL-I UL-I

Sally Mobraaten and Andy: Meeting other collies (especially girls), eating caramel corn -- oh, you mean CCA events? Conformation, agilty, herding, rally, obedience.

Maria Siebeck and Titan: I think Titan would say that he likes conformation first because it involves a lot of food. He LOVES to eat. He will do anything for food. Next on the list would be herding followed by agility. Titan LOVES sheep and running almost as much as food. Obedience and Rally are much further down the line. Since he cannot run and no food is involved, he just doesn’t see the point in either sport.

Amy Ross and Aries: He loves the breed ring and herding most, I think (especially ducks), then agility and rally, obedience last (I think he thinks it is too serious).

Michelle Shoemaker and Topper: Topper enjoys whatever activity we are doing but if I had to list them in order it would be -- herding, agility, tracking, breed then obedience. I think obedience is lower on the list because it is also lower on my list. I know if I was better at obedience then we would all like it more!

Laurie Jeff Greer and Gwen: You would have to ask Gwen, but if I were guessing, I’d have to go with 1) Conformation 2) Herding 3) Obedience.

Linda Marie Ward and Elsa: I believe that she loves agility first, herding, obedience, breed. She is a joy to work with and she has had to adapt to me many times through the years.

Chelsea Bloomberg and Flynn and Tempest: Prior to retirement, Flynn loved agility best, followed by rally, obedience, and herding. Conformation would rate higher if it didn’t require grooming beforehand! Tempest’s preference is agility, followed by herding, rally, obedience, and conformation.

Deanna Levenhagen and Lark: Lark is still such a green dog in all the sports that her likes keep changing. At this point, I think she likes herding most, followed by conformation and rally/obedience, then agility. But I suspect as she grows in her training and understanding of what is being asked of her, Lark's likes will definitely change.

The versatility award at CCA requires competing in at least three events (conformation / obedience/rally, agility and or herding) and qualifying. This is not an easy feat. What are your tips for anyone who wants to try to accomplish this with their collie?

Michelle Shoemaker and Topper: I used to think that in order to win Most Versatile Collie you had to adopt the mindset of “Jack of all trades -- master of none” but over the years my ideas on that have really changed. Our methods of training dogs have evolved so much that I do think you and your dog can be great at more than one sport. Train what your dog loves and be patient with the activities that are more difficult for either of you. I find training what the dog loves first builds a connection between you and your dog and enthusiasm in the dog to train with you. Find good trainers who will respect your intuition about your dog and be your dog’s advocate. When the time comes to take on a big competition make sure you and your dog have fun - he is your teammate. In preparing for Most Versatile I try not to over train the month prior and let the dog have a little down time with hiking. When the time comes and you are at the start line or at the cone - take a second and just think about your prefect run and go for it!

Laurie Jeff Greer and Gwen: Keep it fun! Collies just want to please their people, and are more than willing to do anything we ask.

Linda Marie Ward and Elsa: Enter, have fun and enjoy the experience. It is about working and being a partner with your canine companion. Each dog will give you different experiences, joys, ups and downs. Watch others, enjoy the performance community and the wonderful support they give. Not all dogs like all events, they will shine in some more than others but enjoy every moment as they are fleeting moments in a time that is much too short.

Sally Mobraaten and Andy:  Enjoy the different venues and expose your dog to them with a happy heart. Your collie will then enjoy them too.

Chelsea Bloomberg and Flynn and Tempest: Start your training now! Get you and your collie to as many different training locations as you can (parks, dog-friendly stores, training facilities, farms, places that smell weird, places with strange echoes, loud air conditioners . . .). The more places your dog is comfortable working, the less stressful the environment of the National will be. You’ll likely not feel 100% prepared and that’s okay -- enter it all anyway, and go to have fun with your best friend. If you are having fun and you make it fun for your collie, you will be so much more successful than if you’re worrying about your Qs!

Vinny :: GCHS Chrysalis Wyldrose You Dirty Rat HT PT CGCA FASTCATB FDC

Debra Waelde and Vinny: Believe in yourself and your dog. I keep training fun, and watching herding and realizing that HT and PT seemed doable, especially if your dog has talent you just have to try it. Rally is really fun and most collies can heel, sit, stay and down so there is that. If your dog is already a Champion just get yourself in that ring. THEN manage to do all three in one weekend. I am not a perfectionist so obtaining the highest score is not what I have to get out of my dogs. I like them to be competitive, but I don't wait on perfection. Remember though, there is also agility, tracking, obedience and other things you can do. Just go out and have fun. Your dog will love it.

Joany White and Boone: My tip for anyone considering participating in Most Versatile Collie (or any activity) would be to make the only goal of participation be a means to deepening your mutual love, fun and learning together, no matter how you place. I want Boone to leave the ring more confident and proud of himself than when he went in, no matter how we place (from the mouth of a title-o-holic).

Roxane Jourdain and Tini: Collies can do it all! I really don't believe you can't teach a show dog to sit or do tricks. The key is teaching them context. My dog knows when she's in a conformation ring and when she's in a rally ring. Don't be afraid to step in the ring and have fun. Stepping in the ring is half the work! Trust your dog and your training, and have a blast. What matters is your bond with each other!

Barb Flaherty and Louie: Try it all if you can and keep the dog interested in various events.

Connie Sutter and Charlie: Be patient, keep it fun. Sometimes things don't work out as you expect, but just have fun with your dog.

Amy Ross and Aries: I think anyone who wants to try it, should, and whether or not you qualify, be proud you tried.

Deanna Levenhagen and Lark: If people are interested in trying for an MVC qualifier at nationals, go for it! Additionally, people should be proud of just being able to attempt to qualify for MVC. It isn't an easy feat for dog or owner! Regardless, be proud of the work you've done with your dog . . . even if you don't have a ribbon to show for it.

Jaclyn Rudebeck and Twister: Even if you don't think you're ready, go ahead and enter! CCA is an incredibly welcoming environment. Everyone at the performance events is so genuinely happy to see other collies and their handlers competing, especially at the Novice levels. The more seasoned handlers are so gracious with offering support and encouragement, and everyone cheers on each other, no matter how the run goes. Aside from that, I think it really helped us to have different "pre-ring" routines for different events, and to practice them often and in different environments. It's a lot to ask, especially of a young dog, to switch between multiple challenging activities over the course of a week in a highly stimulating new environment. Those pre-run routines can be really grounding for both dog and handler, and help you as a team to get into the correct mindset for whatever you're about to do. That, and provide as many opportunities as possible to relax and decompress - for both of you!

Aries :: GCHB Oak Knolls Secret Flame HSAd RN BN HSDs (photo by Julie Lawrence).

Maria Siebeck and Titan: Don’t think that qualifying for the versatility award is out of reach. Train for all of the events and enter them at nationals. Have fun with your collie. But most of all, enjoy the journey.

When you walk up to the start line with your collie, what song would you pick that most describes the character of your dog?

Amy Ross and Aries: I think his theme song would be "Walking On Sunshine. " Anyone who knows him would agree.

Roxane Jourdain and Tini: Probably "Harder Better Faster Stronger" by Daft Punk! We're a young duo so it fits us well, and she's very much a little spitfire. The song has a really nice beat too and it helps me have rhythm in rally or obedience. Maybe one day we'll do freestyle to music!

Joany White and Boone: For 20 years, I've sung "Ain't She/He Sweet" (the Beatles' version) to my collies, and I've adapted the words to "I Love How You Love Me" (Bobby Vinton) to tell each of my collies how special they are to me. Since starting performance events, I've added "Something Tells Me I'm Into Something Good" (Thanks, Herman and his Hermits!) to sing to myself when I walk up to the start line. It actually changes the biochemistry in my brain and reminds me that many good things can happen no matter what kind of run we have!


Linda Marie Ward and Elsa: I am not sure what song I would pick. But it would refer to a special bond. That look in their eye with the willingness to be your partner and with you at that moment in that event.

Michelle Shoemaker and Topper: Topper’s song is : "Put Me in Coach -- I’m ready to Play!" by John Fogerty!

Jaclyn Rudebeck and Twister: This is such a fun question! Honestly, the song that immediately came to mind is "Crazy Train" by Ozzy Ozbourne. The intensity and exuberance is a perfect soundtrack for the way I feel when running my boy! We're often right on the edge of control, but that's what makes him so fun and exciting to work with.

Chelsea Bloomberg and Flynn and Tempest: For Flynn, without a doubt, it’s "Too Sexy," by Right Said Fred. Depending on which Tempest steps to the line with me, there are days that it’s "Girls Just Want to Have Fun" by Cyndi Lauper and other days that it is very decidedly, "Sweet But Psycho" by Ava Max.

Barb Flaherty and Louie: Actually, no music is playing in my head but maybe I should try that and see if it helps my nerves!!!

Amy Ross and Carina: Her theme song would be either "I'm Here For The Party" or "Girls Just Want To Have Fun."

Maria Siebeck and Titan: I would pick "Best Day Of My Life" by American Authors. Titan emits so much joy in everything that he does.

Deanna Levenhagen and Lark: Her motto seems to align with the "Hold My Beer" song.

Debra Waelde and Vinny: The Cars "Lets Go."

Sally Mobraaten and Andy: The theme song from “The Courtship of Eddie‘s Father.”

Connie Sutter and: "Eye of the Tiger." What ever Charlie does, he is so focused.

Laurie Jeff Greer and Gwen: “Girls Just Want To Have Fun.”

Laurie Jeff Greer and Gwen :: CH Spectrum Arrowhill Dreamcatcher HSAs HSDs FDC

Most Versatile Collie Qualifiers

TC Riverrun Galatean Wyndhams Top Contender :: Owned by Michelle Shoemaker (View Ads :: Video)

Wild Wind's I Think I Love You CD HSAs HSDs RN :: Owned by Michelle & Laura Bergstraser

GCH Foggy Bay Sealoch Star Catcher, CD BN RE FDC AX AXJ T2B BCAT SBN TKA : Owned by Sally Mobraaten

CH Ability's To The Moon And Back CD BN RN HSA OA OAJ OF CGC VA :: Owned by Maria Siebeck (View Ad)

CH Spectrum Arrowhill Dreamcatcher :: Owned by Laurie Jeff Greer & Jenny Satyavelu (View Ad)

Belfair Colebrae Perpetual Motion CD BN RE PT MX MXJ OF BCAT TKI RATN :: Owned by Chelsea Bloomberg, Alene Evans, Jennifer Laik (View Ad)

Mountainside Takin' The Love Train NFP NAP NJP TKA FCAT DCAT CA CAA BPD TD PT BN RI RNPairs FDC ATT TDI CGCA CGCU VCX :: Owned by Joany White (View Ad :: Video)

Oak Knolls Secret Desire HSAs PT HT RN :: owned by Dr. Deanna Levenhagen, Amy Ross, Brian Elwell, Patricia & Rachel Anstett

GCH Oak Knolls Burning Secret CDX RE NA OAJ OF CA :: Owned by Amy Ross, Brian Elwell, Mary & John Davis (View Ad)

CH Sinkona's Jazzman CDX BN RE PT FDC NAP NJP ACT1 SWN CGC :: Owned by Barbara Flaherty, LindaWard & Tanya Ward (View Ad)

GCH Sinkona's Dream Catcher CDX BN GN RE HSAs MXP3 MXPB MJP4 MJPB MFP T2BP CA BCAT CGC :: Owned by Linda Marie Ward & TanyaA Ward (View Ad)

GCHB Oak Knolls Secret Flame HSAd RN BN HSDs :: Owned by Amy Ross, Brian Elwell, Mary & John Davis (View Ad)

CH Wild Wind's Ability Ariel :: Owned by Michelle & Laura Bergstraser & Kylie Hire

GCH MACH RACH Belfair The Swashbuckler CDX RM3 RAE2 PT MXS MJB OF TKI GV :: Owned by Chelsea Bloomberg, Alene Evans (View Ad)

Belfair Colebrae Storm Chaser HT NF CA DCAT TKN RATO TL-I UL-I :: Owned by Jaclyn Rudebeck & Chelsea Bloomberg (View Ad)

CH Headline's Golden Marquis CGC FDC ACT I ACT II PT :: Owned by Connie Sutter & Theresa Ballantyne

GCH Wild Wind's Mr Rock N Roll :: Owned by Michelle & Laura Bergstraser & Jade Chase

GCHS Chrysalis Wyldrose You Dirty Rat :: Owned by Debra Waelde

Scalloway And Serac's Hold My Quarantini :: Roxane Jourdain & LeaBertsch (View Ad)

Thanks to Jaclyn Rudebeck for putting together this great playlist on spotify. Here is the link to listen to all the song choices listed above:: 2021 CCA MVC Qualifiers playlist

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Cover Photo courtesy Michelle Shoemaker / Wyndham Collies