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Archive for December, 2019

2019 Christmas Letter

Karl & Heather Sather
Fringe (14), Mazikeen (3), Philo (6 months), and Vignette (6 months)

2019 has been yet another year of changes at our house. We don’t grow moss around here.

Letty competed in the AKC Agility Invitational in Orlando last December and went clean in 3 rounds out of 4. This year she ended up ranked the #3 Dutch Shepherd. She earned a few big titles this year too: her AKC Agility Championship (MACH), her AKC Time to Beat (T2B), her 2nd CPE Agility Championship (C-ATCH2), her Open (2nd level) title (CDX-C) in CDSP obedience, and her Novice Containers title in AKC Scentwork. She was in her prime and did a lot in the first 3.5 months of this year. Sadly, in February she was diagnosed with bladder cancer. We tried our very best to fight it. She was so brave at her appointments at the U of MN. But in April the cancer won and spread to her bones and we had to say goodbye to her. She was only 8. I miss her sweet eager face every single day.

Fringe wrapped up her agility career with another Agility Championship in CPE – her CT-ATCH2. She has also retired from nosework and rally. She prefers to hang out at home and chase Mazi around the yard. At 14.5 years old she can do whatever she wants. Or doesn’t want. She loves going on walks around the property and exploring all the wildlife.

Mazi and I are keeping busy with training and trialing. Letty loved the outdoors so my plan for the summer was to be outside as much as possible. So Mazi and I stuck to the plan in her honor. We entered outdoor agility trials, we went hiking, and we went camping. Her training is starting to come together now too. She earned 2 CDSP obedience titles and a UKC rally obedience title. I think 2020 is going to be an exciting year for us. I can’t wait to see what it brings.

Karl and I celebrated our 12th anniversary this year! Karl has been enjoying playing his basses at jam sessions with his friends in WI. They held their annual big party in October this year at his sister Mary’s house. It was well attended and everyone had a great time. He went and saw a Rush tribute band too.

This spring I attended Fenzi Dog Sport Training Academy camp again. This year it was in Pennsylvania. It was a beautiful drive. On the way home I stopped in Ohio to audit a mondioring seminar with a great trainer from Norway. I went back to Ohio in August to attended another mondioring seminar with a trainer from Belgium. It’s always a great time with friends in Ohio. I made 2 trips to Canada this year. In June I went to an agility trial held at a campground in Thunder Bay. I rented a cute cabin and Mom came along for the trip. It was so much fun! We went to Kakabecka Falls in Thunder Bay and then the Splitrock Lighthouse in Duluth on the way home. We did a lot of hiking. I went tent camping in Winnipeg again in August. The park is on 8,300 acres! Mazi and I did a ton of hiking and some agility. I was lucky enough to be able to attend a lot of great training and behavior seminars locally – Shade Whitesel (twice!) on training with toys, Ken Ramirez on animal behavior, Amy Cook (twice!) on training sensitive dogs using play, Jessica Hekman on genetics, and our annual agility handling seminar with Tracy Sklenar.

In September we brought home 2 kittens. Philo and Vignette. They brought much needed joy to our house. He’s big and pretty chill. She’s little and a firecracker that zips around the house fake attacking us and the dogs.

We wish you all peace and joy for 2020!

2018 Christmas Letter

Karl & Heather Sather
Fringe (13), Letty (8), Mazikeen (2)

2018 has been another year of changes at our house – both happy and sad.

At the end of October we said goodbye to Bessie. She was our 16.5 year old house cat. She was our last cat.  We will miss her meows demanding her breakfast and dinner.

Fringe has had a fun year with lots of variety. She earned another Agility Championship in CPE – her CT-ATCH. She and Karl also did an Intermediate obedience class, a tricks class, and they started doing nosework. They really enjoy doing nosework and passed the entry level test (ORT) for 2 different odors (birch and anise) recently. They have earned a rally title in WCRL and are showing in AKC rally in Orlando again this month.

Letty is going to Orlando again to compete in the AKC Agility Invitational as the #2 Dutch Shepherd. This is my 6th year going (2 with Vada and 5 with Letty). She earned her NoseWork2 at a trial in IL on St Patrick’s Day. We earned 2 AKC Scentwork titles in Fargo. She also earned her CPE Agility Trial Extraordinaire. This big title has taken her 6 years to earn! She also earned her UKC Agility Champion Excellent. She was super brave in obedience this year too and earned her CDSP Novice obedience title. Having strangers touch her had been hard for her. We also have earned 1 leg in Open. And she is qualified for CPE Nationals being held in WI next year.

Mazikeen has been training in obedience, agility, and mondioring. We did a jump grid class over the winter and she’s a great jumper. She also did a Canine Good Citizen class and passed the CGC test on the last day of class. She has earned a few agility titles. We are trying to get the last few qualifying scores to be qualified for CPE Nationals.  She loves to run and play with Letty.  She’s an amazing dog with a bright future ahead of her.

Karl has been enjoying playing his basses at jam sessions with his friends and they have been building guitars. He also went to a Lynyrd Skynyrd concert.  His friend Dave come up one weekend to help us work on my house.

I made the trip up to Winnipeg in Ontario in August for a fun USDAA trial and to camp at a wonderful campground up there that has great hiking. I was trial secretary for 7 CPE trials and a mondioring trial and hosted an agility seminar. I also started back to yoga class. And in June I went to Fenzi Dog Sports Academy Camp in OH. I got to OH a few days early to attend a mondioring obedience training seminar with a presenter from Sweden, then we had a fun day of training  mondioring, and then 3 days of auditing all the different workshops and lectures at FDSA Camp. It was an amazing time to be surrounded by like minded trainers and to spend time in person with my friends from around the country.

We celebrated our 11th anniversary this year! When we were in Orlando last year my van died on an on ramp and the engine needed to be replaced and it would have taken 2 weeks. So we bought a new Town and Country. How lucky that Karl decided to go with on that trip so we could make the decisions together! Then at the end of June our renters moved out of the house that I owned before we got married. So we spent every extra moment for 2 months preparing the house to be put on the market. We closed at the end of October. The new owners love the house so that makes me really happy as I loved it too.       

We wish you all a happy and healthy 2019!


It’s been a super long time since I have posted.  I now have the WordPress app on my Kindle and a keyboard for it so I’m hoping I will start posting again.

This was a crazy week.  I hurt my back on Tuesday morning putting on a sock.  So now POUND class that night and only 1 more left.  😦  No mondio training on Wednesday.  Luckily it was an off night for comp obed so I didn’t miss anything.  Thursday I went to comp sports foundation class.  I skipped agility though.  Which means that I’ll have to make it up next week.  Friday I went to agility open ring time and worked on pieces of things and startlines.  It irritated my back a bit.  Today I ran Mazi at a UKI trial.  I woke up feeling pretty good.  Carrying the crate in and bending over to set it up irritated it.  For one class I bar set and leash ran.  I hadn’t sat all day either so my back was getting sore.  Then I scribed and that helped.  Tonight it’s feeling almost back to normal.  Back pain is exhausting.  You’re always on edge trying to protect your back and needing to stop doing whatever makes it hurt asap so you are constantly on edge.  I’ve been sick off and on too.  Hopefully that is gone.

The trial went really well today.  The errors were my handling.  Her contacts are so much better and her starlines aren’t horrible.

Off to bed.  Maybe next time I’ll post about the mondio seminar and how I’m working on redoing her DOH.  I’m going to post our Christmas letter from this year and last also.

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