turned out to be Dave Harris, the guy who had bought the puppy off Eva. He went on to use Douglas a couple of times and kept a bitch out of both of these litters. One of these bitches was Golden Girl Jesse.
Now The second half of the story. We were looking for a brindle bitch puppy. We went over to see some puppies of Viv Coulters (Collooney). When Viv let the pups out this flash of fawn strolled out. I could not keep my eyes off him. George was the same but we never said a thing till we came inside, looked at each other and said, "The fawn dog pup". I couldn't believe it as George was so set on a brindle bitch. He was 10 weeks old, and had already been sold twice. The first buyer wanted a brindle when they saw him and the second never turned up. So it must have been fate. We then brought Mikey (Collooney Look No Further Than Crosscop) home with us.
When Dave next got in touch, he wanted to mate Jesse (Golden Girl Jessie ). Have you got a nice fawn dog I can use? Well it was a no brainer and I told him about Mickey . He came up, saw Mikey and was delighted and we mated Jessie . We went to see the litter at two weeks and decided to have a puppy. We picked a lovely red fawn bitch, each time we went to see them we never changed our minds. Eventually we brought home April (April Showers at Crosscop). We were so pleased with April that we asked Dave and Diana if we could repeat this mating and we did just that.
At three days old we picked Hazel out of the three bitches in the litter. Again, we never changed our minds and brought Hazel home with us. From the moment I saw her I knew we had something special. As she grew she seemed to get better and better. She was so even and well balanced, every time I looked at her my heart skipped a beat.
Her very first show was EAWC Championship Show, in at the deep end. She was not the easiest to Handle and Charley really had her work cut out for her. I said just before Charley went into the ring with her, "if you don't win, I will cry." only because I felt so proud of her. In she went and won a lovely class and went on to win BPIS!! The judge that day was Pauline Oliver. Little did we know then what a big part Pauline would play in the greatest day of our life, so far…
Hazel went on to gain her JW in 55 days, she was awarded her first CC and BOB from Junior under Ray Moreland. At this show she also won her first group placing, a Group 4 at HAOS.
Everyone asks what our proudest moment is, well it has to be Crufts 2016. My proudest moment of the day was having 4 of our bitches in the Bitch Challenge. Junior bitch won by Kim, Crosscop Love me Tender at Kordaline, handled by Sue. Graduate bitch was won by Holly, Crosscop Me and My Girl for Edenwhip, handled by James. Limit bitch was won by April Showers at Crosscop again handled by James. And finally Open bitch won by Hazel handled by Charley. To win the CC and the RCC was just brilliant. Sadly my nerves would not let me watch but the cheers told me everything.
Yes, we have been lucky, from that very first phone call luck has played its part. But also a lot of hard work, dedication and sacrifice has played their parts too.
There are many people behind the scenes who we couldn't have done this without. My mum Doreen and our brilliant dog sitter John. A special mention to Rosemary and James who without them our show team would not be complete. You just never know what is around the corner and with Georges sudden illness Rosemary was a life saver and kept us going.
To finish we have had an incredible journey and we hope that throughout this journey we have helped to promote our lovely breed in a positive and very beneficial way. Hazel is the ultimate show girl and I'm sure we could all agree she has managed to highlight whippets in a good way. Although, she is very photogenic, she has had many a photographer enraged as she just will not stand for photos. That's why we sit.
At least we added a bit of excitement to the Arden Grange/Dog World Top Dog competition with Hazel stealing the top spot at the very last show. Charley's reaction to this has been captured perfectly by the Dog World film crew as she received her 26th CC which gave her the title of Top Dog All Breeds 2016. 26 CCs and every one means the same as the first.
We hope this story might inspire others to go the extra mile, So many dreams have come true for us this year. If we can do it, so can you . So Go on and live that dream. You can do it!
It all began with a phone call from Eva Yacoby (Cobyco). She told me she had given my phone number to a guy who had a puppy from her. He wanted to mate her and she thought our young dog Douglas (Crosscop Stormey Weather) would be a suitable stud.
Well… it was nearly two years before I got the phone call. A very strong Cumbrian accent asked if I had a Stud Dog he could use, it