Mootsie passed away today. She was a wonderful character, more like a human than any dog I have had in my life.
Mootsie was the queen of the kennel and all the other dogs knew it. She would get to wander when we were training and would search relentlessly for the smallest scrap of food. Mootsie had a ravenous appetite; she could find food and devour it quicker than a striking cobra. Woe to the unsuspecting individual who left his/her food in the open, or in their car with the door open. It was gone in a heartbeat.
Mootsie was not tolerant of puppies. She would warn them off once, maybe twice, but not three times. More than one of my young dogs learned the hard way that Mootsie did not appreciate their youthful antics.
From the beginning, we thought that Mootsie was very talented - a reflection of her sire FC/AFC Code Blue and dam FC/AFC Trumarc's Lean Cuisine. She great eyes, and could pick out obscure gun stations with ease. When we came out of the holding blind, I could see her identify the gun stations one by one, before settling in on her favorite - the flyer. I did not have a dog with that talent before and I have not had another dog with that talent since. She had very quick feet and you could work her on the mat in the smallest of increments and could thread the needle on a blind with her. From the beginning, she loved to jump over obstacles on line and that made blinds a joy. But, her greatest asset was her intensity and focus.
For all of that, after a good derby career, Mootsie was not very productive. I don't think we got any all age placements until she was five. Both Cherylon and I wondered if we were simply wrong about her. But, then Mootsie turned it on. From age five until we retired her at age ten, Mootsie gathered 76.5 All Age Points. I think she would have broken 100 points if I were a better handler. Mootsie qualified for the 2007 National Amateur and Open, the 2008 National Amateur, the 2009 National Amateur, the 2010 National Amateur, the 2011 National Amateur and Open, and the 2012 National Amateur. She made the 9th series of the 2010 and 2011 National Amateur, and I always felt that I failed her by not getting her to the 10th. Mootsie deserved to be a finalist.
There was never a better dog than Mootsie. I will miss her. I am certain that in heaven she is busy searching for scraps under the table.
Goodbye Moo Moo.