By David “Cowboy” Flores
Note from VetriScience® Laboratories: This week’s blog post is written by David and Kerri Flores from Houston, TX. David and Kerri participate in several Dock Dogs events, and they are the proud parents of the 2013 Masters Division World Champion Dock Dog, Stetson. Read more to hear all about their 7 dogs and the shows their champions have competed in.
We would also like to thank David and Kerri for providing such a nicely done piece about their dogs and their experience with Dock Dogs, and we wish them the best of luck at their event this weekend! And to all of our readers, have a happy and safe 4th of July!
Our team name is “Team Camo,” and we have been involved in various dog competitions, in which include Fly Ball, Dock Diving, and training in Agility. We are from a small town called Needville, Texas, which is about 30 minutes South of Houston. We live on 5 acres of land that has a fishing pond and plenty of training space. We have a total of 7 dogs, 2 Goats, 1 cat, and just lost a Rabbit, due to old age. So needless to say, we have a variety of different pets, and one can say we are animal lovers. Kerri and I have been married just over a year, and have been together for about 9. We have found our calling, and what keeps us stronger is our love for animals, as well as training them.
We had a very successful 2013 in Dock Diving; we currently are the proud parents of the 2013 Masters Division World Champion Dock Dog, Stetson. My wife Kerri jumps Stetson in the championship show. Stetson is a 5-year-old Australian Shepard from Stetson from Desert Willow Aussie in New Mexico and who never seems to stop. He is on the go all day long, every day. He has come a long way in a short time; he has only been jumping for about a year and half, and he keeps getting better. He has jumped up into the Elite division for 2014, and has done very well this season winning a 1st Place in the San Antonio Rodeo Dock Dogs National Competition earlier this year, and he took home a 3rd Pearland Texas (National Event) a few months after that. He is currently sitting in the top 15 in the world in Dock Dogs as of this past week, and has been holding steady in his division.
When Stetson competed in Dubuque, Iowa last year, he and ended up jumping his best in the cold weather. Pretty weird since we are from Texas. Stetson also competes in Fly Ball, and has done well, but he has his days. I have done the training in this sport for him, with assistance from my wife. It seems to us that he likes to be the center of attention, and that is why he loves dock diving–it’s all about him, and him only.
Our other Dock Dog is Cash (3.5 years Chocolate Lab); this is my Lab who loves to be in the water, and forgets his obedience once he is on the dock. Yes, he gets way too excited for this sport. He was a rescue and never in my wildest dreams would I have asked for a better dog. He has been jumping for about 2 years and has had a variety of challenges, due to injuries, but he has come through and has done very well. Cash has placed twice for 2nd place this year. The first was at the San Antonio Rodeo and Pearland Texas, in speed retrieval.
Cash has done very well in Big Air, but still fine tuning his attention to the bumper when released. He is titled in Big Air in the Senior Division, and will be classified in Speed Retrieve after this upcoming weekend, at Magnolia Texas. Both Cash and Stetson have been training in the Extreme Vertical competition and will be making their debut in the event this weekend, and we are hoping for the best. As for Cash, Dock Diving has been his best sport, and he can also be seen retrieving dad’s birds during bird season.
Our Blue Heeler, Bella, was also a rescue who has done wonderful work in the Fly Ball arena. She has a small stature, but makes up for it with her heart. She has gained all the necessary training to make her one of the fasted Blue Heelers in competition thus far. Bella was a quick learner, and managed to put it all together very quickly. She has earned various titles, and is a few thousand points from her next one. We will be competing at Reliant Center in July with our Fly Ball team called Barkworthy.
Bella was left on the streets of Cypress Texas and didn’t have a steady home. When we received a call, we didn’t anticipate inheriting another dog, but when we did, we actually ended up with another Yellow lab. Yes, Bella and Rowdy (Yellow Lab) were found together and were inseparable when we went to pick her up.
So we ended up with two instead of one rescue. In my mind, this was the best decision. Rowdy came with complications, for which will keep him out of competition, and we are okay with that. He came with bad hips and heart worms; and glad to say, currently is negative on heart worms, but still has hip issues.
Our other Yellow Lab, Dakota, is quite the character. She is the boss of the other two labs, and knows it very well. We started her Fly Ball training over a few years ago, but took a step back when my wife was injured. She is now back and should be rocking the lanes here pretty quickly. Dakota (aka Kota Bear, aka Cold Beer) has a personality of a human.
She knows exactly what time she needs to be fed, and what time she needs to go to bed, and she will let you know. She is a 4-year-old puppy, which likes to please both my wife and me. We expect good things from her, and will report back where we stand after our biggest event of the year at Reliant Center.
Our last two dogs are Angel and Cheyenne. Angel is the oldest of the bunch, at 15 years of age, and Cheyenne is our latest rescue (Lab/Pit Mix) and is a little over a year old. Angel is our guard dog (LOL!!), and Cheyenne is in training for both Fly Ball and Dock Diving. It has been a slow process due to her attention span, but it’s coming along slowly.
You can also learn more about Team Camo and see more pics at their website: http://www.teamcamotexas.com/