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Alpha Rising
"Durgin has a remarkable gift for inventing unusual characters doing incredible things."


BelleCGC patchThe Heart of Dog
There have always been dogs in my life.

When I lived in a the remote Appalachians (from log cabin to beloved old farmhouse), I took the place of the non-existent shelter, and naturally we had our own pack as well. Those days were heavily populated with hounds, including Camo (an astonishingly sweet and dorky Leopard Cur), a number of Redbones, and of course Strider the Wonder Hound.

For the while I was in the suburbs--long enough to gravitate to my sweet Cardigan Welsh Corgis: an extremely personable breed that fits big dog brains and behavior into sturdy little packages. Besides, how can anyone resist those ears?

However, given the freedom of space
and rural living out in the southwest high desert--mountains again, albeit totally different ones!--I've found my way home to the hounds again. Now it's Beagles, and boy are we having a good time!

My dogs all have CGCs (Canine Good Citizen certification), and since '02 we've played in agility competition, with obedience and rally off to the side. In the training and competition, I see them come alive...and the time I spend with them makes me come alive, too.

Here they are!

There's also a Photo Gallery! (still in legacy design)

The Heart of Dog Story Collection is now available!
BellePACH Cheysuli's Silver Belle, CD RE MXP5 MXPS MJP6 MJPS PAX2 XFP EAC EJC CGC (Belle) was born on Christmas Eve '99, and she loves agility! At the time she earned her PAX2, she was one of fewer than 50 dogs in the country to do so. She was also the 20th dog to earn the new PACH title, and was only 100 points shy of her PACH2 when I retired her in September of '11. Belle also has her AKC Rally Excellent and Novice Obedience titles--all in the ribbons--and she overcame great odds and a partial paralyzation at age five to do any of it. 1998-2013: Love you forever, Miss Belle...

iThe titles = Preferred Agility Champion, Novice Obedience, Rally Excellent, Masters Agility Preferred x5, Masters Agility Preferred Silver, Masters Jumpers Preferred x6, Masters Jumpers Preferred Silver, Preferred Agility Excellent x2, Excellent FAST Preferred, NADAC Excellent Agility & Jumpers, and Canine Good Citizen
In spring of '04, CH MACH3 PACH Cedar Ridge DoubleOSeven VCD1 GN RE TDX MXC MJG MXPB MJPB PAX XF EAC EJC CGC joined the gang. Connery is the quintissential Beagle, a clown who is also possessed by moments of astonishing singlemindedness. He has a Facebook page where he chronicles his puzzlements about the human world. read more about Connery, his health challenge, and the fundraising doggie anthology

During 2007, Connery ranked in the top ten Beagles nationally in obedience, rally, and agility.

The titles = Breed champion, Master Agility Champion x3, Versatile Companion Dog 1 (including Tracking Dog & Novice Obedience), Graduate Novice Obedience, Rally Excellent, Tracking Dog Excellent, Masters Excellent Agility Century, Masters Jumpers Gold, Masters Agility Preferredx2, Masters Jumpers Preferredx2, Excellent FAST Agility, and Excellent Agility & Jumpers in NADAC; Canine Good Citizen.
D'ArtagnanAlbedo's Charter Member VCD1 BN GN RE MX MJB NF CA CGC joined the pack in the summer of '10 at age 10 months--which means he had (still has) a lot to learn, and time to make up for. D'Artagnan Beagle (Dart!) is full of brilliance and sass, with a huge dash of youthful evile. You can find photos of Dart at the Wordplay Blog. read more about Dart [once I make that page]

The titles = Versatile Companion Dog 1 (including Tracking Dog & Novice Obedience), Tracking Dog, Beginner Novice Obedience, Grad Novice Obedience, Rally Excellent,
Masters Agility and Masters Agility Jumpers Bronze, Novice FAST Agility, Coursing Aptitude, and Canine Good Citizens

RibbonCh. Cheysuli's Liquid Silver (Ribbon), was born in '01. She's Belle's half-sister through her sire, and she's a gorgeous girl with true diva attitude! I'm privileged to have a half-ownership of Ribbon as a thank-you for help with the very difficult whelping, which with this girl means major bragging rights. She not only won the '04 Megan Competition (a nationwide Cardigan event), she also went Best of Opposite at the National Specialty as a veteran in '10, and she made beautiful babies. You can read more about her at Cheysuli Cardigans.

Dogs Still Beloved

StriderStrider (1984-1998) was the dog of my heart. Everyone has one; he was mine. He came to me as an orphan, only four days old. His mother was a Beagle, his father a Blue Tick. He grew up sturdy and handsome, with lanky hound legs and a nose that wouldn't quit. He inspired my unofficial Blue Hound Visions business name--a moniker that covers writing, webwork, and artwork. He was my WonderHound, and you can read more about him if you'd like. (a legacy page)

KaceyXtacee Carbon Unit, CGC (1995-2008): Kacey was a genius spark of a dog, never taking the easy way. She worried about the world and made sure it knew its place, when she wasn't off masterminding plans of domination or perfecting her doggy telepathic influence. She was never an easy dog, but she was an indelible one-of-a-kind. Kacey qualified for her CGC '03, and was an outstanding obedience dog--everywhere but the obedience trial ring, where she became a Creative Evil Genius. Naturally. You can find photos of Kacey sprinkled throughout the Dog Photo Gallery.
BelleCheysuli Jean-Luc Picardigan, OJP NAP OJC NAC CGC (1998-2010). Jean-Luc sustained a significant brain injury when he was born in '98. He required very special training and handling, but his quality of life improved beyond expectation with agility, which imbued him with confidence and even an occasional sense of glee. He started trialing with the modest goal of simply finishing a course, but in the end he titled through his Open courses, with plenty of red and blue ribbons to his name. He, too, earned his CGC. You can find photos of Jean-Luc sprinkled throughout the Dog Photo Gallery.