Today Tortik became Grand Champion Armahani Heliodorr Halu (AI) RA JC!!!
While he is not the first of my Finnish Lapphunds I've handled to a grand, and not the first of my prefix to earn his grand, he is the first I've breeder, owner, handled all the way, making it pretty special to me.
I can't begin to express how incredibly proud I am of this dog. We've had quite the ride together! While every single BIG and RUBIG win have been damn thrilling, the times he has been singled out by Nordic judges for major awards are the particular 'proud breeder' moments. That whisper from a Finnish judge as he handed over the ribbon 'I know these are rare here, and I wanted everyone watching to know just how good he is' will always stay with me. His wins have included BISS under Norwegian judge A Foss, as well as 2 x DCC/RUBISS under Finnish specialist Tapio Kakko and Swedish specialist Ambjörn Lindqvist.
Huge thanks to CJ Yeap and Kateryna Yeap (Tortik's mum, co-owner and performance handler) for putting up with my craziness these last few years, letting me steal him away so often, and sharing the love of this complete sweetheart of a boy with me. Thanks also to Elaine Short and Sarah Ewenson for being the two people who enabled him to actually happen!