Ca­nines on show

Horowhenua Chronicle - - FRONT PAGE - By JA­NINE BAALBERGEN

This year’s Horowhenua AP & I Show will be a bit dif­fer­ent.

Due to My­coplasma bo­vis there will be no cat­tle at the show, but New Zealand’s Got Ta­lent fi­nal­ist Chelsea Mar­riner and her crew of 16 bor­der col­lies, the Ul­ti­mate Ca­nines, will more than make up for that.

As many as five Ul­ti­mate Ca­nines are set to per­form at the show on Satur­day as well as Sun­day, do­ing two or three halfhour shows each day.

Chelsea and her dogs have been in Levin be­fore for the AP & I Show, some­thing they thor­oughly en­joyed. “It is a su­perb show and the more the au­di­ence laughs at the dogs per­form­ing the cheekier they get,” Chelsea said.

“Kids love see­ing the dogs per­form and they love show­ing off.”

The team from Ro­torua will be do­ing an agility con­test in Toko­roa that week­end, so a show for Horowhenua au­di­ences will be a wel­come change for them all.

“The dogs are su­per en­er­getic and seem to get more into it as the show goes on.”

The plan is to per­form the same show each time, but dogs be­ing dogs one never re­ally knows what will hap­pen, she said.

One of the dogs has a “look­ing af­ter the baby” rou­tine, oth­ers can play dead, stack bowls and play with coins, to give an ex­am­ple of some of the things they do.

Chelsea has been per­form­ing since she was seven years old, but her ap­pear­ances on TV for New Zealand’s Got Ta­lent set her and her team on the path of per­form­ing as a part-time oc­cu­pa­tion.

“I also do dog train­ing and the odd bit of farm work,” Chelsea said.

“It is pretty cool thing to do and the whole fam­ily goes on tour to­gether, though only a few will be per­form­ing.”

She has a ute and a dog trailer avail­able for trav­els around the coun­try.

She said her old­est dog is 16 years old. “I also have young dogs, trick dogs, agility dogs as well as a few re­tired ones.”

Chelsea said train­ing a dog takes time. “They’re in­di­vid­u­als, just like peo­ple. Some dogs pick up sim­ple tricks right away while more com­pli­cated ones take them some time. Oth­ers re­ally take to the tough ones quickly.

“You get out of dog train­ing what you put into it and time and pa­tience are im­por­tant, but all dogs are train­able to some ex­tent.”

Chelsea’s dogs are keen per­form­ers and ex­pect a lot from Horowhenua au­di­ences.

The dogs are all trained us­ing pos­i­tive re­in­force­ment tech­niques and have a great love of show­ing off their skills and go­ing through their paces.

Other at­trac­tions at the AP & I Show in­clude Barry Woods, aka Billy Black, who will per­form on Satur­day, and the lack of live cat­tle will be made up for with a dis­play on beef cat­tle.

The AP & I Show is on Satur­day and Sun­day, Jan­uary 19 and 20, at the AP & I Show­grounds on Vic­to­ria St in Levin.

‘The dogs are su­per en­er­getic and seem to get more into it as the show goes on.

Chelsea Mar­riner with her dogs Chrome, Sprint, Dirt and Rip.

Rip and Chelsea in ac­tion.

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