Birdee came somewhat as a surprise. We had done a breeding with Matt & Dena Drozdoff of Fireside Mastiffs using our boy Camo. A mutual friend, Nancy Walker, co-owned both the bitch and Camo so it was a simple and friendly arrangement. When the pups were about 5-6 weeks old, Matt mentioned that we were welcome to have one of the puppy bitches if we wanted. It was a quick conversation between Phil and myself, followed by an excited purchase of a plane ticket.
I brought Birdee home on the 10th of August. She had our hearts from the beginning and hasn't stopped making us laugh ever since. The child is incorrigible! She pesters the other dogs in the house until they tell her enough is enough, then she moves on to the next unsuspecting victim. When other dogs display less than welcoming behavior, Birdee simply gives them room, looks at them as if wondering what their problem is, and moves on to something (or someone) else. She has an innate confidence that keeps her from ever thinking it might be her causing the bad mood so she never takes a dog who behaves badly personally.
Birdee is a beautiful bitch who tends to overthink what she's doing in the ring. When she does that, she paces (an incorrect style of movement for my non-dog friends). That, combined with a less packed show schedule over the last couple of years, and Birdee is still working on her AKC CH. Not to worry, she will finish. However, we now understand the various reasons why many seasoned show folks seem to comfortable with dogs not finishing lickety split. When you've finished a few, you realize there is no hurry and the good ones will finish in due time.
When I look at pictures of Mollie when she was young, I realize how much she and her granddaughter, Birdee, look alike. Sometimes, it's almost eerie. And that isn't where the similarities stop. I watch the two girls together and despite their age difference, grandma and granddaughter love to play with each other, tormenting each other as only family can. Mollie is doing an amazing job of teaching her granddaughter how good dogs behave, as well as how to teach other youngsters the ropes. When it is Birdee's time to shine as a mother, I have no doubt that the teaching her grandmother has done will save my hide.