Tony Alonso's Final Reflections From The IABCA Shows




By Tony Alonso


Final reflections on IABCA Show (can I stop talking about this already?)


I still remember me writing the Sandy an email with my Golden Retriever's story, my horror story.  I can go back in my mind, without reading, to Sandy's response to my email.  How genuine, how sad he felt for our dog.  I knew then, without further researching, that he was "the right man or the job", the man who would guide us and give us what we were looking for, an excellent show dog and wonderful companion, along with a large family with much support. 

I can say this much, Sandy knew that Miracle was special, but even he must have been taken aback with the results of a few of weeks ago, and we are very glad that, like him, we received that surprise, a true “miracle”.   As I told Jessie when she called me on the phone, I wish I had switched days and had been there to see what Miracle was poised to do.  I wish I had been there to give Sandy a big hug and thank him for giving us that wonderful moment (something I did when we went to pick up Miracle at the farm). 

Yes, I am a hugger, expert at bear hugs, warm hugs, tender hugs, and bro hugs, and that day I would have hugged each of the Herzons and the rest of the folks there to watch and root for our family (Chambray) to win that day.  I am not going to lie, or as kids say in Facebook, "ngl", as Jessi gave me the news over the phone, I got somewhat emotional...NO, NOT CRYING EMOTIONAL!!!  What I meant was that I was speechless, and I am not the speechless type.  I wanted to scream, jump up and down, dance, throw fireworks, etc.  I just didn't know what to do with myself that day...and if I did get teary eyed, nobody was there to corroborate it, so it is my word against, well, nobody's.  It's kind of when I tell people that  I did Karate.  Folks ask me what belt I reached, and I proudly say "white with a red stripe".  To this, people tell me that I can't possibly be lying.  If I was lying, they tell me, I would say that I was a blue, or green belt,  you know, embellish a bit.  I can't lie or exaggerate about my athletic prowess or lack thereof.  My son, Anthony, is a Yellow belt, so he already kicked my butt...LOL

In regards to show dogs, one thing needs to be said regarding evaluations.  If someone has been doing it for so long, their evaluations will be near flawless, while defying the laws of averages.  When we received Miracle, Sandy’s evaluation of him was that of a future show star.  That, we knew and expected, but these results, we thought, maybe we would be receiving with Miracle as an older puppy or adult, not as a young baby.  These were truly astonishing.   The realist part of me knows that I should not be expecting these results all the time because I understand the nature of the sport and will take wins and defeats in stride.  My competitive alter ego will not take a defeat lightly and will be disappointed if Miracle does not become the best dog in the history of the AKC, UKC, IABCA, NFL, NBA, MLB and UFC. 

I have learned to manage my split personality disorder, so none of you folks will notice any changes in me.  Only my psychiatrist can tell....Ok, I don't go to a psychiatrist, but how can I speak of split personalities and not bring up a professional into the conversation???  Either way, I am ready for Miracle to continue his show life and for us to continue learning how things are.

Today I am having Dog Show withdrawals.  When can Miracle go back?  When can he compete again?  Not yet?  Why not?  Adult dogs only? Older puppies?  No worries, we’ll say he is a mini Labrador and that way he can compete in the rare breeds.  Or we can put platforms and make him taller...Yes, I’m having withdrawals…We had such a good time during that Saturday show that we want to go over, over and over again and root for our Miracle, to see him let other dogs know “This is my house”, as he did when he marked his territory in both rings on that Saturday afternoon (or maybe he had not yet developed a strong bladder and simply had to pee). 

I guess as the days go by I will recall that these shows do cost money, and  maybe these withdrawals will go away (not likely), while subconsciously, hoping that Sandy calls and says: “Let’s go kick some butt”, and of course, I’ll be there, tempering my optimism (Realist), while rooting for our dog to kick everyone's butts (competitive), and giddy, because I know what I have, and "You can't have it, not for all the money in the world".  He is an Alonso and we don't sell off our family. 

Remembering that day, when the judge approached us, I now fill myself with false bravado (keyboard tough guy) and say:  “Yes, judge from the IABCA, I know EXACTLY what I have” (no disrespect intended, don’t know the judge’s name and she was extremely nice to us and Miracle).  "My dog’s name is Grand Sieger BIS Ch/Int. Multiple BIS Baby Ch/Int Bred By Exhibitor Ch Chambrays Miracle On The Meadow".

It was much easier when his name was Chambray’s Miracle on the Meadow, or just plain Miracle, but then again, who said easier always means better?


Editors Note: have the innocence of babes all over again, what a thrill that would be! Believe it or not, I get to experience that innocence over and over again with each new owner that comes on board with our unique Labrador Owners Community.

Yes, I get to share their "first time" excitement with each new step that their new addition to their family takes...........imagine what Tony and his family are going through to have their first-ever show puppy make history by becoming the first-ever Labrador to win an IABCA Grand Sieger Best In Show.

How about Juan Marrero with his 2 new puppies, 9 month old littermates and both AKC champion-pointed or Alan Criado with 10-month old "Jake" with 9 points and both majors and 2 Best Of Breeds!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

There are Patty Rosado of Ocala FL with Chambrays Aslan winning 9 points and 2 Best Of Breeds before his first birthday and also Chuck Lewis of Pensacola FL with Chambrays Rum Tum Tugger winning his first-ever 3 shows in a row at a year old!!

There's Jeffrey More of Pennsylvania with Chambray's first-ever bred-by Canadian champion.........................or the Jakeway's with soon-to-be Chambray's first-ever AKC Bronze Grand Champion (Chambrays And The Beat Goes On) and there is  Rosie Feeley with Florida's (not to mention Chambray's) first-ever bred-by-exhibitor AKC Best In Show winning champion.

Yes, I could go on and on with Chambray owner after Chambray owner experiencing the thrill of newness and the taste of success that is usually reserved for those that have been into the fancy for years, years and more years.

Each and every time that a new Chambray puppy or dog goes where no dog has ever gone before, I alongside of their owners feel that giddiness that is reserved for your "first-ever"!

Makes sharing the best with the best all that much better!

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