Heelwork to Music in the UK

Advanced Heelwork

Head Judge Louise Ince

1st -Place Cathy Bates and Ruskath Lyrical Image

A beautiful round from this pair today, the music really suited their relationship and the high step trotting is coming on a treat. Nice to see some unusual patterns in heelwork too. Congratulations on your win.

2nd -Place Di Morgan and Hawkstar Out Of The Blue For Darquest

Well these two have certainly improved and have a lovely relationship. Di your acting skills are really coming on and you are now getting more heelwork directions, well done.

3rd -Place Jill Davis and Rosmarinus Cinnabar At Glidersway

This dog looks really graceful in the ring and has great movement, a few moments loss of attention at times but he is getting his confidence back and that is great to see.

4th - Place Sarah Smith and Forever Just Fen

Sarah you need to work on your transition moves in your routine, Fen tries so hard and produces some beautiful committed heelwork but you look a bit lost at times get that sorted and you will definitely be a good contender in this class.

5th - Place Vee Richardson and Langtrees Wildcard

Racing was the main problem for Vee today, Joker was totally up for doing his round just a little too fast! Also some more changes in heelwork directions to improve your content mark. Lovely to see you both so happy in the ring.
K9 Performers 
19th & 20th September 2015

Advanced Musical Dressage

Head Judge  Louie Ince

This show has a really large ring and warm up area, plenty of space for everyone and as it is also a dog show lots of other activities to take part in too.

Members of public are also present at all times making this show more like a demonstration of our sport rather than a competition and I have to say this class really pulled out all the stops to give the public something to watch.

Well Done to all the competitors who made this a really tight and hard class to Judge.

1st - Place Lesley Brocklehurst and Rehyrb Makhaya

Stunning! Minstrel took a few seconds to get going today but then did the rest of his round beautifully. Lesley makes Musical Dressage look so easy and elegant, a well deserved win, well done.

2nd - Place Vee Richardson and Langtrees Wildcard

Your musical Interpretation for this round was brilliant. You totally owned the ring and the trotting out in front of you was beautiful.

3rd - Place Cathy Bates and Ruskath Lyrical Image

Great work from this pair who always make good use of all the room in the ring no matter how large! And some very difficult and different sequences included in this routine.
Judges Report Paws in The Park 19 -20 September 2015

Firstly a big thank you to Louise Ince for inviting me to judge at this show. It was such a friendly and well-run competition, with the added bonus of being part of a much larger dog event.

Class 1 – Starters HTM

This was a strong class to judge, full of happy attentive dogs and obviously choreographed routines. The goal for many is to start fading out the large (and sometimes pleading!) hand-signals.

Ist Chris Clements with MountlochanChanonry Lad

2nd Chris Clements with MountlochanQueevia-Diva

Chris actually worked three times in this class with Scottish routines, and what stood out was her dogs’ ability to work whilst she was moving her arms and embracing the Scottish theme. Her dogs showed good attention throughout and did not need large cues to get them into position. Chanonry Lad just showing more accuracy on the day.

3rd Christine Crawford with Kingsfarm Snowdrift.

Another lovely attentive collie, working a little forward at times. Some good changes of pace, and I particularly liked her transitions, they were slick and to the music.

4th Sue McAuliffe and Decoymans Piper Wilma.

A very cheerful dog working without much obvious cuing. Her routine was well choreographed and demonstrated changes of pace. Just had less content than the winners.

Class 15 Novice DWD

This was a small class and only one routine completed as sadly Barbara Houston’s Mungo Blessem left the ring, but not before doing some lovely synchronised moves at the beginning of his routine.

1st Ali Hayes with Ragus Double O Seven in A Blaze

A very worthy winner, and a very watchable routine, Ali dancing to A night like this by Caro Emerald in true flapper girl style, and with a great costume. Ali used her hands to perform, rather than to cue her dog which is a real skill needed for this division.She showed great musical interpretation and made a huge effort to perform and entertain. I think Toby was a bit surprised in the change in his handler and was slow at times, but did some good synchronised moves. Well done!

Vee Richardson - Head Judge

Novice HTM – Head Judge Jill Davis Co-judged with Alison Wilde

Only two entrants to this class and there was very little between them. Accuracy became the deciding factor.

1st.Di Morgan with Darkquest Fancy That, Border Collie, performing to Radetsky March by Brighouse & Rastrick Band. Points 21.70 An interesting zigzag pattern was incorporated into this routine, along with some fast pace. I would have liked to see maybe a couple more heelwork positions utilised but I am sure Di is working on this. Well done.

2.Georgina Springall with Dolly Mix, Crossbreed, performing to Somewhere Only We Know by Lilly Allen. Points 21.10 Heelwork at normal, fast and slow paces in this routine but today Dolly didn’t want to go backwards. Same remarks as above about the number of heelwork positions utilised.

Intermediate HTM – Head Judge Jill Davis Co-judged with Cathy Bates

I was a little disappointed with the standard of this class. There were only four entries, one of which was Louise Ince and Troy who did a training round to Stuck by Caro Emerald which absolutely suited him perfectly and I can see this being a super routine when it is ready to be competed with.

1st . Debbie Moore with Mika Mariska, a WSD, performing to Belfast Hornpipes by James Galway. Points 20.45 Debbie used a clever slip step to go with the hornpipe music but the dog was a quite inaccurate in some of its heelwork with some crabbing and lagging and indeterminate positioning. Well done.

2nd. Donna Wallington with Pippie Squeak, a Lakeland Terrier, performing to Capone by Ronan Hardiman. Points 19.45 I felt that this little dog started off very well but deteriorated towards the end so may benefit from doing a shorter routine which may eliminate the lagging, sniffing and scratching element. There was also a lot of hand targeting which should be diminishing before you go into Advanced.

3rd. Alison Wilde with Badger, a Border Collie, performing to Korobushka by Bond. Points 17.75 Badger got off to an unsettled start which was unfortunate as he never quite got his momentum going properly and I actually wondered if Alison was asking him at times to go faster than he was comfortable with.

Starters Musical Dressage –  Head Judge Jill Davis co-judged with Cathy Bates

With two teams electing to train and one withdrawal that only left three teams to score.

1st. Esther Kent and Gosport Riva, a Cavalier King Charles Spaniel, performing to Pineapple Rag by Scott Joplin. Points 21.85 This team led by a mile and it was a huge pleasure to watch them. A very well trained dog and beautifully choreographed routine incorporating pivots, sideways, straight lines, circles, serpentine, weaves and backwards. Well done.

2nd. Ali Hayes and Ragus Double O Seven, a Norwich Terrier, performing to Together in Electric Dreams by Georgio Moroder & Philip Oakey. Points 18.45 A super little terrier with his tight trotting action doing circles, serpentine and straight lines. At one point he was lagging but when encouraged went into the most amazing canter. Whether by luck or design I am not sure but keep it in – it was fabulous!

3rd. Barbara Houston and Mungo Blessem, a Crossbreed, performing to Angelina by Lou Bega. Mungo often has his own agenda in the ring and as well as some lovely dressage in straight lines, circles, pivots, sideways and backwards we unfortunately also had some sniffing, scratching, rolling and jumping up which was not in time to the music!

Novice Musical Dressage – Head judge Jill Davis Co-judged with Cathy Bates

Only three entries to this class and sadly one of them left the ring nearly at the end and had to be eliminated. One point I would make about this routine and that is not to incorporate jumps into a dressage routine but leave those for freestyle and when you enter the ring the dog should be ready to work. If you are likely to have difficulty getting your dog to the correct starting point you are allowed to take the dog in wearing its lead which can then be handed to the accompanying steward for removal.

1st. Jo Preston with Hollywood Frank of Valgrays, a Crossbreed, performing to Heartbeat by Hank Marvin. Points 21.95 This routine was mostly in time to the music although there were lapses in the Pivot and the first Walk Back. Straight lines, circles, serpentines, sideways were fine and it was refreshing to see walking and cantering as well as trotting. Well done.

2nd. Laura Reynolds with Bundu Starr Paws, a Lowchen, performing to Piazzolia Libertango by Bond. Points 16.65 Sadly today this little dog seemed to think dressage included stopping and jumping which detracted from the beautiful trotting in a straight line, circles, backwards and across.

Head judge reports from Jan Debnam

It was a pleasure to judge in this lovely venue. Plenty of the room to prepare the dogs and warm them up; and a good sized ring with carpeted surface. I am surprised more people are not travelling to this show to take advantage of the fabulous conditions – with the added bonus of being able to visit the many trade stalls and other dog activities that are taking place.


1st. Jo Preston performing to Pineapple Rag by Scott Joplin. Score 22.05

This is a lovely routine with Jo doing a portrayal of Charlie Chaplain and Cody working well, using some unusual moves to maintain audience interest and coordinate into the choreographic theme. Jo has worked hard on minimising hand signals and so is able to give a stylish performance, in theme, herself. Very enjoyable to watch.

2nd. Nicky Maxwell and Ironlake Seferino (Large Munsterlander) performing to You’ve Got to Pick a Pocket or Two by Stanley Holloway. Score 19.7

Another interesting round, but Fiji was not at his best, suffering a bit from his skin, which was wrecking his concentration. He improved as the round went on. Interesting choreography, well placed and using the space available to good effect.

3rd. Maureen Heasman and Cappuccino Becky (Crossbreed) performing to All Around My Hat by Status Quo. Score 19.55

And this round did go All Around the Hat, using this prop well throughout the routine. Some interesting moves, taking advantage of Beccy’s modest size. Beccy was a little hesitant at times and not fully focussed throughout which affected her score.

4th. Georgina Springall and Dolly Mix (Crossbreed) performing to The Wombling Song/ Remember you’re a Womble by Mike Batt. Score 18.05.

This was the first time this dog had worked in Heelwork to Music and she made a promising start to her career. The choreography, sensibly, was relatively simple to achieve the best chance of success. She was a little inattentive at times, which tempted Georgina to over handle her.


1st. Cathy Bates and Ruskath Lyrical Image (WSD) performing to Wuthering Heights by Kate Bush Score 24.75

This is a fabulous round with the choreography expressive, flowing, using the space available well and, importantly, holding the style and choreographic theme throughout. Also refreshing to see a round without a plethora of props. The only prop is the scarf which is used throughout, to good effect, by both partners. A stylish and interesting round to watch.

2nd. Lesley Brocklehurst and Rhyrb Makhaya (Flat Coat Retriever) performing to Blue Smoke Rising by Dolly Parton. Score 21.0

Another stylish routine with great choreography and musicality. Minstrel is a big chap and the choreography respects this and uses his strengths.

3rd. Louise Ince and Try me Jodi (WSD) performing to Feeling Good by Michael Buble Score 19.75.

This was the happiest that I have seen Jodi, in the ring for a long time. The pace of this routine worked well, without putting pressure on Jodi, who made a slow start but gained in confidence and style as the routine went on. A nice variety of moves giving some interesting choreography.


1st. Donna Wallington and Pippie Squeak (Lakeland Terrier) performing to Manhattan Playboy. Score 20.05

On this day Pip decided she could work and has never looked better. Pip is a smart little terrier who looks fabulous when doing dressage. She maintained focus and style throughout her routine, which scored above dogs with move varied choreography but less focus on the day. Pip did however perfrom some really fabulous backing, on the beat of the music – and for sufficient distance to really demonstrate her skill. A good use of patterns and variety of heel and free positions adds interest to the choreography.

2nd. Nicky Maxwell and Ironlake Seferino (Large Munsterlander) performing to Moulinet Polka by Andre Rieu. Score 19.6

This routine includes some lovely, varied choreography with good use of patterns, directions and paces. Nikki uses her hat very stylishly and appropriately to give variety to the routine. Fiji is a large powerful dog who looks wonderful doing dressage and this ring is big enough to really show him off. His focus was not as good as it could be on this occasion.

3rd. Louise Ince and Decoymans Piper Edward (Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever) performing to Disturbia by Rihanna. Score 18.8

Troy was also suffering a lack of focus, which is a shame as this routine includes some very good, varied choreography with changes of pace, direction and patterns adding interest.

4th. Jill Davis and Rosmarinus Cinnabar at Gildersway (Border Collie) performing to Boccherini’s Minuet by Novi Novog. Score 18.75

Matisse is such a pretty dog and looks wonderful when he is established in a good working trot. He was having trouble holding consistent paces on this occasion, but was doing his best throughout.


1st. Louise Ince and Decoymans Piper Edward (Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever) performing to Stepping Out to Kool and the Gang. Score 20.65

Louise can be relied on to get on out there and dance. Thank you!! Some of the hand signals need to be hidden in the choreography a little more to increase the style of this dance, but as Troy had not been focussing that well earlier, it was probably better to give him as much help as possible. Interesting choreography and a good variety of dance steps from the handler.

2nd. Di Morgan and Darquest Fancy That (Border Collie) performing to Dance of the Blue Danube by the Anglo Persians. Score 18.35

Some interesting ideas in the choreography but the overall style is not yet holding together consistently in this routine. The handler’s hands and arms need to be choreographed to carry the style of the dance through.

3rd. Jackie Field and Caragcennes Sir William (Minaiture Poodle) performing to Hillbilly Rock by the Woolpackers. Score 14.45

Another routine with more potential than could be actually demonstrated on the day as the dog was a little flat and unresponsive, making Jackie work too hard with her hand signals and losing the style. The concept of the dance is there, and Jackie was working hard to maintain her footstep rhythms.

4th. Jackie Field and Atastar Fairytale (Standard Poodle) performing to Hot Stuff by Donna Summer. Score 13.4.

Sadly, Jackie’s second dog was also a little flat on the day and consequently didn’t show off the choreography to best effect. A good use of space and some interesting ideas.

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