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                                    GROOMING A NEWFOUNDLAND booklet

News and Updates:

14.12.2012 The holidays are here, finally! Time has flown quickly since the summer and hence no updates for a while. The books (Grooming and Water Rescue) will arrive sometime early next week. We'll be busy signing ans posting around 200 books in total! That's quite a few trips to the post office, hauling them there, but at least we have all the packaging ready, waiting with the address labels written, just waiting to be filled and posted. Hope you have the opportunity to take a break, curl in front of the warm fireplace and just enjoy the books!

Merita (K. Rutikuiva) being such a fabulous helper during Bettina's exam study sessions

In November Merita (K. Rutikuiva) and Baron (K. Muskettisoturi) participated at the Aylestone Draft and Obedience tests. During ONE day, they achieved in total SIX passes! They participated in and passed the Obedience levels 1 and 2, and the first level in Draft (Beginners). Well done Merita & Baron for working so hard and doing such a fabulous job :-) ! We (Bettina and Annina) had a great day with them.

Baron (left) with Annina and Merita (right) with Bettina

As other news Scout (K. Navigaattori) is as loved as ever at the school. She's been going for visits and even received a HUGE Birthday card from the kids :-). Happy Birthday M's (four) and N's (three) :-).


Scout at school – Orka by Black Newf Photography

Orka (K. Nostokurki) is also doing well in Oregon. He was photographed by a very talented Joanne (who has just set up her photography company, amazingly talented, taking photos that really capture the moment). Check the photos out from Orka's photogallery, and/or from Joanne's blog at Black Newf Photography: http://blacknewfphoto.wordpress.com/2012/11/19/orka-portland-dog-photography/.


Training a Newfoundland for water rescue – book preorders are now being taken.

The book will be published early December. Order you copy now!

20.10.2012 It is with extreme sadness that I must announce the early departure of the beloved Larinkallion Halinalle "Lotta lerppukieli" 17.5.2005-20.10.2012 Capri's daughter, Vera's sister, the third puppy born in our first litter. There just aren't enough words to express how we feel at the moment. Hugs to her family for taking superb care of her and for the loss they are having to face. R.I.P.

A few days ago I received my badge, a pin, the certificate and official card for being an Intenational Lifesaving Federation regcognized K9 water rescue instructor. Here is a recap of the course held in Belgium in Septermber 2012: http://www.ilsf.org/node/213

Here is a recent photo of Joki (K. Neliveto) that we received gathering photos for The Book.

1.10.2012 Sisters Joki (K. Neliveto) and Scout (K. Navigaattori) had a very successful weekend in the water. They both participated in the Belgian water work test level B and passed it with great results :-). It was on a windy day with a strong current in the water, so an extra congratulations for working through the rough conditions. Great to have such active owners working with their dogs :-) !

Christina with Scout

Bettina participated in the Pet Dog Trainers Europe (PDTE) two day annual general meeting & seminar, held this year in Edinburgh. It was a fabulous weekend with some great speakers talking about a few very interesting subjects. It's always great to network with dog trainers, share new ideas and different views on teaching dogs and dog behaviour.

Here are just a few other shots of the puppies :

The kayaking expert Orka (K. Nostokurki) first pulling the kayak to the shore – then enjoying his trip on the kayak (Oregon)

Al (K. Multimedia) working in the water with owner Donatella (SICS, Italy)


Vuori (K. Nopeusrajoitus) getting accustomed to his crate (moving with his family from Germany back to the US) – Ariel (K. Salapolisi) the jungle-Jane!


The summer is now officially over: Bettina and Merita have moved back to Scotland and Baron has returned to her permanent home, living with Annina in England. Ruuti, Capri and Vera are living with the rest of the family in Brussels. Ruuti is getting back into her training routine after a long puppybreak: she is being taught / retaught the take/hold-commands and directional commands with the clicker. She is a bright girl and really enjoys the five-minute training sessions. Capri and Vera are also doing superbly well.

The ILS International K9 Water Rescue Team Instructors Course went well, on the last day we had the opportunity to try a rescue from a sinking car with Vera.

Hopefully everyone learned a lot from the course, especially Phill (from NZ) and Ken (from USA), who came the furthest away. The ideal situation would be for them to learn as much as possible and take the information back so that I wouldn't need to fly back every year. It was also fabulous to see Pete & his team from the UK :-).

In September we participated at a water test with Merita, Baron and Scout in Germany: everyone passed the test and have been moved to class B for next year :-). Especially Baron performed unbelievably well, having been tortured by Merita for the last week by her heat. Baron knew what was expected and performed well (placing 2nd overall from 11 participants), even if I do admit that it wasn't his best performance, knowing his usual standard of performance.

The day after the water test we headed for Luxembourg. Baron got a reserve CAC and Merita became a Luxembourg Junior Champion! Wonderful! The day after the show we headed to the UK to take Merita over to Annina's for the week so that she wouldn't disturb Baron any more than she had to, Baron being one of the example dogs of the water camp.


Other news definitely worth mentioning are the Visby shows in Sweden: Baron won two CAC's (Best Male 1 and 2) and Merita won two RCAC's (Best Bitch 3 both days) :-). Well done!


I have absolutely no clue where the summer holidays disappeared. We were planning on spending a very relaxing 8 weeks in Finland at our summer cottage, enjoying the hot sauna and the freezing cold lake. And of course Ariel (Ruuti's puppy, Kivisilman Salapoliisi). Ariel has now left to live with her family in Elimäki, Finland. We are pretty much just as excited of her leaving (because we know she'll have a superb life, living with our long-time-waterwork- friends) as her new family was to get her home finally after dreaming and waiting for a new newf puppy for a few years, and having visited Ariel weekly at our summer cottage. A week is a loooong time in a puppy's life: they develop so quickly that even a few days make a difference in the puppy's appearance and character. Thus weekly visits were fabulous :-). Ariel also had the opportunity to visit her new home twice before actually moving there permanently: once after the vet visit (microchipping) with mum Ruuti during a coffee/tea brunch, and once for a full day at 6 weeks :-). Unlike what we've been told, Ariel being a singleton puppy is not “slower to develop” than puppies from normal sized litters; we would actually vouch the opposite. Ariel is a courageous and very temperamental puppy, already showing slight stubbornness in doing exactly what she wants, how she wants it and when she wants it done (reminds us of grandmum Capri!). She is temperamentally very advanced, but it's a good thing as she's had to entertain herself (or play with mum Ruuti) and trust herself (and only herself unless relying on us) when encountering new things. She is very sure of herself. At the moment she's showing characteristics which make us assume her to become a superb working dog for Yrjö and Riitta.

Baron (K. Muskettisoturi) and Merita (K. Rutikuiva) have been going to shows all summer (maybe this is why the holidays went by so quickly: one day to prepare & pack, two days at shows, one to recuperate from travelling, one to relax, one to run errands, one to mentally prepar to prepare the dogs the next day.. and then preparing & packing again to travel to the next two shows etc... ). Can you tell that we prefer working with the dogs to showing them? Their shows have gone very well, for example Baron has gained 2 CAC from Estonia, 2 CAC from Sweden, 3 RCAC from Finland and Merita has gained a Junior CAC from Estonia and two RCAC from Sweden etc.. They've done well, but they are (even if I might be biast in saying this) beautiful dogs; Baron is now ready to be shown, Merita will still need to develop for at least another year to be “ready”, but she is superbly promising.

On the waterwork front we have continued to train our own dogs at our lake. It's mostly been basics for Merita and Baron and more complex things for Capri and Vera. We haven't done any formal waterwork training with Ruuti yet (due to her litter), but we've allowed her to go for swims on her own, and join us in the water whenever she's felt like it. Baron & Merita went to an unofficial waterwork test at our local club; they both performed the fun exercises well, Baron placing 3rd and Merita 6th (out of 10-ish dogs). Some of the exercises were for example towing a person back to shore from floating on a tractor tyre, and taking a line out to a boat and towing it back with the same rope etc.. Something fun for a change!

We were also asked to hold two one-day training sessions at two different waterwork clubs: one in Forssa, the other in Lahti. Both training sessions went overall well, focusing on different things such as working with the dog, different methods for teaching taking things out, and just ways to think up of fun, different exercises. Next year we'll have the 3rd International Water Rescue Camp (Finland) sometime in July. The exact dates will be confirmed once we've planned our own summer holidays and once we have a good estimation of how our dogs' heats will schedule for the summer; will be breeding Merita at that point yet? Can we have Baron with us at all during the summer, will our others we in heat? What shows and other events are planned for the summer? Etc.. It's always a complicated task planning the summer..! We have though confirmed that we'll (try) to come for another training seminar tour in the US in June, definitely visiting Oregon, maybe also New York and perhaps even Canada. The schedules are still open, so just send an email if you're interested in a camp in your region; the more events we'll get to, the less expensive it'll be for everyone (as we'll aim for the travel costs to be covered by the training profits).

Many of you have asked about The Book; the waterwork book that's been hanging around for a while now, being originally planned to have been published earlier this year, but the latest version still being on my computer. It IS coming along very well and I can assure you that it WILL be published soon. We're at the stage of finding good photos to fill the pages and proof-reading everything. If you have anything you would definitely want to be covered in it: there are no such things as “dull questions”: please email your waterwork (or training) related queries and I'll reply to you & add the advice to the book. If you'd like to be on a notice list for when The Book is published, don't hesitate to send me an email.

We are very excited about the upcoming week as we'll have Ken from USA and Phill from NZ water rescue camps visiting us during a week-long water rescue trainers' training week. They are both very eager to learn lots & take back into their own trainings even more.

11.07.2012 A beautiful girl was born a few days ago. More photos in the link: http://watercubs.kuvat.fi/kuvat/Kivisilman%20S/


07.07.2012 The summer holidays in Finland have now started with the tremendous project of setting up a 180 meter long fence on the borders of some of our property. That'll give the dogs a place to roam around without us always having to be alert and keep an eye on them. They all stay within the vicinity very well if they're alone, but the temptation to run off with a friend whilst playing is just sometime too much for the young ones, or they'll run to say "hi" to the neighbourghs, or they'll run to "rescue" the kids playing on the shoreline.. That is, if we're not there to call them back before they head off. A temporary 60m fence is nearly done, which'll allow us to continue with the bigger project of filling up the holes between the larger boulders (to get rid of the snakes) and fill up the swampy marshland with land. We aim to have the fencing done by the end of the summer and the land work finished by next summer.

The dogs are definitely enjoying the summer holidays: Capri and Vera slept (what felt like) a solid 48-hours after the travel, Baron resumed his position of an outside "guard dog" by sitting on the terrace bench and keeping an eye on the neighbourgs (and us). He is just very curious to see what they (and us) are up to, and when we let him off, he'll first run around the property to mark off all the christmas trees, and then sniff the area we've been working on. He'll also without a doubt always run into the lake to swim a few rounds to cool off (it's been fairly warm here, to our surprise!).

We call Merita "the rocket" as she zooms around so quickly between the houses and between the people. If we blink, she's gone to check something else. She stays with the gang tremendously well though, just wants to keep an eye on the action and be where the action is happening. If she's not following us, she's swimming like a speed boat. She seems to only have a "turbo" and an "off" switch.

Ruuti is doing well, she's not ready to pop yet, but she will be in a few days. She's so mellow compared to her normal self that it feels like she's given some of her energy to Merita!

27.06.2012 Annina and Bettina are back from their US trip. Here is a recap of the USA trip. Our next trainings across the pond are perhaps being planned for next summer, anyone interested should contact us fairly soon before any plans are made. 

Bettina has also finished the NZ trip recap: A trip to the other side of the world for water rescue, Easter 2012.

Baron's (K. Muskettisoturi) heart was ultrasounded to be perfectly clear :-). He is now available for stud. He lives with Annina in Nottingham, UK for most of the year, but travels frequently to Brussels, Belgium.

Ruuti's puppies are due in about a week and a half: they are doing puppyaerobics and kicking strongly :-). Virva-Riitta travelled with Ruuti and Merita to Finland a few weeks ago, Bettina (and Markus) will be follow with Baron, Capri and Vera in a few days.

02.06.2012 Ruuti became a Luxembourg champion in Spring 2012 at their speciality show. Not long after that her pregnancy was also confirmed. At the moment it looks like we have homes for all the puppies, but if you are interested in future litters, there's no better time to contact us than early. We do like to get to know all the families before we place any puppies, and as we do not breed often, and often not to the simplest combinations, there is often a longer wait. Our next litter we hope for Merita (K. Rutikuiva, Ruuti's daughter) in about a year, provided that her health results are good. Baron's heart will be ultrasounded at the beginning of next week, and provided that the result is clear, we will allow him to be used at stud. For more information contact bettinasalmelin@hotmail.com

  Baron (K. Muskettisoturi) waiting for his turn, June 2012

As waterwork news both Merita (K. Rutikuiva, Ruuti's daughter) and Baron (K. Muskettisoturi, Ruuti's brother) passed the UK level A waterwork. They both did well, especially mentioning Merita, who at a day before her first birthday and only having done waterwork for just under two months got a "pointless" result, i.e. perfect score. She performed all the three exercises (15m each) in under 2 mins 30 seconds. Quick work & well done girl! We don't have further information on Baron's test details as we had to leave early. Watermead waterwork tests were a mid-way pause for us during our close to 2000km journey down from Edinburgh to southern France (start of summer holidays & start of work experience at a piggery!).

  Annina & Baron & Merita - Annina & Baron, Bettina & Merita, at the Watermead tests in June 2012

The two-day waterwork camp in Oregon has been moved to George Rogers Park for both days. There are still a few places for anyone intersted, and I do encourage you to come & see how we work with our dogs. I'm positive that you'll get a lot out of it :-). We are though both very excited to be holding the camp & grooming & private waterwork sessions in Oregon, and continuing a week later with a waterwork camp in Michigan, hosted by the SCNC ( http://scnc-newfclub.org/event%20flyers/EuropeanWaterWorkshop2012.pdf ) . During out trip we are very much looking forward to getting together again with The Top working Newfoundland breeder, and of course seeing our puppies Orka (K. Nostokurki in Oregon) and Chewbacca (K. Rapakontaa in Michigan).

15.05.2012 Ruuti has been successfully mated with Panda. At the end of May/early June we'll know if we'll have some very promising puppies to look after this summer. More about the litter in puppyplans.

As other news - a little late with them, but still very glad to announce that Ruuti won a CAC at the Luxembourg show in March! Well done girl! Her daughter Merita placed 3rd in the junior class.

Bettina is still busy with work and won't be able to translate her recap until the beginning of June, but one of the participants has very kindly written a recap of the New Zealand water rescue camps for their club magazine and allowed me to publish it here too.

Bettina and Annina's USA holidays are planned with grooming days and water rescue camps in Oregon. Don't hesitate to book your place!

29.04.2012 A recap of Bettina's New Zealand water rescue training trip will be shortly available once she has had the time to translate it into English. Meanwhile we can announce that both Annina and Bettina will be travelling to the US to hold several water rescue camps and grooming days in June.


Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone) has started her heat and the mating with the almost 12-year-old Panda will hopefully occur this week. We are extremely excited about this and hope for some wonderful good-spirited working newfoundlands from the summer's litter :-). We have decided to have the litter in Finland due to the perfect summer-holiday timing of the birth for the beginning of July, couldn't be much better timing! :-)

10.04.2012 Bettina has been spending the last two weeks in New Zealand, holding two water rescue camps (for dogs & their owners) and working at local farms towards her veterinary studies. Two more weeks and one more water rescue camp to go! She is looking forward to coming back in a few years to continue with the fabulous progress some of these dogs have done in the water!

Bettina (left) with the participants of one water rescue camp - Bettina on one of her sight seeing tours in Whitianga

18.03.2012 Well done Scout (K. Nagivaattori) and Christina! Scout passed the Belgian sociability test with flying colours. Passing the sociability test (an obedience course with sociability aspects to it) is a requirement for anyone who wants to compete in official obedience (or for example agility) tests in Belgium.

  Scout (K. Navigaattori) playing with her owner Christina, spring 2011

14.03.2012 Last weekend was Crufts and last weekend Baron (K. Muskettisoturi) moved in with Annina. He is an absolutely sweetheart! There really is no other better word to describe him than "sweetheart". He behaves amazingly well, is in a fabulous shape and well has the typical sweetheart-newfie-male-temperament. Data the pug absolutely loves to use him as a soft bed to sleep on. Baron is always asking for more attention and petting, never leaving Annina's side even for one bit during the day. During the nights he snores as a proper newfie always does, with his four paws in air, right behind the baby gate. 

    Baron (K. Muskettisoturi) with Bettina at the Crufts entrance       -     Baron 3 years, Vera 6.5 years and Merita 9 months, spring 2012

As you can see from the above photo, Merita has grown to be a gorgeous youngster. Though I have to admit that she hasn't had a good cut in a while leaving her a little shaggy to say the least. Now today (just a few days after that photo), she seems to have really come out of her shell into becoming a fine lady (after clipping her amazing 3cm long ear fringe ;-) ). Merita has also started her first heat. It is suprisingly early, but my guess is that the emerging spring has advanced it by a few months. No worries though, she has hopefully reached her rough adult height, being about a few cm's taller than Vera at the moment.

A few weeks ago we received this amazing photo of Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone) and Virva-Riitta at the Fribourg show in spring 2012. 

Ruuti spring 2012 Photo: Melissa Brugger.

26.02.2012 Annina had her first obedience judging appointment at the Newfoundland Club Open Show this weekend. The dogs performed well and it was a pleasure to judge them. We were devastated to hear that this was the last time obedience was being held together with the conformation show. Hopefully someone else will take on the task of holding newfoundland obedience shows in the future.

Spring is coming and so we headed to to seaside:

   Merita (Kivisilmän Rutikuiva) at 8 months at the seaside

17.02.2012 Bettina's Easter plans are being finalized through publishing the entry forms for the 1st International Water Rescue Camp in NEW ZEALAND:


Ruuti's (K. Monitoimikone) litter plans are on their way of being finalized. I am very excited about this opportunity to use a twelve year-old elderly male with excellent health, excellent progeny excellent conformation and definitely water working ability. He himself has competed in the third class of waterwork in France and has a lot of offspring that are active in the water. Hopefully everything will go as planned and we'll have some black newf puppies this summer from Ruuti :-). More information on the puppy pages.

Capri (L. Brysselinblicca) had her ninth birthday on the 9th January. She is a mother to five sons and four daughters, and a grandmother to five grandsons and six granddaughters. She has travelled with us to nineteen countries and competed in eleven, lived in three (Belgium, France, United Kingdom (England and Scotland)). Capri is still in a great shape and we hope to continue travelling with her for many more years to come :-)! Capri retired from showing after becoming the European Veteran Winner 2011 last autumn, but she will continue to work in the water as normal. Swimming is an excellent form of exercise and she thoroughly enjoys it :-) !

We flew to Finland a few weeks ago to see Rolli (K. Rahtilaiva) for the weekend. It was great to see him again as he definitely recongnized us, and couldn't wait to greet us :-). He participated at his first show, placing third in the puppy class. We were glad to get some new photos of him :-). Here are photos of Merita and her brother Rolli:

Merita (K. Rutikuiva) on a walk in February 2012, at 8 months - Rolli (K. Rahtilaiva) at his first show in January 2012 7 months

We received a few new great photos of Orka (K. Nostokurki), here is one of the newer ones, the rest are in his photoalbum.

Orka (K. Nostokurki) in February 2012

29.12.2011 The year is almost over and again a lot has happened during the past year. It's great being able to have this website and keep it as a diary for the milestones that occur in our, or dogs' or our puppies' lives. Capri, our first dog, first Newfoundland, will already be nine years in January -12. The dog that started it all. Time really does fly much faster than anyone would hope. Capri is still in a fabulous shape and we hope to keep her involved in our lives for many more years to come :-).

All of our dogs together for the holidays (Capri, Vera, Ruuti, Merita and Data the pug)

Getting all the dogs together for the holidays (from normally living at three different addresses) was a little hectic, especially getting the puppy Merita accustomed to life with so many other friends (Data, Vera and Ruuti) she hadn't seen for a few months. After the first few days life calmed down, with the dogs getting lots of attention from everyone and getting to go on long Tervuren forest walks:

On one of our walks in the Tervuren forest, Christmas day 2011.

30.11.2011 Bettina had an obedience judging appointment at the Newfoundland Club Open Show last weekend:

We got the dogs together during the weekend. Merita enjoyed Data's company, but I think Data would much have preferred for us to have stayed at home! She did not like the windy, rainy, wet walks nor the over enthusiastic boistrous puppy! Merita is 5.5 months, Capri (Merita's grandmum) is turning 9 in January and Data is now 3 years.


Scout's school project is going well as you can see from the poster:

HAPPY BIRTHDAY N puppies and M puppies :-) !!

20.11.2011 It's not Christmas yet, but it's time to take the annual Christmas-photos for the cards and calendar. We are again making a calendar of the N, M and R -litters, if you are interested in getting one (or several), please email me for more information. They are roughly 7 euros each including postage.

Here is a taster of the photos:

 Merita (K. Rutikuiva) November 2011 at 5.5 months

  Capri (L. Brysselinblicca) November 2011 at almost 9 years

13.11.2011 Our litter plans have changed quite drastically during the last few days after making the hard decision not to breed from any of the N-litter co-owned females or dogs. This decision was not made lightly, but it had to be done as even though all the puppies have been and are SUPERB temperamentally and structurally, their health has not matched up with our expectations. Our aim is to breed healthy able working dogs and thus very unfortunately we cannot justify the future use of H- or N- lineages for breeding. The dogs from these litters are healthy and very active dogs in their every day lives, but looking at the litters collectively there have been too many small issues and a few larger issues with their health. Despite the extensive research, the genes of the parents just did not match up. This happens. It is just important to recongnize the issues openly and know when to stop breeding certain lines. Interestingly enough, the issues that we have been having are those that are often not found through the standard official health examinations.. All the recent issues will be updated in due time on the litter pages for other breeders of similar lineages to recognize and be aware of any apparent common issues.

Our next litter will be from Ruuti (Kivisilmän Monitoimikone) in summer 2012. Ruuti is from lines that have not have any of the issues seen in the H- and N-litters. Ruuti had a fabulous litter with Wee Lovett's Island of Manitou (b. 1987) in summer 2011. The puppies have shown a lot of promise both conformationally and temperamentally. 

Here is a recent training video of Merita (K. Rutikuiva), Ruuti's puppy. It was her first time with the red container.

Bettina will be travelling to NEW ZEALAND over Easter 2012 to hold a water rescue dog camp for anyone interested. She will be staying there between 26th March until 20th April and is taking bookings for lectures and workshops. Ask for more information.

Topics include:

Water Rescue Workshop or lecture (introductory, beginners, intermediate or advanced)
Obedience workshop or lecture (introductory, beginners, intermediate or advanced)
Draft/Carting workshop or lecture (introductory, beginners, intermediate or advanced)

Rally workshop or lecture (introductory, beginners, intermediate or advanced)
Clicker Training workshop or lecture
Conformation ring training workshop
Common problem areas in obedience training lecture

Puppy Training workshop or lecture

Dog First Aid and CPR (alone or combined with Human First Aid and CPR)

Raw Feeding (BARF diet) lecture

Dog Breeding lecture
Working dog anatomy lecture
Newfoundland dog show grooming workshop or lecture

22.10.2011 Joki (K. Neliveto), Scout (K. Navigaattori) and Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone) did a fabulous job at the Belgian watertrials in mid-September. They all passed the A-level, moving onto the second B-level for next year. Especially Ruuti did amazingly well achieving the "Best communication between handler and dog" award! Well done everyone!

A few weeks later Joki (K. Neliveto) participated 
in an official Belgian Kennel Club's obedience test and did a wonderful job achieving 92/100 points! WELL DONE!
The breakdown of the exercises:
- Slalom between 7 dogs, dog on the leash : 14/15
- Walking free and passing another dog: 11/15
- Down, stay, sit, down: 5/5
- Get the dummy: 14/15
- Present the dog (teeth, stand): 5/5
- 2 minutes down: 5/5
- Call the dog from a distance 15/15
- Send the dog back to the place 13/15
Lots of people came to watch the tests and when they were finished they got applauded for doing such a great job :-). Ilse's comment on the work: "It really felt fantastic to work with such a Newfy !! " Later that same day they went to their waterwork club's championship tests, and Joki won that too! She is now the club champion for her waterwork club! (last year they were second place ;-) !) WELL DONE!

We are waiting on Scout's (K. Navigaattori) hip and elbow X-rays to come from the Kennel Club hopefully next week. They looked great. Her heart ultrasound (Doppler) was clear :-). This means that we can go ahead with the litter plans for summer 2012.

15-09-2011   Capri (L. Brysselinblicca) and Vera (L. Huomiongohde) performed as always in the water Wednesday night and obtained the 1st star Water Rescue Dog Team diploma with Bettina, a diploma recognized by the Vlaamse Reddingscentrale (i.e. Belgian Lifesaving Federation). This allows Bettina to work officially with Capri and Vera on the Belgian beaches as a dog-human lifeguard team. They were dogs 5th and 6th to ever gain this privilege :-).

The situations that we had to solve were ‘new’, meaning that myself and the dog were behind the corner while it was set up. The time started from when we walked onto the shore and started the analysis: what equipment could we use, where were the victims, how were they hurt (conscious, unconscious, dead) and what were the potential dangers in the water and on-land (underwater ropes of the markers, boat’s engine etc). This took approximately 30 seconds before starting the rescue action. 

Capri had a motorboat (engine on), with one adult (only injured) and one unconscious child on-board. Vera had one unconscious adult (breathing) and one unconscious child (not breathing) in the water. 

Both the dogs worked perfectly, calmly, attentively and reliabl.

Capri’s situation:
1. Get the boat driver to trust me (=rescuer), so that he has the courage to turn the engine off while I swim towards the boat (dog follows behind)
2. Getting information of the victims from the boat driver (number of victims and what kind of trouble they are having)
3. Get into the boat
4. Pull the motor up
5. Give the rope to the dog (pulls to shore)
6. Keep the boat driver talking/alert (so that I notice if he loses consciousness), while performing CPR to the child (open airways, 30 compressions, 2 breathings)
7. Coming to shore: making a new analysis of the boat driver (whilst helping him out of the boat), carrying the child to a safe place on shore and continuing with CPR
8. At this point the boat driver is OK and can send him to call for help (911, how many patients, location and coming back after call)
9. Continuing with CPR (dog calmly waiting on shore)
-It was important for Capri to wait for the action (before I was ready to give the rope), after which she must obey from first command and continue independently while I was doing other things. She must stay calmly on land after the exercise.

Vera’s situation :
1. Decide who to save first : unconscious child (not breathing) or unconscious adult (breathing). The child was closer to shore than the adult.
2. I sent Vera to the child and swam to the adult myself.
3. Vera took the child’s hand and swam to me, while I was supporting and pulling the adult victim towards the shore.
4. When Vera got to me, I was to take her harness and let Vera continue to shore.
5. Transporting the two unconscious victims to a safe place on shore away from the water.
6. Start CPR on the child (as the adult was unconscious, but the airways were open and was breathing well).
7. Vera continued with the alarm-bark as there was no-one else on shore to help/no phones etc.
8. 1 min CPR after which run to the surfclub for help, after which continue with the child’s CPR
-It was important for Vera to obey the first command (as we were swimming to different victims), come to me after taking hold of the child and continue the alarm-bark on land after the water rescue.

A photo of Capri (2 victims) and Vera (Bettina and 1 victim) this summer :

Not only are Capri and Vera wonderful in the water, but they also do well in the show rings. A few weeks ago at the European Winner Show in Leeuwarden, the Netherlands, Capri (Larinkallion Brysselinblicca) became the EUROPEAN VETERAN WINNER 2011 (also best of breed veteran), while Vera (L. Huomiongohde) placed 4th in the Champion class and Scout (K. Navigaattori) placed 2nd in the Intermediate class. Well done everyone! Capri did do well earning that new four letter and two numbers EUVW-11 that she even got onto the Finnish Kennelclub's website:
http://www.kennelliitto.fi/FI/kennelliitto/uutiset/2011/20110903_euroopanvoittaja2011.htm (bottom photo)

Scout (K. Navigaattori) has also been active with her owner Christina since the summer, getting Scout to be featured as the "Big Dog" in the "Big Dog Word" school's word display (every week the older kids learn a new long word that is posted on "Scout's kennel" on the display). This week 500 children petted Scout during the 3-hour introduction of the Big Dog Word vocabulary game. Scout behaved magnificiently (quoting her owner!) and loved every single child she saw that day. She will no doubt become a superb therapy-dog! Photos will come later!

22.08.2011 Al (K. Multimedia) and her SICS crew are doing fantastic PR work for newfoundlands and all water rescue dogs by signing an agreement with Swiss airlines to be able to fly their dogs on board, in the cabin of the aircraft. Fabulous. Here is a link to the article with a few pictures: http://blog.swiss.com/2011/08/rescue-dogs-on-board.html (Al is the brown newf in the photos)

The SICS crew being introduced to the aircrafts - Al comfortable on the seat

Here is another article link about the fabulous work the SICS do in Italy:
http://www.bergamonews.it/provincia/articolo.php?id=45553  (that is Al jumping from the boat)

One of the beautiful boats they got to use during their patrols

Joki (K. Neliveto) went to France during their holidays and had a fabulous time. Here are two photos (the rest are in her photogallery):
Joki rescuing Finn - Joki sleeping after a wonderful day at the lake

And two photos of Rolli (K. Rahtilaiva) at his new home:
Rolli the lap-dog (at least for now!) - Rolli with his 'big brother' Nero

And here is Merita (K. Rutikuiva) during her first swim at the lakes at 11 weeks:

And a videolink to Chewbacca's (K. Rapakontaa) first swim :-) :

The dogs at the lake: Capri, Vera, Scout, Ruuti and little Merita. Capri is Vera's and Ruuti's mother (they are half-sisters). Scout it Vera's puppy, Merita is Ruuti's puppy.

11.08.2011 Rölli (K. Rahtilaiva) and Chewbacca (was Sampo, K. Rapakontaa) are now at their new homes. Rölli moved to Finland and Chewbacca to Michigan, US. Both of the puppies are doing fabulously well (as is Merita, K. Rutikuiva, with us). They are all just brilliant puppies; learning new things very quickly, always eager to go and never hesitant of anything. They carry toys around very well, like doing underwater retrieves and splashing in their water bowls..! Great puppies for active "working" families :-).

A very long summer update:

The summer holiday was planned to be as short as possible just because we had to leave Ruuti and her three puppies at home; they were too young to travel! Annina arrived from England Thursday night, we left early Friday morning to pick up Christina and Scout (K. Navigaattori) from Mons. On Friday we travelled from Brussels to Bautzen in Germany, a small little town on the German-Polish border. The 950km went quickly and we arrived to Bautzen in the early afternoon. It was a very pretty little village. 

Driving through Germany - Bautzen was a very pretty village

We had planned a 1250km trip for Saturday from Bautzen, Germany through Poland and Lithuania all the way to Ogre, Latvia. We left around 5am, thinking the trip would take roughly 17 hours (google maps directions!), but we ended up being on the road until 3am the next morning! It was a looong drive even though the roads were mostly in very good condition and we didn’t get stuck in any long roadworks or traffic jams. 

The roads were mostly in a good condition, but occasionally the tracks would be close to or over 10cm deep - A candy store sign??

One of the villagers on their Sunday walk.. with a cow! - On their traffic lights they had a counter going backwards to how long it’ll be until they change.

The Ogre hotel was great, though I would have wanted to stay there a bit longer. Waking up late (didn’t realize the clock was an hour ahead in Latvia!) was a nightmare, though we did manage to quickly wash two newfs and trim three newfs completely in just an hour and a half. We arrived at the show grounds just in time; we managed to relax for a few minutes before it was time to enter the ring. Scout won her class with Excellent and Certificate Quality, Vera became Exc 2 with CQ and Capri became Exc 1, CQ, Veteran CAC and Best of Breed Veteran. In the Best Female class Scout became second, Vera third and Capri the unofficial fifth! A great result for the “puppy”, mum and grandmum! 

Christina very happy, with Capri, Vera and Scout.
Vera, Scout and Capri eating the ice-cream.

It was a very hot day so we decided to leave early and head towards Karepa, Estonia and the Estonian week long waterwork camp. On the way we stopped to reward the dogs with ice-cream; it was Scout’s first time ever getting some. At first she didn’t really know what to do with it, but quickly she learned that it was indeed edible cold white stuff :-D ! 

On our way to Karepa (400km) we stopped to eat and went to buy a small speaker for Christina’s iPod (finally!). We arrived Sunday evening to the watercamp location. 

On our way to Estonia, four cars side by side on a road that would normally fit two, or three..

The camp went by quickly and it was great to participate and especially work and help with the instructors. I was working with Karel Mennes in the water, so from our dogs only Scout was participating with her owner. 

The gorgeous beach -
Capri’s beach holiday.

Capri and Vera got to swim and practice in between and after the official trainings, which worked out well. Especially Capri took it as a great beach holiday; sleeping in the sun by the car all day long! 

Vera’s evening turn: taking us out as far as we dare..  …and then swimming back together (that’s around a few hundred meters).

Vera also got to get on the big boat, go for a ride on it and then jump with me.. A Huge big leap! Well done Vera - And I’m happy.

The waves during the first few days were HUGE, but Scout wasn’t slowed down by them at all. She didn’t mind getting her nose wet and she knew instinctively how to count the waves and use the currents to her advantage.

A big wave - Though occasionally Christina miscalculated the waves when they were going in together… 

…and the this is what happened (inside the wave) - Scout didn’t mind though, she was always up for MORE PLAY.

Fun fun fun - And always eager to go

Even if it was just for a normal victim. - They did some boat exercises too, but unfortunately they were too far away to take pictures.

Some of the less experienced dogs had problems going into the water (partly because the owners did not know how to count the waves), and the puppy class was moved to land trainings for one of the trainings. Land training in waterwork is very important, so it was good practice for the dogs, and great for the owners. 

Scout was placed in C-class for the trainings, but after her turn, she decided to continue to the land trainings.. always so eager to go.. (exercise: fetch from the boat)

But she also listens well -
Scout taking the hand

Wednesday night Karel held a first-aid/CPR seminar, and of course Capri was used as the example dog ;-). Capri liked the attention, so she didn’t mind the blowing into the nose part too much. 

There’s not much to tell about the trainings; they were pretty much what we normally train i.e. one victim, two victims, multiple victims, dead victim (take hand) as one of the victims, boat exercises (starting from boat/ending to boat/working with the boat in water as one of the objects), take a line/other object, going out to do the exercises WITH the dog or sending him alone etc.

And pulling by the hand - Looks chaotic, but really isn’t as everyone knows who’s supposed to save who

Scout’s first time saving a person from the boat.. about to jump (missed the jump picture!!)  .. And heading straight to the victim without hesitation! Perfect!

We tried to vary the exercises and keep a good pace with multiple dogs in the water at the same time, so that we were able to do around 10/15 exercises with every dog with good long distances per 1.5 hours training time. The day was split into two 1.5 hour sessions per group, with in total 4 shifts, so that we would be working with two groups a total 3 hours in the morning (1.5 hours each) and 3 hours in the afternoon (1.5 hours each). The groups consisted of around 4 dogs, which was a great group size. 

Like mum, like daughter.. both of them just as crazy..  -  Scout shaking

The week went by quickly. On the last day we held a demo for the kids.

Mio, Capri (with Karel) and Vera (Bettina) saving three victims - Capri would of course do it perfectly, following me and Vera back to the shore

On our way to Viljandi after the waterwork camp we saw 42 storks on ONE field.

We had entered the three dogs to a show in Viljandi on the Saturday after the camp (as it was “on the way to Finland”, only a four-hour trip away per side from the route). On Friday we drove to Viljandi and washed Capri and Scout in the evening. Vera we did completely in the morning as our turn in the ring wasn’t until around midday. The show place was only a five-minute drive away, which was great as we could stay at the hotel for as long as possible, keeping the dogs as cool as possible (it was a very hot day and we didn’t have our tent to put up on at the show grounds). 

The show went amazingly well. Everyone won their classes with Excellent and Certificate Quality, Scout became the Best of Breed with a Certificate (CAC), Vera was second best female and Capri was third best female with Veteran CAC and Best of Breed Veteran. In the big ring Scout amazed us all placing Best of Group 2 from around twenty other Best of Breeds!! Well done!! 

Capri in the big ring

Scout in the big ring.

After the show we drove to Tallinn to take the ferry to Finland (Helsinki). The ferry only took just under two hours, allowing us to 
leave the dogs in the car for the trip. We were in Helsinki by midnight, at our summer cottage a few hours later.

On Sunday we had planned a trip to Lappeenranta, a city close to the Russian border. There was an agility event where we were to pick up Christina’s new Watercubs training vest. On the way we saw a sign for “sand castles”. Of course we had to investigate it a bit further and it was definitely worth t. The sand castles were amazing! 

One of the sand castles  -  Christina and Scout having a little fun – putting their heads through the head-holes

On our way back we went to see the camp grounds again and make sure that everything was ok. The place at Taavetti was just like we remembered, which was definitely great. 

The pretty little Scout very attentive

On Monday we decided to go to the nature park for a walk. We took Scout and Vera with us, just so that we could go for a longer and brisker walk. 

Scout and Christina, Vera at the front: -
Scout on her escape trip (small dot Scout, bigger dot Christina and Bettina’s head)

An hour of hiking (a quarter of the way planned) and Scout and Vera found water. That’s great as they were able to cool down. The only problem was that Scout was too hot, she wanted to cool down, and decided to start swimming, swimming, swimming away from us. Nothing would get her attention and she was going further and further. Shoes, shirt and trousers off and Christina was ready to swim after her. Scout ended up swimming around 400 meters until Christina managed to get her attention and they returned to shore (another 50 meters). Scout wasn’t tired, but Christina was (understandably) not so enthusiastic to continue so we returned back to the car and back home.

Scout and Vera on our way back

Tuesday morning was full of shopping, planning and list making getting ready for the weekend’s camp. In the afternoon we participated at the Kaakon Kahlaajat waterwork trainings held by our friends. Scout was the only dog to swim this time too as there were quite a few dogs at the trainings, and getting an extra three dogs (Capri, Vera, Ruuti) would have lengthened their trainings quite a bit. We had a great evening talking to our friends and getting to know what they’d been up to the past year. 
Wednesday and Thursday were full of further planning until it was time to go to Helsinki airport to pick up Karel Mennes and Jan Counotte-DeVree. Karel is a professional lifeguard trainer and Jan an official Belgian waterwork judge. Both of them work with us regularly at our waterwork trainings, Karel being the founder and main trainer and Jan one of the founding members of the IWRDA. Jan was in Finland for the second time, the first time being two years ago participating at our camp as one of the main instructors. 
The waterwork weekend started on Friday with a level test and land trainings. While half of the group were doing land trainings with Annina and Christina, the other half was graded on a few simple exercises to determine which group they should be at for the rest of the weekend. The exercises were: retrieve a dummy, save a person, a boat exercise and swim with handler. These exercises would show us at which level the dog was at, and how ready was the owner to enter the water. We ended up having two A groups (beginners), two B groups (intermediate) and two C groups (advanced), with 3-4 dogs in each group. Karel and Bettina trained together with one group (Karel would do the general trainings, whereas Bettina would take one dog and hander to the side to explain or teach in more detail, or go over things the dogs didn’t know how to do, or needed more practice with) and Markus with Jan (with Annina). Teija and Yrjo were there for Saturday for the third training place. The timetable for Saturday and Sunday was like in Estonia: 1.5 hours of training in the morning and 1.5 hours in the afternoon for every group. During the evenings we had seminars. On Friday about waterwork training (Bettina) and Saturday first-aid for dogs (Karel).

The very serious first-aid seminar, thanks to Christina and Jan. You can see Markus wearing our camp T-shirt - Mugs we had for the camp

The water exercises were very similar to those we normally train, and to those we did in Estonia. We kept the trainings as varied as possible with the minimum or basic equipment to allow the participants to learn more exercises they could do on their own at home. It was important to teach the participants to use their voice (clear (loud) commands and real good praises) and make them understand that being in the water IS a part of waterwork, not just standing on the shore. We had six extra wetsuits, six extra waterwork harnesses and three extra lifejackets, and they were in use during all the trainings; FANTASTIC. We were extremely surprised (and glad) that people actually entered the water this year and really used our advice during the trainings. It was a completely different atmosphere compared to two years ago. We were impressed  

Scout taking a surfboard to a victim - Scout about to save two victims

Scout pulling a boat all the way to the shore - Dogs waiting to go to their owners in water

The nice beaches we were able to get for the camp - The first time any of the dogs did saving two victims with the owner

Reading the comments and seeing the dogs improve a huge lot during the few days we were there, I think everyone learned A LOT of new things to incorporate into their own trainings. The weekend definitely was a HUGE success.

Sunday evening we were going to have a Doggy Olympics game relating to waterwork, but unfortunately most of the participants had to leave early, so we ended up not having the game. It would have been great, but we really would have needed at least half of the participants to go through with it. It’s a shame they had to leave early! 

After the camp on Sunday we headed back to our summer cottage. Jan, Karel and Markus went fishing, and to everyone’s surprise Markus actually caught a good-sized pike! He earned 10 euros for that bet, and another 10e for letting it go. Jan was feeling sorry for the fish ;-). 

Going fishing: Jan says: “We are the Vikings – we bring food..!” - The pike (Scout is wondering whether she should go after it or not)

Monday morning we left for the airport and the ferry terminal, leaving Karel and Jan at the airport, the rest of us heading to the terminal to catch the ferry to Sweden. The ferry left around 5PM from Helsinki, getting us to Stockholm at 9AM. The ferry ride went quickly as we were tired and just fell asleep straight away. Once again we realized how important the “kakka”-command is as Capri and Vera were able to quickly relieve themselves in the designated spot on the deck, but Scout (who didn’t know the command) wouldn’t relieve herself during the whole of the ferry ride! Luckily it was only a short ferry over. 

Bettina and Christina with the dogs (Vera, Scout and Capri) on the deck - Everyone just loooooved Scout

Playing “find Christina” on the ferry

Tuesday morning we took Annina to the Stockholm airport (she needed to be at work on Wednesday in England and this was the only way for her to get there on time), and then headed down south towards Brussels. It was a loooooong drive because of the low speed limit due to Christina’s new trailor. 

We slept just under 4 hours in Germany, getting us to Christina’s house around midday on Wednesday. An hour later I was finally at home with Capri and Vera, getting to see Ruuti, the puppies… and one of the puppies’ new owners. We had seen Rolli’s owners during our waterwork camp already, but now it was time for Rolli to go home. The summer holidays were over!

10.06.2011 More puppy updates in the puppyblog! Capri's heart was ultrasounded to be echodoppler clear at the age of 8,5 years! Great!

04.06.2011 Ruuti (Kivisilman Monitoimikone) is a proud mother :-)! More in the puppyblog!

02.06.2011 Ruuti (Kivisilman Monitoimikone) has started to whelp :-). As I'm writing this, Ruuti's opening phase has lasted for around 18 hours, which means that she should be whelping soon.. Or that's what we hope since we're just excited to see all the mini-Ruutis ;-) ! We opened a PUPPYBLOG for the R-litter, which we'll update with pictures and puppyprogress. Remember to add the link to your favorites, as that's what we'll be updating more often from now un for at least the next eight-ten weeks rather than this news- section. There is also a link to the photogallery for the R-litter, where we hope to put new pictures at least every few days, so that you can follow their progress virtually. I will also be starting up my Skype-account again, you can add me (bettina.salmelin) and talk to me whenever I'm online as that means that I'm puppy-sitting :-).

Ruuti is STILL sleeping in the froggy position (1.6.11), even with her HUGE belly - Ruuti on the 1st June, a day before the start of the opening phase of the whelping

Vera (Larinkallion Huomingohde) was sterilized yesterday as we were not planning to have any more litters with her. The eight wonderful puppies from her N-litter is more than enough :-) !

27.05.2011  ONLY ONE WEEK TILL RUUTI POPS :-) !! We are extremely excited to see all the Mini-Ruutis :-) !

Last weekend the SICS was invited to participate at the opening of Bau Beach, one of the many dog beaches in Italy. The Minister of Tourism Ms. Brambilla was there to open the beach, and she had chosen our lovely AL (K. Multimedia) to pose with her for the TV interviews and the newspaper atricles. Fantastic :-)! And hugs to the gorgeous AL who behaved extremely well :-) !

Link to the TV interviews with AL (the first three news casts)

Link to Ms. Brambilla's own website blog of the event

Al in one of the numerous newspaper articles after the event - Al walking to the beach with Ms. Brambilla (with owner Donatella on the left in the orange and black drysuit)

Al with her owner Donatella in another TV-interview, unrelated to the opening of the dog beach. LINK

As other amazing news the first two of our N-litter (26.11.2009) have been through some health examinations. Tenly (Kivisilman Nollatoleranssi) is OFA certified to be heart and patella NORMAL, and her preliminary elbow X-rays look normal and hip X-rays look to be "good" on the OFA scale. We are thrilled and so is her owner :-)!! Murky (Kivisilman Nastarenkaat) went to the vet to be castrated yesterday (for no other reason than the owner's comfort, so don't worry!) and his elbows and knees look normal. The preliminary estimate of the hips is between B-C. We are VERY happy with these results too. Hopefully the rest of the N-litter will continue to have similar good news regarding their health status'.

Tenly (K. Nollatoleranssi) after her trim at 18 months - Murky (K. Nastarenkaat) about to go on an Easter Egg Hunt!


21.05.2011 We celebrated Vera's SIXTH birthday a week ago (17.05) by making her a small birthday cake and going for a really long walk. She is doing excellently, and so are all her siblings from our first litter (Larinkallion H-). Time really does fly!

We have been heading to the local horseracetrack the last few days as the swans and geese seem to have invaded our normal walking routes (alongside the lakes). The dogs won't chase them or otherwise get into conflict with them, but Capri and Data will try to eat all the poo they can find as a midday snack, and Vera will try to roll in as many piles as she has the time for! And that's pretty nasty!

We (Annina and Bettina) have been invited to judge at two official obedience tests in the UK, the first one being already in November and the second in February. We look forward to a great day judging with hopefully a lot of participants :-) !

Ruuti is doing well, she gets rounder by the day! Only two more weeks until the due-date. We are VERY excited :-) !

Vera, her mother Capri and Data the pug on the horse track in May 2011 - Capri posing for the camera on our walk

09.05.2011 We are getting a little impatient with the waiting for Ruuti's litter to be born, and today we just HAD TO go to the local Poundshop to get some puppystuff... This is what we came home with: a few first-collars, a few puppyleashes, puppyfoodbowls and a few toys. All of them of course absolutely necessary, right?!

Some puppytuff bought whilst impatiently waiting a few more weeks for Ruuti's litter to be born..!

As other news we trimmed Ruuti to look more and more like her mother Capri (probably because of the trimming technique; bluntly using the kitchen scissors to chop of all the unwanted extra fur that she won't be needing for the puppies (as there are no shows until the end of the year). She doesn't seem to mind the puppycut and is now at least a grocery-bag-full-of-hair lighter for the summer!

Ruuti's chopped-off puppy-look for the summer. No shows in the near future with her ;-) !

30.04.2011 We are extremely glad to announce that RUUTI (Kivisilman Monitoimikone) IS PREGNANT :-) !! According to the cranial measurements, the expected due-date is around the first weekend of June. We are extremely excited about this, and look forward to spending the summer holidays with the puppies! Keep your fingers crossed for an easy delivery and lots of healthy puppies!

We are also back from Italy, training with the SICS and participating at their first International SICS trainers course. There's still quite a way to go until we are official SICS trainers, but this is definitely an exciting start. Participants came all over from Europe (Belgium, Estonia and the UK), and also a girl from the US. We had a fabulous time, and look forward to going there again possibly towards the end of the year, maybe even with Vera to try out their certificates! I will write a longer story about our weekend in due time, but meanwhile you can look at the photos in this link:


Bettina with Vera prepared for a day of waterwork training in Idroscalo, Milano -- The Italian instructors with us, the international instructors, on the last day of trainings.

  Our gorgeous Al (K. Multimedia) is doing very well in Italy, she swims excellently and is best buddies with everyone -- Capri on her well deserved sunbathing holiday in Italy !

We got to meet our puppies Joki (K. Neliveto) and Scout (K. Navigaattori) this Easter over at shows, on walks and at water work trainings. They have grown up very nicely and are both excellent water dogs!

Scout (K. Navigaattori) with mum Vera (L. Huomiongohde) -- Joki (K. Neliveto) with mum Vera (L. Huomiongohde) and grandmum Capri (L. Brysselinblicca)

30.03.2011 The Finnish Newfoundland Club's magazine arrived today, which means that the entries for the International Waterwork Camp are now OPEN. Remember to send your entries quickly, as the entry numbers for the camp are capped. LINK TO ENTRY FORMS AND MORE INFORMATION

28.03.2011 We are extremely please to announce that Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone) will be bred to Wee Lovett's Island of Manitou this week. The expected due date is around the 1st week of June. More information on our Current Litters  -page.

Last weekend Bettina and Annina participated in a UK Kennel Club organized Obedience Judging seminar, test design and practice judging course. We are extremely happy to announce that they both passed the examination, and are now qualified to judge at UK obedience shows. Great! During the week Vera (L. Huomiongohde) passed the Canine Good Citizen Bronze level at the local obedience classes. Congratulations!

Ruuti's (Kivisilman Monitoimikone) heart has been tested to be clear of any abnormalities last Thursday. Unlike the previous times we've been to that clinic, the vet used the normal ultrasound method (echo doppler) AND the ECG (electrocardiogram) monitor, and wired Ruuti to the machines for extra checkup's to make sure she was uttely healthy. We just laughed together with the vet that the vet must've gotten a new machine recently to be so eager to try it out ;-) ! Luckily Ruuti was utterly healthy and she couldn't detect anything even if she tried ;-) !

As other news our previously co-owned Joki (K. Neliveto) will be sterilized at the end of this week, as we have decided to rule her out from our future breeding plans. She is now in the full ownership of Ilse & Luc. Joki is an excellent water dog, and her owners are very eager to continue waterwork with her this spring. They have already entered Joki to the Luxembourg spring waterwork tests! We wish them Good Luck for the tests, though I'm pretty sure they won't need it as Joki works just like her grandmother, our Capri (L. Brysselinblicca): is always reliable and the Perfect dog for waterwork :-). I look forward to seeing her again this Easter both at waterwork and on our walks!

In England, Capri and Vera started waterwork just over a week ago at the Watermead training club near Leicester. The waters are freezing (to us humans), but the dogs are happy to continue as normal :-). The trainings were great, and we look forward to this Saturday to try out some new exercises. The Scuola Italiana Cani Salvataggio (SICS) ( www.canisalvataggio.it ) will be organizing a training course in April for new instructors. The aim of it is to spread the knowledge of training and working with water rescue dogs to other countries. We are glad to say that we, and a lot of our friends will be able to participate and hopefully bring back a lot of knowledge to our trainings, with the end goal of being able to work with our dogs in real situations together with local authorities. If you know anyone suitable (with the background in lifesaving, or the enthusiams to go ahead with it) from Your country, don'thesitate to email me for more information.

15.03.2011 Crufts is now behind us, we had a fabulous time there meeting a lot of old and new friends from all over the world. Thank you for making it such a pleasant

event :-)! Hopefully we'll see you there next year again!


We are looking forward to starting waterwork this weekend in Leicester with Pete and Jen Lewin and the Watermead training group. It's a very early start for the year (as we had a waterbucket freeze outside last night!), but the more waterwork we can do this year the merrier. The dogs are definitely looking forward to it too, probably as much as I am.

07.02.2011 We are having some trouble updating the top bar to contain two separate headings for the News-years, so we will keep it as it is now (combining 2010 and 2011), so that you don't have to stay out in the blue whilst waiting for us to manage the headings, after all, it IS already the beginning of February!

If you can remember our great weekend in Italy with the SICS (www.canisalvataggio.it), there was a film crew following us all weekend. The video clip has now been aired on TV in UK and Australia! Here is a link to the official version of it (unfortunately the link only works in the UK):

Hope you enjoy!

Bettina participated at a Rally Judging Seminar at the beginning of January, and is now a qualified Rally Level 1 and 2 judge. Annina will be participating at a similar event in a few weeks to get herself qualified. In general our spring is devoted to going to various dog seminars and workshops ranging from obedience seminars to judging seminars to heelwork to music workshops. During the weeks we have obedience on Tuesdays for Capri (level 4) and on Thursdays of Data (level 3) and Vera (level 5). We also started going to a six-week Rally course on Wednesday nights with Vera and Data. Though as Vera (L. Huomiongohde) started heat just a few days ago, Capri (L. Brysselinblicca) will be glad to replace her for the classes. Capri and Data participated at a Rally-obedience trial this weekend, and especially Capri did great as she managed to get a qualifying score! Data (pug) decided to please the audience, and even though she did well (for her level), she unfortunately did not quite get a qualifying score, due to her stubborness when she realized she wasn't getting any treats :-) !

The S.I.C.S. decided to share a few links with us. A few of them will be joining us at Crufts (Friday - to watch the newfies), so if you're interested in getting to know them, come and talk to us / them on the Crufts Friday.

Crufts video clip:


National Geographic video clip:


At the beginning of January Al (K. Multimedia) participated at a Telethon (a marathon swimming). The club's dogs swam 56 hours non-stop, covering a huge distance of 310, 40 kilometers in total. The participatin dogs would swim in turn for 10 minutes with their handlers with a 45 minute break in between the swims. After three times, the break would be increased to two hours. But that is A LOT of swimming! Well done Al for being able to participate at such a great event! 

Joki (K. Neliveto) has done well too! She passed her obedience club's test, and is now is the C-class!! HUGE congratulations, well done to you both !! :-) Scout (K. Navigaattori) is doing very well in her obedience classes too, she is a very quick learner!

Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone) has done very well at shows, since the winter show in Brussels she was awarded the RCACIB and RCAC from Mouscron (BE). Our litter plans for her are getting along well. We hope to announce the male in a few months after everything is confirmed and well on its way. 

Capri, Ruuti's mum celebrated her 8th Birthday at the beginning on January in England :-) !

20.12.2010 We had a great day at the Brussels dog show with Vera (L. Huomiongohde), her daughter Scout (K. Navigaattori) and the siblings Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone) and Baron (K. Muskettisoturi). Everyone did well and came home with Excellent, on top of that both Ruuti and Vera won their classes (open and champion), Ruuti also becoming the second best female and getting the Reserve-CAC and Reserve-CACIB. Scout was fifth in the Junior-class, Baron didn't place in his class. It was a job well done by everyone, especially because the entry numbers were huge; there being 60 newfs!

  Scout (K. Navigaattori) at the Brussels dog show    -       Vera (L. Huomiongohde) [Scout's mum] at the Brussels dog show (photos by Paivi Reijonen)


09.12.2010 Annina moved to England with Data-the-pug, and is now living in the same household with Bettina and Capri & Vera -newfs. It has been very cold for the past few weeks in Nottingham, even to the extent of a semi-permanent snow/ice covering the nearby fields. The roads have been so slippery that dog class has been cancelled for the last few weeks. Data is not enjoying the snow, but instead prefers to sleep indoors by the radiator. Capri and Vera on the other hand always seem to get extra boosts of energy as the weather gets colder. The colder it is, the happier they are!

Capri and Vera playing in the snow, winter 2010.

Capri and Vera participated at a club open show in England. They both placed 4th in their classes (veteran and special open black). We also entered them in pre-beginner's obedience and they both got good points even though their performances were far from perfect, but it's a new start for us and them in the field of competitive obedience :-). Though it must be remembered that basic obedience has always been and will always be the basis of all training and working with any dog.


Annina has been taking care of the household in Brussels while all the puppy-owners seem to be going on their well-deserved holidays when the days get darker and the weather even wetter in the rainy-Belgium!

Here are a few longer posts from Annina, which I though might be nice for the news-section as Annina describes the dogs' temperaments oh-so-well !

”As Bram decided to go on a well-deserved holiday to Africa and could not take Baron (K. Muskettisoturi) with him, we offered to look after the gorgeous brown bear. We always love having the ”pups” over as it is fascinating to see the similar looks and mannerisms the dogs have with our girls. And they get along so well – just like family! Everytime a pup comes to visit, it feels like a member of our extended-pack has come back home -- And the girls love it as they get a new dog to play with!

We knew that it would be a bit of a challenge to have Baron over so soon after Ruuti's (K. Monitoimikone) heat, but we were prepared for the chaos. As expected, Baron keeps trying to hump Ruuti a lot. It is quite frustrating, but understandable. Baron is almost two and his hormones are still ”very active”. Normal hormonal teenage boy!

We take them for a couple hours walk in Tervueren every day, to keep them calm in the house. So far it is working... Unfortunately Data (the pug) has a cold (keeps sneezing, coughing and cannot come for long walks in the cold). She is loving it, as everyone keeps cuddling her and she can just sleep in the warmth all day long...

In addition to mounting, Baron has been Very interested in Ruuti and has been washing her behind every chance he gets. He actually reminds me a Lot of her mum, Capri and how she is always the one to keep everyone clean [she still licks Vera's behind if Capri thinks she is getting dirty..] (.. you can just hear the slurping sounds, ugh.. ). In addition to keeping Ruuti clean, Baron has started to mother Data. He licks her face, eyes, ears, butt... It really feels like he has decided to be the ”mum” of the two girls, and is just showering them with attention and affection. Data does not appreciate this too much – she Hates getting wet and slobbered on!

We went to Leuven dog show on Sunday with both browns (siblings Ruuti and Baron). They looked gorgeous (even though I say so myself) and both won their classes with excellent! I am very very proud of them! Baron was a gentleman in the ring, and was a pleasure to watch.

It was funny, but Baron fell in love with an Afghan hound sitting right next to us. He kept pulling, inching and stretching toward the Afghan during the whole day. At times I had trouble keeping the lovelorn gentleman's butt on the ground. But at least he had excellent taste – that young Afghan later became Best of Breed. But just think of the type of pups the two would bring to this world. Think of all the silky, tangly hair! Thank you , but no - never!

Bram asked me to take a picture of Baron for the calendar, but unfortunately Betti has the good camera. I have an almost decade old, small, sad camera with which to take pics. However I never back away from a challenge, and here are my pics from today's Tervueren walk for you to enjoy. I will still take more (with better lighting) tomorrow.

Baron is staying with us until Thursday. But I have good news, Joki is coming over right after. It did feel weird having only two dogs in the house after Capri and Vera left with Betti. Thankfully we have these dogs people loan to us.

Have a great holiday Bram! And you Ilse et co!

I am looking forward to seeing Joki on Thursday.. ”


Baron in Tervuren, Autumn 2010.

- - -

It feels like we are hosting a doggy-day-care. First we looked after Baron (K. Muskettisoturi) for a week, and once he left - Joki (K. Neliveto) came to visit for a week. We love it, but I still think it's a bit funny.

Thankfully Joki is a Very easy dog to take care of, especially since she lived with us for the first four months of her life. She IS one of us (and not in the creepy-horror-movie kind of way, but she knows our routines exactly and is completely at home here). When she came, she greeted the girls, played for a bit and then went to sleep in her spot in front of the front door – just like she always does.

After Baron, I feel like I am on holiday.

When Joki was small and living with us, she and Data were the Best Friends Ever! They would play tug, sleep next to each other and just be together all the time. As soon as Joki stepped through the door on Thursday, Data commandeered Joki as her own mattress and play-thing. Joki doesn't seem to mind..

Ruuti is still exhausted from Baron, so she sleeps most of the day. Thoug she is now starting to wake up more..

The girls' sleeping ritual is very sweet: Ruuti is usually the first to fall asleep next to the couch (as I am sitting in the livingroom – and all our girls just have to be with people). After a while Joki joins her, snuggles next to Ruuti's side with a satisfied grunt. They either fall asleep straight away, or they lick each other's cheeks and ears and then fall asleep. After the house is quiet again, Data wakes up from her spot on the couch (.. from my lap – where else), and jumps down to check on the girls. She then either climbs back into my lap or climbs on top of the girls and starts snoring, surrounded by all the coat and warmth.

Joki is as big and wide as Ruuti, which is why Markus keeps mixing the girls. He keeps calling them ”twins” and really thought they were sisters from the same litter. He thought I was joking when I told him that Joki is actually Ruuti's niece and Vera's daughter.

In the mornings when I wake up to give the girls their breakfast, I have to be extra careful not to mix the girls and give the kibble to Ruuti (and this is especially hard without a good, big cup of coffee first). You know the saying ”grass is always greener on the other side”. Well, the girls would happily switch their foods, because they think the other is getting the better food. We feed our girls raw and use kibbles as treats, while Joki eats kibble and eats raw as treats. You can see their dilemma. They think the other is just eating desserts. So at Every meal Ruuti salivates next to the kibble bowl and Joki sits next to the meats and veggies. Do they really think I am going to slip up at some point this week..?

Joki is going throug her chewing-phase. I knew this, but had completely forgotten it! This morning when I came down, I had a nasty surprise waiting for me. Joki had chewed the heels off my boots, destroyed two books, some magazines and chewed some fouton off Data's bed. I think I will have to put Joki to sleep in the hallway tomorrow night – with a big chew bone. I cannot belive I forgot Joki's chewing. Ilse had told me, but.. This is what happens when you have the same head both summer and winter.

I gave everyone a big bone to chew on. The idea is that Joki would get tired of chewing..? I can just hear the slurping and grating sounds as the girls eat them. You should have seen how big Joki's eyes got when she saw her bone (I gave her the biggest one). It was a cow's legbone, she hasn't come up for air since.

I think I am becoming quite good at commanding in Dutch. All the words are slowly coming back to me. Though thankfully Joki understands Finnish as well..

Unfortunately I don't have a camera anymore. My parents left for Washington DC, and took it with them, I will have pictures as soon as they come back on Wednesday.

Until then.. ”

Vera (Larinkallion Huomiongohde) in England, Autumn 2010.

- - -

Just a little update on Joki and her visit, I know you are interested in how it's going, right?

Now that Ruuti is not comatose anymore, the house is much more noisy. Joki tries to get her and Data to play all the time, and I mean every waking moment. She keeps licking and nipping Ruuti's ears (.. and I have to tell her off.. ), and poking Data with her snout. She truly is enjoying her time with the girls – and acting like a big baby.

Thankfully most days I can just usher them to the garden and let them play. More space to run around without having to worry about them knocking things over.

However the skies have opened in the last few days and it is POURING down rain, and I mean POURING. The whole backyard is a mudfield ie. wet and very very slippery. When you walk in the garden, your every step makes a ”squelching”- sound. I do not know how better to describe it. I have to keep arms leveled when I walk, otherwise there is a big chance that I'd fall flat on my face in the mud – not very dignified.

When I let the girls out, even for just a quick bathroom break, they come back inside completely covered in mud! I don't know how they do it, but somehow they are masters at getting wet and dirty. The floors are now completely covered in muddy paw prints, even though we try and mop them up all the time. We have started to wear shoes indoors. Now I am extremely glad the girls are not allowed upstairs in our bedrooms.

But thankfully when I put them in the hallway, they know it is time to sleep for a bit and completely zonk out – recharge their batteries. It is their ”time-out” zone. They can run around in the living-room and outside, but when I call them into the hallway – it's night-night for an hour or two. It is my time-off, when I can concentrate on my work.

They still try and get me mix up their foods. I have started feeding Joki in our big car-cage (now in our hallway) to make sure they do not try and steal each others foods, and every morning Ruuti runs into the cage letting me know I can just give her the food, Joki can survive on the veggies.. (eye_roll). Silly girl!

Data and Joki play really nicely most of the time (sometimes Joki is a bit too rough, not knowing how big she really is.. ). Joki has let Data ”kill” her many, many times over the few days. Mainly their play consists of Joki lieing on the floor and her letting Data jump, climb and hit her while she growls, barks and shakes her head (her head is as big as Data, so when Data zigs left, Joki's head zags right). When Joki ”dies” ie. she lies completely still, Data thinks she's won and very proudly puffs her chest and starts walking away victoriously. But ha-haa, this is when Joki's tail starts wagging and she wakes up from the dead with a small puff-bark, and the struggle continues.. It's great to see how well the two play together! And now that Data is feeling much better, she can play without starting to wheeze and cough.

Ilse will be picking Joki up on Saturday morning, so we still have a little time with her. If the rain stops tomorrow (which I doubt – It feels like the days before the Great Flood), I will try and get some pics of her.

I have taken video of the girl (I stand in the doorway safe from the rain, while the girls get wet), and will convert it into wmv when Joki leaves. Until then I will keep recording..”

Capri (Larinkallion Brysselinblicca), Autumn 2010.

29.10.2010 Ruuti has been doing extremely well in the shows we have been taking her! Just last weekend she placed first in her class (out of eight), and then as second Best Bitch getting the reserve CAC and reserve CACIB (total 58 newfs!). Well done! 

Ruuti in Utrecht (photo: Lenie van Mourik)

We updated a few of the pages that were lagging behind, mainly the show results (though without the written comments) and the water work results for our girls. 

As other news: We are making a calendar (year 2011) featuring all our Kivisilman-puppies. If you are interested in getting a copy for your own wall, just send me an email and I'd be happy to include you in the order as well.

18.10.2010 Bettina is now living in England (Nottingham) with Capri (L. Brysselinblicca) and Vera (L. Huomiongohde). The dogs love staying with her, as they get to go on new walks, find new ponds to swim in, and get to meet new dog-friends every day! Ruuti and Data (the pug) are still staying in Brussels with the rest of the family. The family does come together every now and then, mostly when there are dog events in the schedule. For example last weekend we all headed for a show weekend in Lausanne, Switzerland.

The results, 3 CAC, 1 RCAC, 1 CACIB and 2 RCACIB, were shared between the-very-bouncy-duracell-bunny-Vera (L. Huomiongohde) and the-well-behaved-Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone). Not a bad result for a two-day-show! And few weeks ago we headed to the German Admiral's Cup, where Ruuti, Vera and Capri all passed the waterwork first level with great points (193, 191, 197 / 200)! The German waterwork test rules looked very interesting, so we promised ourselves that we'll definitely go there again next Spring !

We heard very sad news about our lovely Al (K. Multimedia) a few weeks ago: her left cruciate ligament ruptured. She is now doing well after the operation, but we hope no-one else will ever need to go through what she has had to! Hugs to Al and her owner Donatella !

All the other puppies are doing great. Joki (K. Neliveto) and Baron (K. Muskettisoturi) did extremely well at their waterwork club's championship event: Joki placed 2nd and Baron 3rd ! (obedience Joki 1st, Baron 6th; waterwork Joki 3rd, Baron 1st) Well done! Joki also passed the Belgian socialibily test a few weeks ago; great job! Scout (K. Navigaattori) is doing extremely well in her obedience class too, shining away and performing even better than the older dogs in the group! We have some new pictures of Tenly (K. Nokkakolari) from Pennsylvania in her photogallery. She is a very active, fun, playful, and waterloving, gorgeous girl!

15.09.2010 We had a fabulous time in Italy with S.I.C.S, Scuola Italiana Cani Salvataggio (http://www.canisalvataggio.it/ ). We joined their helicopter trainings on Saturday, and their normal waterwork trainings on Sunday. Our own Vera (L. Huomiongohde) and Al (K. Multimedia) even jumped from the helicopter with us! Lots and lots of pictures here.


                    Vera's jump from the helicopter                                                                                                            Al's jump from the helicopter

Family portraits taken in Italy after the waterwork trainings, and in Germany visiting Cooper (K. Nestekaasu):

                    Al, Scout, Vera, Ruuti, Capri                                                                                                     Vera, Ruuti, Scout, Capri, Cooper

We received Ruuti's (K. Monitoimikone) and Baron's (K. Muskettisoturi) hip and elbow X-ray evaluations from the Finnish Kennel Club today. The results are Perfect. Ruuti's hips are B/B, elbows 0/0. Baron's hips A/A and elbows 0/0. Can't really get any better than that ! We are very happy.

We went to see Murky (K. Nastarenkaat) last weekend. He has grown and matured a lot since we last saw him ! He loves chewing up rooster rubber toys and destroying toilet paper rolls - he's no different than any of our other pups  ;-) ! Joki (K. Neliveto) also came for the weekend. She is very mature-looking compared to Scout and Cooper, but still needs to develop a bit more. She has a gorgeous head and colour. She is still as playful as before the summer!

                      Murky (K. Nastarenkaat)                                                                                                  Joki (K. Neliveto)

28.08.2010 Time really does fly! We have been concentrated on teaching our dogs tracking, this time with a human scent rather than blood trials. The dogs seem to enjoy it much more, and it's easier for us too, as we can just make a track anywhere and anytime we want to, just need to bring a glove and a few treats with us. So far we have laid a few double-laid, short, straight tracks for all of them a few times. Ruuti flies over the track and needs to re-trace her steps after passing the glove, Vera goes a straight track and finds the glove immediately, Capri's slow but very accurate, and Data just goes and hopes she finds it..! It is very rewarding and very fun to track with all of them. They all advance at a slightly different pace, with different quirks, so it keeps us up and alert too :-). You should try it too! A very good book for it is Judi Adler's Audible Nose: Teaching your dog to track. That's the one we've been reading and following through :-).

We went to get Ruuti's (K. Monitoimikone) and Baron's (K. Muskettisoturi) official hip and elbow X-rays at the Eersel clinic a few days ago. We're very happy with the results, as the hips and elbows both looked perfect :-). The vet's estimate was B hips for both, and 0 elbows for both. Now we'll just have to wait for the evaluation results from the Finnish Kennel Club. It looks like we can go ahead with our future litter plans for autumn 2011 or spring/summer 2012 with Ruuti, though a few more routine health checks are in need before we can shine the green light, but we don't expect them to cause any problems :-).

Next weekend we are heading to ITALY for a long weekend to see our gorgeous Al (K. Multimedia) and join their waterwork trainings (http://www.canisalvataggio.it/ ). They have even arranged a helicopter for the trainings, and perhaps we'll even get to get on it and maybe perhaps even jump off it..! Amazing!! Scout (K. Navigaattori) and Cooper (K. Nestekaasu) will be joining us for the trip, hopefully we'll also get to see Vuori (K. Nopeusrajoitus).. Murky (K. Nastarenkaat) we'll get to go visit a week later, when we're coming back from a longer show-trip-weekend with Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone) and Vera (L. Huomiongohde)! Looking forward to that too :-) !

05.08.2010 The summer holidays are now officially half gone already. Yesterday we returned from our four-week trip to Finland (a week of which we spent over in Estonia at the week-long waterwork camp).

First the results, then the other news.

Vera is now Estonian Champion, having also received her third CACIB (one more needed for the International Champion title). Vera is now Finnish, Swedish and Estonian Champion!

Ruuti did well in shows too, she got a CAC, and a few reserves. More of the results (with the written comments) will be put in her show-results section. Our co-owned Scout did well in the shows too. She got two honor prizes, once also being the best of breed puppy. She will continue her ”show career” in the youth class.

  The Rosettes from the Estonian shows   EST FIN SE CH Larinkallion Huomiongohde VERA
                                The Rosettes from the shows in Estonia                                           The new Estonian Champion Larinkallion Huomiongohde "Vera"

We participated at an unofficial Roturace, a fun competition where teams of four dogs of the same breed run on a greyhound track for the fastest times against other breed teams. Ruuti ran at an amazing speed of 30km/h ! She covered 80 meters in 9.37 seconds!


  Roturace 2010 Kuolalingot  Ruutin Roturace suoritus
                    Our team  "Kuolalingot"                                                                                                                  Ruuti running at the Roturace

During the summer holidays we also checked and confirmed the date & place for the next international waterwork camp in Finland. We will be hosting it 15-18.07.2011 in Taavetti Lomakeskus & Camping. More news will be posted on our website towards next summer. It is open for all newfoundlands, a few extra places possibly going to landseers and leonbergs.

We participated at the International waterwork camp in Karepa (Estonia) in July. The place was amazing, the organizers and instructors wonderful, the trainings good, all in all we enjoyed it a lot! Until next year!

Capri did amazingly and on the last day of the camp, at an unofficial German waterwork test, she placed second int he B-class :-). She enjoyed the water exercises so much that we plan to go to Germany again towards the end of the year to a waterwork test (though starting from A-level with the three).

    Capri in Estonia  Sunset in Estonia
                              Capri at the waterwork camp in Estonia                                                                            The sunset in Karepa on the beach

Scout learned how to swim during the camp, which was a huge achievement. Well she knew how to swim, and had gone to the beach a few times before (and really enjoyed playing in the shallow waters!), but Karepa made her realize that she can go for longer and longer and longer loops on her own! She gave us a few scares disappearing into the distance, but luckily her recall is good and she returned to us well.

Data, Scout, Ruuti, Vera, Capri
      Data (Tarragem Haley Hurricane), Scout (K. Navigaattori), Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone), Vera (L. Huomiongohde) and Capri (L. Brysselinblicca)

Even before the summer we jokingly said that Scout is our ”mini-Vera”, and having her over for the summer really confirmed that she is just that! Scout's personality (active, loves to obey, brave, trusting, rapid learner, a crazy puppy :-) ) and appearance are so like Vera's that we absolutely loved having her with us over the summer. Scout will go back to her owner in the next few days when they return from their holidays in the USA.

We received some bad news concerding Al's hip (E) and elbow scores (1) over the summer. They are unfortunately not as good as we hoped or expected. We will go take her sibling's Ruuti and Baron's hip and elbow X-rays in the next few months. Despite the bad news, Al is doing very well in Italy with her owner. They are busy with their waterwork club patrolling the beaches and training a lot! Al appeared in the CBS news, and will also be appearning in the US National Geographic's film ”And Man Created Dog”. It will be released 8/8/2010.

Kivisilman Multimedia (Al) Kivisilman Multimedia (Al) Kivisilman Multimedia (Al)
              Al rescuing under a helicopter                               Al and Donatella recuing a drowning person back to the boat                      Al bossing everyone around ;-)



14.06.2010 We had a good show-weekend with our “puppies”. We took our Vera (L. Huomiongohde) and Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone) to the show, borrowed Baron (K. Muskettisoturi), and both of our co-owned girls (Vera's pups) Joki (K. Neliveto) and Scout (K. Navigaattori) also came with us. The results:

Vera 1st Excellent on Saturday and 1st Excellent with RCACIB on Sunday

Ruuti 1st Excellent with RCAC on Saturday and 2nd Excellent on Sunday

Baron 1st Excellent with CAC on Saturday and 1st Excellent on Sunday

Scout 1st Promising on Saturday and 2nd Promising on Sunday (placed after her sister Joki)

Joki was only in the ring on Sunday and was 1st Very Promising.


Baron (K. Muskettisoturi), Vera (L. Huomiongohde), Joki (K. Neliveto), Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone), Scout (K. Navigaattori)

                                                         Scout                                                                                        Joki        

                                                         Ruuti                                                                                           Baron


We had quite a few dogs with us this time, and it was great to see everyone together :-). Baron and Joki stayed with us over the weekend, getting to play with our dogs in the garden. Baron was a real gentleman and behaved extremely well – it was a pleasure to have him over. Joki looks like, and behaved at our house just like Capri ;-) ! It was really nice having her over for a long weekend :-).


The rest of the pictures of all the pups are in the photogallery http://watercubs.kuvat.fi



                                               Joki taking contact at dogschool

We also went to Joki's dog training class on Thursday evening. Joki did very well, even though the weather was not the best for newfies: hot and humid! She takes contact very well (when she wants to ;-) ), knows the basic heelwork, recall and fetch-exercises, and really enjoys playing with her owner Ilse :-). Well done Joki! Joki also recognized us very well, always aiming to pose well for the camera ;-).

                        Baron wondering what his sister Ruuti is doing..?                                                                 Joki, Ruuti (on her back - again), Baron and Data

Baron we went to get from his house Friday, he's not a very good guard dog as he greeted us into his yard with a huge slobbery kiss and tail wags :-). Of course he knows us well already, but it was really nice seeing him recognize us too. He behaved extremely well over the weekend, did not pull on the lead at all, always listened to our commands (even though we speak a different language), was gentle with everyone he met, and well.. the lovable dog we've always adored :-)!

Scout we call our little monkey :-). We went to pick up her and her owner Christina on the way to the show both days. Saturday Scout managed to climb up to the driver's seat when we were unpacking the car! She was just happily sitting there and waiting for us to come take her out too :-). I think we're going to have a busy summer with Scout keeping us occupied !!


10.06.2010 Just over a month has passed from the last update, so instead of having a huge long update in the news-wection, we decided to split it into stories about the events we've been to: the Dienville's international Newfoundland Waterwork meeting (and saw our gorgeous Al (K. Multimedia)) and Bala (Wales), a combined waterwork and draft test, and in brief the results of a few shows in Chateauroux, Irun, Toulouse and Castelnaudary.

We met many friends (old and new) at the International meeting - it definitely was a lot of fun getting training tips and actually seeing so many newfies working in the water at the same time :-).

Ruuti (Monitoimikone), Vera (Huomiongohde), Capri (Brysselinblicca), Al (Multimedia), Scout (Navigaattori) in Dienville

During the Bala-weekend we got a total of EIGHT passes!!

Capri passed waterwork levels A and B
Vera passed waterwork levels A and B, and draft level 1
Ruuti passed waterwork level A, and draft levels 1 and 2

AMAZING job girls :-) !!

Bettina with Ruuti doing level 2 haul in Bala (looking at the huuuuge mountain they were supposed to climb next!)


It's been a long while since we last went to so many shows in such a short time, but they have gone very well. Vera got a RCACIB from Chateauroux, and class wins from Irun, Toulouse and Castelnaudary. Capri we only took to Toulouse and Castelnaudary, where she placed second after her daugher Vera :-). Ruuti did exceptionally well first becoming second best bitch getting a RCAC and RCACIB from Toulouse and being the best female with CAC in Castelnaudary. Data also did very well with an excellent second in Toulouse and a second best bitch with RCAC in Castelnaudary. This weekend we're heading to Douai, hopefully they'll continue with their winning streak ;-) !


Annina and Virva-Riitta with Data, Vera, Capri and Ruuti at the Castelnaudary show


20.04.2010 Vuori is gone and we're already missing him! He found a great home with Colleen, her husband and their two sons in Germany. Our next litter is planned for summer 2012 (or 2013) with Ruuti (K. Monitoimikone).

Scout-sister (Navigaattori), Vuori-brother (Nopeusrajoitus), Vera-mum (Huomiongohde)

Scout and Vera with the infamous moo-cow


Bettina is also back from France with Capri and the on-heat Ruuti. This week we've all started the spring weight-loss program/get-in-shape for summer, though it's more for us than the dogs as we MUST fit into our wetsuits :-D ! The waters are still freezing, but waterwork has already started. We went for a fun day at the lake today with Capri and Vera, managed to get a few good pictures and a couple of trainig videos which we will post on our FORUM (http://www.watercubs.com/forum). The forum is only for our puppy and stud dog owners. We can much more easily keep in touch, share ideas and opinions about everything, and post training tips and a lot of pictures. It also helps the puppy owners to keep in touch with each other and compare notes on how the puppies are developing. It is fantastic how active all the puppy owners are about sharing thoughts and pictures :-). We LOVE them, THANK YOU :-)!

The Forum has been a great idea and we're very happy we finally did it, since it is much easier for us to post new training tip threads on there (rather than our website), since we don't really have to think before we post (i.e. can post daily messages and ex-tempore-ideas). And don't really have to think about the format (which is necessary for the website), and can just concentrate on giving advice. We can also access the forum from anywhere, while we can only access the website updates from our Belgian computer.

We also had the chance to go see Joki (Neliveto) and Baron (Muskettisoturi) at their first waterwork training of the year. We had a GREAT time, thank you for inviting us, we'll be back with the girls :-)! We heard great news that Baron (1,5 years) passed the B-level obedience test with a great result at his obedience club. Now he is in the most difficult C-class! HUGE CONGRATULATIONS :-) !

Joki and Baron with their owners Ilse and Bram.

Donatella shared a Gorgeous picture of Al (Multimedia) ! She looks exactly like her mother Capri when she was that age.
We LOVE her so much and can't wait to get to see her in Dienville at the International Newf Meeting in a month :-) !

AL (Multimedia) Spring 2010


13.04.2010 We spent the last two fantastic weeks in the French countryside, basking in the warmth and enjoying the fact that our whole family (people&dogs) were together again. We drove to the nearby lake a few times to let the dogs run and swim to their hearts' content.

Before our holidays we were contacted by a fantastic family who will be adopting Tente, now called Vuori (means mountain in finnish) this weekend. Vuori has grown a lot and is now half the size of the adults (and quadruple the size of Data-pug) :-)

The dogs loved being a big pack over the holidays and Vuori really bonded with all the girls. Ruuti started her heat last week, so she is still with Bettina in France as we still have our little guy here. After the weekend, it is time to change the dogs again. Capri and Vera will go and enjoy the lakes and fields in France, while Data and Ruuti will be pampered in Belgium :-))


18.03.2010 A lot has happened since the last update. Bettina is back from the States. You can read about her adventure and see pictures of her trip. She really did have a wonderful time and cannot wait to visit the pups again.

We have now constructed a discussion forum for all the puppy owners, stud dog owners and a few friends to share ideas and pictures about anything and everything, be it dog related or not. Hopefully this will enable the litter owners to keep in touch and share experiences with each other more easily.

Tente is still with us, loving life and learning fast. He is a very sweet boy, and we are getting more and more attached to him every day. He plays with the other dogs really well, loves kids and people and is a wonderful foot heater in the evening :-). Joki is with us a part of the week, and she is growing more gorgeous each day. She and Tente are not terrorizing the house as we had initially dreaded, but are wonderfully well behaved and controlled inside - though crazy when we let them play outside in the yard. It must be the influence of the adults. It is fantastic to see how many good manners the puppies learn from the rest. Capri is also with us in Belgium, keeping the puppies in line and being pampered by us. The energetic duo, also known as Ruuti and Vera, are in France with Bettina, enjoying the sunshine.

Tente exhausted from playing

22.02.2010 Bettina is now flying over the Atlantic with three puppies. Her plane lands at New York (JFK) in a few hours, where Pipari will meet her new family. Mona and Pipari are sharing a cozy crate downstairs, while Oslo Orka has a seat of his own upstairs in the cabin since he is a service dog in training. Luxury for him, not so much for the girls :-).

Just an hour after we had updated the website letting people know that Mona was looking for a home, a very nice family contacted us about her in Atlanta (USA). Luckily all the paperwork is sorted out; so she is on the same flight as Betti and the pups. Last night as we were frantically packing and trying to get everything sorted out; we realized that 6 of our 8 pups are now in the "hands of Americans" either living here in Europe or in the States. Maybe we should just move to America, as we seem to get along with them very well ;-). 

Akseli left this Saturday to be "babysat" by a family in France :-). 

We took all the remaining four puppies and Data the pug to the finnish dog school this sunday, as our goal was to get the puppies to meet as many dogs as possible before they had to leave. The puppies did great ! We also took them to see Baron (Ruuti's brother) and a very friendly 1-year old newf, Niva. Niva and Baron confused the pups as they looked like our other dogs, but they weren't our other dogs.... :-) There are more pictures in the puppies' photogallery.

Tente, Pipari, Mona, Oslo Orka


Tente (formerly known as Kasper) has changed his call name. The new name comes from TNT (trinitrotoluene), and as people would be completely perplexed if we wrote our dog's name as TNT, it will be spelled out as it is said in finnish, hence Tente. A bit complicated, I admit.  Tente will be staying with us until he finds a good one.

Markus, our younger brother was very sad to see the other puppies go this morning, he would not leave them last night. I think he is just glad that Tente is staying with us a bit longer. Joki is also staying with us for some weekdays until the new family's work schedule allows them to have her for the entire week.

The house seems much quieter now ! This morning I went to get food for the pups, and as I was reaching for the biggest meat bags, realized that there were only two mouths to feed. I walked back upstairs with only a very small bag of meat. Betti left Ruuti and Capri with us for the duration of the America-trip; so once the big browns wake up I don't think the house will be That quiet ;-). Both have taken well to the puppies. Ruuti runs and plays with them, while Capri has decided that if she ignores them they will eventually go away.

The puppy pen will be taken down in the evening; and our lives will finally return to normal. We will have our livingroom back. Gosh, I can't even remember what it was like before the puppies ;-). 


Our this week has been very busy with everything, and it looks like everything is just piling up more and more for the weekend :-)!

All the puppies have their vaccinations in order, the normal deworming done, have been microchip identified and are registered to the Finnish Kennel Club.

On Monday Bettina will leave to the States to fly Pipari (brown girl) to New York, and then Orka to Portland (Oregon). She will make sure that Orka gets used to his new home well, and will give advice on training Orka to be Leska's service dog and a therapy dog for Lynn to take to work at the retirement center.

Bettina will be staying in the Portland-area meeting a handful of other newf owners and breeders until 7th March. So if you're in that area, and have newfies, please email and arrange a playdate with us :-) ! It'll be a fantastic trip :-).

We would love to keep both of them with us forever, but as our time and space is limited to the adults that we currently have, we're unfortunately unable to do that. Meanwhile, we have continued with the daily socializing trips to the city, tram and metro with them, and have started obedience with both of the puppies. They will start attending the local finnish weekly training/walk.

This week our theme with the pups has been to get the puppies used to as many different dogs as possible: big, small, furry, old, young etc. So thank you for letting us train with Akela (the rhodesian ridgeback) and Dana (the norfolk terrier). Over the weekend we will also make a few trips to see Baron (Ruuti's brother) and Niva (a 1-year-old newf). We also plan on going to the park for short walks off-leash. The vet will come on Friday to give the 12 week vaccinations, so after that we will be able to take the pups everywhere more freely without having to worry about germs. 

We got pictures of the lovely metaphors that the kids did of the time we went to see them with the puppies a few weeks ago. We Love them ! Thank you ! There are more pics in the photogallery. We have also added new pictures of Cooper, Scout and Joki in their own gallery folders, so do go and see them :-).

10.02.2010 Everything has been going very well with all the puppies. Life is a bit hectic, which is why written updates are a bit rare nowadays:-). The puppies are growing very fast and getting a lot of new experiences each day. We have been taking the pups separately to see the world as often as we can. We usually try to take 2-4 pups individually out per day, (2-3 for a metro-tram ride and 2-3 for a walk to the nearby boulangerie and back).


Our usual trip takes around an hour: we first walk to the metro 10 minutes, then take the metro for 20 minutes, change into a tram (one of those old ones that have flickering lights and very bumpy ride!) for 20 minutes, and then walk back home 10 minutes. Everyone always falls alseep half way on the metro/tram ride. So definitely all are well used to odd noises :-). Some of the pups have also walked with us already to the post office too, they just fell asleep in the queue at the post office, so definitely well socialized ;-).

Orka's (Kasper's) first metro-tram ride

Last week we made the puppypen smaller, so we could start crate-training the pups better. The puppies now sleep in the crates during the day (2h play outside followed by 2h nap in the crates followed by 2h play outside etc.. plus of course most of time the puppies are free in the house trying to play with Data or Vera :-) ). It works well! The first time we put the puppies in the crates (two in one, one in one), the pups made noises for maybe 2 minutes, but after that they all fell asleep and slept for the next 1,5 hours. Then we went to open the crate door, but none of the puppies wanted to come out :-D. So they slept another 30 minutes with the crate door open ;-). (before putting them in, the pups had been in the garden playing for about two hours, so they were tired!). This is very good training for them, they like to go in there, and they stay inside even when the door is open. The only "problem" we've had is with the waterbowl, because they play with it and tip it over constantly!! So we're getting those bowls that attach to the cage door with bolts. Hopefully they'll stay full for a little longer ;-). We feed the puppies in the crates so they associate it with food and fun. When the pups roam around the house, they keep checking the empty crates for more snacks and delicious pieces of meat :-).

We have also started contact training with all the puppies. So basically giving cheese treats and lots and lots of praise when the puppies look at us in the eyes and when we call them by name (during their individual training and walks outside). The idea is that they learn to follow us and learn to listen to our instructions. They are all taking contact very well and wag their tails a lot when they get the attention (and the cheese :-)! They are hungry for attention and eager to learn more new tricks every time :-)!

Scout, Cooper and Joki are also doing very well in their new homes :-). They are almost potty trained, have learned to come when called and know how to sit by command. They are also starting to learn to wait for food and do down by command :-).

Oslo and Pipari will be flying out with Bettina to the USA on 22 February through New York where Pipari will stay and then to Portland Oregon where Oslo will go. Bettina look forward to the flight and getting to meet their owners and spend some time with them :-)! Bettina has already made appointments to see a few Newf breeders and the famous Judi Adler!

27.01.2010 Last Wednesday and Thursday we went to Scout's owner's school for a little visit. On Wednesday there were about 18 kids, and on Thursday 25 + adults + helpers + people passing by :-). The puppies behaved extremely well during the hour's drive there and the hour back home. They didn't whine, nor cry during the trip and when we came to the school, everyone was bursting with energy! The puppies didn't even hesitate when they saw the big group of loud children in an unfamiliar place all trying to get their attention :-). They climbed, tugged and played with the kids, until they were so exhausted they could hardly stand :-). We had Vera with us for moral support for the puppies, but they didn't need her, as the kids were So Much Fun! In the end, when we put the pups back in the crates in the car, Vera got special attention from the kids and a good belly rub from each one. It was a fantastic experience for the kids, the puppies, for Vera and for us (as the pups slept the Whole evening :-) ). 



The gene test results came about a week ago, and we got some good news and bad news. All the black puppies, except one carry the recessive brown gene, but the one that does not have the gene is our dear co-owned girl, Scout :-). This means that all the black males (Oslo, Akseli and Orka) and one black girl (Cooper) are Bb, while Scout is BB.

Two of the puppies have left for their new homes. Scout left on Friday, Cooper on Sunday. We have received many emails from the new owners (we Love them, so keep them coming ;-D ) with some pictures. Everything is going extremely well, both are almost sleeping through the night, leash walks are going great and the families other dogs have accepted the newcomers and are starting to realize they are there to stay :-). Joki is now the weekends with the new family, and only staying with us during the weekdays.

Scout and Merlin                                        Cooper at the airport

12.01.2010 Capri is now an old lady as she had her 7th birthday just a week ago. She is currently in France with Ruuti and Bettina. For once France has proper freezing temperatures and more snow than you could ever imagine! Long walks on the nearby fields are an impossibility as there is so much snow that it reaches the calves. Thankfully it is so exhausting to walk through the snow, that when Betti gets home with the dogs, all she can hear is loud snoring :-). Ruuti's normal fast running style has changed into antilope-like jumping from one big pile of snow to the next. At times Ruuti finds it easier to borrow under the snow like a giant brown mole. Capri prefers lying next to the warm fireplace in the living room. It could be that her "grand old age" is finally showing itself, as before it was nearly impossible to drag her inside from the subzero temperatures :-).

In order for Betti to see the puppies daily and so that we can talk about anything related to the pups, daily Skype calls are now routine. I tried to take a picture of Capri on her birthday, but unfortunately the Skype connection in France is not all that great, so the picture is a bit blurry but still better than nothing. :-).

Capri on her 7th birthday

The puppies are growing fast and are already bigger than Capri was when she came to us. The biggest of the puppies (Oslo) already weighs over 6,5kg. The puppies go outside almost every few hours when it is light outside, so the puppy area stays Much cleaner than before. Many of the puppies are flying to their new homes, so we have placed two flying crates in the puppy area so that everyone has the chance to get used to them :-). We have also placed more toys in the area (bottle curtain, dummies, balls, tug-toys and a giant blue rubber cat..) The puppies have now had their first vaccinations. They also have had their second routine deworming on Monday and all have a microchip, passport and registration papers from the Finnish Kennel Club.

We also took the almost weekly pictures of the puppies with the New Year themed Moo-Cow. The puppies are 6,5weeks in the pictures. 

Oslo                                                                                                         Akseli

                                                Scout                                                                                                                                    Cooper

                                                   Pipari                                                                                                                                 Orka

                                                Mona                                                                                                                               Joki



01.01.2010 We got new pictures of Bamse (Larinkallion Hännänhuippu). He has grown a lot since we last saw him and looks very good. It is always fantastic to get more pictures of ‘our puppies’. There really is a Lot of snow in Finland! Our snow here in Brussels, seems insignificant now :D

Bamse (L. Hännänhuippu) in snowy Finland with his canine family.

We have received confirmation that the registration papers have gone through and are on their way back from Finland to Brussels. They should be here very soon.

The puppyblog has been updated again with new pictures and news of events in the puppies' lives. Everyone is growing a lot and learning about all kinds of exciting new things. The puppies have now explored the house and the garden. Luckily it stopped raining for a couple of hours this morning (though it was snowing a bit) and everyone got to enjoy the fresh air and the new exciting smells! It did not take long for the puppies to start running around, giving us gray hairs trying to keep a count of everybody. From now on, we will try and take the puppies outside always after they've eaten or slept, so they start learning to do their business outside. This will make house training for the new owners much much easier!

The puppies outside discovering new smells and and new objects at 36 days


(c) Salmelin