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Junior Versatility
By Marinda Dillon

My name is Marinda Dillon. I am 13 years old and I show in Conformation, Junior Handling and Agility. I began showing dogs in conformation when I was six. I have two Afghan Hounds, a Powder Puff Chinese Crested and a Border Collie. Last year I began training my Powder Puff Crested, Howser, for agility. We ran our first trial in May of this year. I loved it! Howser and I obtained our first agility title in two weekends. Agility is so different than conformation shows and Junior handling. We have a lot of fun at the trials and everyone is very friendly and helpful to novice runners. My sister also runs agility and participates in Junior Handling.

I have started my Border Collie, Fancy, in the breed ring obtaining her first point. When she has completed her Championship she will begin agility training. I hope to have her running trials by late summer 2005. I also would like to try Herding with her.

I have shown my Afghan Hounds in conformation and Junior Handling. The older of the two is Ahlivia. She and I made it to Westminster this past February. The younger one is Sadie, she has obtained conformation points and a Best Of Breed win but I think she would be great at lure coursing which we hope to try this spring.

I like to try different events as it allows the dogs to be versatile and they really have fun doing performance activities. There are so many activities you can get involved in with your dog and for me there is no better place I would rather be than working side by side with my dogs. For any Junior that is thinking about trying a performance event I would say get out there and have fun! Not a lot of kids participate in my area but the adults are very supportive and freely offer advice to help you learn.