Am/Can Ch Calico Ridge Sir Lancelot, 1988-1999

Am/Can Ch Calico Ridge Sir Lancelot, 1988-1999

Our first Ridgeback was Morganna (Ch Deer Ridge Morganna ROM). Both of us worked during the days, and still do, and Morganna was home by herself. We felt she was lonesome and we decided to get her a companion. We went to Diane Jacobson, the main Ridgeback breeder in northern California, and asked her if we could get a puppy. By that time, we'd been to quite a few dog shows and had developed some opinions on certain things we liked about the appearance of the dogs. Diane had a young dog at that time named Calico Ridge Downtown Brown (Brown Dog). We really liked Brown Dog, especially his head. It was very masculine and just what we thought a male Ridgeback should look like. So we told Diane that we would like to get a dog with the same father as Brown Dog. She told us that she happened to have an outcross puppy that was fourteen weeks old, from a litter sired by Brown Dog's sire (Ch Calico Ridge The Warlord ROM). We met him at a dog show, fell for him, took him home with us, and named him Calico Ridge Sir Lancelot.

When Lance was six months old, our handlers Mike and Karen Kurtzner began to show him in local shows. He got his first point toward his AKC championship at the Del Monte KC show at Pebble Beach in the Spring of 1989. When he was about nine months old, Mike and Karen took Lance and Morganna to Canada for nine shows. They had a good trip and Lance won seven points toward his Canadian championship. He won the Hound Puppy Group in seven shows and was Best Puppy in Show one time. At the Western Canada Rhodesian Ridgeback Specialty in Vancouver he was selected as Winner's Dog by David Helgesen, author of "The Definitive Rhodesian Ridgeback.".

Above all, Lance was Morganna's soul-mate. They kept each other company during the days while we were both at work and in the early mornings they enjoyed romping at Point Isabel off-leash dog park.

When Lance was ten months old we noticed him limping. When the limp didn't go away after a couple of weeks we took him to the radiologist for x-rays and were distressed to discover that he had hip dysplasia. We thought this was the end of his show career, and knew it ended any hope of breeding him to Morganna, which had been our plan. However, a few months later his limp went away and we began to show him again. In February of 1990 judge Paula Hartinger selected him as Winner's Dog at the Cow Palace. He and Morganna are shown in the following photo "on the bench" at that show.

Over the next few months, Lance continued to pick up points, being selected for wins by judges Margaret Renihan, William Field, and Robert Ligon. On June 9, 1990, Lance finished his AKC championship by going BOW for a 4-point major under judge Kathleen Andrews at the Donner Trails KC show in Greeley.

Later in June of 1990, we took Lance, Morganna, and her 10-month old son Bruiser (Camelot's Technical Knockout) on a combination vacation-dog show expedition. We spent a week in Colorado, then attended shows in Wyoming, Montana, and ended with two weekends in British Columbia. On this trip Lance won several Bests of Breed and in Canada he finished his CKC championship when Cheri handled him to a Hound Group 3 under American judge Joe Tacker at the Richmond show on June 22.

When Lance was two years old we had his hips evaluated by OFA again, just to be sure. The HD was confirmed and he was neutered. At this time Bruiser was developing into one of the leading show Ridgebacks in the United States and was away from home for relatively long periods of time with his handlers. When he would return from these trips there was always tension between him and Lance, who had become used to being "king of the roost." To keep peace in the house, we placed Lance with our close family friends John and Pat Rooney and their three sons, Sean, Hunter and Griffin. The Rooneys lived closed to us and we had the opportunity to visit Lance frequently, and he had the luxury of being the doggy center of attention in his new family. Lance had a very good life with the Rooney's. In spite of his dysplasia, he continued to be very active, taking daily two- or three-mile runs with John.

He died in his sleep on January 24, 1999. He was ten years old and in apparent good health. We are grateful that he passed on peacefully and without apparent pain.

Rest in Peace, Calico Ridge Sir Lancelot. We will all miss you.

Revised: Sunday, January 31, 1999.