Age seems to be no barrier for the Kellie Stanfield trained Border Collie, ‘Korey’, who is a gorgeous show dog still competing at the top of his game.
The rising 10-year-old, recently returned to the show arena and competition at the Tumut Show in March, winning Best Neuter in Group and on to Best Neuter in Show.
Most recently, the 2011 whelping was on show in Albury over the weekend and he was awarded Best Neuter in Group in a very competitive line-up and went on to be awarded Best Neuter in Show.
Korey, a Supreme Champion show dog, boasts a long, successful career in the spotlight, but was retired and neutered during Covid-19, before making a return to neutered competition.
“It was during the Covid period that I decided to retire Korey from the mainstream show and have him neutered,” Mrs Stanfield said.
“He had gained several thousand breed points, was a multi best in show winner and had nothing else to prove.
“Not all shows have class 18 (neuter), so I guess one could say he is now in semi-retirement!”
Korey hails from the strong and well-respected ‘Korella’ Border Collie line, and is a product of the ongoing friendship between the Stanfields and the Korella kennels.
“Korey was gifted to me as a Christmas present in 2011 by his breeder, Ross Mathew of Korella Border Collies at Wagga,” Mrs Stanfield said.
“My friendship with Ross goes way back after my husband John and I purchased a pet Border Collie from the kennel in 1991 – John and I then purchased our first ‘show’ Border Collie again from Korella in 1996.
“My partnership with Korella has been a fun journey, having handled many dogs to Australian titles, Grand Championships and also a Supreme Champion.”
Before his neutering, Korey was an instant hit in the show arena, winning on debut and quickly gaining the attention of breeders and judges alike.
“Korey began his show career at three months of age and was a winner on debut,” Mrs Stanfield said.
“He completed his puppy classes with nine wins and numerous placings in sweepstakes (all breeds of dogs), 16 classes in group and 4 classes in show.
“A highlight being Minor Puppy in Show at the Border Collie Club of NSW April 2012 show under breed specialist, Mr John Sullivan (Kennoway Border Collies).
“In 2012 Korey was the Dogzonline Rising Star Border Collie.”
After a strong start to his career, it was no surprise to see Korey progressing through the grades before earning the title of Supreme Champion.
“He gained his Australian championship (100 breed points) very quickly and continued on to gain his Grand Championship (1000 breed points) at just over two years of age,” Mrs Stanfield said.
“At Albury Show on November 1, 2014, Korey was awarded his 10th Best in Group which qualified him for the title of Supreme Champion, the highest award that can be achieved as a show dog.
“To be a Supreme Champion they need to have 1000 points, 10 Best in Groups (under 10 different judges) or three Best Exhibit in Show awards.”
Prior to being neutered, Korey also sired several litters, which is no surprise when looking at his resume.
“His last major award was runner-up best exhibit in Show at the Bushfire Charity Show at Harden following the 2019/20 bushfires.
“Although getting on in age, he still loves to show and continues to give 100%. His progeny also have the same zest for life as he does. His son (from a Korella litter), was kept by us, and has given much joy in various other avenues of dog sports.”
The Covid-19 pandemic put a stop to shows and events for an extended period and Mrs Stanfield explained it was likely harder on a dog like Korey, who craves attention and interaction.
“When the Covid pandemic struck, all dog shows ceased. It was a difficult time for everyone but we kept up our routine of exercise, swimming, grooming and maintenance bathing to keep the dogs in condition,” Mrs Stanfield said.
“Mental exercise is also important with time spent training for “nose work” whereby food to get them started on finding or specified odours (which Lockie has progressed onto) are used and the dog needs to find it within a certain time, in a specified space – It is very rewarding watching them doing what comes naturally. They just love doing it. It’s like the detector dogs do on TV.”
“Korey has always been a very social dog, and loves greeting people at shows, so it was hard for him during Covid. If we were out doing exercise, he would go up to people wanting pats and scratches to make up for all the ones he missed out on not being able to go to dog shows.”
Now, with shows returning and Korey embracing his career as a neutered show dog, Mrs Stanfield is busy finding suitable events for her champion.
“Once DogsNSW approved shows to resume after Covid lockdowns, I opted to stay local for a while and entered Korey in the 2021 Tumut Show – his first show as a Neuter,” Mrs Stanfield said
Mrs Stanfield explained that both she and her dogs loved competing and socialising, with more shows certainly on the horizon.
“I point my finger at the dogs each show morning and tell them “I only require two minutes of full attention today”, to which they usually oblige,” she laughed.
“They love being show dogs, always excited, sometimes a little too much (and) for me, it is the friendships that have been made over the years and just being able to spend time in the outdoors doing fun stuff with the dogs and wonderful friends.”