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IFCS Team Profile: Jeannine Doepke

A profile of IFCS Team USA Member Jeannine Doepke and her dog Jill.

Where do you live?

Glendale, Arizona

How did you first get involved with agility? 

I rescued a one-year-old Border Collie mix 16 years ago and I decided that taking him to an agility class would be a fun activity for both of us.

What made you decide to compete?

The club that held the agility class that I attended was a NADAC club who held several trials a year. All new students were encouraged to go out to the trials and volunteer. After volunteering and seeing how much fun the dogs and handlers were having, I couldn't wait to join them.

Do you participate in any other dog sports or training with your dogs?  

We have done a little herding which the dogs love but it's hard to make the time to do it often since I have a full-time job and do some much agility.

Tell us more about the dog you will be competing with as an IFCS Team Member?

Jill is an eight-year-old Border Collie. She was the first dog that I got as a puppy - my three prior dogs were rescued as adults. Jill is very serious and driven to work. Her favorite non-agility activity is swimming. She asks to go in the pool every time she's in the yard, even when it's cold outside.

Does your dog have any quirks or unique habits that you loved to share?

Jill is a shameless beggar. She knows when there is a treat in someone's pocket and just goes and sits in front of them. If they don't immediately offer the treat to her, she starts doing her cutest trick for them which is sneezing. That usually produces the treat. Her oddest trait is that she hates iPhone's Siri.  She leaves the room when she hears the noise that Siri makes or if she hears the word Siri. 

Do you have other dogs/pets aside from your IFCS dog? Tell us more about them:

Roy is a 14-year-old Border Collie that we got from Arizona Border Collie rescue 12 years ago and Lynne is an almost three-year-old Border Collie that is very closely related to Jill.

Describe for us what you do in your "other" non-agility life, work life?

I'm a computer programmer.

How does it feel to be on the IFCS Team this year?

It's such an honor to be on the team and to represent the United States. I still have trouble believing that we made the team when so many great dogs/handlers tried out.

What are you looking forward to the most at the World Agility Championship event in Spain this April?

Everything. I am looking forward to watching the competitors from the other countries.  I'm looking forward to sharing this experience with my teammates and most of all, I'm excited to be showing Jill off.

Do you do anything special to prepare yourself for a big competition?

I think that it's always important at any competition for both my dog and me to be fit, so I'm working with a personal trainer and I'm doing a lot of conditioning and core work with Jill.

People who enjoy agility with their dogs are often intimidated by the idea of competition - what advice would you give them to encourage them to take the plunge?  

Just do it. It is a bit scary the first time that you step into the ring, but all of that is forgotten by the time that your dog goes over the first jump. Be careful though, it is a very addictive sport!

Do you have a favorite dog from a book, movie, TV-show or video game?

Lassie of course.

Watch a video of Jeannine and Jill:


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