Posted Date: July 28, 2017
A profile of competitor Kathleen Kwiatt and her rescued dog Scruffy.
Scruffy is a 10-year-old male Jack Russell/Border Collie mix. Kathy Kwiatt, his owner, says, "When I took my daughter's dog to a spay day at the Humane Society and did not make the first 100 dogs, as I was leaving I saw this eight-week-old puppy sitting next to a crate full of puppies. I told the lady how adorable he was and she asked me if I wanted him and I asked how much and she told me take him, he's yours. So came home with a puppy and one not fixed."
In addition to being an agility Star, Scruffy was entered in America's Cutest Puppy contest in 2007 and took third place.
Kathy relates how, "When Scruffy was about four-months-old I took him to an event that I had no idea was all about. I went and saw agility and knew right then that is what I wanted to do with him and wanted to compete at Cynosports more than anything. We trained in a year and went to our first competition at a club. My dream was to make it to Cynosports - when they decided to switch it up and I found out it was coming here to Arizona in 2016, I was determined to qualify but unfortunately we did not qualify."
"I was raised with dogs and cats and horses. I never knew the true meaning of a dog til I started doing agility. Until you have a well-trained, well-mannered dog, no one truly knows what a gift God gave us. Through training I know the real meaning that dogs are Man's Best Friend. Scruffy is my very best friend and love of my life and truly my life saver."
One of the things that Kathy loves about Scruffy is, "When I go to a trial show, I get a lot of compliments about how happy he looks running and how much fun he has. His most loved thing to do is fetch a favorite toy and bring it to you and you don't have to move. He loves squeaky toys and has to have attention from anyone around by pawing your hand and bringing your hand to his chest. When I would go to training classes sometimes I would help the trainers with other handlers and their dogs and my Scruffy will stay in a down the whole hour for class."
Kathy and Scruffy have competed in USDAA at TopNotchCanines and First Dog Sports. For people considering getting a dog, particularly a rescue dog, Kathy says, "I have been doing competitions for eight years and anyone I see with dogs I talk about agility all the time and help them to train them or get them to the trainers that helped me. It is such a great feeling to do something with your dog and a different view of your dog's worth."