We have recently completely redesigned our website. We hope you find it easy to navigate through and learn more about us and our hounds. We have had quite a year these past twelve months. We changed our kennel name from D'Vangel to Kominek Afghan Hounds as we put our heart and soul into our dogs, and what better way to demonstrate our pride in our hounds and their accomplishments than by putting our own name on theirs. We had our first litter in June of 2011, the 2011 Game of Thrones litter, and so far multiple pups are pointed in the ring and field, and the first pup from our litter to finish, our Cersei, did so at twelve months of age in June of 2012! We have been very blessed and look forward to what the future brings with our continued love for and involvement with the King of Dogs!
We have just had our second litter, the 2013 Game of Thrones litter, born April 14, 2013. All in black masked red. This is an exciting litter as it combines the best of the racing and performance dogs of Europe in sire Guimares with our beautiful Dual Champion dam Soleil!
We are active in exhibiting our stock and are working members of the following clubs:
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2014 ASFA International Invitational
A weekend like this last deserves a write-up.
So we planned on leaving Durham with the six furballs at hopefully 1pm on Friday, but Selma’s day ran long and we didn’t get out of Durham until 6pm. That put us on the road for almost 10 hours as we pulled into the Ocala La Quinta at 4am. Taking turns, I was able to sleep in the back of the van for a couple of hours and Selma for about four hours. We did have just enough time to run up to the room, take showers, throw on clean clothes and walk right back out the door. Selma was begging to take a nap, but I knew if I laid down, I’d screw up my clock, so just wanted to run straight through. We hit the Dunkin and were at the trial for the beginning of roll-call.
A couple of weeks ago, we received a special visitor, Guimaraes (aka Humbaba, Junior), Humbabarauma of Synergon, the sire of our second litter and open field coursing hunter extraordinaire who caught two jackrabbits at this year’s Grand Course and received two AK’s for it. We wanted to exhibit him to a new crowd on this side of the country, much like we did with Kepi at the ’12 AHCA national. After a week of “all is well” and getting settled, Junior had a major bout of diarrhea and a couple of crate accidents overnight which necessitated a vet trip and he’d have to be on antibiotics for the weekend. We didn’t want a van with spattered walls, so we put him on them.
Nice cloud cover to start the day and the girls were fit and ready to run. We were tired from the lack of sleep, but the excitement of being at another II was compensating enough. I am glad after all that I didn’t initially volunteer to lure operate or huntmaster because I don’t think I could have done either on Saturday. You could tell from Junior’s runs that day that he was a bit laggy too from the 3 types of antibiotics (Tylan, Fenbendazole and Metronidazole) he was on. Felt sorry for the dude, but we wanted to knock out whatever was messing with his GI flora. He still put in some good hard runs.
Cersei and Soleil were in top form. Soleil was coming off of her broken neck (lateral process fracture of the C1) on Jan 5th, so this was her first trial post-collision with her daughter, Daenerys. People were surprised she recovered so well and was in the condition she was in, but she was tearing it around the backyard for the last month and a half, so we felt confident that her bone had mended well and she was up to it. The only big concern with her would have been a collision or a spill, and thankfully, neither of those happened. Cersei has been hard worked for the last several months as well. Her speed and ability really was something to marvel at this weekend, as we have NEVER seen her run like this.
We went into this weekend thinking that Junior would be taking the breeds, Cersei would be up in the ribbons in open and Soleil would be pushing for first in FCh with her being maybe a shocker breed win. Never did I think Cersei would come out on top in Open. The final placements for our guys on Saturday were: Cersei first open, Guimaraes third open, Soleil second FCh and then Prince William, Cersei’s brother, first FCh and Malone their sire first veteran. We were floored to say the least to have the siblings and their sire in competition for Best of Breed. It was a good run and having Cersei win the Gary Forrester cup that day and having a dog we bred and owned on a perpetual trophy had us floored. We also took kennel stake for Soleil and Cersei and bench stake for Soleil. So proud.
The storm that delayed the trial for several hours was a doozy: lots of rain, thunder, lightning and high winds. It pushed the day long, so that at the end, we were eating in the dark and the Gillette Cup run was pushed to before the BII runs on Sunday. We received ribbons that night, but had to push the awarding of the perpetual trophies to Sunday as well.
No matter what happened on Sunday, we were already on cloud nine. We were honestly rooting for Junior for Ernest and Michael and had taken him off his meds the night before so he’d feel a bit better to run. It did make a difference in his effort and you could see it in his attitude and enthusiasm (and his GI production). Cersei put in some clean, fast runs again and was in second, down one point to Junior, who was in first after prelims. We were really hoping he’d pull it off today now that he was feeling a bit better. The momma dog was amazing. She is such a trooper and really loves to course, plastic or live, it doesn’t matter: she’s in it for the game. Coming out of prelims again, she was in a tie for first with her son, Prince William. If either of them took first that day, we didn’t care. Having our guys up in the rankings is all that matters and I consider Junior one of ours too.
The weather on Sunday was perfect. The field was softened a bit by the rains, there was a nice breeze and temps were in the 70's. The course on Sunday was frustrating to say the least. There was a crest in the field so from the line, you could only see half of the course. The judges could see everything, but missing half of the action made it very difficult to justify scores. I was also fairly ticked that as a huntmaster for ridgebacks, salukis and deerhounds, I couldn’t adequately do my job of monitoring the course for safety because I was unable to see half of it.
After the finals, Cersei came out on top, outscoring Junior by two points and giving her the first by one point in open. That also finished her FCh title. I really wish I could have seen 100% of both of those courses to explain how. We were happy for Cersei, but I really wanted to have Guimaraes take one of the days for Ernest and Michael and give him a shot at the BII run. Soleil took the FCh stake by one point over William and Malone took veterans again. This put daughter, Cersei, and her sire, Malone, and dam, Soleil, in the run for the Best of Breed. Jeanie didn’t want to run Malone for breed, and we figured with Soleil having to run both Gillette and BII that day, we’d not put either girl through another run and forfeited the breed to Soleil. Again, the girls earned their kennel stake and Soleil took bench stake. Both mother and daughter got a perpetual trophy this weekend, and we felt the momma dog really deserved it for the years of running and beautiful puppies she’s given us.
Going into the Gillette and BII runs would be some long courses, but I know what Soleil can do and have seen her run two 1.5 mile courses in a day. Additionally, my sadistic self likes to put out 900-1000 yard courses for MAHA at Flintrock Farms in Reidsville, NC on lots of terrain to challenge the dogs. Back to back should be no problem after only running a couple 970 yard courses this morning. First up was the Gillette run and Soleil drew the third course with a greyhound. I was pumped because Soleil runs truer and faster when she’s challenged by a dog which will lead her: she gets pissed and pushes that much harder. At the slip, there was a nice 100+ yard lead-out, and she was pushing hard on the grey. You could hear the gallery oooh’ing and aaah’ing at the afghan hound that can push on greys. At the first turn, the grey hop-skips on his rear and pulls up and the judges calls a stop to the course. That was it, and I knew it. After that, running alone, Soleil would go back to her field cheater, corner cutting, half-hearted ways when she runs alone and she did. She thrives in competition. No shot at a Gillette for us this year, but maybe in the BII…
So for the BII courses, Soleil draws the first course, which will be run in short order. Soleil came off panting, but I knew she had it in her despite Selma’s worry. She drew a greyhound and a ridgeback, so we were in the money again for running with a fast dog. I slip and off the line, Soleil in yellow wants to go right SO HARD, she nudges everyone to the right off line, but once she realized it’s going straight out and the grey puts some distance on her, she resumes course. Again, with a faster dog in the lead, Soleil pushes like crazy even on a back-to-back 1100 yard course. This bitch is made of the good stuff and we couldn’t be more proud of her. At several points, the crowd would gasp as Soleil came close to overtaking the grey at several points. I think that diverting at the beginning killed it for her in the end along with a 20 yard slow come-in, but I can forgive a 5 year old bitch for not killing the plastic bags after running a total of 2400 yards in the span of 15 minutes. Good momma dog.
Cersei drew the fifth course with a cirneco. Now, I’m normally wary about running with other breeds, especially smaller ones. Our dogs aren’t small dog predatory, but smaller dogs seem more distracting to them for some reason. At the line, all weekend, Cersei would do a “look over” where she looked at the other dog next to her, but I would push her head to the bag, and she’d intently focus. All weekend, she did this and ran squeaky-clean with other afghans. We pull up to the cirneco and Cersei gives her a look, I push the head and she stares at the bags and never looks back at her. I’m thinking, “ok, this will be ok: she’s focused. We’ll be alright.” I was wrong. Cersei started out on the straight on the bags for 20 yards and then turned her head to stare at the cirneco. That dog was just more interesting than plastic. She speed checks and saddles up next to the cirneco. At one point after the first turn, the cirneco tumbles and everyone’s gasping and my heart stops. The judges yell her off, she comes right off, I whistle her over and she comes back in to me. She received a dismissal for it. I apologize profusely to the owner and ask if everything is ok, and thankfully the dog is fine. I asked one of the judges, Ian Davies, later and he said it was not malicious and she was only prodding the cirneco: no teeth came out and the dog only tripped up. I still feel awful and that spelled the end of us ever running with any other breeds. Both girls have cleanly run mixed-breed in the past, but anytime we’ve had an excusal or dismissal, and it has always been with other breeds during BIF runs: basenjis, whippets, salukis. Both girls are also multiple BIF winners, but you never know with mixed-breed. It’s too much of a novelty to resist for them, and not worth the interference and damage to ours and other peoples’ hounds. Again, if the owner of the cirneco is reading this, I am so sorry that happened.
It was getting late and we had 10 hours back to Durham. We said our goodbyes to our old friends and new, collected our trophies before the ribbons ceremony and had to forego the official pictures. Selma had to be into work at 6am the next day and we already knew she was going to be late. I drove all 10 hours straight through the night back home thankfully uneventfully.
We had so many nice complements on our runners and their courses as well on our soon-to-be-runner, Brienne, out of Soleil and Guimaraes, who despite not getting to course at only eleven months old, had a wonderful time as well. This was definitely an event we will never forget and look forward to bringing the trophies back to the next II and trying for them next year!