March 25, was the date for the first obedience dog trials in Barbados for 2015.

A lot of very keen contestants. There were no passes in the Utility and CDX and only 2 dogs competing at each of these levels in the trials.

There was keen competition for the CD title and 11 dogs were in the ring for the CD trials. The breeds were: 3 German Shepherd dogs (from working lines), a Boxer, 3 Golden Retrievers, a Bouvier Des Flandres, 2 Labrador Retrievers and a mixed breed/rescue.

Dogs doing the trials were at different levels. To achieve the CD title,  passes would be needed for legs A, B and C.

Different dogs passed different levels. Different judges are provided by The Barbados Dog Training Club for trials as one judge cannot qualify contenters for all three CD legs.

Dogs in Barbados who were awarded CD titles in March, 2015

Two dogs achieved the Novice title in Barbados in March, 2015

Two of the participants achieved the third and final leg for the CD title. Brenda Kaufman with her mixed breed/rescue Olivia and Linda Pearson with her German Shepherd Dog, Echo.

obedience winners

First winners of the Novice title in Barbados, for 2015

To me, it is great to see a mixed breed/rescue achieve a CD title. There is more about her, Olivia, in the next post.

Training dogs in Barbados

Three top dogs in first obedience trials for 2015 in Barbados

Taking the trophy for first and high in trial was the Bouvier Des Flandres, Isabelle, (Ch. Chepam Valentina at Calliope, pending BKC paperwork) with a score of 193.5 out of 200. This is her first leg for the CD title.  Isabelle is 14 months old. The passing score is 170 out of 200.

Bouvier Des Flandres goes high in CD trials

Isabelle goes first and high in trials with a score of 193.5 out of 200

She did miss the trials early November last year as she was in season.  As a very young puppy, she would have passed her first CD leg except for the long down and stay where she needed 2 more seconds to qualify!  She has always done very good off leash heeling which exercise fails a lot of participants. Isabelle has always done a beautiful fast recall another exercise which also fails a lot of dogs.

I believe that her training has also helped her do well in the conformation show ring. She received 3 Challenge Certificates from UK judges Tom Mather, Geoff Corish and Derek Smith, 2 out of 2 Best Puppy in Show and 1 Working Group 2.

Of course, those of us who love this breed will hold their breath with obedience trials as this playful breed can always decide to entertain, as I well know, in the ring.  But a Bouvier can work very well at any task. When I look at Isabelle in the obedience ring and I see her eyes which do look full of laughter, I am one of the ones who hold their breath when I take off her leash.

I did not spend a lot of time training her except for her training at Waterford grounds. At home, I concentrated on sit and down stays and I would leave her in the kitchen and go about domestic duties like watering plants in the patios etc.  And she would get biscuit treats on my return for her stays.

There is also a challenge with female dogs, they can compete in conformation shows when they are in season but not attend classes in agility nor obedience much less compete in trials! So it might take longer to finish them!

The judge for the CD trials was Sarah Hamilton who was one of the participants at the Utility level. The trainer was Linda Pearson, a certified USA trainer who also competed with Echo, one of her German Shepherds.

It was nice at these trials to see dogs coming from the beginner’s class into the ring and also doing extremely well as one Golden Retriever did. It is a very big jump to move from a basic dog training class to the Novice level which involves off leash exercises.

There seems to be a lot of dog training going on in Barbados which is good as maybe then fewer dogs would get rehomed, and/or dumped due to behaviour issues.

Dogs doing obedience in Barbados

Dogs with The B’dos. Dog Training Club doing a sit stay exercise

Of course, people need to understand when they bring home a puppy, that puppies will be puppies so a puppy needs to be supervised and trained from early, especially if it is not in a crate/kennel but resides in the home like a family member.

Top trainers, not just in Barbados but worldwide, usually have their own dogs and love dog sports, agility, ring sports, obedience etc. Those trainers do pass on and share a lot of practical knowledge to the others in the ring with them. And in a class like this one which had all levels of dogs and handlers, Linda Pearson split the class into two which made it more productive for everyone.

So far, in Barbados, the only titles that can be achieved locally are from the conformation show ring and from obedience trials.

I would think that breeders looking for good homes for their puppies would be delighted to find puppy buyers who take the time to train dogs.

Overseas, although there would be more obedience trials, it might be more challenging time wise to title a dog as the distances to travel would be a lot further.  So, we, in Barbados, are lucky with the short distances we need to travel and also with our climate.

Dogs/puppies on The Barbados Dog Training Club’s Basic Obedience also sat their little training tests the same week. I believe this was also a large class.

With The B’dos. Dog Training Club, the objective of the basic obedience dog training class is to achieve training in dog basics such as sit, stand, down with stays, come and also to heel on leash. It is also an excellent opportunity to socialise puppies/dogs in an enclosed fenced secure area in a central location and friendly environment. Some of these owners and dogs will go on to further, more advanced training.

Congratulation to all the participants who achieved CD titles and CD legs and also to the ones who came out for the Basic Obedience friendly test as well.

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