Two Bouviers with toys

Bouviers with toys

Around the middle of September, The B’dos. Dog Training Club will be resuming its training classes for Beginners’ Obedience,
Novice (CD title) and the Open (CDX). Classes for various levels of agility will also be resuming.

I plan to alternate Rita and Rhapsody on the Open class as both of them have achieved the Novice CD title. The Open class has dumb bell retrieval with the broad and flat jumps, drop on command when doing the recall, sits and downs with the dog’s handler out of sight. The heeling exercise where I find most handlers lose a lot of points will be marked harder than in the Novice. Dogs must have successfully qualified for the CD title before they can do the CDX trials.

Looking at the training schedule, I know that several handlers also have 2 dogs and so they are also alternating the dogs on the class or getting someone else to handle their second dog. My alternating means for me, one dog a class, but for others they might do two dogs a class, and just tie one, while working the other. Breeds I see on the training schedule are Rhodesian Ridgebacks, Golden Retrievers, Labrador Retrievers, a Boxer, German Shepherds, Japanese Akita, Irish Setter and some mixed breeds. Linda Pearson is doing the training.

Some of the above breeds like the Golden Retrievers and Labrador Retrievers naturally pick up sticks and other objects and bring to their owners. For the dogs which do not retrieve easily, a forced retrieve will probably be taught.

One way of encouraging a dog to do the dumb bell retrieve is to make it a game of fetch. Neither Rhapsody nor Rita is keen on retrieving any object but once it appears to be a game with a toy, they are inclined to join in.

Of course, individual trainers on the island will be doing their usual basic training, and schutzund training is also being done by another club, BGI and I do regard Adrian Ward from that club as an excellent trainer.

As my dogs usually do well in the conformation show ring, I have been asked whether obedience training helps or can be a negative. Some people say that because of obedience training, when the handler stops in the show ring, the dog might sit. A dog which has obedience training can easily be told “stand” and “stay” if the handler realises the dog is about to sit.

A tip which might be useful is this: I always used different leashes. I use a rough, found in supermarkets, leash for obedience training. When my dogs enter the show ring, that type of leash is never used. So before we get to the show grounds which are the same grounds, used for agility and obedience training, my dogs have, through the leash they see me with, a sense and feel for what they will be doing. Also, the atmosphere is very different because of the crowds.

I would recommend obedience training for all dogs as it makes them easier to live with, and can save their lives, through a “stop” and/or “down” command. And it is, of course, great when you stack the dog to be able to tell it to “stay”. 🙂 in the show ring.

Barbados also has two Barbados Kennel Club All Breeds Championship Dog Shows coming up: one in October and one in November.

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