No bandaids for us

29 Jul
"Mascoutah Kennel Club dog show. Dogs fro...

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Drum roll please *.*.*.*.*.*.*  Wally is now entered in not one, but TWO shows! Look at us being all grown up and official.

We’re going to the Longview-Kelso show in St Helens and the BTCA National Specialty (like you didn’t know that already). I’m also eyeballing the Gig Harbor Kennel Club show in Shelton on Sept 24 & 25. That would make for a long Sept with three show weekends, but I hate to pass up a local show. I can see how people become addicted to this. We’re not even showing yet and I’m scouring the AKC site for all-breed shows in WA and OR. I’ve already created a schedule that goes to the end of January. *rolls eyes at self* Hopefully by then he’s finished!

Our first goal is a CH title, which requires 15 total points awarded by 3 different judges that include 2 majors (3-5pt). The most dramatic way to finish your dog is to win three 5pt majors, but that almost never happens. We’ll probably end up winning a major without too much fuss, then struggle for the last major as we rack up singles. At some point we’ll go for a GCH too, but not until Wally is more physically mature (mental maturity is a long way off!). GCH requires 25 total points awarded by 4 judges that include 3 majors and you have to defeat 1 champion at three shows. In between CH and GCH we’ll be working on obedience, rally, agility, and Earthdog titles. What was that? We’re awfully ambitious, you say?

This week was our second handling class and Wally did even better! *fist pump* When he first saw Jazzy he went a little crazy barking, but once I got Wayne’s show lead on (ours is too wide) he settled down. Something about choking himself on the thinner lead and not being able to breath makes him shut up. I thought about this a little and decided two things.

First, I’m buying a thinner show lead at Hurricane Ridge on Sat. Ours is way to wide, even wider than the one Sandi uses on Coal, who weighs 85lb! That’s what happens when two novices go to a show vendor looking for duds. The second decision was to get a head halter, like a Gentle Leader.

Normally I don’t like these since people tend to use them as a bandaid instead of an actual training tool, but I’m not going to do that. My logic is that if Wally has no choice but to pay attention to me then he has no choice but to learn. Instead of pulling on the leash to see other dogs he can learn that the only way to see other dogs is to wait for my permission. That’s just not happening with a normal collar. I’m optimistic, and I always have Sandi to troubleshoot with. It really is handy to have a friend who’s a dog trainer. :)

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Posted by on July 29, 2011 in Shows


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