Where would you start show-handling?

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Where would you start show-handling?

Postby Tim Trowbridge » Tue Dec 13, 2016 1:11 am

If you were to start out again fresh and having never show-handled before, what would you suggest doing to get started?
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Re: Where would you start show-handling?

Postby GiGi Grant » Tue Dec 13, 2016 4:38 pm

Go to as many shows as possible. Watch the handlers, the judges and the dogs. Take your dog through handling classes if there is an AKC dog club anywhere near you. Don't just take the dog thru one session- keep going. And find a mentor in the breed who can give you private lessons. It looks a whole lot easier than it is, but if your dog enjoys the ring, it can be great fun!
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Re: Where would you start show-handling?

Postby Tim Trowbridge » Thu Dec 15, 2016 1:49 am

Thank you, Gigi! I live in Indianapolis and there seems to be few handlers of CBR's. I'm planning on hitting as many shows as I can this year. I spoke to one CBR owner who shows his dog and he said they will basically discuss who's going to a show so they can get points award for Majors and Minors. It sounded like a bunch of CBR people have to kind of band together in some cases to get their dogs the points needed to finish their dog.

I'm very interested in learning everything I can, and figure there may be some books out there worth a look on top of going to shows. I'll keep looking for a mentor.
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Re: Where would you start show-handling?

Postby moscowitz » Thu Dec 15, 2016 12:42 pm

Don't end up being a patsy for other people showing their chessies. You could be used to get them points once they know you have a chessie and are new to showing. Also be careful of the pros they band together to help one another.
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Re: Where would you start show-handling?

Postby Tim Trowbridge » Thu Dec 15, 2016 2:06 pm

Thanks moscowitz, that's kinda the way it sounded to me. I've got a friend who's been showing Yorkies and other small dogs for years. The one thing I sense about doing shows is if you don't enter cautiously it can ruin your desire to have anything at all to do with it. Burn out before you even get a real start on the good side of show-handling.
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Re: Where would you start show-handling?

Postby Gina Downin » Fri Dec 16, 2016 3:03 pm

Hi Tim! Ours is still a breed that is dominated by owner-handlers and it is possible for a novice handler with a quality dog to achieve great things in the conformation ring. I've never taken a conformation class and managed to become a pretty good handler just by watching skilled handlers. I did show Angus steers in 4-H as a child, so maybe that gave me a leg up. I strongly encourage everyone to show their own Chesapeakes if they can so that our breed does not go the way of some other breeds where you need a pro to accomplish anything with your dog. It helps to be be knowledgeable about your dog's strengths and weaknesses. Do you have a mentor that can objectively assess how well your dog conforms to the breed standard? I have found many people who are willing to answer my questions and mentor me over the years. If you really want to do this, there are people who will help. Just get out there and meet people. What is the breeding of your dog?
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Re: Where would you start show-handling?

Postby Tim Trowbridge » Fri Dec 16, 2016 6:03 pm

Thanks Gina! I agree, just look at what has happened to the GSD.

Yes, my dog's breeder has slowly been bringing me up to speed about things about the Chesapeake that are beyond just looking at the dog through the eyes of a doting owner (rose-colored lenses) . She's been teaching me about the breed, literally, from the paws up. It's quite different when you look at confirmation that way, and quite honestly I feel more objective the more I learn about the Chesapeake's official standard, and where my dog fits in to that. I've still got way more to learn than what I know, or what I thought I knew about Chesapeake's. It's a labor of love though. :)
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