A weekend of training at Dog Tree farm
Updated: Jun 15, 2019
We were delighted to host a really excellent weekend's training and socialisation at Dog Tree Farm. Supported by the highly experienced dog trainers and handlers Paul Matthews, and our very own Andy Parker; in the morning we were able to use the ground to maximum advantage for both dogs and handlers; as Dog Tree Farm has a variety of different spaces, it allowed everyone the chance to work on hunting, retrieving and general steadiness (the number of rabbits around at this time of year does have some advantages!), and to build confidence in both handlers and dogs.
Lunch was a quick pork pie, quiche, sausage rolls and cream tea, most welcome after a morning that required a fair bit of concentration. It's always good to have someone else's advice and assistance when working your dog, and the morning was no exception with everyone finding things to build on through the summer.
In the afternoon Amelia Parker, aged 12, helped organised and run a fun and competitive scurry which was eventually won by Sedgehurst Grouse, handled by Steve Panton. It was fantastic to see so many dogs take part and demonstrate the skills the breed is so renowned for....and the inevitable death of some sausages along the way.
Some feedback from Paul Matthews was; Handlers need to be less vocal and stand up taller when the dogs are retrieving. Overall I am seeing an improvement in the dogs, partilcularly Mandie Hussey's Hebe and Ann Curtis' Gunner.
After training was finished, Grant Hussey, was on hand to help those who wanted to shoot clays with his ever-friendly and useful advice, all whilst having fun blasting away at targets. A number of people camped that evening, and we had a really tasty BBQ, a few quite drinks and a really lovely evening in the company of friends and breed enthusiasts.
The following day, Sunday 2nd June, was set aside for the working test, always the highlight of any weekend like this, and there were a number of entries across Puppy, Novice and Open. As many of you will be aware, running a working test takes time and dedication from the organisers and it is worth mentioning some of the people involved. We would like to thank Steve Charlton and John Semmens for giving up their time to come along and judge, Debbie Mould & Nigel Stock for throwing dummies, Keith Story for shooting , Kronch and Graham Tweed for the Prizes for The Working Test and, of course, Andy Hales for helping orgainse the Test. A huge thanks also goes to everyone who took part in the test itself, it takes a lot of confidence and courage to enter your dog into a competition, but it allows everyone to learn something and to practice what is an important aspect of the breed. If you haven't ever done one, you really should give it a go!
All in all the weekend was an immense sucsess, we raised over £500 for the WCSS, and we would of course like to thank everyone that came along, got stuck into the events, helped with the training, organised the day and generally helped out. It was a great example of what the Society is about, and we hope there will be many more in the future.
A few special thank-yous beyond those mentioned above - Thank you to Zoe Cooper and Daisy May for some brilliant photos as well as Shirley, Deb, Julia, Charlotte, Jo, Mandie and Julie for kitchen duties.
Andy & Vicky Parker