Working Towards Tests
Updated: May 23, 2019
Where work allows my Clumber Baloo (lovingly know as Grotbag) & I have been attending working tests across the Midlands this year and have been asked to write a little about the experience.
Results wise haven't won much, but, what I have learnt has helped to improve my handling and communication with Grotbag considerably.
It hasn't been plain sailing (we've had running in, me falling over, me going a*se over t*t while Grotbag runs in, me over handling, then under handling!) and the wheels have wobbled a fair bit but lessons have been learned and valuable experience gained for the both of us on ground we wouldn't normally have access to.
I won't lie, there have been naysayers along the way, however for every one of them there have been many (many!) more happy to see a Clumber out and about, to the point of people actively offering to help and sharing experiences/tips.
In short I would describe my experiences (so far...) at working tests as positive. So much so I would encourage anyone that's dog hunts a pattern (cough), is steady to dummies/other dogs with dummies and can do a marked & blind retrieve to give it a go at least once - you never know, you might just have a fun day out, on good ground, surrounded by people with a common interest and pick something up to help you with your dog.
I'll end with something the senior judge said on my second test:
"there is nothing going to happen today that hasn't happened to me a hundred times before, so relax and enjoy the day"
Witten by Robert John