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Choosing a mentor

Discussion in 'Showing - questions and answers' started by Mama_Zookeeper, Mar 25, 2005.

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  1. Kerry Jane

    Kerry Jane Super Boxer

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    Another thought....I have a friend who really wants to be a professional handler. She currently has dobermans, and she has been struggling in this ring because there are also a lot of professionals there. Anway, she belongs to a local training club which does obedience and conformation classes - and she has offerred to show dogs for other people at no cost. She has a lot of experience working with dogs, mostly in obedience though, and is now wanting to expand her horizons. I saw her at the show last weekend and she was showing 2 pugs for someone.

    I just wanted to throw that out there. I am sure that it is easier to stick with one breed....but this would be a way to get general experience.
     
  2. Kerry Jane

    Kerry Jane Super Boxer

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    The one book that I have is called The Winning Edge - Show Ring Secrets by George Alston. It is good but a little dated. The other one that I have is called Show Me! A Dog Showing Primer by D. Caroline Coile and I thought that this one was very good. I buy a lot of my books on Amazon, and I buy the second-hand books which means that it only costs a few dollars for a book.
     
    Last edited: Mar 29, 2005
  3. Mama_Zookeeper

    Mama_Zookeeper Boxer Insane

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    Kerry Jane, thanks a bunch for the book recommendations. I am a real bookworm and like to start everything I dive into with a lot of research. I will definitely be looking for these books at Amazon.

    I quite honestly estimate looking for a dog in the summer and I like the idea of taking conformation classes with my two current pups. Mia could use the dicipline as she is a bit unruly, Rocky is a sweetheart and I could totallly see him strutting his stuff. He might not be a bad agility dog now that I think on it. Mia has some health issues going on right now. She will be having some mast cell tumors removed later this week then starting chemo to slow down the recurrence. I want to try to get a handle on this before I tackle a new pup. I imagine the search for a dog could take at least 1-1 1/s yrs so I have plenty of time to research and pick the brains of all you wonderful people. Your advice is MUCH appreciated. To be honest I am starting to get a buzz from all of this, nothing like a challenge! Very exciting stuff!

    Dora
     
  4. HD_Cruisin8

    HD_Cruisin8 Super Boxer

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    I just wanted to say, in response to your(Dora) previous post, that if you're going to get a show pup, you will have to train the pup. So it may be best to wait until you get the pup to take the classes. JMO... I need a handling class, but the kennel club here doesn't even offer one! I've been going to the meetings and they have 2 people who might start a class. I don't know whether I want to put my future of showing in their hands or not. My breeder told me they'd show me some stuff, so hopefully they will sometime soon! My breeder typically owner-handles their dogs, dogs they've bred(that others own), and sometimes other people's dogs not from their breeding. Good luck! I look forward to reading about your endeavors! :)
     
  5. Kerry Jane

    Kerry Jane Super Boxer

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    The problem with handling/conformation classes is that they are more for the handler than the puppy. A puppy can get awfully bored if forced to stack and gait for an hour. The same is true for any dog - and you don't want your dog to get bored with this and then not want to show for you. If you take a puppy to handling/conformation classes you have to be really careful to keep it fun, and then leave when your dog has had enough.
    A lot of people and books say NOT to take conformation classes for this very reason - or if you do, do it with a pet, and then simply practise the same principles with the show puppy. OR when you go to class take your puppy and another dog - do a bit of the class with the puppy and then put the puppy away and work with the other dog.
     
  6. JulieM

    JulieM Boxer Insane

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    Or, 'step out' of the class for a while and play with the puppy. :) Our conformation classes are basically mock shows - line up in the ring, the 'judge' goes over your dog, you gait some pattern and go around to the end of the line until your next turn. Of course, the judge in this case offers help with stacking, gaiting, etc., which sometimes happens in shows but not usually. ;) We generally have 15-20 people at a class, so after my 'go around' I go out of the ring with the puppy, we practice free stacking a little bit, play some games, meet some of the other dogs who are hanging out, and then go back in the ring a few dogs before it's our turn again. This cuts way down on the boredom level for the puppy, and also helps it get used to having some downtime ringside.
     
  7. abby's mum

    abby's mum Super Boxer

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    How do you go about finding conformation classes locally. The boxer clubs are not close enough. I would like to take Abby for practice (even though she doesn't have a clue, i'm sure she will get it). Then when i do get my show prospect I will be a bit more knowledgable.
     
  8. HD_Cruisin8

    HD_Cruisin8 Super Boxer

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    You should try to find your local all breed club or the closest all breed club to you. There are probably more all breed club than boxer clubs. Most all breed clubs offer a conformation class; I've not heard of many boxer or breed specific clubs offering a conformation class, but that's just me. Look in your phone book or online to see about any local all breed kennel clubs. Good luck.
     
  9. Kerry Jane

    Kerry Jane Super Boxer

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    You may also want to try any dog training schools in your area. We have a training school which mostly does obedience training - basic and competitive - and they also offer conformation classes.
     
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