Anyone written a guide for folks new to AKC games? [Archive] - RetrieverTraining.Net - the RTF

: Anyone written a guide for folks new to AKC games?

04-02-2006, 12:34 PM
I am interested if anyone has written guidelines to help folks who are new to playing the hunt test (or maybe field trial) games. It seems that new folks don't have a clue on how to complete an entry form, that a premium gives you all the info you need on the event and an entry form, etiquette at an event, running order and how to get your RO number, what is in a catalog, checking in/out with the Marshal, making yourself available to run your dog when the Marshal asks, etc. etc. etc.

If you have something, please share. I would like to have something I can publish in my club's newsletter, and share with other clubs.

I feel that dog clubs should do a better job of educating their members, rather than putting this burden on the Event Secretary. Also, I feel that those who participate in the "games" should clean up their language and show more respect for the MARSHAL, the judges who volunteer their time, the unpaid club member/workers, and the landowners.

I doubt that folks realize they could be written up to the AKC and sanctioned/fined for inappropriate actions/language in connection with an AKC event.

04-03-2006, 10:50 AM
Hello Ann...It's been a while!
I have a copy of "Retriever Field Trialer's Handbook" copyright, 1983 by Joyce Olinger (w/credits to John McAssey, Jack Loveland and Gordy Olinger).

It is a 77 page, spiral bound publication that covers some of the things you mentioned. The table of contents includes...Breeds, Champions, Clubs, Judges, Medical, Miscellaneous, Recommended Books and Publications, Safety Precautions, Training (trial/training glossary, commands, paraphernalia, listing of pro trainiers) Transportation of Dogs, Trial Organizations (Bird Stewart, BOD duties, Custodian FT Chair, FT Secretary, Gun Captain, Gunners, Host/Hostess, Marshall), Trials (Entering a FT, Entry Blank/Premium, FT Etiquitte, Handler's Excuses [This one is a blast], List of items to take to a trial, Procedure of running a dog in a trial, List of FT's), Illustrations (dog anatomy, muzzle instructions, and applying a tourniquet).

I started running trials back in the 60's and you learned from your mistakes and earned experience (plus James Lamb Free). Course, things were a bit different back them as compared to today. However, it was still a challenge for the new folks. I came across this '83 handbook about 20 years after the fact :(. Todays new handlers have a world of info at their finger tips (as in RTF) and many other sites. If you would like to look my copy over, I'll be happy to send it up to you. It's rather crude...but it did serve it's purpose well in it's day, I'm sure. NOTHING regarding Hunt Testing is mentioned...maybe cause they weren't invented just yet, but NAHRA was in the planning stages, I think. :)


04-03-2006, 11:00 AM

If you want to send it, that would be great. The parts that interest me the most are handlers' etiquette, Marshaling, etc. If it would be easier to make copies of the parts that are good--that would be fiine too. I'd be happy to pay you for copies and postage.

Seems that each year, we get folks who are running their first Junior and don't have a clue. I had a guy call me to see when I was going to send his "tickets" so he would know he was entered. I've had phone calls before 6 a.m. and after 10 p.m. I've had people who expect me to help them find a motel because they waited too long and all that I listed were full. Some complain about every test, about the judges, about the food, whine about sign placment, and are impatient and rude in general. They expect the club to chase them down when they are entered in multiple stakes--not knowing it is their job to check in/out with the Marshal at each stake.

Maybe I've been doing this Sec. job too long and for too many clubs! But, it pays SO well......

I'm getting pretty grumpy!! Ann

04-04-2006, 01:48 PM
Ann - I can totally relate to your pain. I was the hunt test secretary 3 years ago, and I also recieved telephone calls after 10pm. And people asked me to book them hotel rooms as well! Now I judge (started) so I am not able to be the hunt test secretary anymore. pheww!

That is an EXCELLENT idea to put something in your club newsletter. I would LOVE to include something as well. A few years ago, I found something that I did put in our newsletter, and I will go back and see if I still have it. It was about "what to expect the day of a test". If I find it, I will email it to you.

I think everyone who runs tests should have to take a turn at marshaling at some point in time! It should be a requirment! Then there would be more understanding and etiquette at tests!

Question for you Ann...Does using Entry Express aliviate some of the pain of recieving entries/phone calls/strange requests/etc? We are hoping to be able to use them when they can add HRC tests.

04-04-2006, 03:34 PM
Entry Express--what a life saver! As my friend Chad from ND Retr' Club says "a miracle from God!" The number of calls has dramatically decreased, and you don't have all those paper entries coming to your house, and you don't have too make calls for missing info, etc. etc. Go to and read the testimonials. I just sent one and Chad's is right below mine.

I am the HTS for SMHRA (closes April 20) and Blackhawk (closes April 27). There is no way I could do it if not for Entry Express.

I think there is only one MN club that is not using You will LOVE it! And, it makes it possible to get others to try being the HTS because it is no longer overwhelming.

Scott A
04-06-2006, 03:07 PM
The AKC has a set of videos out about passing hunt test. It covers alot of good information for someone that is new to the game. it also shows what type of work is expected from a junior, senior and Master level dogs thier is even a handbook. I want to say thier was an add in the RTFN for these.

I know this is kinda vague but, maybe someone in your club are area has them.


04-06-2006, 03:12 PM
The problem with that set of videos is that they were NOT produced by the AKC. A "cease and desist" order was issued by AKC against the company that produced them (for copywrite infringement among other things), but I thought I saw them still for sale sometime in the recent past.