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View Full Version : The cost of campaigning a dog at any level



Marvin S
10-05-2012, 11:33 AM
This deserves it's own thread for discussion so here goes - I gave an estimate, but fairly close as I do numbers as a pastime of $20K to be somewhat serious in the FT sport. I would imagine those who do 2 nationals a year or 4 would be into it much more than that.

Buzz stated it is probably less expensive to use a pro & he's probably correct, but if I'm going to be involved a pro does not work for me except for the knowledge they can pass on, either on purpose or not, during workouts. If I were going to use a pro full time I would have a share in a good race horse group with a chance of getting a return.

I'll do more later as I have to go to the store :).

ARay11
10-05-2012, 11:47 AM
I think it depends on how many dogs you want to compete. 1 or ? The higher the number, the more likely you need to be a DIY dog person?

menmon
10-05-2012, 12:17 PM
It basically cost $1200 per month per dog....not including vet bills and those need to be planned for. If you are double staking all-age dogs it is going to be $300 per month more to it. Also plan on 5 years to get a dog to where he is competitive in an All-Age Stake. This is a lot of money but you get a lot for what you pay for, and training you own dog is much more expensive because the cost is not spread out over a bunch of dogs.

BonMallari
10-05-2012, 12:35 PM
It basically cost $1200 per month per dog....not including vet bills and those need to be planned for. If you are double staking all-age dogs it is going to be $300 per month more to it. Also plan on 5 years to get a dog to where he is competitive in an All-Age Stake. This is a lot of money but you get a lot for what you .pay for, and training you own dog is much more expensive because the cost is not spread out over a bunch of dogs

Huh ? would like to see your rationale over this one

here is how I broke down campaigning two AA dogs for one weekend- amateur handled/trained

Entry Fees : Open and Amateur stakes.......400.00

Lodging/Food : 3 nights.....300.00

Gas : two full tanks in a large SUV or truck 200.00

Misc expenses : pocket cash 100.00


Thats a cool grand without even seeing a bird in the air...so 4-5 trials in the spring and the same in the fall..thats 8-10K /year to play on the weekends...minimum

now start adding in birds,cost of grounds,transportation,gas, FEED, VET BILLS,insurance,membership fees,

back when we started in this game in the early 70's the entry fee was 35.00/stake

Coincidently the entry fee to the National Amateur/Open was 300.00...just like it is today....but it costs a heck of a lot more to get there and stay there today

ARay11
10-05-2012, 12:38 PM
There are two separate costs involved in playing the games:
What it costs to train Fido
What it costs to campaign Fido.

helencalif
10-05-2012, 12:55 PM
Some thoughts on this subject...
The cost for an Amateur to campaign a f.t. dog depends on how many trials per year the dog runs and where those trials are.

Because we don't go to many trials a year, I don't consider what we do could be called "campaigning" a dog. This year we have gone to very few trials. Ruby in 5 trials so far; Sally in a few more. Have 3 coming up and the year will be over. My guess is 12 trials this year for Sally, 8 for Ruby. Not enough trials to say we are campaigning either dog. Going to a national is expensive -- travel, accommodations, pre-trial training with a pro (over $1,000. which includes birds). A CA training partner estimates he spent about $6,000. to compete in the national AM when held in Vermont and about $5,000. for Michigan last year. Again, it depends on where the national is held as travel is the greatest cost.

As far as a return for investing $$ to campaign a bitch, we wouldn't "campaign" one. The only financial return is to breed her to a top stud dog after she gets a title. Breeding, raising puppies, then getting her back into shape takes a good 6 months out of the year. I think "campaigning" is something that is mostly done with males. The $$ return is stud fees. There are a lot of good stud dogs out there with FC, FC/AFC, and AFC titles so there is competition.

The real stud fee earnings come after the dog wins a national. That's when the ladies line up.That's when there is a return on campaigning a stud dog. We have seen recently two National Am winners who were not campaigned much (Emmitt, Traveler). Emmitt has gotten some breedings. Don't know about Traveler.

The $20k per year sounds like a close estimate to what it costs to go to a lot of trials. NOTE: I said go to trials. Does not include feeding, training birds, other training costs, vet bills, etc. Add a national and it's an easy $25,000. (then add feeding, birds, vets bills, etc). I think few stud dogs bring in that kind of an annual return. Top stud dog fees seem to be around $1,500.-$2,000. Gotta get a lot of breedings to pay for campaigning a stud dog. Usually they became stars after age 5 (or 7 ?) which means spending a lot of years trialing, then winning a national, before many stud fees.

Helen

menmon
10-05-2012, 01:51 PM
Huh ? would like to see your rationale over this one

here is how I broke down campaigning two AA dogs for one weekend- amateur handled/trained

Entry Fees : Open and Amateur stakes.......400.00

Lodging/Food : 3 nights.....300.00

Gas : two full tanks in a large SUV or truck 200.00

Misc expenses : pocket cash 100.00


Thats a cool grand without even seeing a bird in the air...so 4-5 trials in the spring and the same in the fall..thats 8-10K /year to play on the weekends...minimum

now start adding in birds,cost of grounds,transportation,gas, FEED, VET BILLS,insurance,membership fees,

back when we started in this game in the early 70's the entry fee was 35.00/stake

Coincidently the entry fee to the National Amateur/Open was 300.00...just like it is today....but it costs a heck of a lot more to get there and stay there today

I have 3 dogs in training. My bill is appox $3600 per month. If I enter them in an am I pay the approx $80 per trial. I did not consider hotel and gas cost so it is more than I said.

To be sucessful in this game unless you are retired and can train all the time, you have to pay a pro. Even the folks I know that are retired pay a pro and train everyday with them.

menmon
10-05-2012, 01:53 PM
Your senerio assumes that your dog will still be playing after the first series. I learned never to book a room until after the first series. Lots of rooms come available after the first series.

Franco
10-05-2012, 02:39 PM
I too think it cost less to have a competitve dog via a Pro. Especially, when I can make a lot more money working my day job then I can hanging out with the Pro and dog. 12k a year with a Pro is about right including entry and handling fees, birds etc. If I travel to make a trial, add another $400-$600 per trail depending on the distance and cost of motel rooms. I'd rather spend that money hunting private duck/goose lodges than driving 4 hours each way to see some crazy test setup. ;) Plus, the Pro has bird throwers, birds etc. that as an idividual, you can't spread that cost. Then, there is the grounds factor.

Buzz
10-05-2012, 03:05 PM
Your senerio assumes that your dog will still be playing after the first series. I learned never to book a room until after the first series. Lots of rooms come available after the first series.


I was just looking the other day. Of the last 13 times I ran, I got to the blinds. The blinds are the death of me. Last weekend I realized I need to pay closer attention to which dog I'm handling and get in the right mindset because they are both a little different...

I learned about only booking one night though too. Cheapest room I could find at Minot this year was about $150/night and they billed me for three even though I was on the road for home Saturday night. Up there it's crazy trying to get a room, not sure I'll go all the way up there next summer because of it.

BonMallari
10-05-2012, 04:31 PM
Your senerio assumes that your dog will still be playing after the first series. I learned never to book a room until after the first series. Lots of rooms come available after the first series.

I tried it that way too, but having to find a room on Friday or Sat night after 6pm is no fun and cost prohibitive


I was just looking the other day. Of the last 13 times I ran, I got to the blinds. The blinds are the death of me. Last weekend I realized I need to pay closer attention to which dog I'm handling and get in the right mindset because they are both a little different...

I learned about only booking one night though too. Cheapest room I could find at Minot this year was about $150/night and they billed me for three even though I was on the road for home Saturday night. Up there it's crazy trying to get a room, not sure I'll go all the way up there next summer because of it.

Even though every trialer has blown out early and headed for home soon after they are out, we have determined from a safety standpoint it makes more sense to grab a bite to eat and maybe relax and get some rest and decompress before making a long drive home..trying to save a few dollars on room is not worth putting lives on the line while on the road, because you're tired or irritated

john fallon
10-05-2012, 04:40 PM
Why is this thread on POTUS Place, and not the RTF Forum ?

The more dogs you run the cheaper it is PER dog..........



john

BonMallari
10-05-2012, 04:47 PM
I too think it cost less to have a competitve dog via a Pro. Especially, when I can make a lot more money working my day job then I can hanging out with the Pro and dog. 12k a year with a Pro is about right including entry and handling fees, birds etc. If I travel to make a trial, add another $400-$600 per trail depending on the distance and cost of motel rooms. I'd rather spend that money hunting private duck/goose lodges than driving 4 hours each way to see some crazy test setup. ;) Plus, the Pro has bird throwers, birds etc. that as an individual, you can't spread that cost. Then, there is the grounds factor.

We tried to rationalize the cost that way too, considering how much my brother could potentially earn by being at the clinic...now if we could just start charging the "patients" that he sees at the FT grounds, it would probably pay for the entire weekend...I always thought he was a popular and likeable guy till I figured that many just wanted some medical opinion....disclaimer : he does have some regular friends/patients that he will check on during the weekend and his been know to even treat a few on the grounds or at the hotel later....

Clint has tried a couple of seasons using a pro, but the one thing he missed the most was being there and competing in person, so he has opted to either train the dogs himself or forego the trial altogether when his responsibilities at home far outweigh playing games


The one thing you cant put a price on and you cant create is TIME..plus you cant replace that which is lost

Marvin S
10-05-2012, 07:05 PM
Why is this thread on POTUS Place, and not the RTF Forum ? john

As we get further into the discussion you will see why it was put on POTUS :).

Marvin S
10-05-2012, 07:13 PM
Clint has tried a couple of seasons using a pro, but the one thing he missed the most was being there and competing in person, so he has opted to either train the dogs himself or forego the trial altogether when his responsibilities at home far outweigh playing games

This goes to those who believe their dogs are part of the family when they have earned that right & those to whom dogs are a symbol of status & hence, livestock. It is the enjoyment of the journey :). For the former it's like sending your kids to boarding school full time :).

caryalsobrook
10-05-2012, 09:55 PM
This deserves it's own thread for discussion so here goes - I gave an estimate, but fairly close as I do numbers as a pastime of $20K to be somewhat serious in the FT sport. I would imagine those who do 2 nationals a year or 4 would be into it much more than that.

Buzz stated it is probably less expensive to use a pro & he's probably correct, but if I'm going to be involved a pro does not work for me except for the knowledge they can pass on, either on purpose or not, during workouts. If I were going to use a pro full time I would have a share in a good race horse group with a chance of getting a return.

I'll do more later as I have to go to the store :).

Thanks Marvin for starting what I consider one of the best threads I have seen. I don't know about the expense part but for me the total package is my dogs and I doing our thing, no matter the results which include warts and all. I started in HT's just because that was what I was exposed first. I have such admiration for the dogs which so joyfully display their skills. I love those with whom I have trained, both pro and amataur, that have helped me so much. Being retired, I give thanks for each day that I am able to train and learn with my dogs. I have no idea how much I have spent, truck topper 4-wheeler, camper, not to mention wingers collars vet. bills, HT's ect. I do know that I cherish each day. I have a Bass boat and an aluminum boat for crappi and blue gill fishing and neither has been out of the garage this year. Some friends say I should sell them but I keep them just in case. Simply put, I love the training and treasure the friends I have made. As to the money, I always say "my son pays for it. That is just less he will inherit.":)

Each person has their own reasons for owning and running a dog or dogs, be it for their enjoyment of training it themselves or having a pro training. To me, any reason for doing so is a good reason. :D