ANOTHER OPINION RE PROPOSAL TO OUTLAW LAYOUT/HIDDEN BLINDS IN MARKING TESTS:
In place guns/thrower retirement; layout blinds in a natural depression behind a natural bland obstacle, i.e., downed tree, cover or a rise in terrain greatly indentifies GOOD MARKING DOGS.
First, I commend Tim West for standing up and rejecting this flawed proposal.
Second, as Tim states "as judges we have a duty to exercise common sense".
Third, a known basic fundemental in training today is to utilize a standing brushed
blind as a "TOOL" in training dogs to LINE to scent.
Therefore, it is a charade to believe that a brushed blind now affords any reasonable kind of invisibility in multiple marking tests. It is a common occurrence today to see dogs "lined" to the "brushed blind" and observe such a line, then a "hunt" to scent.
This proposal is another example of administrative interferance/injustice.
Clubs should NOT approve this proposal.
W. D. Connor
Sounds like the RAC is full of PC retriever enthusiast, there are inherent dangers everywhere. Flyer stations are more dangerous than layout blinds will they be next? Mandatory hand rails on all "Mounds" so nobody slips and falls next meeting.
I am in favor of judges having the option of using layout blinds. I believe that there are legitimate concerns about the improper use of blinds, which compromise worker safety. But, there are safety concerns with gun handling as well. I believe that common sense would address those issues.
At the National Meetings that I have attended, participants were pretty evenly split on their use. I think that people who compete in areas where cover is abundant do not recognize what a powerful tool a layout blind can be for a judge faced with a field with little to no cover
I understand the issues with using layout blinds, ie overheating bird boys and dogs getting hurt by them. If you wrap holding blinds properly and concel them in a tree line there is no more air flow in that than a layout blind, they are just as hot. I have been in both and it seems on a hill with no cover a layout blind can actually be a little cooler than a holding blind set up on a tree line in the sun.
It all comes down to the ft commitee and judges using good common sense. If its hot use the best options you have available to keep bird boys safe. no body wants the dogs or workers to be injured.
With safety of our dogs and the bird boys as a primary concern for any set-up, I see no compelling and inherent risk associated layout blinds when used with safety as a primary consideration. As others have said there are other more inherently dangerous aspects to any set-up than layout blinds. Again, as others have said, the safe use of a layout blind in fields with little topography change and little cover, is a very effective means to test the marking skills of our dogs. I will encourage our club to vote against the proposed amendment.
One of the most memorable opens I have watched was in my backyard and utilized layout blinds. It was a tough test in a mowed, rolling field and was ran from a mound. There was no danger to the bird boys and the blind itself had little danger to the dog. In a mowed field or one lacking cover a layout blind sticks out like a sore thumb. Ask anyone who actually hunts out of them or, look at my attached picked and note the location against the cover on the edge of an alfalfa field. Placed in the open without piles of natural local cover such as grass, corn stalks and tumbleweeds they are more like a flashing neon obstacle. If you covered them they'd be a pile of stuff the dog will run around.
The only rule I could see making is banning them if temps are forecasted or reach over 75 degrees. It would be bad to put anyone in a layout in warm temps. Or possibly if you're bird boys are old farts
I agree completely. It is an optional tool for judges to use in situations that call for it. To "outlaw" them is really a statement of non- faith in judges and test committees.
Originally Posted by Ted Shih
I don't believe all judges have good sense when it comes to judging. Too often I see a lack of common sense in judges when they set up tests into the sun so the first 15 dogs don't see the marks. or putting gunners in shadows making it near impossible for a dog to see the gunner or bird. Setting up a test that puts a dogs health and well being at risk due to injury or over heating.
Originally Posted by Tim West
I don't believe that layout blinds need to be "outlawed", but a trial giving club has and should continue to have the right to not allow them at their trials. The club is ultimately responsible and liable for its workers and should be the one making the decision regarding the use of layout blinds.
Doesn't it all boil down to the club field trial committee having the "balls" to make the call if a test or particular mark is dangerous for the BB or dog? FTC/HTC has the final approval of any test, there's got to be enough common sense in the group to make the correct decision!
Yup, but God forbid some nobody inexperienced person challenge someone who's been doing it for 25+ years with a little common sense
Originally Posted by Raymond Little