I have dropped a dog in a hunt test for style. (several years ago) The dog showed the least amount of effort that it required to get the bird. It seemed reluctant to come to the line, and made only a minimal effort to watch the birds being shot.
I've carried dogs to the next series that ran almost as slow as than the dog I mentioned, but they showed intensity and true desire to do the work. Some breeds sometimes are slower, and some old dogs are slower. I enjoy enthusiasm, speed is nowhere near as important.
Originally Posted by fishduck
It is good to see you posting.:) Thanks for the input! It is good to know that style is still being judged.
Originally Posted by counciloak
Originally Posted by Randy Bohn
First, I haven't seen the problems you apparently have. Both Terry and I talked about the dogs that we recently judged at Swamp Dog, which you attended and neither of us remembered any style issues.
Are there piggy dogs? Sure, but far fewer than 10 years ago - and those I have seen recently are not very competitive.
Second, I will admit that many moons ago when I began judging, I placed a dog whose style on blinds was marginal. Since then, I have denied placement to dogs with poor style. I have also set up blinds that were too hard and cut some dogs I wish I had not. I think it's all part of your education as a judge.
Third, I think I need to see more than one instance of poor style before I drop. For example, a dog might be nervous about running tight to a gun, but then pick up speed. Or it might be uptight on a short blind, but fine on the long blind. I have dropped dogs that slinked into the water, but poor style was compounded by multiple casts and refusals. So the drop was due to more than poor style.
Fourth, as for carrying your friends - that is an issue of personal integrity unique to each individual. I have dropped good friends, and people I couldn't stand. I have placed friends and people I couldn't stand too. Because the mission is to award the best dogs for a given weekend - regardless of their owners, handlers, or past record
Interesting and illuminating discussion.
My dog and his idiot owner/handler/trainer just wish that style = speed and that it got judged the same way WD-40 gets used. You know, if a little bit is good a whole lot is better, even if it is not aimed very well.
Wishing I had known then what I know now to deal with my track star