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Thread: Touching dog in AKC test or trial: is it really against the rules?

  1. #1
    Senior Member mitty's Avatar
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    Default Touching dog in AKC test or trial: is it really against the rules?

    All I could find was one passage about not holding the dog to keep it steady, between the time you call for the birds and when your number is called. I could not find anything else in the rules. Yet I have heard left and right that touch your dog, and you are out. Is it just a "better safe than sorry" thing, that touching the dog might be construed as intimidation or something?

    The FT and HT regulations have similar language. Here is the statement from the HT regulations:

    "Section 11. In Senior and Master Hunting Tests, a handler shall not hold or touch a dog to keep it steady, or verbally restrain a dog on line, except in extraordi- nary circumstances, from the time the first bird is being thrown until the dog’s number is called. Violation of any of the provisions of this paragraph is sufficient cause to justify a grade of “0” in Trainability."

    Thanks!
    Renee P

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    Senior Member DKR's Avatar
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    Naw go ahead and touch your dog and let us know how it works out for you.

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    Senior Member Todd Caswell's Avatar
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    Why in the world would they make a crazy rule where you can't touch your dog while under judgment

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    Senior Member yellow machine's Avatar
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    It is perfectly fine go ahead and pet your dog. I see it all the time.
    A cold nose feels good on a hot day.....
    Majestic Oaks Liberty Belle JH

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    Senior Member Ken Bora's Avatar
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    if I am in the middle of running and I want to touch my dog, I ask.
    sometimes they have a mouthfull of feather or a big burdok on the side, I ask.
    after I thank the judges and am back in back of the closest holding blind to the line
    full on belly rubs!
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    Senior Member mitty's Avatar
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    thanks, Ken.
    Renee P

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    Senior Member DoubleHaul's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by mitty View Post
    Yet I have heard left and right that touch your dog, and you are out. Is it just a "better safe than sorry" thing, that touching the dog might be construed as intimidation or something?
    The FT rules also state that a handler's hands must remain in close proximity to his body and that projecting them for whatever reason should be considered a threatening gesture and the dog penalized accordingly.

    I can't think of any good reason a handler should touch the dog between the time the birds are called for and the number is given. You have plenty of time to get that done before you call for the birds and you are not likely to have any feathers, burrs or seeds in the eyes until after the dog is released to retrieve. Regardless, touch a dog before your number is called and you are out.

    After the judges have released you, technically you don't need their permission but to prevent any misunderstanding, it is best to ask before you wipe out the feathers or check for a burr in the pads just to make sure what you are doing is not misconstrued. While you have been released the dog is still required to deliver and give up the bird and sit at heel, so touching the dog without explaining to the judges why could be considered a fault.

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    A couple of times I have had a dog come back with blood on his/her head/face. I take the bird, and ask the judges if I can check to make sure the dog isn't hurt. The Judges have always given me permission to check, but I do always ask.

    Meredith

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    Senior Member 2tall's Avatar
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    I was warned once. My Chessie suffers from a bit of "stage fright" and is sometimes nervous about returning to a large gallery. When I ran him the first time, instead of my husband, when he delivered the first bird, I patted his head and said good boy. Judges said "careful, don't touch the dog again". Right or wrong I did not argue the point. Dog ran a fine test then broke on honor. Moot point!
    Carol,
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    Alternate Handler: Westwind Buffalo Soldier
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    Senior Member Evan's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Todd Caswell View Post
    Why in the world would they make a crazy rule where you can't touch your dog while under judgment
    Because it could be construed as a threatening gesture. Things aren't always as they seem, and the judges don't know how you train.

    Evan
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