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Thread: Enter junior test?

  1. #1
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010

    Default Enter junior test?

    Local golden retriever club has a junior/senior test coming up. I am debating entering my dog. Here is our background:

    Our main focus is competition obedience. My dog has been force fetched, will deliver to hand, and has run just enough marks in his life to be familiar with what's going on. He has never had a live flyer and he will cheat on water when given the opportunity.

    I have no plans on doing senior work, and it isn't a big deal to me if we don't get a JH. It is unlikely we will ever get any higher training than what he currently has.

    So one side of me says don't set a dog up for failure, but the other side says since I have no real aspirations in the sport and just thought it would be something my guy would have fun doing for a weekend, what's the worst that can happen.

    Thoughts on entering?

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  3. #2
    Senior Member Ken Bora's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jun 2004
    Burlington, Vermont


    Quote Originally Posted by Golden6824 View Post
    ..... what's the worst that can happen.

    Thoughts on entering?

    you can be totaly blown away at how much fun your dog has doing field work.
    your Golden can be a natural flying through tests you never even thought of let alone trained for.
    you can get so hooked you will be tossing old freezer ducks in the rain someone you met on the RTF and loving it.
    you will start adding clutter to your truck you never seen.

    don't go, step away now, buy a cat........... no good will come of this.


    or am I ?
    "So what is big is not always the Trout nor the Deer but the chance, the being there. And what is full is not necessarily the creel nor the freezer, but the memory." ~ Aldo Leopold

    "The Greatest Obstacle to Discovery is not Ignorance -- It is the Illusion of Knowledge" ~ Daniel Boorstin

  4. #3
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Sep 2004
    Illinois Wisconsin border


    You may never run a hunt test, your own statement, maybe just one. Dog cheats, never has had a shot flyer, your words. What could happen? Well hmm there are many Junior Hunters out there that had the same thinking as you,but, got hooked , finished their JH title and were retired because of noise, line manner issues, bird handling issues, delivery issues, cheating, etc, etc. Don't enter it for fun for the dog, train for the standard, your a obedience person, it answers your own question, either train for it or don't run/enter it. Just one man's opinion.
    Earl Dillow

  5. #4
    Senior Member Sharon Potter's Avatar
    Join Date
    Feb 2004
    Wisconsin Rapids, WI


    Has your dog been around gunfire? I'd make sure of that and also make sure he gets a flyer or two....if you decide to do it. If you really want to run hunt tests, train and go for it...but if you don't train for it, I'd skip it.
    Sharon Potter


    Chesapeake Bay Retrievers...too many to list.

    Team Huntsmith

  6. #5
    Senior Member savage25xtreme's Avatar
    Join Date
    Dec 2009
    SW OK


    Enter it.

    Pick up 4 birds and put them in your hand, easy as that, don't even need to be steady.. Junior dogs should not be enticed to cheat, as long as your dog WILL SWIM you should be ok.
    Gavin B.

  7. #6
    Senior Member Jennifer Henion's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2012
    Far Northern California


    In this case, I say DO IT! Especially if it's a Golden club and you like to watch other Goldens. Junior is nothing to be nervous about if your dog delivers to hand and doesn't mind fetching birds. Only problem is that you will likely get hooked on the sport. Go enjoy it!

    You'll be mad if you go and weren't entered!! You'll say to yourself: "Dang, we could do that!" And it's so much more fun if you are entered and not just watching others.


  8. #7
    Senior Member FOM's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2003
    Falcon, CO


    I say run like crazy...I'm 14+ years into this "oh I'll just do it for the dog" - yeah, good luck with that!

    Seriously, if you can get him a live flyer and around gun fire prior just to make sure you won't have those hiccups, I say go for it! But you have been warned, this sport is addictive! See if you can also get with a training group prior and have them run you through your paces as a handler - absolutely nothing worse than to go out because of a stupid handler error! Read the rule book, also!

    Don't forget to take pictures and post up your results....lastly, it's just dogs picking stuff up.....or not, so have fun!
    "You can't eat a pig whole, but you can eat a whole pig." - Joe S.

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  9. #8
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Apr 2008
    Crownsville MD


    The first test I entered we were #4 out of an entry of 50+ dogs so I got to sit and watch most of the dogs run. I was flat out amazed by the number of handlers who said to another that their dog hadn't had a flyer or a cripple. I don't know the percentage of those folks who did not pass, but I know it wasn't just one or two.

    Be fair to your dog and yourself. Go watch the test and enjoy. Then go home and train your dog for a future test. The clubs give out the most wonderful orange rosettes when a dog passes. You'll be so proud of your dog when they hand one to you at the end of the day!!

    Also, don't count on never wanting to go into senior. Field work is highly addictive!


  10. #9
    Senior Member
    Join Date
    Mar 2010


    He has no problem with gunfire, he very quickly figured out gunshot=retrieve

  11. #10
    Senior Member cpmm665's Avatar
    Join Date
    Jan 2009
    Clifton Park, NY


    For the cost of an entry fee you can buy some flyers, set out decoys and throw marks in cover on land and water and see how pup handles it.

    Dekes and cover are things I've seen hose up dogs that aren't following a regular training program and exposed to them. The Dekes can be scary and cover changes from short to high can seem like brick walls.

    I worked with a fluffy show dog last summer, older dog, average marker and drive. The dog would get spooked around decoys and avoid going to the area of the fall, also would hunt short avoiding digging into cover. We persisted exposing the dog to these situations and he did earn his JH.

    If it's just for fun, why not just buy some birds or attend a Club training session? The excitement of a hunt test is intense, much different than a trip to the park for some bumper marks. Personally, I wouldn't do it on a "just for fun" basis, I'd opt for a bit more training first.
    Cindy Von Sutphen

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