The Myth of the Amateur Trained FC/AFC Dog - Page 3
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Thread: The Myth of the Amateur Trained FC/AFC Dog

  1. #21
    Senior Member
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    Nov 2004
    New Haven, CT


    Gray Chin who are you or do I know you and did you run the Maine Trial?
    Gentle in what you do. Firm in how you do it.

    WESTWIND WHISPERING COVE (LARRY son of Murray) WDQ MH, QAA2 8/5/05-3/20/18
    WESTWIND WHISPERING COVE JAY QAA, MH (Larry's son and Murray's grandson)

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  3. #22
    Senior Member
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    Jun 2010


    Quote Originally Posted by Gray_Chin View Post
    Mr. Voigt said it all, but I’ll add this…If you look at the etymology of the word myth, it comes from the ancient Greek “mythos” with the specific lack of distinction between true and false. Aristotle positioned that the “mythos” was the spirit of the theatrical play and the “mythos” was the background of the Greek tragedy, dealing mainly with gods and heroes. In our case, with the mythology of the successful amateur, to homeschooled amateurs, this has great symbolic significance, with the picture of the working class hero taking his dog to the upper echelons of the game. It provides a way to find hope and motivation, even if the lines of fantasy and reality are blurred.

    Unlike fantasy that is nobody’s truth, and history that seeks to be everybody’s truth, mythology is somebody’s truth. To the boot strappers, this is our truth, even if it is only rooted in our subjective experience. I don’t think it can be understood by non-boot strappers, because they have not gone through the challenge, frustration, and heartache involved in learning the game and building their own dog. With that, they will also never understand the immense joy, satisfaction and pride that can be achieved when things work out. Raising and training is not always fun, but I have learned more about my dogs, and myself, going through the process than if I had payed someone else to do it. Neither is right or wrong, just a personal choice with its own set of rewards and consequences….and part of the myth may be believing that the extra care, detail, bond, and knowledge gained through the process, will be the edge, on the last bird in the fourth…if not there is only one thing to blame, yourself…and this can be difficult and a barrage to the ego.

    In the end, whether ones story ends in triumph or tragedy can be objectively or subjectively measured, yet ultimately, history will dictate the factual objectivity of a blue ribbon. I’m sure there are those who think the musings of an old duck hunter, with a seal chasing bird monster that moonlights in the game, are pointless, but I’ll argue that the myth is very important to those with the grit and rugged individualism, that strive to attain the unattainable, and these same individuals are still relevant and important to the sport.

    Well said.

  4. #23
    Senior Member Cayuga Dew's Avatar
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    Nov 2014
    Lebanon, PA


    Gray Chin - Thank you for such a well written post!
    Duane Ray - Inventor of the 'Dewey Gunner" Retiring & Un-retiring Gunner-Available for purchase from Magee Retriever Products in July of 2019

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  6. #24


    From Ted Shih earlier post on Read the rule book: I have seen the good, the bad, and the ugly when it comes to handlers with multiple entries.

    Probably my biggest complaint about the amateur with four or more dogs is that he/she is driving the solo dog Amateur out of the game. When I began 20 years ago, it was not uncommon to see Amateurs in station wagons with wire crates pull up to run their dog. That working class person is almost extinct from the game. In fact, the middle class person has almost been run out of the game. If the pattern of amateurs with unlimited money, time, and dogs continues, you will soon drive the upper middle class out of the sport. Why would someone want to go through the brain damage of putting on a FT only to be crushed by the weight of numbers. Very few amateurs venture into the Open, where the Big Dog Truck Pros compete with strings of 10+ dogs. If we're not careful, we will see that pattern continue into the Amateur. For the true Amateur, that has access to grounds, winter grounds, good training group, talented dog etc., the reasons Ted posted above are still making many Amateurs asking why am I trying to play this game. Not to mention the cost and time demands.

  7. #25
    Senior Member EdA's Avatar
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    May 2003


    Quote Originally Posted by Thomas Running View Post
    Not to mention the cost and time demands.
    I think the two biggest discouraging factors are the time demands and the difficulty of finding a dog with the talent to be a bonafide all age competitor. Not that the financial part is not a factor but it is one that can be worked around. In the last 5 +/- years we have lost 5 of what I consider the younger crowd, that is people younger than 60. All were 8 point judges, above average to excellent judges, honest, and conscientious and at one time were all part of my training group. I think for all of them the time commitment was the ultimate deal breaker. I chose this addictive hobby 48 years ago and every time it is new dog time I question my sanity however as I told friends 15 years ago when I contemplated quitting, I hate fishing, I was terrible at golf, and I was too old to make new friends. The new puppy is 2 1/2 weeks old, I hope he is real good because he will probably be the last one.

  8. #26
    Senior Member HarryWilliams's Avatar
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    Jan 2005


    I think when someone starts to question about people's dogs attaining a FC AFC by utilizing professional training or by NOT being the sole trainer theirself, they might ask themselves if they are trying to justify why they don't have one or will not be able to.

    I know exactly why I don't have one. It's simple. I haven't won an All Age trial and earned the additional points with one dog. Myth or dream - to want a completely self trained field champion is a worthy goal. It is attainable and has nothing to do with what others do.

    See ya in the field!!! Harry
    "Sometimes we just gotta do what is right". Jerry 2006

    See ya in the field. HPW

  9. #27
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    Apr 2015


    Quote Originally Posted by TexasK View Post
    ...and I thought I had a drinking problem
    Lol. Thanks for the funny.

  10. #28
    Senior Member huntinman's Avatar
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    May 2009


    Rare, but definitely not a myth. Fair number of Ams out there still doing it. Maybe they don’t get recognized because they aren't of the “in” crowd.

    I judged one a few weeks ago that will be in MT. He didn’t place the weekend I judged, but they are an exceptional team and have come a long way in a few years. Very good team.
    Bill Davis

  11. #29
    Senior Member Sabireley's Avatar
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    Feb 2005
    Culpeper VA


    I have a good and enthusiastic group. Nobody is young but we have nice dogs and desire to win. You’ll see us on Sundays.

  12. #30
    Senior Member Bridget Bodine's Avatar
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    Mar 2008
    Lake Winola, Pa


    Sammi and Justin don't send their dogs anywhere, do they? Seems we have quite a few on the middle/northeast circuit
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