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You see, I do love Field Trails. I love looking for a winner, placements and jams. I love the competition, the training, the whole sport and all that goes into it. But that is not where I belong.

I am a Hunt Test Person. To me, the Hunt Test game, as described in our Rule Book, is kind of like school and I’m an old school teacher.

Jr:
Elementary School
Senior: High School
Master: College
Graduate School: Master National

We want our dogs (students and handlers) to be the best they can be. We are not looking for a winner or even the best dog. We appreciate a dog that puts forth effort and can pass with a “C”. We celebrate the A+ students, the gifted ones. We want our dogs to graduate from a level with at least a C average, just as we want and expect of our children. Of course we want an A or B, but we may not get it. Sometimes we even hire a tutor (I had one for Spanish in High School and Statists in College) to get that “C” grade. Man, was I proud of those C’s and so was my Dad.

A person can graduate from High School or College with a "C" average. We do want our students (children or dogs) to put forth effort to be the best they can be. Will some fail? Yes, they will; if they don't meet the minimum standard, that's just the way it is. Should we ask more of our dogs than we do our children? No... How would we feel if High Schools or collages only graduated A and B students and failed the C student?

Any teacher or judge can recognize excellence and celebrate the A or B student. But it takes a knowledgeable teacher or judge to appreciate the C student, to really understand the minimum required to pass at each level. Maybe all judges should train at the level they judge or at least have experience running entry level dogs as well as fully trained dogs. They need to know what the minimum requirements are and respect the effort required to get a passing performance at each level.

Our Rule Book (Regulations and Guidelines for AKC Hunting Tests for Retrievers) plainly states in Chapter 2, Section 2 that a dog must evidence abilities at least in accordance with the minimum standards at that level. It does not say maximum.

We are not competing in the Hunt Test game we are trying to train to meet a standard, and get a title (a degree). Words like "mediocre" do not have a place in our sport. I am so thrilled when I see a great team smack a test, but I am also excited to see a team that has struggled and worked so hard finally get a "C". I've been there. Most of us who train our own dogs have.

Yes, I look for excellence now. In many ways I have become a dog snob. Using words like "pedigree", "biddable", etc. But I remember that it took me 20+ tries to get my first Master pass and lots of tutors. I have A students and I and am so proud of them. I am also mighty proud of my little "C, C+" girl. I do want her to graduate from college and I would love for her to have an A average, but will be happy with a C or B. She has had a tutor and we may never see grad school. But I look forward to celebrating that Master degree.

Please do not spoil our sport. Celebrate the dogs and handlers. Some may want to be a Junior Hunter, or a Senior Hunter and some graduate from college and become Master Hunters.
The Master National is Graduate School. There you can raise the bar and ask for a B+ or an A. But, remember, not all of us or our children wanted to or were prepared to go to grad school. Should we expect more of our dogs? Why would we not accept a C from our Jr, Sr, or Master dogs? Raise the bar when they go to grad school. And, if you want to compete, just run Field Trials.

Please, DO NOT mess with our Hunt Test Game, celebrate it...
 

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Applause!

We enjoyed being in your Flight this year at MN's You truly love this sport, and it shows in your dogs!
 

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simply awesome, thanks!
 

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Great Post!!!! I was given similar advice from Paul Brown of Pennsylvania and Georgia many years ago when I started judging. I have always tried to judge by that standard.

Thanks for posting
 

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Thank you for putting into words just how similar our dog's hunt test journey is to our own educational journey!

I can relate to that hard earned C that felt like an A to me!
 

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Well, in most grading systems a 70% grade is a D.

To get to master national you need a 70% only 75% of the time, thus you only need a total grade of 53%.

58% is an F in every school I have ever attended and a pretty low bar to get into grad school.
 

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So in the space provided please list all the dogs that you have trained to that level wiseass __.

All hat no cow regards

Bubba
 

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So in the space provided please list all the dogs that you have trained to that level wiseass __.

All hat no cow regards

Bubba
Mephistoples IX - 5 for 6 in MH

Two in the chute that I would like to be able to actually enter in some tests this fall, if they're ready.

Yep - 1 that's all 1...

Not sure what that has to do with making an intelligent observation.
 

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So in the space provided please list all the dogs that you have trained to that level wiseass __.

All hat no cow regards

Bubba
Love ya, Bubba. :)
 

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Well, in most grading systems a 70% grade is a D.

To get to master national you need a 70% only 75% of the time, thus you only need a total grade of 53%.

58% is an F in every school I have ever attended and a pretty low bar to get into grad school.
I have to defend my undergraduate grade point average here. 70% is a Gentleman's C- As my RA told me when I first moved into the dorm: 2.0 x 120 credits = B.A.
 

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The intent of the original post : "Please, DO NOT mess with our Hunt Test Game, celebrate it..."

Why do we have to dig into what a C versus a D ?

I think everyone needs to step back- enjoy your dogs - enjoy the game- stop worrying about entries- what it takes to qualify for the MN- to me nothing is more fun than when your dog succeeds on it's first multiple or it's first cold blind - if the journey leads you to the MN or Not - it's still fun to train and see the dog learn!!!!
 

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Anyone else wonder about how busy a "pro" is, who is online most of the day, pontificating everywhere he can stick his nose?
 

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I thought it was all about having fun & maintaining what you want in your standards. Too low a standard you're out & you didn't pass the test. Work on raising the bar! It is really simple concept. Not sure I would think anything different nor comparing HRC or HT to the troubled school system & kids. IMO Is there an issue w/ that? Grading the dog sport is silly. We all just love the sport. Just like kids some dogs do better than others live w/ it!!!& move on!!! IMO
 

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A lot of times in this world to much me me me and my my my even in dog competition anybody ever think to ask the dog what they think, I don't think he or she would give much a s??t what the grade was just throw another bird ? Very well said in many of the posts in this Thread.
 
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