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I have Betsy home right now from my pro (she's in heat) and I train with her everyday. Today I let my 10 year old son run her (first time he's always been a bird boy before.) and I think he fell in love with it. It helped that Betsy is a VERY powerful dog and big and I think he felt like he was launching a rocket. He's all jacked up about doing it more and it got me thinking and here's my question -

How many of you have your kid's involved in this and what age do you think would be a good age to let the kid run a trial or hunt test? I figure he's got to be big enough that the dog could see him for handling but I've seen some pretty small gal's do very well. Also, if you do have your kids involved how?
 

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I agree the sooner the better. I have 3 young kids and they love to throw the duck or bumper or blow a duck call for me. For their sake the sooner the better the more they are going to be excited about it and want to participate in hunt tests/ field trials.
 

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At the Backwater HT last fall, they held a puppy hunt for kids and puppies. My 3 three siblings LOVED it, especially that ribbon they got to take home.
 

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I've got three daughters, twin 12 yo"s and one 7, they love being involved with the dogs, throwing bumpers, helping with the pups and running them when the occasion arises. Delta Waterfowl had an event around here for a few years with a kids stake, regardless of the dogs accomplishments, everyone got a ribbon and a duck call. They loved it, and it helped them get use to running in a crowd, handling the dog around other dogs and all that stuff.

I do wish the AKC, clubs and other venues would do more to promote kids running dogs, either as a seperate stake, or in the regular stakes with a reduced or no cost. Kinda tough to shell out $180 to $210 a weekend, in addition to my initial entries for the dogs. I've brought it up at our club meeting before and the time, space, equipment limitations always win out, however we are a dying sport without the kids involvment.

My 2 cents and something to think about.

Brad
 

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Dukdawg said:
I do wish the AKC, clubs and other venues would do more to promote kids running dogs, either as a seperate stake, or in the regular stakes with a reduced or no cost. Kinda tough to shell out $180 to $210 a weekend, in addition to my initial entries for the dogs. I've brought it up at our club meeting before and the time, space, equipment limitations always win out, however we are a dying sport without the kids involvment.

My 2 cents and something to think about.

Brad
HRC has a Junior Handler program. Check in to that.
 

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Kids and dogs.........

:D I gave 4 pups to the HRC Youth Retriever Program and have gotten MORE joy out of hearing the things the fine youngsters are GUSHING about their pups...... GOT them addicted to the dawg game...LOL. One of the young men that got a pup came down with his family from Illinois to Nashville TN just to see me this weekend and help me do the stuff I couldn't do myself. He EVEn took the water bath to celebrate my dog titling for me. GOOD KID !!!!. The club had a Junior handler even for the youngsters in attendence. EVERY child received a NICE trophy and it was really something to see the kids coming up and imitating their Dads or Moms and handling a dog. Was a hoot to see a dogs head taller than the child handling..... Cody ran my dog and it was something to see him standing there with Maxx on the line ....His SMILE was HUGE........ only problem was Maxx had to bring me the mark.......LOL......he knows his boss......LOl.
\
 

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My son started handling one of my older dogs in fun tests at about 9 or 10. He ran a few HRC started tests with him and then started asking for his own dog. He is now 12 and he and his 18-month-old Dustbucket (the dog and kid in my avatar) have done very well so far. 4 for 4 started, 4 for 4 seasoned and I expect that they will do very well in finished this fall.
I had to adjust my expectations a bit when we first started out as far as how involved he is with the day-to-day training. Between school, soccer, boxing, etc, he just doesn't have the time to train with me every day. So basically, I'm training the dog and he is able to help a couple of times per week. At that point, I'm training dog and handler both which adds its own challenges.
He is turning out to be a pretty darned good handler and he and his little dog have developed a bit of local celebrity. We intend to train hard through the summer get their HRCH this fall and start running master stakes.
 

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My kids enjoyed going out in the field with me until they reached about 9 or 10. Then they wanted to pursue THEIR interests. So, I took a break from working the dog (retired her in 1995) and spent the next 7 years being a soccer mom. I haven't regretted it for a minute.
 

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My daughter ran Jake when she was 3 1/2 and Jake was 2 in a WCX. I will probably have my now 6 year old and 4 year old run a couple of young dogs in HTs this year. They love it!


John
 

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My daughter started helping when she was 7. She ran my (her) yellow male for the first time at the Lake Country (Minn. Horse and Hunt Club) hunt test when she was 8 and she passed and tiltle that dog. She was 50 lbs and the dog was 80lbs and 1 1/2 years old when she ran him. I had to hide behind vehicles so my (her) dog couldn't see me. A gentleman at the test came up to my wife and myself while my daughter was running and asked sarcatically "do you think you could find her a bigger dog?" If the dogs is steady or if the kid is big enough start the child as soon as you can.
 

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It was great watching Bruce Mitchell's daughter win a Derby with Pike, but didn't the AKC come up with a 'Junior Handler' designation after that? I don't think they can compete with the big boys (or girls) anymore.

I may be way off on this - my memory is only partially with me these days.
 

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Can't a kid run a titled dog in AKC Junior? When my step-son was about 10 he ran my wife's chessie in Junior. I don't remember is Ranger was titled yet or not. Ranger was a puch button dog on marks anyways so it didn't take much handling.

Tom
 

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I think that a kid can run a titled dog, but I am thinking that they can no longer place in a FT.

Maybe someone can refresh my little memory.
 

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My 4 year old son is helping me out. He can throw and blow a duck call better than his mom can,(don't tell her though, I will need her help someday too). I hope that my 8 month old pup will run for my son. My 5 year old bitch won't go on a mark unless I tell her so that makes it hard. I usually just wisper "Lucky" then she will go. We always keep training short and sweet when my son comes with so that it always stays fun.
 

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It's funny you should ask

My 7 year old daughter just got the first started pass on our Boykin this weekend. Both of their first test. :lol:
 
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