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Working Test with Poppy and Merlin

Discussion in 'Gundog Training, Fieldwork, & Field Trials' started by Karen, May 8, 2018.

  1. Karen

    Karen Registered Users

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    After all the emotional ups and downs of the last few weeks, OH and I decided to go ahead with our participation in a local charity working test, run in aid of assistance dogs. It's a lovely and prestigious working test, on the grounds of an old hunting lodge, and people come from all over Germany to take part. I thought long and hard about starting with Merlin, but decided that the tasks in the pre-beginner class (Schnupperklasse) would not be too arduous for him. OH decided he wanted to compete with Poppy in the advanced class; only the second time he has ever taken part in a working test.

    The pre-beginner class started in the morning. When we got there, Merlin was ALL OVER THE PLACE with excitement - 40 dogs!!!! So many buttholes to sniff!!! Guns!!! Dummies!!!!! :D:D:D - he did calm down eventually, but I was glad I got there really early so he could get used to things a bit before we were sent off in our groups to the various tasks. He was so excited I was sure he would run in at the sound of the starter pistol with each task, but actually he was very concentrated and worked well, except on one task where he lost the plot a bit and ran around sniffing, before peeing on a bush... This would have been an automatic disqualification in a higher class, but in the pre-beginners they just took marks off. There were five tasks in total; two simple marks, one walk-up with a mark, and two searches with two dummies to be returned from each. He ended up with a score of 83/100 (including one perfect score of 20 on one of the tasks), an evaluation of 'sehr gut' (very good), and a very respectable 9th place out of 40 dogs. I was very pleased with him :)

    Here he is, looking studious and concentrated in the waiting zone:

    IMG_0562.JPG

    Poppy as usual was like a small dummy-guided Exocet missile - starting off with a 100 meter blind (with no shot!) through the woods, followed by various marks, blinds and search combinations. She was such a star, and OH was calm and collected and wisely just let her do her stuff rather than whistling all over the show and trying to correct her. I watched from the sidelines, and was so proud, especially on the final task where she pulled off an extremely difficult mark in a meadow of long grass, which all the other dogs found very difficult. There were a couple of occasions where I would have handled her differently on the blinds, but nonetheless they did so well, and ended up with a score of 91/100 and an evaluation of 'excellent' - and third place out of 40!!! :)

    IMG_0573.JPG

    It was a lovely day, and we all had a wonderful time. I don't think I'll be entering any more competitions with Merlin this year, so it was really nice to have this day out with him, and the experience alone will have been excellent for him. He took the physical exercise in his stride, and if you didn't know he had a problem with his hips you would never have guessed. I will continue with my modified training plan with him this year, and if he stays fit I may enter him into a couple of low-level competitions next year.

    And as for the Pocket Rocket... Well, she is just amazing. :tail::clap:
     
  2. MF

    MF Registered Users

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    Wow, they are brilliant dogs! Such a lovely antidote to all the worries you’ve had.
     
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  3. selina27

    selina27 Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Very well done to you all, exciting to read your post.

    I am so so pleased that you enjoyed such a good day out with Merlin :)
     
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  4. Boogie

    Boogie Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    Great work, all of you :doug::tail:
     
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  5. snowbunny

    snowbunny Registered Users

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    Wonderful! I would love to see some video of you training/working with them. :)
     
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  6. SwampDonkey

    SwampDonkey Registered Users

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    Wow! Just wow you must be so proud. What a brilliant day. Xxx
     
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  7. Stacia

    Stacia Registered Users

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    Well done, a great read as well which I enjoyed, they both did excellently.
     
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  8. QuinnM15

    QuinnM15 Registered Users

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    Sounds great! 3rd place is amazing! I see Poppy's dummy says 'platz'...my cousin is in the police k9 unit and his dogs are Belgian Malinois (1 working, 1 retired) trained in Germany and their commands are all German words, no English. Platz is the one we hear most often! Can't remember if it means sit or down?
     
  9. Karen

    Karen Registered Users

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    It actually means 'place', so I think for training purposes it means 'down'.
     
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  10. FayRose

    FayRose Registered Users

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    Well done all 4 of you. You are quite right to be proud of both dogs, what a great day :clap:
     
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  11. Joy

    Joy Registered Users

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    What great work from both your dogs -congratulations! (I love the word ‘schnupperklasse’. Does this mean Merlin is a schnupper?;))
     
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  12. Jojo83

    Jojo83 Registered Users

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    Fantastic result Karen :) :)
     
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  13. Xena Dog Princess

    Xena Dog Princess Registered Users

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    Congratulations to Poppy and Merlin! What a great result from team yellow!

    So Schnupper is German for puppy? 6 years of German and I never learnt the word for puppy and this makes me very sad because Schnupper is a FABULOUS word.

    Oh those Germans, they get so emotional :D
     
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  14. Sven

    Sven Registered Users

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    Congratulations for both Merlin and Poppy, well done.
    Nice when all the work pays off and you see your dogs just enjoying themselves but still concentrating on the tasks at hand.
     
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  15. Xena Dog Princess

    Xena Dog Princess Registered Users

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    Ok, excitement slightly abated. Hundchen is German for puppy, which makes a lot more sense now that I think about it.
     
  16. Joy

    Joy Registered Users

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    Lol! But it should be schnupper - much more onomatopoeic (snuffling puppy).
     
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  17. Sven

    Sven Registered Users

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    Well that is a bit dissapointing for you @Xena Dog Princess

    I might be wrong here (as been a while), but I think it means 'like to get to know class' ie: se what it is all about.

    Sure @Karen can correct soon...
     
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  18. drjs@5

    drjs@5 Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    This is lovely to hear Karen.
    Your dogs are both crackers, and clearly enjoy the experience of working like this.
    I hope you feel able to continue with the moth, watchful eye on health of course a
    A huge well done to you and OH. You must be so proud x
     
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  19. UncleBob

    UncleBob Supporting Member Forum Supporter

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    That's great to hear. And lovely photos :)
     
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  20. Karen

    Karen Registered Users

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    'Schnuppern' actually means to try something out... to sniff it. Yes, like snuffling, I'm sure it's the same word base.
     
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