Sage Monkey

Sage Monkey

Saturday, April 30, 2011

Preparing for The AKC Senior Hunt Test

Jasmine - A beautiful 14 month old DK GSP
Today I took Cleo to train with Bob Corsaro in New Jersey in order to get her ready for her first two braces of the AKC Senior Hunt Test. We will be running her Memorial Day weekend in upstate Pennsylvania. Today Bob had Cleo focus on honoring and staying steady on the shot. Normally Jim is the handler for Cleo but due to work related events this weekend he was unable to attend so I was the one in the field with her today and will be again tomorrow. The only down side to me handling Cleo is there are no pictures of her training but its well worth the trade off for getting to be more involved.

An example of Honoring (also known as backing) from a previous training session:
We started Cleo off backing Jasmine the DK dog who's picture is at the top of this post. The first time Cleo came up and saw Jasmine locked on point she did not stop and back on her own. I attribute that to me. I got a little anxious and wasn't sure if she could see Jasmine or not and I believe I stopped and whoaed her before I should have. The next few times I felt much more relaxed and let Cleo do her thing. When she would see Jasmine on point she would stop. More importantly though when Bob would flush Jasmine's bird and fire Cleo stayed steady and just watched the birds fly off. In the past she would have moved. One of Bob's goals today was to get lots of repetition in on honoring for Cleo. She also had the opportunity later in the day to honor another male GSP. I believe the extra practice on honoring really helped because when it was Cleo's turn to work the field and she pointed she stayed steady and didn't move a muscle when Bob flushed and fired. I was so excited and at the same time totally bummed that Jim missed it.

I did get to see some other dogs in the field with Bob today. He was working with two 5 month old English Pointer brothers. They were very cute pups and it was my first time getting to photograph English Pointers. I love my German Shorthaired Pointer so much but I can totally appreciate watching other hunting breeds work. It's also nice because I love to photograph the dogs and its nice to see the contrasts between tails, and body color ect. It makes for fun photography. Below are some pictures of 5 month old Luke:

Here are some pics of his brother Gus:
 I also got to tag along and watch Chaeli a beautiful setter owned by Ron Levine work the field. Chaeli is a real joy to photograph because she's so soft and white she is almost illuminescent. Besides she has a super fancy tail!
Tomorrow I'll be back in Jersey with Cleo to work on more honoring and staying steady but we will also be working on retrieving.

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