Nature vs. Nurture: Dog Breeds, Temperament and Training

Recently, an exasperated dog owner contacted me about her out-of-control, “aggressive” Labrador retriever. She was trying to understand why her 2-year-old dog actively challenges other dogs, men and children with growls, snaps and threatening postures. During our phone conversation she reminded me several times that “everyone knows” Labs are sweet and gentle creatures that love… read more


BDC World Championships 2015

We are only a month away from the 2015 BDC World Championships which will be held at Muddy Creek Game Birds in Meriden, KS on October 20-24, 2015.  Registration will be on Tuesday, October 19 from 3-5:30 p.m.  Following registration, we will have a handler’s meeting for those competitors that begin tournament play on Wednesday…. read more

2,700 Dogs Compete at International Agility Festival

The Kennel Club International Agility Festival reached a record number of agility classes when 2,700 dogs competed against the world’s best at Rockingham Castle on Aug. 13-16. The Festival, supported by CSJ Specialist Canine Feeds, was open to all dogs and included a number of competitions such as the Championship classes, where dogs competed to… read more

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As the Wheels Turn – The Gate Keepers — Ring Stewards 101

Ring stewards are critical to the smooth functioning of any AKC dog show. Most are volunteers. None are well paid. The job includes everything from keeping the judge on time to keeping the exhibitors in line. It is the type of largely unnoticed effort that, when done well, is invisible. But, when done poorly, inevitably… read more

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As the Wheels Turn – Emergency Preparedness

Fire. Flood. Tornado. Hurricane. Earthquake. Car accident. Medical emergency. Anything can happen, has happened and could well happen again. When we have responsibility for the lives of the dogs in our care, this makes planning ahead a vital consideration. Out here on the West Coast, literally hundreds of thousands of acres are burning down around… read more

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As the Wheels Turn – Handling FAQ — Problem Solving

Let’s face it. A good show dog is a very different creature than a couch potato dog. While the two are not mutually exclusive, a dog who is unsocialized outside his home, out of condition, unused to being groomed routinely, unfamiliar with the noise and commotion of a dog show etc has a long upward… read more

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As the Wheels Turn – Someday We’ll Laugh About This…

I am a professional show dog handler. This is a job that is very time sensitive and physically demanding, so I hire dog show kids to help me out. Which effectively means that on any given weekend, I am personally responsible for the health and well-being of other people’s kids and dogs while traveling great… read more


If at First Ya Don’t Succeed…

Keep on suckin’ ‘til ya do suck seed! NYUK NYUK NYUK. When my brother and I were young, we were glued to the television every Saturday morning (assuming I didn’t have a horse show). Our very most favorite TV shows to watch were old episodes of The Three Stooges. We liked the “REAL” Three Stooges. We only… read more

As the Wheels Turn – Putting the Pieces Together

This has been a fun and very well-received series. We’ve talked about hand stacking, free stacking and moving already. Now it’s time to put it all together with a dash of pizazz! One of the judges at the show this past weekend was very good at giving the newer handlers pep talks. All of my… read more

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As the Wheels Turn – Step Right Up — Tips on Teaching a Fabulous Free Stack

Note: I promised this topic and I always keep my promises! But, before we start, I’d like to offer a moment of silence in honor of the dogs and exhibitors killed en route to the World Dog Show in Milan. I learned about this tragedy at the same time I was hearing exhibitors talking about… read more

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