Sat 08 Oct 2022, Marston Moreteyne

Level 8: Judge - Christine Gregory

Beancroft Farm, Beancroft Road, Marston Moreteyne. MK430QE

Start: 11am
Entry Fees: £30 per dog.
Contact: Emma Conlisk

Trial Manager and Judges Reports

Thank you to Emma for the invitation to judge her L8 trial. As per usual at Beancroft everything was beautifully organised, aided by Wendy who kept a steady flow of competitors, all ran smoothly which I really appreciated for my first appointment at this level.

I like calling an area clear but I know that for others that this isn’t a priority. In previous L7’s I have tried not to be too trappy with the hides and be generous with the time to see if this would illicit more “clear” calls – it didn’t. So for this L8 I focused on testing the teams stamina, the dogs motivation and problem solving ability and handler skills if and when more detailed searching was required .

All areas were “white dogged” before and after the odours were placed.

Kitchen and narrow corridor leading to a cluttered area. 4 hides 3 1/2 mins.
This proved to be the most difficult search. Apparently dogs tend to see corridors and alleyways as routes to speed through to more interesting areas beyond. With this in mind I put 3 hides in the corridor. Gun oil in the LH seam of the carpet; clove in the LH cupboard; on the other side, again in the carpet, truffle. In the end area gun oil was hidden in a rolled up rug. The corridor was a tough area for the handlers to work in, manoeuvring themselves and their dogs in such a tight space was not easy. Elli seemed to catch Nicola out when she found the first hide in the carpet so quickly because unfortunately Nicola didn’t call it, just one of those brain fog moments that we’re all familiar with. 2 was the most that any team found until Rebecca and Marvel came along and found 3. Only Justine and Chumley found the the truffle hide.

6 hides, 6 mins. A very large area plus a small car which, together with about a third of the area was blank.
3 teams found 5 of the 6. Chumley was one of these, he and Justine had moved on past the double doors when Chumley suddenly connected nose to brain and began the journey back to the hide (C), it was lovely to watch him work it so independently. Karen and Barley did a lovely job here too, their only miss was a hide in the wall (C). An adjacent drainpipe pushed the dogs wide of the hide and then created problems in working back to source. Alison and Dylan gave another strong performance but missed the one under the step by the back door (T). It was an unfortunate moment for Dylan to apparently get distracted by the weeds ……..unless of course the odour was pooling there? Rebecca and Marvel were brilliant too, only the hide on the doors caught them out. Dolores was the only handler to call clear, it wasn’t correct but she knows her dog and rightly decided that there was little to be gained from pushing Gypsy on.

A large hall with loads of Haloween stuff on the walls, 3 tables in the middle plus storage shelves at one end. 5 hides, 4 1/2 mins.
I had 3 stacks of chairs up against a wall approximately a metre away from an adjacent wall forming an alcove. One hide (GO) was on the front of the first stack, the second (T) on the stack closest to the wall. This proved to be a tough hide. Dogs were tasked in but struggled to put themselves in the right position to work to source. Only Melanie and Rowan were successful here, they and Dolores, Karen and Alison found 4 hides. This was Neil and Oscars best performance of the day also finding 4.

It was really nice that all the competitors stayed for the presentation. It had been quite a long day and we didn’t have any qualifiers, although it was a close run thing for Karen and Alison, yet everyone was so sporting and supportive. It really demonstrated the very best of Scentwork UK. Good luck to you all in the future.

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