Sun 05 Dec 2021, Combeinteignhead

Levels 2 & 4: Judges - Jackie Lawer, Debra Cassidy

Combeinteignhead Village Hall, Shaldon Road, Newton Abbot TQ12 4RG

Start: 10:00 for L4, 14:00 for L2
Entry Fees: £27 per dog.
Contact: Sara Seymour

Trial Manager and Judges Reports

Level 2
Thank you Sara for asking me to judge level 2. It was lovely to see some old partnerships and welcome some new ones. I was pleased that all the teams coped well with the venue, especially as it was a new environment to some. Later on outside when it dropped a few degrees and quite a swirly wind developed, teams worked hard and kept their nerve and in some cases resetting their dog to achieve a positive outcome.

The two hides on the wall took a lot of concentration as the wind had really got up and the building became quite noisey, with dogs stopping to locate various rattles.

With regard to tables and chairs some teams pulled their dog off when they were heading towards the scented perimeter article. It was a joy to see no trashing in boxes and bags.

Main handling deductions were “Handler not believing dogs indication” – remember I only see a snapshot of your dog working and you may have been caught out previously with false alerts.

Overall it was a pleasure to not only judge teams but observe the different working relationships. Lastly many thanks to Penny who scribed for me.

Level 4
Today I had the pleasure of judging the L4 trial at Combeinteignhead. As I feel Level 4 should start to prepare the teams for the more environmental searches they can expect from L5, I wanted to create a challenge for the teams without causing them to become demotivated! I am very pleased to say that everyone qualified (although there were a few hairy moments!).
In the table, chairs & perimeter, the gun oil hide was under the table leg nearest the entry point – I expected this to be tricky and it was for some of the dogs. The clove was on the side of a double door leading outside. All the teams found this quickly and easily. I used coffee and shampoo as distraction scents. The coffee was positioned along the closure of a solar panel and the shampoo was under the chair at the far end of the scented table. In this case the shampoo attracted quite a lot of interest for most of the dogs.
We did the exterior search next. It was quite windy and I thought the dogs may have had a problem with it, but the majority found this area pretty easy. This area was a combination of paving stones and graveled areas. Gun oil was near the top corner of a large overturned plastic crate between two holes. Most dogs indicated on the hole on the side and one went on top to indicate but all very well on source! The clove was in the end of a plastic hose. The coffee distraction scent was beneath a small wheel and the shampoo on a low blue and white step.
All the dogs completed a speedy search of the container area finding both hides in about a minute or less! The clove was on the strap of a rucksack and the gun oil was on the metal clasp of a large suitcase. Coffee was located next to the seam of a cardboard box and the shampoo was on a Christmas Eve type box.
One car and a 20m wall was the final search. One hide was in a round hole near a corner of the wall and the other was on a large stone leaning against the wall. None of the dogs seemed distracted by the articles placed along the wall and most coped well with this search also.
Thanks to Sara Seymour for asking me to judge and Tina and David Cameron for trial managing and scribing. It was a lovely morning and we even saw some sunshine.
Jackie Lawer

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