Thu 16 Dec 2021, Bearley

Level 4: Judges - Sue Kirkham & Janet Wykes

Bearley Village Hall, Snitterfield Road, Bearley, Stratford-on-Avon, CV37 0SR

Start: 9.30am
Entry Fees: £28 per dog.
Contact: Sue Gardner

Trial Manager and Judges Reports

Thank you to Sue Gardner for inviting me to judge Level 4 at Bearley. A new venue with a large hall, good parking and a field behind for competitors to walk their dogs.
Thank you to Lisa Finney who was my efficient scribe, Jackie Hodge who scribed for Janet and Kathy Fitzgerald who made sure competitors were ready and in the right place.
A white dog was used for all searches. The distraction scents were Almond and tea. I co-judged with Janet Wykes, l judged the interior searches and there were 11 competitors.
Table/Chairs and Perimeter
The clove was on a chair and the gun oil on a metal filing cabinet. Distraction scents were placed in a basket and under a wooden pole in the corner of the hall. Nearly all teams found both finds. There was some lovely quiet handling, allowing their dogs to work.
Boxes and Lugguage
The clove scent was on a box on the right hand side at the front and gun oil on a suitcase with wheels on the left side at the back. Distraction scents were placed in 2 bags. 6 teams found both scents. 2 called on distractions and 3 on boxes near to the scented box. There was some enthusiastic searching and quick times. Hazel and Cedar 39 seconds, Kate and Millie 40 seconds and Clare and Ripple 43 seconds.
I enjoyed watching your dogs work and the teamwork between you. Good luck for future trials.

Many thanks to Sue Gardner for inviting me to judge at the level four trial today. A special thanks to my scribe for the morning, Jackie Hodge, and to Lisa Finney and Kathy Fitzgerald who helped ensure the day ran very smoothly. A white dog was used for all searches.

I co-judged with Sue Kirkham, and we had 11 competitors.

I took the outside searches and we started off with the exterior search where I used a fenced off area that encompassed both hard standing and grass. The gun oil was placed in a plant tray near to the entry and the cloves was placed in a boot jack on the grass towards the back of the area. The distraction scents were almond (in an umbrella adjacent object to the boot jack) and tea (electric cable reel in the centre of the search area). A lot of the dogs knocked the gun oil on entering the search area but, as we see quite often, were often reluctant to indicate straight away and preferred to explore the area first. Well done to those of you that noticed the change in their behaviour and ensured that you later returned to the item to secure your find. We had a couple of dogs that showed an interest in the almond distraction and this did result in a couple of wrong alerts. Overall, we had six teams that identified both hides, ignored the distractions, and gained full handling marks. Well done Clare and Ripple, Francesca and Cody, Hazell and Cedar, Mandy and Mac, Kate and Millie, and Ruth and Mint. The searches by Kate & Millie and Ruth & Mint were particularly quick, accurate and a real pleasure to watch, well done.

For the vehicle search we utilised three vehicles close to a verge, with quite a number of distractions from leaves etc. on the ground. The clove was placed in the front of the left-hand side foot step on the farthest car, with the gun-oil on the Discovery in the very bottom of the front left-hand door cill on the opening side. The majority of the dogs found the clove hide and we had some lovely indications. The gun oil hide was found to be a little more difficult with the odour clearly blowing under the car. Many of the dogs were investigating the rear right wheel area and trying to crawl under the car where the scent was being blown. It was good to see many of you recognize this and take your dogs around the other side of the vehicle to search. What was quite noticeable was that whilst the dogs would search the wheel areas very well, some of them were less interested in searching the door/cill area on that side and as a result missed the find. Many were drawn off the car onto the nearby boundary area and then went back to the vehicle at the rear wheel. Those of you that noticed the area was missed (particular mention to Gloria and Dylan here that handled this well to secure their second find) and ensured that you placed your dog back onto the vehicle at a point earlier than where they popped off were often rewarded with the find. We had five teams that identified both hides and gained full handling marks. Well done Rachel and Topic, Ruth and Mint, Hazell and Cedar, Gloria and Dylan, and Mandy and Mac. The search by Hazell and Cedar was a delight to watch with Cedar searching beautifully around the perimeters of all vehicles and providing great indications, well done.

Following the combined totals with Sue’s interior searches congratulations go to:

Ruth & Mint – 1st Place. What a superb team to watch. A clean sweep with a quick time. Mint carries out her searches with a lovely sense of purpose and enthusiasm. Congratulations.
Hazell & Cedar– 2nd Place. A lovely partnership, another clean sweep and Cedar was a delight to watch. Well done
Mandy & Mac – 3rd Place. Another great team with Mac carrying out some very thorough searches. Some lovely handling demonstrated from this partnership, well done.
Clare & Ripple – 4th Place. A slightly off target indication on the car was unfortunate and meant this team just missed out on a clean sweep but what a great team. Ripple was enthusiastic but so nicely handled. A lovely partnership, congratulations.

A special mention to Kate and Millie who just missed out on the rosettes (a lovely partnership and some great indications), and to Liz and Chandra who gained their excellence today – congratualtions.

This was a really enjoyable trial to judge with fantastic competitors. I hope you all enjoyed it.
I look forward to seeing you all continue to progress on your Scentwork journey

I need to start by thanking our judges for the day Sue Kirkham and Janet Wykes who set an interesting challange for our level 4 teams. It would not be possible to put on the trails without the amazing support of the Leamington Dog Training Club Team, so a special thank you to our scribes Jackie Hodge and Lisa Finney and Kathy Fitzgerald who was our runner for the day.
I also need to thanks Elaine Kingston who was kind enough to supply her delicious homemade mince pies for everyone.

Bearley is a new venue for us which seems to have been popular with the competitors. We aimed to offer a relaxed and friendly trial and wanted both competitors and their K9 parteners to have an enjoyable day.
Well done to those that passed the level and special congratulations to those who secured a placing. Those that didn’t manage to get the requirred finds, I am sure will achieve the requirement soon.

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