• Show Date: 09/04/2023
  • Show Type: Open/Limited/Sanction
  • Judged by: Sarah-Jane Finch Contact Judge
  • Published Date: 28/07/2023

Hampshire Gundog Society

Hampshire Gundog Society Premier Open Show - Sunday 9th April 2023

Handling Classes 

Thank you so much to Hampshire Gundog Society for asking me to judge handling at their show. It’s always an honour being asked to judge handling, especially the juniors as these young people are the future of our sport. This is something that we should not lose sight of and we should be encouraging these youngsters as much as we can.

As a judge of handling, it is with pride that I watch these youngsters go on to do so well in our sport and I hope that the youngsters who entered today will go on to be successful.

A few general notes to begin with. When there are mats laid down, remember these mats are for the dogs and not the handler. All handlers today at some point either ran their dogs off of the mats when the pattern given should have been possible with the dog totally on the mats. Also dogs were either set up on or stood with some feet on and some feet off of the matting. Some breeds detest the floors in leisure centres and can slip/slide on them and even injures themselves. This is something that a handler must be very aware of. I was impressed at the handlers knowledge of the dogs anatomy for those I asked and nearly everyone was well prepared for any ring accidents by having a poo bag on them.

Junior Handling Association

6-11 Years (2,0)

1 – Eva Scott (aged 8) handling a Hungarian Vizsla. A very smart young lady who came into the ring with great confidence. She stood her dog well and paid attention to where I was standing as she stacked her dog. Her lead work was excellent, holding the lead the whole time so as not to get in the way of me assessing the dog. When I asked her to show me the teeth, she did this correctly and I was able to see both sides then the bite well. She had a good rapport with her dog, if I was being picky, she could have talked to the dog a bit more although the dog was very at ease. She moved around the ring and did a triangle as I asked, was always aware of where I was standing and did not go between me and the dog at all. Overall, she presented a very nice picture and I am sure this young lady will have a very bright future.

2 – Ryker Jahn (aged 8) handling a Bracco Italiano. This young man seemed a little out of his depth with his change who was certainly making him work hard today. He stood his dog well at the beginning although was unable to stack him due to not being able to reach from nose to tail. He needs a bit of work on lead use as he let go of the lead when I asked him to show the dogs teeth. In handling a dog’s teeth should be shown: left, right then bite which he struggled to do. He tried so hard to get his dog to cooperate and was talking to his dog, but I fear the wilfulness of the dog was too much for him. Overall, a good effort but needs work on patterns and the basics of handling.

12-16 Years (2,1)

1 – Poppi Screen (aged 14) handling a Spaniel (Welsh Springer). This young lady presented a pleasant picture on entering the ring and was very smartly dressed. She stood her dog well, despite the dog being very determined not to be stood! Her lead use was good, holding it out of the way while I was assessing her dog. She needs more practice on showing the dogs teeth as it wasn’t as clean a show as I would have liked. She had a good rapport with her dog, talking to it throughout the time she was in the ring. She moved around the ring watching where I was and performed the up and down pattern changing hands well. Despite standing alone, she deserved her place as she was made to work hard by her charge who was a real fidget. Best Junior Handler

Adult Handling

17-45 Years (3,1)

1 – Phoebe Toublic handling a Spaniel (English Springer) A super smart young lady who entered the ring with such confidence. She stood her dog perfectly then blended into the background as I went over the dog, she showed the teeth as required and with ease. Her lead use was excellent and she had a great rapport with her dog, constantly talking to it. She watched me the whole time ensuring she never moved between me and the dog. She listened carefully to my instructions and carried out the patterns well, pausing after each turn to make sure where I was standing before setting off again. I wouldn’t hesitate to have this young lady handle any of my dogs. Best Adult Handler.

2- Miss L Wilcox handling a Hungarian Vizsla. Another very smart handler whose young dog was making her work hard today. Her lead use was very good, she showed the dogs teeth perfectly and had a good rapport with her dog. She carried out the patterns that I asked well, watching where I was the whole time and moving around so as not to come between me and her dog. A great effort from this handler with a very wilful young dog.

46+ Years (3,1)

1 – Kirsty Watts handling a Retriever (Chesapeake Bay). A very confident handler who entered the ring like she meant business. She was well presented and her dress complemented her dog. She stood her dog well, had excellent lead use and showed the dogs teeth correctly and with ease. She had an excellent rapport with her dog, its very clear that they have a great relationship. She performed her patterns well and noticed I moved sides on the up and down. She was aware of where I was most of the time and as the class went on, her confidence grew and at the end was watching me and moving as needed. After the class she told me that she had never entered handling before, so she should be very proud of her first effort. A really good handler.

2 – Silke McDowell handling a Retriever (Nova Scotia Duck Tolling) This lady was very smartly dressed and presented a very smart picture entering the ring with her dog. She stood her dog with confidence and had good lead use. When I asked her to show the dogs teeth she only showed me the bite. Her rapport with her dog was very good and she carried out the patterns I requested well. However, she wasn’t aware of me moving and didn’t move herself accordingly. A good handler just needing a bit more knowledge of the rules of handling competition.

Sarah-Jane Finch (Dalticino)