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Discussion Starter #1 (Edited)
Why would someone choose to work for a BN title over a CD title? Is the BN just slightly easier than the CD? If my understanding is correct, one could actually earn both of those titles. It is unclear to me why one would want a BN if they've earned a CD though.

Beginner Novice
  1. Heel on Leash 40 points
  2. Figure Eight 40 points
  3. Sit for Exam 40 points
  4. Sit Stay 40 points
  5. Recall 40 points
Maximum Total Score 200 points

Companion Dog
  1. Heel on Leash and Figure Eight 40 points
  2. Stand for Examination 30 points
  3. Heel Free 40 points
  4. Recall 30 points
  5. Long Sit 30 points
  6. Long Down 30 points
Maximum Total Score 200 points

Also- is it too much to go for a CD without first earning a BN, specifically for someone who has never worked a dog in obedience before?
 

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When I showed my first dog Indy the BN wasn't an option, so I did Rally first with the RN I didn't have to let my dog off lead which is something having never been in a ring with a judge, I was very nervous about, so I was able to get alittle experience in the ring before going on to the CD, I can see where the BN is a good stepping stone for a first timmer to get their feet wet in a fun way. Dog wise Indy could of handled the CD without the RN first easily, he flew through the CD in 3 shows with 2 1st's and a 2nd, but I needed some ring experience so I didn't make stupid nervous mistakes and I think the RN or BN helps with that.
I also know alot of people that are going back and picking up the BN now for fun while working on their CDX or UD because it wasnt' available when they started their dog.
With Frank I started him in the BN even though he could do all the CD exercises because he was young 13mos, and I wanted to see how he handled the excitement of a show, he did fine and it was an easy title to get him started in the obed. ring
 

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I forgot to add I wont' go back and pick up the BN with Indy purly because I've retired him, he has developed some dog aggression issues which is why he's not gone on to his CDX. otherwise I would just for fun.
 

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Discussion Starter #4
Thanks Franksmom- that's some good info!
 

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The BN was never offered when I did obed,,it looks like all exercises are done "on leash"? I to would say it's a good stepping stone for someone who has never competed before, never been around the show scene, and maybe wasn't quite sure what to expect...
 

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It's MUCH easier than a CD. First, it's ALL on leash. There are some dogs that have yet to perfect their off leash heeling, but are good with on leash. Also, the stand for exam can be difficult for some dogs. The sit for exam is a good stepping stone. I think it's a great title to go for if you have basic OB but aren't quite ready for a CD and I think that was the point of it anyhow. :)
 

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The BN is much, much easier than a CD. Everything but the sit stay is on leash, and even then the leash stays on the dog, the handler just isn't holding it any longer. Sit for exam instead of a stand, no group stays off lead with the handler way across the ring, heeling is a rally sign pattern, no judge following along barking out orders.

It can be a good way for people and dogs to get some positive ring experience with a younger, less trained dog and get an idea of how the dog does in a trial environment before pressing onto the CD and taking the leash off. This can be a very nice stepping stone for people coming to OB from rally, or getting into competitive obedience for the first time, as the CD can seem very daunting to people new to obedience. And of course it also makes more money for AKC and the clubs holding shows.

I think the whole BN came about because the creation of rally didn't go the way AKC had intended. Rally was originally to be an easier, more fun way to attract more people to training and competing their dogs, with the hope that once addicted they'd graduate to obedience. But as it turned out a whole rally crowd developed of people who just do rally, some very seriously, and they stick with rally and don't move over to obedience. I would bet they are hoping the BN will fill the same niche they intended with rally.
 

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Chris Wild hit the nail on the head. On top of that, I've heard more people complaining about Rally being difficult than the BN. I think a lot of people get nervous with Rally because it's always a new pattern and you never know what will be thrown out at you. The BN is a set pattern and pretty easy to do. Besides the sit stay (where you walk around the ring), probably easier than Rally, depending on who you ask.
 

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There isn't a set heeling pattern in Beginner Novice....but the pattern is limited to the basic signs and the only halt is at the end.

Many people find it easy because they don't have to listen to a judge call out heeling commands. I think it's a good class for green dogs or newbie handlers.
 

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I am one leg away from my BN, and should have the last leg pretty quick. I think that the judges are much more lenient with BN than with other classes. I know I got away with some barking that would have really cost points in any other class, and finished in first place with said barking. I saw it as stress, and the judge saw it as an exuberant dog wanting to work. I just don't think the experience is there for us yet, and that is what I love about the BN. I can get some experience and don't have to wait years and many matches to move up.
 
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