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From a measurement perspective, I enjoy the idea of Rally. It's a sampling of a particular set of tasks all believed to be at approximately the same level of difficulty. That appeals to me.

But while it kicks our butts because polish is where we struggle, I love the precision of obedience more. It presents endless challenge. I like that. I also appreciate the predictability of knowing that when I walk into the ring to show in Novice someday, I have a very good idea of what the course will be. I won't have to worry about that aspect.

And for a sport, right now we're kind of Nosework obsessed, and she's good at it so far, so while we won't stop in obedience, I don't see adding a second sport of any kind for awhile. Or ever. We'll see.
 

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Discussion Starter #23
As for agility, I just don't think my boy is cut out for that. My old girl would have been a spitfire in her younger years, holy cow was she athletic.

The boy? Not so much. When he is trotting straight forward he does have a lovely fluid gate, but watching him chase a ball he just isn't especially quick or light on his feet. It is hard to explain but I just would really doubt he would do super well or even enjoy agility that much. But he isnt even a year yet so who knows, he may get more nimble? He is only just kind of outgrowing flumpy-ness Maybe I am just not used to the way he looks: he is an 80+ ASL equivalent (he is a white), she is a 65 lb WL ball of muscle (or was in her heyday)

Selzer, I really appreciate your description and perspective. I actually wondered about those group stays & whether anything went wrong in the way of a fight. I have worked mighty hard to protect my kid from bad experiences with other dogs & I would be devastated if it happened in an OB ring. Don't know how common that really is, though?

One other distinction that occurs to me is that it seems rally is something you can practice for by yourself (at least I have), obviously I couldn't train for those group stays without a class.

Right now I feel like I might like to try traditional OB at some point but only if I can get over my own nerves :(
 

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Discussion Starter #24
And let's not get started on AKC versus other venues like CDSP, WCRL, or worse yet, online titling venues like CRO and NCO. I mean, everyone knows that anything you can do via video is "worthless". Funny thing about that... someone in the NCO Facebook said that her dogs have multiple high level titles in several different organizations, yet they are struggling with a level 1 NCO exercise. (This was a quotw from earlier, don't know why it isn't showing up with that person's info)


I started doing Cyber Rally as practice. And the old girl...not sure competing in real life is gonna be good for her but she loves doing the courses in our yard. Any little thing is a NQ in CRO! There is no score, you make one little mistake and you're out. And yes, you can just keep trying, but you can keep trying in any venue it just involves more waiting and driving. I'm not convinced CRO is significantly easier. I'm not looking for any special recognition for a CRO title (we have 1Q per dog so far). It's fun. And I have acutally gotten some helpful feedback from the judges on everything from training ideas to our actual performance. Me and my dogs are better for it so you can't tell me there is anything wrong with that
 

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As for agility, I just don't think my boy is cut out for that. My old girl would have been a spitfire in her younger years, holy cow was she athletic.

The boy? Not so much. When he is trotting straight forward he does have a lovely fluid gate, but watching him chase a ball he just isn't especially quick or light on his feet. It is hard to explain but I just would really doubt he would do super well or even enjoy agility that much. But he isnt even a year yet so who knows, he may get more nimble? He is only just kind of outgrowing flumpy-ness Maybe I am just not used to the way he looks: he is an 80+ ASL equivalent (he is a white), she is a 65 lb WL ball of muscle (or was in her heyday)

Selzer, I really appreciate your description and perspective. I actually wondered about those group stays & whether anything went wrong in the way of a fight. I have worked mighty hard to protect my kid from bad experiences with other dogs & I would be devastated if it happened in an OB ring. Don't know how common that really is, though?

One other distinction that occurs to me is that it seems rally is something you can practice for by yourself (at least I have), obviously I couldn't train for those group stays without a class.

Right now I feel like I might like to try traditional OB at some point but only if I can get over my own nerves :(
Yes, you practice group stays, by practicing the stay command and increasing your time with it, and doing it in different locations, and leaving the room when the dog is on a STAY.

Yes, you need to work in a class once a week for some weeks. A class where they do group sits and downs as an exercise each week. But you would practice the stay on your own, for the most part. I had gotten Arwen so good at stay, that I walked into a show and signed her up for the CGC, without ever practicing supervised separation. I just put her on a down-stay, and went and hid behind a vehicle. When they called me back, they said she never moved a muscle. Good Girl. And there were dogs everywhere. Dogs moving are harder to take than dogs all doing their sits and downs.

At another show, a fellow had I think a Portugese water dog on a Sit-stay, and a Ridge back broke his stay and went over to her, and put his nose up under her butt and lifted her out of her stay. LOL. The judge did allow the bitch to redo her SIT STAY and she got her title leg. The boy was disqualified.
 

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Discussion Starter #27
Selzer,

That might really help us, the boy loses his mind when I try to leave him with someone.

And he isn't too happy with someone trying to touch his feet either (he has no problem with me doing it)

I guess I raised a momma's boy.

CGC is the next thing on our list....hope to conquer these things in class
 

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Regular obedience may be easier than the CGC for you. The one problem some of the less social dogs have is the STAND FOR EXAM. The judge tells you to stand your dog. You give him the stand command and then stay and walk 6' in front (on lead). Then the judge walks up to your dog from the side usually, and touches the head, back, and butt (no feet). The judge walks away, and then tells you to return to your dog. You return and walk around the dog to his shoulder and wait for her to say, Exercise Complete.

Other than that, for your CD, no one touches or even comes near your dog.

With the CGC:
1. They come up and greet you. No touching.
2. They come up and greet you and ask to pet your dog -- they pet the dog on the face, chest sometimes, head.
3. Grooming and appearance -- they run your brush down the dog's back, pick up each front paw, and touch both ears.
4. Sit and Down -- self explanatory.
5. Stay and Recall -- pretty easy done on long line.
6. Loose lead walking
7. Walking in a crowd.
8. Reaction to another dog.
9. Supervised Separation -- someone holds the leash while you go away for 3 minutes. Now they are allowed to talk to the dog, which might make it worse for some dogs. I don't know.

I either missed one or stay and recall are separate exercises.
 

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Discussion Starter #29
CGC is definitely going to be a challenge for us:

He doesn't care to have his ears handled, I think they are ticklish. He will grudgingly let me do it.

He does not care for over the head petting.

Doesn't like a stranger to handle his paws.

Doesn't like to be separated from me. LOL why are we doing this???

Well, sooner or later a vet will have to handle his paws and look in his ears.

I don't need him to be a social butterfly but people love to pet the top of dog's heads and it seems like a worthwhile project to get him to tolerate it as much as he can in preparation for the day somebody just pats him on the forehead
 

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Discussion Starter #30
I do believe he would handle the CD handling better than CGC.

He is fine with other dogs, fine with heeling through a crowd, the worst he will do if someone reaches straight at his face and he isn't into it is pull back enough to avoid it.

I think (hope) it will be good & worthwhile for him to learn this stuff
 

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The CGC test is very worth doing, even though we train and condition for it. I mean, a true temperament test should be done without any training. But people know what is in the TT, and they will open umbrellas around the dog, make sure they hear loud noises as pups like gun shots, will make sure they walk on a variety of surfaces, subject them to strange people.

So, while it may say something about the dog, it might also say more about the owners and their socialization program. I am not knocking it. Just, you should be able to take an unprepared dog through that test and have him pass it.

With the CGC, you train the different tests. You know what is coming, and some people do have to work very hard to get the dog used to each of the exercises enough to pass the test. Does it mean the dog is breedworthy? No. Does it mean the dog will not bite a toddler that comes running out of the blue and thrusts its arms around the dog's neck with a delighted squeal? Sadly, no. Does it give you information about your dog, and your dog valuable information about the world that between the two will probably prevent the reaction described, and will most likely make living with your dog, easier. Yes. And will it give you the bug to keep on keeping on with your dog, trying other venues, doing other stuff? Hopefully. Probably. It is worthwhile.
 

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This got brought up on the other thread and I am interested in hearing people's opinions:

Someone said a rally group had been shamed out of an obedience club by the traditional people. Why? What is it that the other folks think is so shameful about rally? Less precision? More interaction with the dog?

I saw it mentioned somewhere that some people think that pure positive trainers can't compete at advanced AKC obedience & are creating easier venues because they can't hack it (not saying I agree or disagree just what I read). Is this part of the rally thing, or more to do with venues like Companion Dog Sports Prog that allow treats in the ring and praise but otherwise seem very similar to AKC?

What would be the benefit of competing in traditional AKC? Proving your dog in a more difficult venue than rally? Is traditional "harder" than higher levels of rally?
That was me. The club is a hardcore obedience group. They had some problem with the rally teacher and used that as an excuse not to offer it again. The people titling dogs in obedience think Rally is a lazy sport and not worthy of their time.
 

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The people titling dogs in obedience think Rally is a lazy sport and not worthy of their time.
Ha! More than likely, they've either tried it and failed, or else are too afraid of failing to even try it.

I've done AKC obedience and rally with my oldest girl, and one of these days, I'll get into the ring with the younger two.... meanwhile, I do online titling. With CRO, the fact that it is strictly pass/fail makes it harder than receiving an numerical score, in my opinion. I screwed up an otherwise qualifying run by doing a sign wrong. In AKC or the like, it would have just been points off, but in CRO, it was an NQ. Also, in a live event, if the judge is looking at their scoresheet, sneezes, or whatever, and miss you doing something wrong, hey, that's that, you got a freebie. With video, they can go back and watch it again and again.
 

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That was me. The club is a hardcore obedience group. They had some problem with the rally teacher and used that as an excuse not to offer it again. The people titling dogs in obedience think Rally is a lazy sport and not worthy of their time.
We've run across that a few times in our time. But you'd be amazed (and so would those owners!) that high level obedience handlers often have a hard time with rally.
Many of them train on conditioning. The dog knows that you will do A, B, C, and D and even though the order you do them might vary there are really no surprises in the ring. The owners and dogs both seem to have a problem with the ever changing courses and many of the dogs have issues with all the signs in the ring. They are used to a completely bare working area.
 

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Discussion Starter #35
@ selzer, re: CGC

Yes, I understand the limitations of what passing CGC means.

I am not sure what it says about him that he does not care for particular types of petting/handling by strangers? When we recently had guests in our home the gentleman gave him a manly pet on the forhead and he was totally cool with it. I have seen him avoid it out in public. He is more social and relaxed at home than out in public. The ear thing has been an issue @ vet, I have been working on it.

On the whole I think I underestimated how hard it would be to expose him to enough given where we live. I can say I never had anyone outside the family handle his feet, should I have done that, to accustom him to it? At this point I guess so.

For the sake of making sure he isn't unmanageable at the vet I think the CGC is good practice. So far he is the best behaved I have ever had for nail clipping. I can do most anything I want to him, some things I need hubby to hold him for, like I can't take his temp alone, need hubby to keep him from out squirming me.

I don't see him objecting to the brushing thing, he loves it when I do it, but have not tested with someone outside the family.

Is it a temperament flaw if he objects to a stranger picking up his front feet in a petco aisle? He didn't do anything especially dramatic, he just pulled his foot away and backed up a step.
 

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Just the TT. AKC offers a temperament test, and a dog should be able to pass that without being groomed for it. But a lot of people start their grooming in the whelping box. Just like a dog has to allow a judge to check his berries. Show people get those dogs up on tables, having friends do berry checks at 8 weeks or so. For the young dog who goes into the ring having never had that done, it is interesting to see the expression he gives when the judge checks him out -- been there, done that. Rushie was a good boy, just totally startled.

I think you have to understand that the CGC and even the TT are made up by all-breed fanciers, a test not so much for temperament, but behavior in the case of the CGC. The TT might take some consideration into the breed, not very familiar with it. But for sure the CGC is not made up with GSDs in mind. That doesn't mean a good GSD shouldn't pass. Even a poor GSD can be worked with and pass the CGC.

A dislike of strangers handling his head, his paws, etc, does not indicate poor temperament. But a dog with good character will learn to accept it without protest if the owner works with the dog, makes it clear to the dog that this is going to be done and what is and what is not appropriate.
 

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Discussion Starter #38
Well I don't have to worry about berry checks. He only has one, so no point in ever entering him anywhere requiring two :(

Speaking of that, OB doesn't care about nuts, right? Only conformation?

I really appreciate your insight on the CGC & TT. We will be working on it (CGC) He is a good kid, I think he will get the message :)
 

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Well I don't have to worry about berry checks. He only has one, so no point in ever entering him anywhere requiring two :(

Speaking of that, OB doesn't care about nuts, right? Only conformation?

I really appreciate your insight on the CGC & TT. We will be working on it (CGC) He is a good kid, I think he will get the message :)
No, OB (or Rally) doesn't care about nuts, only conformation requires two testicles. Any AKC registered purebred can do obedience, full registration, limited, or PAL (Purebred Alternative Listing) registration. In some shows mongrels can be shown as well, but they must have a CAR -- Companion Animal Registration, I think, through AKC.
 

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Discussion Starter #40
Yeah he is AKC registered, just sadly never dropped that second nut.

We got a confirmation for our entries in our second rally trial. It is a much bigger venue & trial, hope we don't fall apart!

Regardless of anything else, I am very happy with my boy. I find him easy to train, super easy to live with, and willing to try hard at anything I have yet asked of him.
 
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