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Official Judges Critique

Judging: Adult Handling Association Classes, Gundog Group

Adult Handling Association

A couple of handlers broke the golden rule while moving their dogs. It’s something many of us do to control the speed of movement of larger breeds in breed classes, but in handling try and remember not to get between the dog and judge. 

17-30 years (3, 2)

1st Elanor Brown. Handled her excitable 8-month-old GSP with patience and gentle reassurance. She corrected her dog when it moved its feet (or tried to sit!) while still keeping an eye on my position. Her pattern work was excellent – straight lines but without stopping on the corners. A shame she stood alone today as she’s a very talented handler.

31-45 years (5)

1st Laura Elliott. Laura’s Visla was slipping on the floor while standing but she remained calm and carefully corrected the feet throughout the class. She showed the teeth cleanly and had smooth transitions from standing to moving. Laura had a great rapport with her dog on the move, making the most of the ring, completing straight lines and offering gentle encouragement.

2nd Natalie Storey. A very accurate handler who paced her WSS beautifully on the move. She stacked her dog accurately and offered plenty of quiet reassurance when showing the teeth, standing and moving. I was splitting hairs between these two but just felt Laura dealt admirably with a more difficult dog.

3rd Steph Duncan, handling a GWP, completed a trio of excellent handlers.

46-59 years (2)

1st Lynne Jamieson. Lynne, handling a pointer, and Katrina, handling a goldie, are both experienced handlers who are used to showing in the breed ring. As such, Lynne broke the golden rule once while slowing down her dog’s movement and Katrina broke it three times. As soon as I mentioned this at the end of the class, they said they had immediately realised what they’d done. They were both quick to stack their dogs accurately and corrected the stances when I moved their dogs’ legs. Both moved their dogs at the correct pace and were reassuring.

2nd Katrina Wallis

60 + years (2, 1)

1st Fiona MacLead. Stood alone handling a 6-month-old goldie who was intent on chewing the lead on the move! Fiona remained calm and composed throughout the class, gently correcting her dog. Her lines were straight and movement fluid, stepping out at the right pace for her young dog, but she did break the golden rule – an easy thing to work on for next time.

Laura Crombie (Judge)