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Posts Tagged ‘Standards for Hunting Tests’

We have kept this blog up for more than 10 years. I know that there are others who enjoy reading it. But we also use it as a kind of diary, to help us remember what happened to which dogs when.

So as I have with Carlin’s other hunt test passes (Junior and Senior), I thought I’d create a post that lists Carlin’s scores for the Master Hunter Upland spaniel tests he took and passed, earning his MHU title. Each test is represented in a table, and each table includes the scores given by the two judges for each category.

Master Hunter Upland pass 1Northwest English Springer Spaniel Club – August 20, 2016

Ability Land Water Retrieve Hunt   Dead Water Blind Average
Hunting 9 | 9 N/A 8 | 8 6 | 6 7.67 | 7.67
Bird finding 9 | 10 8 | 9 8 | 8 6 | 7 7.75 | 8.5
Flushing 8 | 8 N/A N/A N/A 8.0  | 8.0
Trained 8 | 8 8 | 9 8 | 7 6 | 6 7.5  | 7.25
Retrieving 9 | 8 9 | 8 8 | 8 7 | 8 8.25 | 8.0
Overall average 7.83 | 7.88

 

Master Hunter Upland pass 2Northwest English Springer Spaniel Club – August 21, 2016

Ability Land Water Retrieve Hunt   Dead Water Blind Average
Hunting 8 | 9 N/A 9 | 9 8 | 10 8.33 | 9.33
Bird finding 9 | 9 10 | 9 10 | 9 10 | 10 9.75 | 9.25
Flushing 8 | 9 N/A  N/A  N/A 8.0  | 9.0
Trained 6 | 6 10 | 8 7 | 9 6 | 6 7.25 | 7.25
Retrieving 9 | 9 10 | 9 10 | 10 6 | 8 8.75 | 9.0
Overall average 8.41 | 8.77

 

Master Hunter Upland pass 3Mount Rainier Sporting Spaniel Club – September 2, 2016

Ability Land Water Retrieve Hunt  Dead Water Blind Average
Hunting 10 | 8 N/A 8 | 7 10 | 7 9.33 | 7.33
Bird finding 10 | 7 8 | 9 7 | 7 10 | 7 8.75 | 7.5
Flushing 10 | 9 N/A N/A N/A 10.0 | 9.00
Trained 10 | 10 6 | 7 7 | 7 8 | 6 7.75 | 7.50
Retrieving 10 | 10 10 | 7 8 | 8 7 | 6 8.75 | 7.75
Overall average 8.92 | 7.82

 

Master Hunter Upland pass 4 – Puget Sound English Springer Spaniel Club – September 3, 2016

Ability Land Water Retrieve Hunt   Dead Water Blind Average
Hunting 9 | 9 N/A 10 | 10 8 | 8 9.0  | 9.0
Bird finding 9 | 9 10 | 10 10 | 10 8 | 8 9.7  | 9.25
Flushing 10 | 9 N/A N/A N/A 10.0 | 9.0
Trained 9 | 8 8 | 10 10 | 10 8 | 8 8.7  | 9.0
Retrieving 10 | 8 9 | 10 10 | 10 9 | 9 9.0  | 9.25
Overall average 9.2  | 9.1

 

Master Hunter Upland pass ? – Clumber Spaniel Club of America – September 4, 2016
We don’t have any records of passing this test. But when I called the American Kennel Club in early this month to straighten out some other mistakes on Carlin’s AKC Points and Awards page, the AKC said they show a pass at this test for Carlin.

“Really?” I asked, “I don’t think so. Are you sure?” And the nice lady there replied, yes, she’s sure. They even had it down as Carlin’s 5th qualifying score for his MHU title. She was a bit embarrassed that the certificate hadn’t been sent out yet, and was glad I’d called her so she could make sure to get it sent.

About 5 days later, an MHU certificate arrived, dated September 4, 2016. We just didn’t get it until May 8, 2017. We could have stopped there and accepted the title, but it didn’t feel right. So we entered him in more tests to make sure Carlin could really do the work.

 

Master Hunter Upland pass 5Missouri Headwaters Gun Dog Club – May 20, 2017

Ability Land Water Retrieve Hunt   Dead Water Blind Average
Hunting 9 | 8 N/A 10 | 8 9 | 8 9.33 | 8.0
Bird finding 9 | 8 9 | 9 10 | 9 9 | 8 9.25 | 8.5
Flushing 9 | 6 N/A N/A N/A 9.00 | 6.0
Trained 9 | 8 9 | 9 10 | 9 9 | 8 9.25 | 8.5
Retrieving 9 | 7 9 | 10 10 | 8 9 | 9 9.25 | 9.0
Overall average 9.2  | 8.0

 

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SHU

I thought I’d create a post that lists Carlin’s scores for the four Senior Hunter Upland spaniel tests he took and passed, earning his SHU title. Each test is represented in a table, and each table includes the scores given by the two judges for each category.

Senior Hunter Upland test 1 – Clumber Spaniel Club of America – September 6, 2015

Ability Land Water Retrieve Hunt Dead Average
Hunting 9 | 9 N/A 9 | 9 9.0 | 9.0
Bird finding 8 | 8 8 | 9 8 | 8 8.0 | 8.3
Flushing 8 | 8 N/A N/A 8.0 | 8.0
Trained 8 | 8 8 | 8 8 | 8 8.0 | 8.0
Retrieving 9 | 9 8 | 8 9 | 9 8.6 | 8.6
Overall average 8.3 | 8.4

 

Senior Hunter Upland test 2 – Cascade English Cocker Spaniel Fanciers – September 7, 2015

Ability Land Water Retrieve Hunt Dead Average
Hunting 8 | 8 N/A 9 | 7 8.5 | 7.5
Bird finding 9 | 9 9 | 9 8 | 7 8.6 | 8.3
Flushing 8 | 8 N/A N/A 8.0 | 8.0
Trained 8 | 8 8 | 9 8 | 7 8.0 | 8.0
Retrieving 9 | 9 7 | 9 9 | 7 8.3 | 8.3
Overall average 8.3 | 8.0

 

Senior Hunter Upland test 3 – Sporting Spaniel Club of Southern California – November 7, 2015

Ability Land Water Retrieve Hunt Dead Average
Hunting 9 | 9 N/A 9 | 9 9.0 | 9.0
Bird finding 10 | 10 10 | 9 8 | 9 9.3 | 9.3
Flushing 10 | 10 N/A N/A 10.0 | 9.0
Trained 8 | 9 9 | 9 7 | 8 8.0 | 8.7
Retrieving 9 | 8 9 | 9 9 | 9 9.0 | 9.0
Overall average 9.1 | 9.0

 

Senior Hunter Upland test 4 – Sporting Spaniel Club of Southern California – November 8, 2015

Ability Land Water Retrieve Hunt Dead Average
Hunting 10 | 9 N/A 8 | 10 9.0 | 9.5
Bird finding 9 | 9 10 | 10 8 | 9 9.0 | 9.3
Flushing 9 | 9 N/A N/A 9.0 | 9.0
Trained 10 | 7 10 | 9 8 | 8 9.3 | 8.0
Retrieving 10 | 9 10 | 9 9 | 9 9.7 | 9.7
Overall average 9.2 | 8.9

 

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That’s what Tom Quarles said after judging Cooper’s 4 runs today. That’s a real compliment coming from Tom, who is a long-time Irish Water Spaniel owner, pro trainer, and AKC hunt test judge. He also noted, as did yesterday’s judges, that we have A LOT of dog. If we can just get him under control, they all said, he’ll go far.

French Creek Ranch, Junior Hunt Test site, June 19, 2010

There’s something about hunt tests. If you read Russ’s earlier post, you may remember how well behaved Cooper has been in training — calm, controlled, and focused. Well, in hunt tests, he doesn’t lose the focus on retrieving, but he does lose his calm and control. He pulls on the leash, won’t heel, jumps around in the holding blinds, sits at the line only reluctantly, and would break at the line if Russ weren’t holding him by the collar. Fortunately, these behaviors don’t disqualify a dog at Junior Hunter level tests. But he will need to learn these lessons thoroughly before he can go on to Senior level work.

Even so, as you’ll see from the following video of Cooper’s 3rd Junior hunt test, he does a lot right on those abilities that AKC judges are looking for*. (I’ve indicated these abilities in parentheses.):

  • His head snaps around to the sound of the duck call or gunshot to mark the fall of the bird (marking).
  • When the bird falls into cover, like tall grass or bushes, he keeps using his nose until he finds it (perseverance).
  • He has a lot of dash and style when leaping into the water (style).
  • He returns to heel and delivers the bird to hand (trainability).

What he needs more work on are the calm control coming to the line and at the line (trainability). He also need to work on keeping his his head and body facing forward in alignment with Russ’s body, so that he can see the bird when it falls (marking), rather than just relying on the sound of the duck call, gunshot, or splash. You can see this issue clearly on the first water mark in the video.

Here’s the video of his 3rd pass, earned at the Umpqua Valley Retriever Club Hunt test in Glide, Oregon. Unfortunately, due to operator error, we didn’t get good video of his 4th pass, (judged by Tom Quarles and Don Aker) which qualified him for the official Junior Hunter title. We did get some good ribbon pictures, though, which you’ll see at the end of the video.

*You can see these standards by going to AKC Rules and Regulations page, clicking Retriever Hunting Test Rules, downloading the PDF, and going to Chapters 4 and 5.

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