The Many Faces of the Airedale Terrier
Obedience Training and Titles for Your Airedale
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Sage (Ch Skyecroft Dancing Sage Tiger)
shows off her obedience skills
Photo courtesy of Karen Green
by Julie Trottier
ATCC Regional Director, Quebec
The Airedale, much like a teenager, can be a mischievous fellow on some occasions and a perfect English gentleman on others. In a wholesome environment, the Airedale is a faithful, protective, devoted and affectionate dog as well as a good companion to children because of its playful nature. The Airedale needs an energetic master who can be firm and authoritative, and who will lavish attention and affection on this four-legged clown.
Both you and your Airedale will get a lot out of good obedience training. Obedience training will help your dog fit in better with your family and become a true Airedale Terrier and a true companion. To take part in obedience competitions with your Airedale, you must have a good sense of humour. The important thing to keep in mind is that the Airedale likes to perform and loves to please, it will remember a well-taught obedience exercise all of its life.
The Airedale Terrier is an all-purpose breed. It is by far the most versatile terrier, excelling in both hunting and working. Obedience exercises are designed to show the usefulness of the purebred dog as a companion to man. The Novice exercises focus on the basic commands heel, sit, down, stay, stand, and come that every dog should know because they are the toolbox for everyday life (vet check, grooming session, etc.) and for other training such as agility training. The Open exercises lay the foundation for retrieving all kinds of objects in all kinds of situations. Utility exercises are adapted mainly from hunting commands like find and flush birds.
Training to obtain an obedience title is a lot of work, but a lot of fun too. You learn to understand and appreciate each other more than you ever thought possible. There are a number of ways to go about obedience training with an Airedale. The best tip I can give you, is to equip yourself with lots of patience and lots of treats and work with your dog 15 minutes a day.
Come is without a doubt the most important command to teach a dog with a highly developed prey instinct. Heres a simple but effective way to teach your Airedale to come cheerfully and consistently. Give your dog a reward: food, broken-up biscuits or dog treats. While size doesnt matter, taste does. Whatever reward you choose, use it for obedience training only. Start in a quiet, fenced area. Standing a few feet away from your dog, call your dogs name and say come. Give your dog the reward and a bit of praise as soon as it is at your feet. Then let it go back to what it was doing. As your dog shows that it will come when you call, gradually progress to calling it away from more interesting distractions. An important part of this is to praise all the while the dog is moving toward you. If you must yell at your dog for not coming when called, make sure that yelling turns to praise the moment the dog is moving in your direction. Up the level of difficulty only when your dog has mastered an exercise.
Now that you have taken one or two obedience classes and your Airedale is a perfect companion at home, you can teach your dog simple commands that will make your everyday lives easier, such as hop in the car, get in your crate or stay on the carpet (to keep its wet paws off your clean floors) or do your business.
I think our motivation comes from our love of the breed, the pleasure of building a closer, stronger bond with our Airedale every day while working toward a goal and the quest for success. We should be proud of the breeders and Airedale owners who spend countless hours training their dogs in order to earn obedience titles and the recognition of their peers. It is important to maintain superior quality in the conformation of the Airedale breed, to ensure the health of the breed through proper testing prior to breeding, and to demonstrate the breeds aptitude for obedience by earning one or more titles with our dogs.
A qualifying score in any class requires earning more than half the available points in each exercise with a total score of 170 or better out of the 200 possible points.
C.D. Companion Dog Has completed the requirements for the Companion Dog Obedience Title, by receiving three separate qualifying scores, by two different judges in the Novice Obedience Level. The CKC will permit the use of the letter C.D. to be use in connection with and after the name of each dog that has met the requirements for that title as hereinafter.
- Heel on Leash and Figure Eight
- Stand for Examination
- Heel Free
- Long Sit (1 minute)
- Long Down (3 minutes)
C.D.X. Companion Dog Excellent Has completed the requirements for the Companion Dog Excellent Title, by receiving three separate qualifying scores, by two different judges in the Open Obedience Class. The CKC will permit the use of the letter C.D.X. to be use in connection with and after the name of each dog that has met the requirements for that title as hereinafter.
- Heel Free and Figure Eight
- Drop on Recall
- Retrieve on Flat
- Retrieve over High Jump
- Broad Jump
- Long Sit (3 minutes, handler out of sight)
- Long Down (5 minutes, handler out of sight)
U.D. Utility Dog Has completed the requirements for the Utility Title, by receiving three separate qualifying scores, by three different judges in the Utility Level.
- Seek back
- Scent Discrimination, article #1
- Scent Discrimination, article #2
- Signal exercise
- Moving Stand
- Directed Jumping
O.T.Ch. Any dog having attained the three obedience trial titles of C.D., C.D.X., and U.D. shall be recognized as Obedience Trial Champion, and shall be entitled to bear the prefix O.T.Ch. before its name.
O.T.Ch. XTitle: Obedience Trial Champion Excellent Must have a UD. The dog and handler team must qualify in both the Open and Utility Class in the same trial on five different occasions after the completion of a Utility title.
M.O.T.Ch. XTitle: Master Obedience Trial Champion Excellent Points for this title may only be accumulated after the completion of an O.T.Ch. A minimum score of 190 in Open and 185 in Utility is needed to obtain points. One High in Class placement is required in either Open or Utility Class but no minimum score is required. A total of 40 points is required to earn a Masters title.
G.M.O.T.Ch. XTitle: Grand Master Obedience Trial Champion Excellent Points for this title may only be accumulated after the completion of an M.O.T.Ch.. A minimum score of 195 in both Open and Utility classes at the same trial at ten separate trials by a minimum of ten different judges. One High in trial must be achieved in at least one Open and one Utility class.
Source: The Canadian Kennel Club (CKC)
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