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Well, I think we had our best show yet! We entered the puppy class at an open show in Maidstone. It was in a multi storey car park which was a bit off putting, then at the last minute they moved the setters outside in the rain. At least the ring was bigger.

I got Bess to stand to start with - not 100% happy with it, but at least she was still. She then proceeded to jump all over the judge and tried to bite him when he looked at her teeth. Oh dear!

But when I ran round with her she didn't jump up at all! First show she's kept all four legs on the ground! I was then quietly chuffed when the three other dogs all played up, having to start again, and jumping and leaping everywhere. Although they did stand quietly for the judge. One dog would not keep his legs on the ground, and the judge gave them extra chances and advice at the end until the dog ran a few paces on four legs.

We came 4th, out of four. But I was pleased that she showed some improvement, although she must be better with the judge!

Bess is slightly smaller than the other pups - only about an inch shorter than a bitch one month older, but she is slighter in frame. Bess also has a very flat smooth coat, whilst the other pups had thick curly hair.

I don't know whether I've not got a good dog to show - well, not at the moment at least, or whether her misbehaving with the judge ruined her chances? He certainly was giving the other dogs more attention and more chances, so did he rule out Bess at first sight?

Whatever, I was very chuffed with her improvement, and despite the rather odd location she was much calmer overall than at previous shows. She also travelled extremely well. She was a good girl.

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Living up in Scotland and seeing dogs on the moors, the heavily coated Irish would get very matted and wet and risk getting damaged.   Setters that have too flat a coat have no insulation or protection from harsh foliage and little resistance to water.   SO, it seems to me that the perfect coat is what used to be called "loose", i.e. there is sufficient volume of coat for protection but not so excessive it would stop the dog from working.  They are a working breed and I thought that they should be "fit for purpose" which is why it is important that they have well padded feet, a loose coat, and the ability to be able to "pull" out when running.  Cow hocks and "ten to two" front legs do not give them that ability.   There is a lot of emphasis on heads and expression and huge coats to the detriment of the breeds overall construction.    I look at photographs in the year books of what look like fab dogs and then when I go to a show and see the dog move it is so disappointing but hey ho that's a completely different topic - JUDGES!!!!!! 

Thanks for that! :0). I like the descriptions of your two! I have an image of Jasper giving the judge a cuddly toy now. Would he get disqualified for trying to bribe a judge? And Ferguson sounds wonderful!

I've got that image of Jasper in the ring with a cuddly toy now, thats just what my Finlay would do (",)

Hi Trish, I'm so enjoying everthing about Bess and showing and what's more it's been so enlightening to read your adventures:)) you truly do seem to be having a good time. I think you could encourage me to definitely try one day but as the other reply said.... I too would have setters running around like fools sniffing maybe the judges rear ends lol. And poor Flame is missing vital anatomy :(( On the other hand Ruby would need a tunnel to get her out there and Poppy well.... you she might just have what it may take, she's a real little miss show pony!! take care keep up your training x
Well, Bess is standing perfectly at home for me now. I've stopped using bait which tends to get her to be a bit mouthy. She is letting me see her teeth without any argument. I think she's lulling me into a sense of false security for next Saturday and the Pointerand Setter show!

Oh, and she's found a food she likes. Got a taster pack from Honeys at £4.70 per kilo for their mince! That's more than I could buy it at a supermarket! I was hoping she wouldn't like it! :0(. Don't know what to do now.

Unfortunately, Rigsby came down with kennel cough over the weekend so I won't be going to Coventry but  good luck all the same and try to enjoy yourself.  After all, it's only a show and hopefully, one of many.


Oh that's a shame. Hope he gets over it soon. Maybe we'll meet at another show.

I'm looking forward to it whatever happens. It will be an experience!
Well, at ringcraft tonight I wouldn't describe Bess as an angel, but she stood perfectly for me and I got complimented on how well I set her up (as opposed to previously!). In some ways I wish she had played up as you know what they say about dress rehearsals!

Has any one any idea when the minor puppy bitch class might be on Saturday? Or how can I find out?

You can download a copy of the schedule here http://www.fossedata.co.uk/show_schedules/schedule.aspx?id=SAPC_NOV_12

judging starts at 9.30. There is a veteran bitch class first, then a Field Trial class but there are usually only 1 or 2 in that class, sometimes none at all. For a first champ show I would definately allow an hour. You will need to get a catalogue which are usually on sale inside the entrance, find your entry in the catalogue which will give you your bench number.  On your bench you will find your ring number (or sometimes they give you the number in the ring but that is not often).  Make sure you have your ring clip on or a pin to display the number which must be on show all the time you are in the ring. Don't go first, then you can watch what others have to do. When you have finished showing and your bitch is settled go back to the ring and watch others, that is one way to pick up some good tips, see how they hold the head, where they place the lead when the dog is stacked, where they place the lead when the dog is moving.  I didn't enter, now kicking myself as I wish I was going. So have fun and good luck. 




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