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I'm quite curious as to how all the members use their dogs? I must confess that I am a horseback field trialler and the dogs I campaigned ran in FDSB trials sanctioned by the American Field. Are their any other members of Exclusive Setters involved in the same way?
Are their any subscribers to the American Field? Are their any members involved in any kind of field activity with their red dogs?

R.J. Schweiger

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lol, those boys are real task masters - unless they want to stop of course !!
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All six of our setters (3 english,2 irish,1 mixture irish/english) are mainly huntingdogs and all except the mixture have trialled.
We trial on the field and high mountain-trials. In Finland there are three different terrains to compete in:
1. Field
2. Woods
3. High mountain,which in my account is the king of all terrains! ;)

What I "play" with them is mainly retriewing, so all my doings with the setters is based on hunting and everything that is required in what they are made to live for.
I have mainly trained and competed in obedience. Three obedience champions so far with my kennel-name. Each dog has taken about 4 years of hard work to make up to become a champion.

I have also made up one setter to be a qualified army-dog. Its rather like "search and rescue" except the dog is not allowed to rush out and find, but must stay on a lead and "point" you towards the person or item of clothing or whatever. No good if you have a dog running up to, and allerting the enemy is there? All work has to be done in total silence for obvious reasons.
Training an army-dog, ment that I had to go through basic army-training myself.
Quite a pain...as I am not the army "do-as-you-are-told"-type.

I have also done some human + blood-tracking with some of my other setters.

Hunting only on a very basic level with one of my dogs (finding pheasants and retrieving). I dont hunt but went along when I was asked to by a neighbour. The dog I took was one that was both obedience-champion and army-dog and this was when she was retired from all her other work. And she absolutly ADORED being allowed to do exactly what she had been told not to for all those years!
There was no finess to it...she howled with pleasure as she set off to find the birds (this was the "trained-not-to-make-a-sound"-army-dog) and she happily chased after shot but not killed hares with the biggest ever smiles on her face!

And yes, shows...but as few as I can possibly get away with and only so that the bitches are at least shown before they have a litter.
When I first started out with setters in 1975, ! thought showing was fun...but it did not take me long to realise that working with, and trying to comunicate with my dogs was far more satisfying for me.
I think there is a difference...choosing the army as a career, you accept its rules and regulations as being part of the deal.

I had two choices, either hand the trained dog over to the army when they were having their "pretend"-wars. (And no, this was never an option for me...after all which army-doghandler is used to an irish setter? The training was full of german shepherds, rottweilers etc...and then the one irish setter).

The other choice was becoming part of a reserve army and handle the dog myself. To me the army was such a "pretend" world. It was like being totally isolated in a world of your own, living in the baracks and tents... talking about enemy that was non-existing and searching for hidden traps and guarding stuff nobody in their right mind would ever want to steal.
But I am very glad I did it.
It was a great experiance and yet another avenue to go down when it comes to training a dog. I chose it becourse it was as far away from "me" as I could get...I suppose.
With a background of art-school and working freelance I am just not the type for army.

Great to have done it...and its a huge boost to your ego to be able to take a maschinegun appart (and reasemble it) in the pitch dark, but quite frankly...will I ever be able to use that experiance?
No chance!
If war broke out in Sweden tomorrow...I would be the first to hide!

No hero...Im afraid.
What sort of an army was this?
2 pairs of bloomers?

I had enough equipment to fill my whole loft!!!!!!!!!! :-)
AKC field trials off horseback and also Show working on keeping the dual quality in my Irish.

Cassie Allen

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