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Showing Skye Terriers

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Tags: Skye Terrier, Show, Socialization, Grooming

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There are very few experiences that can be shared between a dog and an owner that will have quite the profound impact upon the relationship as showing your Skye Terrier will have. Showing any dog can be a stressful event. Showing a dog that is headstrong and has natural tendencies to be aggressive to strange people and animals adds another level to the insanity. This isn't meant to discourage you from showing your Skye Terrier only to paint a fairly accurate picture of some of the challenges that await you.

Go See a Show

The first thing you need to do is go and watch others showing Skye Terriers. All dog breeds are different and react differently in showing. You must see a show that is specifically geared towards Skye Terriers so that you understand the challenges you may face and the expectations of the judges and the crowd.

While you are there be sure to check out the grooming area. You will see all kinds of grooming procedures going on and this is an excellent opportunity to get tips and tricks for grooming your Skye (if, of course, the grooming area is open to spectators). More importantly, this is an opportunity to discuss with other Skye owners the specific challenges of showing this breed and training techniques that may help make your first show go more smoothly.

Socialize Your Skye

This is vitally important if you have aspirations of winning the show-and why go to all the effort if you don't plan to win. For this reason your Skye needs to be accustomed to strangers handling her, touching her, watching her, and invading her personal space. Your Skye is likely to be handled by the judges during a show (this is necessary to determine shoulder height and other information because the long hair hides these things).

You also want to have your Skye accustomed to crowds so that she will not be likely to panic or nip at other dogs, owners, judges, or children in the crowd. It is not a good situation for a dog that isn't well socialized at all. When combined with many of the breed traits of Skye Terriers that are rather antisocial it could be a recipe for disaster.

Practice Makes Perfect

Practice the steps your Skye will need to take so often that you can both perform them in your sleep. Reward your Skye for a job well done but remember things will be different with an audience and judges around. Be sure to practice these things around other people so that your Skye is accustomed to performing.

There are no guarantees for a perfect showing of your Skye Terrier but doing all of these things will help your first show and subsequent showings go much more smoothly. Another important thing that will help your show be a huge hit rather than a miss is for you to attend handling classes with your dog. This gives you the perfect opportunity to practice everything that will be expected of you and your Skye in the show. Good luck!

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