I have a problem. I purchased under co-ownership a very nice female show puppy. There were specifics as to showing and the handler that we went over before purchase. They swear by their handler, who I don't like very much (her personality, how she interacts with the dogs)-- but she is good--if not the best in our area. I also have heard pretty negitive things concerning her personal life (involving drug ADDICTION-- not just use), but have no way of knowing if it's true or not. The final thing I am concerned about with this handler is that the breeders also kept 2 littermates to show themselves. If they are an established client, isn't the handler going to put their dogs points before mine, if it came to who gets handled in the best of breed class? Obviously the handler would never come out and say it, but I wonder. I have tried contacting the handler for WEEKS and I just get 'How's she doing? I'll get back to you'. My pup will be 6 months and ready to show in JUNE. Anyway...thought someone with more handler experience could help me. I know of another experienced handler who is less used (because he goes to fewer shows), who I would feel more comfortable with. Now I am scared to p-ss the first handler and co-owners off. This crap can get really political. Should I just go with the one I don't like, and send the next show pup to the one I do like and see what happens? I am so confused. HELP!
Have you had a chance to visit with the co-owners on this yet? I do agree, a good handler will make all the difference and they may be more motivated to work a little harder with the others. I'm sure not all handlers are like that, but I get a funny feeling since you aren't getting answers. I would think in interested of fairness, talk to the other co-owners and tell them your concerns about your dog, your investment. That it might be best since this handler is also showing a few other of their dogs, to try another handler with the one you co-own. I"ve had a few chances to buy some very good puppies with co-ownership and was afraid that we wouldn't be able to agree on things like this. After I had a good chance to think it all over, I thought about how I would feel being an owner vrs and owner/handler and that I would want the puppy or dog with me-not wanting it at the handlers or to share it. I felt that I would feel more gratification and excitement if I were to learn and apprentice myself and maybe not do as well. So far, so good.
I chose my handler not because she finishes more dogs that another, but rather how she interacts with the dogs.
My handler has finished many dogs, but more important to me is she treats each and every dog as if it were her own. Since my handler lives about 3 hours from me I usually drop my dog off at her house the weekend before she goes on the road. She doesn't have a kennel out side but rather the three bedrooms in her house have been converted for the dogs.
You have to feel comfortable with your handler, after all your dog will be in their care a good amount of time.
One thing has me questioning this handler, how does he/she plan on handling more than one dog in a class? YOu did say she is handling 2 other littermates. At least 2 of them must be of the same sex.
I also make a copy of my dogs medical records for the handler to take with her on the road, just incase.
***Edited By: Renorey on 5/29/2005 9:43:01 PM*** Reason: Additional data
Thanks you guys.. I just don't want to be taken advantage of... although I would say things aren't going how I want. I am still really confused most likely because of the pressuring, and that this isn't 'my' puppy alone. There are also the co-owning breeders who are very much in favor of their handler. Though they will not be the one hiring and paying her I suppose. I met with the handler today and she is pretty much magic. She makes is firm, but... maybe I am not firm enough. This really doesn't help that I am greener than grass to this. I am sure that ANY handler could make her look a lot better than I am doing. I don't know... after a very friendly puppy confirmation class, I also kind of wanted to show my pup myself at small shows in a 3 state area, but when I mentioned taking her to a couple small shows for experience the handler was like 'Oh no-- you don't mean you show her, you don't want to do that'. Then me being the passive wussy I am, I was like 'Oh, I just meant take her and gett her acclimated'. I was then informed unless they are showing dogs aren't supposed to be at the show grounds (unless she wants to look at them apparently-- because she had me take her to the show grounds to look at her). As far as showing her littermates there is another female and I asked about that, and the handler said that she doesn't like to show puppies too much anyway so she would be rotating them. She said it was 'wasting people's money' to show puppies at small shows. She only likes to take them to large major show and specials where they get more 'ring time'. That blue ribbons don't mean anything to her. Then when I looked at her rate sheet she charges 3x as much for those larger shows. Again, I don't know. Is that right?
You know there are a lot of politics involved in showing. I am starting small so when I get approached or slammed, I'm ready for it. You see all the time, people being fined for poor behaviour at shows. They do say that with handlers only 20% of owner/handlers vrs 80% handlers. Sure it's their job and they don't want to lose business. I hate that attitude that you can't do it if you chose. That's all part of the politics that showing dogs entails. It's a really crappy view and I think that maybe people in this industry need to be more politically correct in what they say and polite. There is a difference between someone expressing constructive critism vrs.just plain rude. I had a very uneducated person who was obviously tagging along with a handler approach me as I groomed my silky male. She told me that was the ugliest yorkie she had ever seen. I politely looked up at her and said-That's good because he's not a yorkie, but a silky. She was dumbfounded and walked away. Ok, so many can't tell the difference, but when someone wants to be so bold about it, they really should know what they are talking about. You do what you feel is right!
My handler charges me $62.50 per day showing and $10.00 a day board when not showing. Most of the handlers I see get a little more than that and also charge for grooming etc., mine doesn't.
Yes my handler does charge more for majors and specialties $100.00 per day showing. But if she is taking my dog to the major along with the dog that does need it then I get charged her normal rate. Generally the traveling to a major is more as most shows are not majors.
She is right about the puppy classes though. 9.95 out of 10 judges will not give the breed to a dog out of the puppy class, even if it is the best dog there. I asked a judge why this is so and he told me the dog still has a chance to fall apart. The breed generally goes to a dog out of the open class or even a special.
One good thing about the puppy classes, your dog will get ring experience and by the time she gets to the open class she will be an old hand at it, or you will quickly learn that the dog does not have the temperment for the ring, not all dogs do.
***Edited By: Renorey on 5/30/2005 9:13:28 PM*** Reason: added info