what all is involved? The description of the one I want to go to just says, "limited to the number of dogs which can run during all available daylight hours" There's a master test, senior test and junior test. "All test levels will be single course with birdfield. Shooting by official gunners only. Junior test will be blank pistol only." "Quail to be released in junior level. Quail and chukar to be released in senior and master levels." "No horseback handling or gallery riding is permitted." This is probably a dumb question, but if they're running all over the field, how can you see it all?
akc hunt tests this is the JH that i was warning you about! Hunt tests are like a scaled down version of a field trial with some exceptions. one, in a field trail you are competeing against other dogs but there is a minimum performance level that must be reached. if no dogs meet the minimum level, no place ments are issued. . there will be winners and losers and there can only be one #1 dog in a stake. in a hunt test you are not competing against other dogs, only against a standard. it is a pass/fail situation. A hunt test also differs from a trial in that your dog is usually ranging much closer to you. if you acheive a certian number of passes at a certian level you then get that title, either junior hunter (jh), senior hunter (sh) or master hunter (mh). they run in what is calles braces, 2 dogs at a time per course. in order to watch them, you walk along n the gallery so first there will be 2 dogs, then the handlers, then the judges (usually the judges are on a horse) then the gallery. stay with the gallery, do not get up to or ahead of the judges. Junior is something that i would not run my dog in but we can talk about that later, there are some bad complications that can arise if you do this. a senior hunter is a pretty well broke dog but not polished up. a master hunter is a completely broke dog, that is very polished in all aspects of fieldwork. your dog must be very good to get MH but that is what really makes it a meaningful title! if it were easy it would not mean anything. single course with bird field means that they are running on one course so that only one brace (two dogs) can run at any given time. a bird field means that the birds are released in only one small section of the course as opposed to scattered along the course. this can be a good thing or a bad thing depending on your dog and field conditions. there is such a thing as to many birds on a course and your dog having to many finds. we had that happen in a trial just a couple of weeks ago and placed 4th out of 30 with 5 finds in a 30 minute stake. would likely have done better if we had only had 2 or 3 finds. Hunt tests are fun and you can find the regs at akc.org. they are easier for folks to get into then field trails and are a good way to set standards of training for your dog. if you achieve a Master hunter with your dog, you have done something that is well worth bragging about! If you are intersted in this sort of thing i would reccomend akc hunt tests above NAHVDA or NSTRA
Section 1. Junior Hunting Test. A Junior hunting dog must show a keen desire to hunt, be bold and independent, have a fast, yet attractive, manner of hunting, and demonstrate not only intelligence in seeking objectives, but also the ability to find game. A Junior hunting dog must establish point, but no additional credit shall be given for steadiness to wing and shot. If the handler is within reasonable gun range of a bird which has been flushed after a point, a blank cartridge must be fired by the handler. Junior hunting dogs must hold point until the handler gets within normal gunshot range. Junior hunting dogs must also show reasonable obedience to their handler's commands. Section 2. Senior Hunting Test. A Senior hunting dog must show all of the attributes of a Junior hunting dog. In addition, the dog must be steady to wing and must remain in position until the shot or they are released. A Senior hunting dog must retrieve. Whenever it encounters its bracemate on point, it must honor. A dog that steals its bracemate's point cannot receive a Qualifying score. Section 3. Master Hunting Test. A Master hunting dog must give a finished performance and demonstrate clearly that it deserves to be qualified as such. This is the complete hunting companion that any hunter would be proud to own. It must be under its handler's control at all times, and handle kindly, with an absolute minimum of noise and hacking by the handler. A Master hunting dog must show a keen desire to hunt, must have a bold and attractive manner of running, and must demonstrate not only intelligence in seeking objectives, but also the ability to find game. The dog must hunt for its handler at all times at a range suitable for a handler on foot, and should show or check in front of its handler frequently. It must cover adequate ground but never range out-of-sight for a length of time that would detract from its usefulness as a practical hunting companion. The dog must locate game, must point staunchly, and must be steady to wing and shot on all birds and if it breaks, it cannot receive a Qualifying score. Intelligent use of the wind and terrain in locating game, accurate nose, and intensity on point are essential. Whenever it encounters its bracemate on point, it must honor. A dog that steals its bracemate's point cannot receive a Qualifying score. A Master hunting dog must positively demonstrate its steadiness to wing and shot. The handler shall not command or signal the dog to retrieve until positive steadiness has been demonstrated. The dog must retrieve promptly, tenderly and absolutely to hand.
Oh, it was a happy snicker, not a mean one...The kind you get when tears of laughter leak out your eyes. Analogy. Little girl asks if anyone can get the dime she dropped on the bottom of the neighbor's pool and unbeknownst to her an Olympic diving champ had stopped by for lunch...who ran to the diving board did a triple somersault w/ a twist before hitting water and came up on the pool deck before her, rising like a seal from the water, w/ the dime between his teeth. umm...that kinda snicker. Still don't get it? You the diver. Good answer.
Kittys mom-that was pretty acurate! A lot of this is over my head, for now...but I am going to keep on reading and keep on asking questions! I can barely walk beside my bed anymore, because I keep buying more books and magazines. But sometimes, it's easiest just to ask someone who knows!