Training for Conformation Shows
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Thread: Training for Conformation Shows

  1. #1
    LabsLand is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultTraining for Conformation Shows

    Hi All!

    My Henna is 14 weeks old, and although we both are enjoying our weekly puppy classes, I was wondering if somebody in the forum can give me some lights on where to find Conformation Classes for puppies, if it is too early to do so, and what specific training/commands should I start with her besides heel and stack, and the best way to get her to stack free.

    I checked in clubs that are within a 40 miles radius and I couldn't find any classes specifically for Show Dogs. Does anybody know of any trainer between White Plains, NY and Waterbury, CT ?

    So far she is doing great with the Sit, Down, Leave it, and a couple of minutes per day the Heel commands.

    I started training her (by my own) with the "Stack" command. I started putting her front legs on top of an old mini (portable) iron table and now she positions herself without asking when she wants a treat in between meals. I started today having her on top of the iron table (4 legs) and she seems to be getting it... she knows she can't go any further when her front paws touch the border of the table. Would this work? I don't want to confuse her. The sit position seems to be the easiest one when she wants a treat... :-\ and I feel guilty making her stand now to get the treat after almost 3 weeks of teaching the SIT command. She probably thinks I am more confused than her ???

    Also about the use of a bell by the kitchen door seems to work (sometimes), however she is using it to tell me it is time to have her dish served It seems she is training me pretty well... :P

    Any ideas?

    The instructor at the Puppy class specializes in German Shepard's, but seems to be very knowledgeable in other breeds, and I don't mind driving for 40 minutes to get to her class, but I just want to find out when and where to bring her for more specific classes.

    Thank you!!



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  3. #2
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    DefaultRe: Training for Conformation Shows

    Who is her breeder?

  4. #3
    Canyon Labradors's Avatar
    Canyon Labradors is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Training for Conformation Shows

    If you are thinking about showing her, I would probably no worry about sit so much and I would probably not worry on putting my hands on the pup to stack her. I "ruined" Grace by hand-stacking her. The minute I put my hands on her to move her legs, she shuts down. You will have better luck at a happy lab with a natural pose with just worrying about stand and once that's down, you can touch them a bit more easily.

    Have you joined a kennel club or a lab club yet? Sometimes those folks can clue you into who's doing some training on the side, or if you find a mentor, they can work with you.

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  6. #4
    LabsLand is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Training for Conformation Shows

    Hi Jen.
    Thanks for sharing your experience.
    I am leaving some of her lunch for treats during the afternoon or when we have time. I just say "stack" and put my hand in front of her a bit higher than her head. If I put my hand too high she'd sit. I am not focusing much in her having both rear legs perfectly parallel to each other, just praising her for trying to catch the treat stretching her neck. I don't want her to get bored and I have noticed that in the last couple of days she is less focused. I am guessing her senses are becoming more powerful and she is finding so many new things around her.

    I found two clubs in the internet today.
    To become a member, one of them require to be referred by two members. ???
    It is about 35 miles from home and I will check some All Breeding Showing classes they offer every Tuesday night. It is probably the same distance I drive to take Henna for her Socialization/Puppy class every Monday.
    The other club's website does not have much information and I will call on Monday. They are also not that far and they also offer classes for conformation.
    One of these clubs will have a Show on June and I will probably show Henna.

    I will probably keep training her to walk on the leash (heel), and in 2 or 3 weks will start taking her to the Showing class if not earlier.

    Thanks again for stopping by and for your suggestions. They are very welcome.

    I hope your girl is doing well carrying those babies.

    Nestor

  7. #5
    CaliforniaLabLover's Avatar
    CaliforniaLabLover is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Training for Conformation Shows

    Quote Originally Posted by LuvLabsToo
    I found two clubs in the internet today.
    To become a member, one of them require to be referred by two members. ???
    One of the best ways to get member endorsements is to arrive to a club function with your application filled out and meet people, mentioning that you would like to join the club but need 2 member endorsements. Our local labrador club requires endorsements, then 2 "readings" prior to being voted into membership. In Los Angeles, where we right at the forefront of AB1634 (sigh) which allows people to keep their dogs intact if they are members of an approved dog club, this helps keep the puppy-millers and BYB-types at arm's distance from our reputable club.

    Henna is an adorable name for a black girl puppy, by the way....VERY clever!

    Are there any labrador breed clubs near you that you could join? I find them to offer far more for the labrador enthusiast than all-breed clubs, though the latter is definitely a step in the right direction.

    ~Julie, Rogue, Monty, and Eddy~

    "The reason a dog has so many friends is that he wags his tail instead of his tongue." -Anon

  8. #6
    windycanyon's Avatar
    windycanyon is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Training for Conformation Shows

    Our all breed club requires the visitors to come to a meeting first so we can get to know them a bit before picking up an application. It usually works out nicely as the folks can join a class and by the time the readings happen, everyone kind of knows one another a bit better. Our regional lab club just requires 2 sigs and board approval.

    I'd not worry too much about confusion w/ Sit, etc.. Despite Mata having her CDX at 2.5, she only sat once in the ring at the Intl shows recently, and that judge actually got a kick out of it (on the return from the down and back). ;D My advice is ....Just have fun!!!! Anne

    WindyCanyon Girls, August 2014

  9. #7
    LabsLand is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Training for Conformation Shows

    Thanks a bunch Anne.
    I will check with the Labrador Retriever Club and even if they don't have classes coming I will try to become a member, and I will also try an old breed club since it is closer and seem to have more classes.
    I want to be very cautious and keep her interested in playing/learning with me. I don't want her to think of me as an instructor who pushes her around, but as her best human friend with whom she can discover fun places, experiment new challenges to build up her confidence, and more importantly have fun.

    Thanks again!
    Nestor and Henna.

  10. #8
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    DefaultRe: Training for Conformation Shows

    Nestor, I had a reason for asking who her breeder was. Is it a secret? I know most of the Lab people in your area and can tell you who to contact, etc. Most other people on this board don't live near you, but I do and wanted to help. If you don't need help from someone in the breed in your area, that is fine, but at least I know I tried.

  11. #9
    LabsLand is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Training for Conformation Shows






    Quote Originally Posted by nwlabs
    Nestor, I had a reason for asking who her breeder was. Is it a secret? I know most of the Lab people in your area and can tell you who to contact, etc. Most other people on this board don't live near you, but I do and wanted to help. If you don't need help from someone in the breed in your area, that is fine, but at least I know I tried.
    ???

    No secret at all!!! I just don't know how to describe a pedigree and don't know how to post a graphic showing it. I am sorry. I really appreciate your willingness to help me and since we have exchanged messages in the past and I missed the chance to meet you even though I saw you and your dogs in Fitchburg, I thought it would be a bit more personal to send you a PM, and that's what I did last night as soon as I read your message. As you can see her breeder is in the other coast and I know it is going to take some time to get to know some local people, but those are little challenges compared to the happiness Henna has brought to me.

    Once again, thank you for your interest and good will to help this newbie.

    Best regards,

    Nestor





    Quote Originally Posted by LuvLabsToo
    Quote Originally Posted by nwlabs
    Who is her breeder?
    Her breeder is Stephanie Harris in Washington.

    Henna's sire is Marcelo from Chablais Kennels (Canada) and her mom is Sophie (Skyfire Labradors).

    Sophie's Sire is Am / Can CH Skyfire's Oughta Be A Law JH CD WC (Descendant of CH Tabatha's Drifter at Dickendall JH), and
    Sophie's mom pedigree includes Fin MVA N MVA V-98 SV-91 NU CH Guidelines Copyright and CH Tabatha's Drifter at Dickendall JH

    Are you familiar with some of these lines? I love her hair and she is amazing playing with other puppies and with strangers. She seems to be a slow growing puppy according to her breeder and I can see it as an advantage to extend my weeks of enjoying a little puppy.


    I look forward to meeting you and show you my little Henna. She is very smart and I love her head, eyes and coat. ;D

  12. #10
    LabsLand is offline Senior Member
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    DefaultRe: Training for Conformation Shows

    Quote Originally Posted by CaliforniaLabLover
    Quote Originally Posted by LuvLabsToo
    I found two clubs in the internet today.
    To become a member, one of them require to be referred by two members. ???
    One of the best ways to get member endorsements is to arrive to a club function with your application filled out and meet people, mentioning that you would like to join the club but need 2 member endorsements. Our local labrador club requires endorsements, then 2 "readings" prior to being voted into membership. In Los Angeles, where we right at the forefront of AB1634 (sigh) which allows people to keep their dogs intact if they are members of an approved dog club, this helps keep the puppy-millers and BYB-types at arm's distance from our reputable club.

    Henna is an adorable name for a black girl puppy, by the way....VERY clever!

    Are there any labrador breed clubs near you that you could join? I find them to offer far more for the labrador enthusiast than all-breed clubs, though the latter is definitely a step in the right direction.
    THANK YOU!!
    I will do that. I already identified the local LRC and 2 all-breed clubs. I will start the paper work and join the classes in 2 weeks. This coming Monday will be her 3rd puppy class and I am doing it just for the sociabilization part of it and Henna seems to love it... she chases all the taller puppies and some people keep asking me if she is a "Black Lab" because she is very short compared to other 3 labs in the class. I find it funny for them to ask "Black Lab" instead of "Lab" but they all are very nice people and I just mention that her parents grew slowly too...

    I don't have an official AKC name for Henna yet, but I guess it doesn't matter at the moment to join any of these clubs. Thank you for your comment on her name.

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