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Would behaviour training affect ring temperament? I once had an opportunity to speak to an all breed judge and he told me that he dislike obedience trained dogs in the show ring.Instead of running around the ring with confidence,the dog is always looking to the handler anticipating the next command.

Just yesterday, I picked up a Ceasar Millan book and eventhough I haven't finish the book, I liked what I've read so far.I would,one day,like to jog all my dogs in a pack but to do that,they all have to be calm submissive.If not,they will be all over the place.But "calm submissive" seems to be one of those words that don't belong in the show ring.At least,this is what I think as a beginner on the verge of showing his first dog.What are your thoughts?
 

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At least,this is what I think as a beginner on the verge of showing his first dog.What are your thoughts?

Ignore that judge and put down Caesar's book! :)

Seriously, if you are a smart trainer you can do both.
My dog had his Utility title (highest obedience level in AKC) before he got his first show point.
It sounds like you are talking about basic pet behavior versus competition obedience -- and EVERY dog needs basic manners, show dog or not!!!
Best of luck,
 

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Granted, when showing in conformation, you want the dog looking out ahead and not up at the handler as is done in obedience with attention heeling. Howevver, I definitely think you can teach the dog to do both successfully. And both those skills are very different from everyday pet training that makes your dog a joy to LIVE with.
 

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I have another dog with a Utility title in obedience that shows in conformation, and believe me, they are smart enough to tell the two venues apart. I totally disagree with the judge.
One of my conformation trainers has finished several OTCH dogs, and would also disagree.
A dog knows which ring he's in. If he didn't, he's probably not smart enough for advanced obedience titles anyway!
 

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I do think there are things you can do to help your dog tell it apart- hold your hand out in conformation, at your waist in obedience...use different leashes, etc. But totally agree with the above. My puppy is working on both!
 

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Well in the show ring I prefer to see Goldens with lots of ring presence and happy. Obedience training makes them a bit too calm for the show ring. By that I do not mean that a dog should romp like crazy in the show ring, but be easy-going.

Hotel4dogs, I have to disagree with you. Being extremely calm in the show ring, put up a serious face instead of a big smile can make a huge difference. It has nothing to do with intelligence, but attitude of the dog in the show ring.
 

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Discussion Starter · #7 ·
I don't for a moment doubt they can do both.I have seen dogs that go into the ring with this super dominant "who da man" attitude,a real pleasure to watch,and some dogs who rather not be there (I've yet too see utility trained dogs doing conformation,so i can't comment on that).Both will eventually finish at some point in the future.I'm concerned that obedience will kill his "mojo" so to speak.You want to see that spark,that fire in the eyes.Can he still have it if he is no more jungle boy...wild...unrestrained?
 

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The golden retriever breed standard, at least here, doesn't call for a wild, unrestrained jungle boy.
I do know what you are referring to, which I believe is flashy dogs.
But I do not think that a dog that is handled properly in the conformation ring loses his flash because of obedience training.


I .I'm concerned that obedience will kill his "mojo" so to speak.You want to see that spark,that fire in the eyes.Can he still have it if he is no more jungle boy...wild...unrestrained?
 

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I don't for a moment doubt they can do both.I have seen dogs that go into the ring with this super dominant "who da man" attitude,a real pleasure to watch,and some dogs who rather not be there (I've yet too see utility trained dogs doing conformation,so i can't comment on that).Both will eventually finish at some point in the future.I'm concerned that obedience will kill his "mojo" so to speak.You want to see that spark,that fire in the eyes.Can he still have it if he is no more jungle boy...wild...unrestrained?
Obedience does not necessarily have to make a dog lose spunk....you should see the videos of FlyingQuizini in the ring. Da** :D If that is not flashy, I don't know what is. (Ok, he is not a breed dog, but I definitely think if he was shown he would be/could be just as flashy). You can have both. And there are plenty of dogs that are unhappy in the show ring that don't do obedience. Why? I am sure there are multiple reasons--perhaps it is not their thing or it was never made a fun experience for them.
 

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Well in the show ring I prefer to see Goldens with lots of ring presence and happy. Obedience training makes them a bit too calm for the show ring. By that I do not mean that a dog should romp like crazy in the show ring, but be easy-going.
Or, um -- NOT

For evidence I will challenge anyone to view the BOB video from last year's National in Rhode Island. Fisher -- UDX legs OTCH points and all -- freakin dragging me around the BOB ring, in hilarious fashion...Ring presence? Happy? Uh, yeah. Calm -- absolutely NOT

I myself have not witnessed the video as I do not wish to relive it! :)
He was a NUT

This was typical. He knows the difference between obedience and breed -- and that in the breed ring -- you can be a BAD DOG and get treats for it! WOOHOO PARTY TIME!!!! (bad dog! :) )
 

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If you have an obedience dog who is trained for attention heeling but has never been trained for the breed ring, there can be a problem. When Selli went for her CCA, it took a while for her to gait looking forward, rather than at me. However, most really good breed dogs are far from "wild" in the ring. They are highly trained, highly controlled dogs.
 

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I think the stereotype that dogs cannot or should not do both is perpetuated by old time conformation people ...at least in my experience.

My eight month old puppy is FLASHY and HAPPY and SILLY in both rings- that's what attracts the judge's eyes to him, that's what makes him who he is, and that's what makes him my partner.

I bet if you watched Hotel4dog's Tito in breed or obedience ring, you see a happy and flashy dog in both rings. And clearly, if you watched Anney's Fisher, you would see a happy and flashy dog in both rings.

The key is that the dog knows its job in both rings, has the confidence to do its job, and is out having fun with the handler. Obedience training will never "break the spirit" or "train the joy out of them" unless it's done by an abusive idiot.
 

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I am not picking on you, but you are getting into one of my pet peeves, which is goldens being bred with incorrect temperaments so they will excel in the breed ring. The golden, by the breed standard, is not a wild spirited dog, nor is it an on-the-toes, in-your-face dog.
Please consider the following, written by a very well known and respected long time judge (citation follows):


"....If we can't look at a dog and instantly recognize, by its general appearance and attitude, that it has the style and bearing appropriate to that breed, then it is not truly that breed--in spite of what a pedigree and registration certificate might say. And please, somehow we must find a way out of the trap that we have set for our show dogs that makes the hyperactive and extroverted personality, which may be suitable only for some breeds, the ideal by which we measure all breeds.
Even the word "charisma" has been reinvented when applied to show dogs. Charisma, as defined by any dictionary you might refer to, is the unique powerful quality attributed to individuals (in our case, dogs) that arouses and inspires popular support. It has absolutely nothing to do with leaping around the ring as though time out for ex-pen duties was in order. If a race around the ring and show-its-head-off attitude is one that is called for and suitable for a breed, then fine. But we must go back to the commonsense place that tells us each breed has its own demeanor and adhering to that demeanor is what constitutes excellence.
Let's take the threatened character of the Golden Retriever as an example. I use the sterling qualities of the Golden not because the breed suffers any more or less in this respect than any other breed, but because historically the Golden has been one of the true "good old boys" of the sporting breeds. Calm and collected, he got on well in the field with the other dogs and worked well for his owner or for another hunter who might have borrowed him for the day. At home he adapted his behavior to every member of the family, gentle with the toddlers and the elderly, always ready for a romp with the older children.
As we all know, the Golden has become an extremely popular breed, and unfortunately the breed's composed sterling character and perfectly acceptable level of showmanship in the ring are being bastardized by some breeders in pursuit of a more aggressive showman--a dog that will have greater success in Group and Best in Show competition.
We can't blame the backyard breeders and pet shops for this one. People who breed at that level aren't even remotely interested in how a dog performs in the show ring; they're interested in only one thing--puppies!
I can just hear some people say, "Well, it is a dog show. How is a little extra showmanship going to hurt a breed?" A little showmanship doesn't hurt any breed. A little of anything is not likely to create problems, but be ever vigilant against the compulsion we have for "If a little bit is good..." It applies here, too, I assure you.
Still, what effect does this added degree of showmanship have..".how could it hurt the breed?"
How? These "improvements" in the Golden personality create changes that are both mental and physical. Hot-wired, extreme, standing-on-the-nails kind of showmanship requires an entirely different kind of character than that which the Golden has gained its international reputation for having. The new attitude takes greater aggressiveness. It takes having an edge. Result? Rising reports of Goldens attempting to attack each other in the ring and Goldens attempting to bite people.
Then there is the tail-up-over-the-back carriage of the "new" Golden. Whether it comes from incorrect construction or from incorrect attitude remains to be determined. The question some people may be asking is, what's the big deal with high tail carriage anyway? Well, for those who might not be familiar with them, the majority of retrieving breeds use their tails as rudders as they go about their work in the water. It shouldn't take a graduate course in navigation to tell you that a tail that sticks straight up in the air or over the dog's back isn't going to be much help when it comes to steering!
More important than the tail issue, however, is the change in personality. There is no greater fault for a gundog that the lack of a compatible nature. A gundog must, above all, be able to coexist peacefully with its fellow canines and the humans with which it lives and comes into contact. This is not because we happen to like it that way, but because this dog is a hunter and hunts in company--the company of humans and the company of other dogs. This compatibility constitutes a great part, some say one of the most important parts, of a sporting dog's essence and is a hallmark of the Golden Retriever. Dog-to-dog aggressiveness or aggression toward humans is a fault that should immediately eliminate a sporting dog from competition..."

Richard Beauchamp, judge, "Solving the Mysteries of Breed Type", 2008, page 125-126

By wild, I mean wild in spirit, not going bloody berserk wild.:doh:
 

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Discussion Starter · #15 ·
OK...maybe wild is too strong a word to use.Would you prefer ring presence or flashy,as you call it? Would that be considered wrong temperament?
 

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I think every person who has a breed dog, wants a dog with ring presence, but I don't see how that would be trained out with obedience training. The best obedience Goldens also have amazing ring presence. There are particular behaviors in one venue that don't work in the other, but that is an issue of training, nothing else.
 

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Well in the show ring I prefer to see Goldens with lots of ring presence and happy. Obedience training makes them a bit too calm for the show ring. By that I do not mean that a dog should romp like crazy in the show ring, but be easy-going.

Hotel4dogs, I have to disagree with you. Being extremely calm in the show ring, put up a serious face instead of a big smile can make a huge difference. It has nothing to do with intelligence, but attitude of the dog in the show ring.
Wow, have you ever watched some really good goldens in the obedience ring? Most of them are not what you would descibe as "calm," but instead very flashy. It's mostly a matter of how you train the dog. Most people training for the obedience ring also want "flash," so they train for those results. If you train in a more boring fashion you are more likely to get boring results.As far as looking out versus looking at the handler, it's just a matter of training. Just like when I teach a dog to mark, he's being told look ahead, not at me.
 

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They can absolutely bo doth and if it's a spirited dog to begin with (not all are) the individual sport won't effect how the dog performs, but the way you train certainly can.
 

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I think the comment about having a "flashy" dog and that it wouldn't be compatible for the obedience ring is also "old school" thinking. The first time I ever stewarded in obedience was for the Mid-Florida Golden Retriever Club, when it hosted the National Specialty in Orlando. I had never competed in obedience (green, green, green) and was (and still remain) a novice in conformation.

A golden and his handler did the off lead heeling routine in what I later learned was Open (going for a CDX). I'm no judge, (of either breed nor obedience) but that golden had a smile on his face and his sidegait was beautiful to watch. I looked down at the catalog and had to smile inwardly as I was looking at a CH competing and I secretly congratulated myself on noticing his lovely foot-timing.

To give credit where credit is due, he did lag in several parts of the routine, but he looked like he was having a great time. Did he have "ring presence?" I would say so. Anyone who feels that they are afraid of training the "fire" out of their golden, well, I just think they are afraid that their training methods will shut down their golden instead of inspire their dog. But if you hook up with a good training group, that will not happen. Your golden will actually enjoy the opportunity to learn new things.
 

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I have a feeling that anyone who believes obedience training = soul squasher and show dog = Dennis Rodman.....haven't spent much time in either arenas. (or basketball)
 
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