It is generally acknowledged that the Newfoundland, as a unique breed, was bred by its originators in Canada to be a big powerful dog capable of an arduous days work either on board a fishing boat or on shore. On land it was extensively used as beast of burden as well as being the friend and guardian of the family, especially the children. Without wanting to endanger their dog or anyone else, the modern day owner increasingly wants to see whether their dog is equally capable.
In the colder months (usually October - March) we train our Newfoundland dogs in draught. This involves obedience work, manoeuvres in the cart, and a haul (walk) in the cart. Carting is a great way to build the communication and bond between dog and owner. We have also seen improvements in the water from dogs that have learnt commands in the obedience ring. For those who do not wish to train using the cart, you just join us for obedience work and a walk. We meet around 10.30/11am and finish mid-afternoon. Like water there are tests in carting if you wish to have ago, we can teach you about all the different requirements as you move up the levels.
Tests, which are extensions to training and not an end in themselves, are based on the building block principle. Skills learnt by owner and dog for the lower levels are repeated and refined or modified in higher level tests. It must be understood that it is necessary to master the lower levels first in order to proceed to the higher levels. If a problem arises with a certain manoeuvre then there will be a firm foundation to fall back on; Therefore dogs must pass each lower level before being permitted to attempt the next highest level, i.e. passing the Beginners Test before Level 1, and Level 1 before entering for Level 2 etc. It must be borne in mind that the exercises actually test the owner and dog partnership, not just the capabilities of the dog.
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