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Betsy Peets

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    Beaverton, Oregon

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  1. Trick Dog: A Title for Everyone

    Some of us, author included, just can’t help themselves, we love titles and strive to accumulate as many as we can with our smart Cairn Terriers! Most suffix titles (e.g. CD, NA, CAA, RN etc.) are done in an environment where only spectators are lucky enough to view the well-matched team of dog and handler. Now you can train skills, get a title and show your trained Cairn off to your friends, family or anywhere! I can’t tell you how many times Happy has performed his “Dead Dog” trick or Oz has done his “Leg-weave” trick and received shrieks of laughter and applause! The AKC Trick Dog title is perfect for everyone; kids, Grandma, Mom or Dad. Cairns are little sponges and love to learn. Some are driven by food, some by toys but ultimately they love to please (if there’s something in it for them). Training is a great way to bond with your dog, no matter what their age. You can train anytime, anywhere; on your couch with a handful of “high value” treats in front of the TV, in the kitchen before you hand over their meal or in the hallway heading for bed the list is endless. One or two (5-10) minute sessions a day for 2 maybe 3 days will give you a great start to a novice level trick like “shake”. No pressure, great treats, upbeat high pitch training voice will make your pooch excited for these quick training sessions. Start slow, tricks begin with a basic move like “Sit” or “Down”. If you use a clicker fine, if not, select a marker word so they know a reward is coming. My marker is “yes”, it isn’t a huge part of my normal vocabulary (just ask my kids and grandkids) and it is quick. Consistency is the key, don’t keep repeating yourself (Fido sit, sit, sit) — that just teaches them that after the third or fourth command you’re serious. Time your marker word or click well, right after Fido’s butt hits the ground in a nice sit “YES” and treat. Some trainers don’t introduce a command until the dog has the trick down, I introduce the command in the beginning, before I mark and treat. I avoid words that are used a lot like “down” or “cookie”, Down is ok for Obedience or Rally ring for lay down but when you’re trying to get your dog to stop jumping on Grandma, “Off” is better. If you do or are planning on doing agility, “Splat” works great and it puts smiles on people’s (and judges) faces. It means “pull your front legs out from under you and put your belly on the floor as fast as you can”. When I trained “Splat” it was very fun to teach both dogs side by side, they turned it into a contest and created a very fast “Splat”. Be patient, make sure you are not over-feeding or over training, both will get you into trouble fast. If Toto already has a CGC (Canine Good Citizen) title you are half way to a TKN (Trick Dog Novice) title! I bought a book, “Dog Tricks for Dummies”, it gives you step by step instructions for many tricks, if you get stuck just try another method. We were at a dog show in Idaho one year and a class of kindergarten children and their teachers were walking by our grooming set up. They stopped to look at the cute Toto dogs and asked some questions. Before they went on their way I brought my boy, Oz, out and he put on a show they absolutely loved. Oz loved doing it, he loves the attention and praise, well, and the treats. Training tricks, or any type of training can, with supervision, also help children learn how to build a positive relationship based on empathy, shared communication, and trust. For example, there is a group here in the Portland, OR area that works with domestic violence shelters. The dog/human teams work with at-risk youths through classes in positive dog training. The Little Dog Laughed works closely in support of behavioral therapy professionals in their effort to nurture empathy and non-violent problem solving skills. Check out their website: https://www.thelittledoglaughed.org/ Personally, I would love to see this program go nationwide. AKC’s Program has 4 levels: Novice (TKN), Intermediate (TKI), Advanced (TKA), and Performer (TKP). To earn a tricks title you must find where an evaluation is being held. A good place to start is to check your local canine events listing. We had one locally in Ridgefield, WA at the Greater Clark County dog show in December. A local Tricks evaluator (she is also an agility judge) brought all the props and charged $10 per title at this show. Three day total titles achieved was 175. Follow this link to find out more about this wonderful program: http://www.akc.org/about-trick-dog/
  2. Highlander Column - Winter

    Regional report submitted to the CTCA Highlander newsletter The Pacific Northwest is having a very nice winter this year! In comparison to the 2016-17 winter it is wonderful! December 2-4 was Greater Clark County Kennel Club’s AKC Obedience and Rally weekend. It is wonderful for those who do conformation and OB/Rally: no conflicts. There was also a Tricks Title evaluation where 175 tricks titles were awarded ranging from Novice to Advanced. Farm Dog evaluations and AKC scent work trials were also being held that weekend. A Performance Extravaganza! Next year consider joining us! December 9-10 Greater Clark County Kennel Club All-Breed conformation show and “Ugliest Christmas Sweater” contest. I never did find out who won the sweater contest — maybe next year. In conformation there were majors in bitches both days: just think of what it would have been had you joined us 🙂 . Just Sayin'. This is a great show up in Vancouver, WA just across the river from Portland. December 16 was CRCTC’s annual holiday party at the Quarles. This year we decided to have it earlier in the day and call it brunch. It worked out wonderfully and we were all done by 2:30ish and on our way home. I love the gift exchange, it is always fun to see what gifts are brought and what is cherished enough to “steal.” Our January 2nd club meeting brought a great turnout for elections of new board members. Our new President: Vicki Havlik, VP: Tom Quarles, Secretary: Cindi Marshall, Treasurer: Hallie Gould, Board Members: Debbie Blanchard, Darleen Chester, Betsy Peets, Fran Wright. Congratulations to our new Board, we see great things happening. January 17 started the wonderful Rose City Classic All-Breed Dog show, largest show west of the Mississippi! Wednesday was Terrier Association of Oregon show with entries for Cairn Terrier sweepstakes and regular classes supported by Columbia River Cairn Terrier Club. Lots of beautiful Cairns could be found in every event: Agility, Rally, Obedience, Conformation and even Trick Dog evaluation! Friday was Meet the Breed. Many visitors were greeted with wagging tails, doggie kisses and a trick or two. They got to know our Best Pals at their best. Five days of shows is tiring but so much fun. More to come for the year! March 10 will be our eye clinic. We welcome all breeds and Cairns 10 years and older are at no charge. We always have a great turnout and we are thankful that Marie and Tom Quarles' home is available. CRCTC's specialty at the Stumptown cluster in Portland will be Friday, July 20, come join us! The theme is Cairnival so come prepared to have a Merry-Go-Round Time! Our banquet will be Saturday in the usual incredible Northwest Fare. Our judges are: Specialty: Marly Lucier, Sweepstakes: Pam Nicolai, Obedience: Laurie Beck. More information available on our website: www.crctc.org. Come join us, we promise to make it worthwhile.
  3. Betsy Peets

    When my last beloved dog, Poli, passed away in 2004 I decided I needed a small dog in my life. I was very sure of the TYPE of dog just wasn't sure of the breed. I wanted a big dog in a little body with intelligence and personality. I have had dogs, mostly mixed breeds, in my life but I'd always wanted to try showing a dog. One dog I remember we had growing up was a beagle/fox terrier girl. I loved the attitude and intelligence she showed. She was easy to train and we never had any problems with her so I was thinking terrier was a good choice. I used the internet and went to shows and found the Welsh, Soft Coated Wheaton and Cairn terriers were to my liking. I talked to a Cairn breeder and decided to meet at the Rose City Classic Dog show in Portland in January. Little did I know it was the biggest show west of the Mississippi!! I went to watch them at the ring, I was told never to bother anyone before they go into the ring. The Breeder was in the ring with the sire of the puppies, he was incredible!! Stood beautifully while the judge was looking but, when her back was turned they played then "snap" back into position when she was looking again. I had to have one of those pups!! Cairngorm Shot in the Dark - AKA Happy. Happy was born 1/7/2005 and is kind of feeling his age now but still insists on working for treats. Happy is a performer in more than one way. He did 5 productions of The Wizard of Oz in the Portland area. 4 at high school productions and his last was with the Pixie Dust Production, a professional group. He loves to do tricks and has quite a stash of them. Happy has all these titled at the end of his name: BN, RE NAP NJP SE CAA CGCA TKP More later
  4. Meet the Breeds

    Meet the Cairn Terrier. Stop by the Cairn Terrier booth in the Santiam building for some tail wagging and breed-meeting.
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