• PoetikDragonPoetikDragon
    Posts: 2837
    (Not sure if this should be under shows/events or behavior/training. Moderator, feel free to move.)

    Talk to me about barn hunt... I've spent a long time considering my options for a dog sport besides conformation (since my dogs are "done" with conformation) and I think barn hunt is it! It hadn't even crossed my mind till @WrylyBrindle mentioned it earlier this week.

    Stuff I like: Obstacles and physical activity, nosework, reading my dog / forming a partnership, pet rats, timed events (objective not subjective judging), fun for the dog, one dog at a time, smaller enclosed area, honing the dog's instincts, not based around executing commands perfectly, less training than obedience/rally/agility, no conditioning, no equipment to purchase.

    Stuff I am not sure about: Making it a positive experience for the rat, keeping male dogs from marking the hay bales, my dogs might not want to because I've told them to ignore my pet rats for two years.

    Stuff I don't like: At the moment, nothing~

    Other sports I considered roughly in order from highest to lowest:
    - Weight pull (cons: a lot of conditioning involved, some equipment needed, motivating the dog)
    - Lure coursing (cons: afraid of losing my dogs with poor recall, most titles only for sighthounds)
    - Nosework (cons: lack of classes, would prefer a more active sport)
    - Agility (cons: motivating Akitas to do any command quickly)
    - Rally/obedience (cons: graded on perfect execution, Akitas)

    There are of course other dog sports out there, like dock jumping and flyball, but my dogs flat out wouldn't do it at all.
    「怪獣荘秋田犬」Kaiju Kennels Japanese Akita and Hokkaido, Claire Matthews
    http://www.facebook.com/PoetikDragon
    http://www.facebook.com/KaijuKennels
    http://www.kaijukennels.com
  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 506
    I haven't tried Barn Hunt yet, so I can't speak from experience, but there is a great informative thread already.
    http://www.nihonken.org/forum/index.php?p=/discussion/8367/barn-hunt-love-to-hunt-try-the-new-sports-to-search-for-rats/p1

    I do think nosework is a good related sport without live prey to teach foundation scent skills and impulse control. I am also concerned for the wellbeing of the rats, and teaching my dog to hunt instead of ignore critters, since we have pet rabbits.

    As for other sports.. If you are considering lure coursing, just give it a try. The next Chino CATs are next weekend. $2 to show up and try, no registration required. A few of us will be there. It seems everyone is initially afraid to let their dog run free (myself included), but this location is fully fenced. There has never been an escape, including our drivey Shiba, Kai, and Shikoku who have attended.
  • zandramezandrame
    Posts: 506
    Winning Edge Sports, the same place in Chino where the lure coursing is held, is starting to add barn hunt events. They had one this weekend actually. Their events page -
    http://www.winningedgedogsports.com/events/

    Also, you forgot sheep herding!
  • PoetikDragonPoetikDragon
    Posts: 2837
    @zandrame Next weekend I am going to a barn hunt thing :<

    EDIT:
    image
    「怪獣荘秋田犬」Kaiju Kennels Japanese Akita and Hokkaido, Claire Matthews
    http://www.facebook.com/PoetikDragon
    http://www.facebook.com/KaijuKennels
    http://www.kaijukennels.com
    Post edited by PoetikDragon at 2015-03-29 21:44:08
  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 3422
    Barn hunt is fun.

    The clubs have a lot of rats and regularly rotate rats and change out tubes to give the rats a break at specific intervals. There are specific handling rules for rat care at trials to cover any bases. The rats know they are safe in the tubes, and seem unphased.

    My dogs love the sport. To keep the boys from marking, which does happen (so far I've been lucky with Ike in that he hasn't wanted to mark the bales) I bought hay bales ahead of time for practice and went to practices and learned to interrupt them when I saw that they may want to mark. It's learning to read the dog is all, for potential marking as well as their signals they give when finding the rats. Lots of people do practices first to help teach the dog how to give strong indicators.

    We are going to the trial in St Helen's April 9-12th, maybe just one day.
    info@hokkaidoken.org
    www.hokkaidoken.com
    www.hokkaidousa.wordpress.com
  • lindsaytlindsayt
    Posts: 3422
    Also, I've seen several Akita in Rally and they do really well. I have only seen one Akita in Agility here, and she was adorable. None in Flyball, but my guess is it is a rarity like my Shibas in Flyball are. It can be done, but it takes training and the right dogs.
    info@hokkaidoken.org
    www.hokkaidoken.com
    www.hokkaidousa.wordpress.com
  • CaliaCalia
    Posts: 3969
    LoL, in one of the Barn Hunt's I went to last year people were complaining about a specific rat since most of the dogs run with it weren't finding it. It was so used to Barn Hunt that it would spend most of its tube time sleeping, thus not being very enticing to the dogs.
    image

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