The Handler Clinic is an educational tool developed by NAVHDA to help dog owners and handlers understand the testing system. The clinics are conducted by designated trained leaders; all of whom are NAVHDA Senior Judges. During the two-day clinic weekend, participants experience all aspects of a Natural Ability, Utility Preparatory, and Utility Test. The first few hours of each day are devoted to informal classroom instruction. There is discussion of Test mechanics, the scoring system and NAVHDA philosophy.
The group then goes out to the field to judge and score dogs being run in the actual Test process. After each dog has run and been scored, there is a discussion of performance and scoring as observed by the participants and the clinic leader. The discussion includes strengths or weaknesses of training and handling observed in the demonstrations, and how they may have affected the dog’s inherited skills.
Who Should Attend?
- People with their first pup see how other dogs work and gain insight into what their pup is doing and why. This helps them to develop their pup’s talents and improve performance in weak areas.
- Novice handlers learn how NAVHDA evaluates versatile dogs, and are better prepared to handle their dogs in a test.
- Experienced handlers gain a deeper, more technical knowledge, of how the team of dog and handler are judged.
- Breeders learn what to look for in their breeding stock and their progeny, and how to use NAVHDA records obtained through our Test Records for selective breeding.
- For aspiring NAVHDA Judges, attending a Handler Clinic is one of the first steps in our Apprentice Judge Program. What you need to know:
- Prepare by reading NAVHDA Aims, Programs and Tests rule book ➢ Bring all-weather gear, an article of blaze orange clothing, field boots/shoes. Rubber “muck” boots are useful.
- Non-Vegetarian lunch and bottled water will be provided.
- YOUTH (18 and under) Handlers can apply for the Kristin Rieser Scholarship Fund to cover their entry fee.
**NOTE** Clinic is for Handlers only-no dogs.
**NO alcohol allowed on grounds during event.