Bronze award – May 2016

I was invited by Tracey Prall at Canine Connections to examine a group of dogs for their GCDS Bronze award over at Abergavenny last night. These are the dogs that passed – well done to everyone!

GCDS Bronze award Abergavenny Community Centre 2016

Flossie, Millie, Mali & Malaika with their awards

GCDS Silver Awards

I was examining more KC GCDS Silver Awards this week at Walford near Ross-on-Wye.  Three dogs passed – well done to everyone.

Meg, Merry and Harry with their Silver awards

Meg, Merry and Harry with their Silver awards


GCDS Silver Awards

Still very busy examining and this week it was the KC GCDS Silver Award at Walford near Ross-on-Wye.  Two dogs passed and had very proud and pleased owners!

Pi and Bailey with their Silver award certificates and rosettes

Pi and Bailey with their Silver awards

Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme – Bronze Award

I was invited to examine at Walford and Dymock this week for the KC GCDS  Bronze award.  These are the dogs that Passed.  Well done everyone!

GCDS Bronze award

Heinz, Hudson, Pip and Daisy

GCDS Bronze award

Ziggy, Keiser and Arlo

Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme Examinations

I’m doing quite a few Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme examinations over the next few weeks.  It’s good to be testing across all the awards – Bronze, Silver and Gold.  These are the dogs and handlers that I passed this week in the Ross area. Well done to everyone!

GCDS Bronze award

Flint and Merry

GCDS Bronze award

Jasper, Blake and Sydney

Christmas presents for Toby the Read2Dog

Toby’s really enjoying his role as a Read2Dog for Pets As Therapy.  He visits a small, local, rural school and the children who read to him really do get a lot out of the sessions.  We had such a lovely visit today as he was presented with a package which contained a Christmas card that the children had made with a fabulous picture of Toby – they’d all written messages inside.  Plus there were also some Christmas presents… what a lucky dog!


Toby showing off his presents!


Pets As Therapy Read2Dogs Scheme

At the veteran age of 9 years old, Toby is enjoying a new phase in his Pets As Therapy role by becoming a Read2Dog at a local rural school.

Research has shown that children can become stressed or nervous when reading to an adult or in front of others.  Amazingly, when a PAT dog is present then the child is more comfortable and not so self-conscious.  Ultimately, both communication and reading skills can improve.

Toby visits the school once a week and is enjoying being read to – particularly as he snuggles up to the children on a bean bag and gets lots of strokes!IMG_0304_LR12

Crufts 2015

Crufts Gundog Day… early start to get there in time for KCAI lecture. Then demos and meeting friends old & new.  Finally, finished off the day with a bit of retail therapy.  Well done to Tina Smith and Hermione on receiving their Working Gundog Certificate.

Presentation of Working Gundog Certificates

Presentation of Working Gundog Certificates

Spaniel Gundog Training Day

On Sunday 1st March I was invited to take part in a Spaniel gundog training day with the Welsh Springer Spaniel Club.  The guest trainer was Martin Kilminster who is also a trainer with the Mid-Western Gundog Society.

I took one of my Cockers, Phoebe, who although a show strain is displaying an aptitude for gundog work.  It was an excellent day and Martin’s ‘quiet’ style of positive training went down well – especially with a group of raring to go Spaniels!

We were also introduced to using place boards which can help with building in steadiness in your dog’s training.  Place boards are an innovation from the US and Phoebe certainly picked up what to do very quickly.  Martin also demonstrated how they can be used to teach your dog to quarter – again Phoebe took to this straightaway.  Place boards are now at the top of my ‘wish list’!

A big thank you to the WSSC for inviting me – a really enjoyable day with great company and lovely to see lots of ‘Welshies’.

Achieved Kennel Club GCDS Gold Examiner

Yesterday, I travelled to Runcorn in Cheshire so I could get a good night’s sleep before being assessed today by the Kennel Club as a Good Citizen Dog Scheme Gold Award Examiner.  It’s the ultimate test as an examiner for the Good Citizen Dog Scheme but I’m pleased to say that I passed.  I’m now an  ‘A1’ listed GCDS Examiner and can examine Bronze, Silver and Gold awards.

Who won the Gold?

Who won the Gold?

GCDS Silver Award Success!

Well done to members of my GVDTC Thursday Obedience class who took their GCDS Silver award today.  The weather was very wet but I’m delighted to say that nine dogs passed!  Congratulations to Natasha Harrison & Rufus, Kathy Williams & Barney Rubble, Bill Harman & Maddie, Tina Smith with Judy & Hermione, Jenny Shore & Jumble, Gail Clark & Gem, Carol Lloyd & Sox and Heather Suff & Ben.  Special thanks to the examiner, Anne Weston.  Here’s a photo of the group.

20141009-KCGCDS Silver-group shot

KCGCDS Silver Award – October 2014

Training schedule updated

I’ve updated my training schedule to show the new classes, additional training and the GVDTC in-house instructor course I am running with Anne Weston.

GCDS Bronze Award Success!

Well done to members of my GVDTC Thursday Obedience class who took their GCDS Bronze award today. Everyone passed and it was lovely to see such a mixed group of Spaniels; a Clumber, Welsh Springer, Working Cocker and two English Springers! Congratulations to Sarah Cundy & Blossom, Tina Smith & Judy, Gail Clark & Gem, Kathy Williams & Barney Rubble and Natasha Harrison and Lulu. I’m very proud of you all. Special thanks to the examiner, Anne Weston and to club members for allowing us exclusive use of the club grounds for the award. Tim is working on the photos but for now here is one of the group.

KC GCDS Bronze Award – October 2014

Judging at Kingstone Fun Dog Show

Best in show and runner up20140831-KingstoneFunShow-214_LR8

I had a fabulous day on Sunday at Kingstone dog show. The dogs were well-behaved (the owners were too) and the sun shone. Thanks to Kate and Sue for asking me to Judge the show.  You can see photos taken by Tim Dale Photography here.     On the day, the show raised £345.00 for Longtown Mountain Rescue and I understand there will be a cash donation from Bulmer’s Cider of £200 to add to this – excellent!




Achieved Kennel Club GCDS Silver Examiner

On Friday I travelled to Hockley, near Southend, Essex as the following day I was assessed by the Kennel Club as a Good Citizen Dog Scheme Silver Award Examiner.  It was a long way to go but thankfully worth the effort as I’m really chuffed to say that I passed.  I’m now an  ‘A’ listed GCDS Silver Examiner.  Next I’ll be going for Gold!


26th August – training cancelled at Poston Mill

Unfortunately, it looks like the rain is set for the day and as there is no cover at Poston Mill and the ground is too slippery for agility I have reluctantly decided to cancel today’s class.  See you all at GVDTC on Thursday.

Passed assessment for APDT

I’ve been a little bit distracted the last couple of weeks as I’ve been waiting on tenterhooks for the results of my assessment for membership of the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT).  After submitting written papers, being assessed at training a group of unknown dogs and handlers all at various levels of ability in an indoor location that I’d never been to, followed by an in-depth 45 minute oral exam, I’m delighted to say that I passed with 91% and have been invited to join the APDT.  Massive grins and something bubbly to celebrate this evening!

Scan_20140831 (3)3

Judging the local dog show

I’ve been asked to judge the Kingstone Fun Dog Show on 31st August.  It should be a great day out for you and your dog with a class to suit everyone.  You’ll also be helping raise funds for Longtown Mountain Rescue, a charity close to my heart as I do a lot of hill walking in all weathers!  Do come along and have some fun while supporting this worthwhile charity.

Fun Dog Show Poster 2014

Scent work training

For some time I’ve been training my dogs to carry out scent work searches around the house and garden. It’s a great way to allow them to use their natural sniffing instinct and also tires them out which is especially useful if the weather is wet and horrible. I’ve been wanting to take this to the next level so, on 27th July, Phoebe (one of my cocker spaniels) and I completed ‘Scent Work Level 1 Foundation’ with Pam McKinnon an ex-Customs & Excise drug detector dog handler who now runs Talking Dogs. It was a fun and interesting day and by the end of the course we carried out a ‘blind’ room search with Phoebe easily managing to lead me to the item on each occasion. Well done Pheebster! I’m now going to practice what I’ve learnt with both Phoebe and Toby (my other dog) and then I’ll move forward to Level 2.

Training schedule updated for Bronze/Silver awards

I’ve updated my training schedule to reflect the extra lessons we’ll be doing in the run-up to the next Bronze and Silver Kennel Club Good Citizen Dog Scheme awards in September. There will also be mock tests which I have provisionally arranged for 4th September.