Puppy Sweepstakes

Hi -

Does anyone have a minute to explain just exactly what this is about? 😕

In what reference? At shows? If that is what you are asking, puppy sweepstakes is a non-regular event usually at Basenji Specialty shows. It is conformation judging however, just like a regular dog show, but depending on the club holding the event they have classes for puppies under the age of 6 months. Many times a class for 4 to 6 month old puppies. At regular conformation shows they have to be 6 months to show. Also there are Veteran Sweepstakes….

Yes, shows, I suppose. I'm going to the BCOA Nationals this year & I'd like for my basenjis to compete. Everything is new to me, including owning a dog, & I'm trying to find my way through all of these rules, regulations & what I need to do to prepare my dogs for what I'd like for them to do.

Here is a good explanation on dog shows
http://www.akc.org/events/conformation/beginners.cfm

And Sweeps are just another type of competition. There are a number of different classes like 6-9 puppies, 9-12 puppies (Red/White), 9-12 puppies (AOAC - any color other then red), etc… both for Dogs and same ones for Bitches. You would enter in the appropriate class. After the judging of all the different classes, the winners of each class go back in and compete for Best in Sweeps and Best Opposite Sex in Sweep.

And sweepstakes generally involves winning some money. Not much…this isn't horse racing 😉 But usually if you win first place in a class, it can cover the cost of your entry. Everything else about sweepstakes is the same as regular conformation, but there are no points towards a championship.

@Quercus:

And sweepstakes generally involves winning some money. Not much…this isn't horse racing 😉 But usually if you win first place in a class, it can cover the cost of your entry. Everything else about sweepstakes is the same as regular conformation, but there are no points towards a championship.

Being that you're from NW OH, can you recommend a good trainer or place with a good training program? I'd like to do obedience with and/or show my male & I know my female will be awesome at agility, provided I can get over the obedience hurdle with her! She is definitely her own boss!

Holly, I don't know what clubs would be good in your area, but a good place to start is doing a search on AKC's site, and contacting those clubs to find out where and when they hold classes. Also they may have some individual members who do their own classes if the club itself doesn't do anything. Andrea might have some specific recommendations.

http://www.akc.org/clubs/search/

From there you can choose what type of club you want to search for, like conformation or agility. And then narrow down the search by state. Best thing to do is attend some of the different classes to watch and see if you like the instructor's way of training. Usually classes that focus on positive reinforcement and things like clicker training are often the best bet.

Good luck, looking forward to meeting you and your crew this fall. Maybe we'll even head your way for a show or trial this summer? Did you get your dogs from a show breeder? If so, they will be able to help you out a lot with what classes to enter and how to best handle your dog. If not, there are lots of us here on the forums that can help too as best we can. A good thing to focus on for this year's national is to come and watch all the events and soak up all the info you can. It's a long hard road doing some of this stuff with Basenjis. lol But so very rewarding. 🙂

Most agility classes require your dog to have gone through a basic obedience class first. So that might be another thing to look for. Have you thought about rally obedience as well? These classes are often more fun and interesting than traditional obedience, that might be right up your alley too?

Also most facilities that hold dog classes will require you to be up to date on vaccinations (some require more than others) and have a recent fecal test done (usually within about 60 days). So double check you have everything in order and paperwork handy for enrolling in a class. Also you'll have to check with the instructor, but usually they ask that you have a flat buckle collar and 6 foot leash for using in class. So you'll probably want something different than whatever you use at home with all their tags on it. If you're going to try showing, then you'll need a special show chain and lead. You might have to order something online or find a show in your area, they have vendors where you can get supplies. And another thing is to figure out a good treat that you can use for training that your dog likes. Something that you can use in tiny pieces that fits nicely in a pocket or bait pouch. And something that your dog values highly. lol

Holly, I don't know what clubs would be good in your area, but a good place to start is doing a search on AKC's site, and contacting those clubs to find out where and when they hold classes. Also they may have some individual members who do their own classes if the club itself doesn't do anything. Andrea might have some specific recommendations.

+1 on this. The way I finally found a conformation class locally was thru the AKC site and a local dog club that was listed on that site.

My other great resource for show stuff has been my pup, Liyah's breeder. I went to some dog shows with them recently and asked them to help pick out leads (they gave me pros & cons about the various types), etc. and then I just paid for everything. They have also spent some time going over the show basics and also got some of their show & breeder friends to help with some show training as well (so I'd have different perspectives). Oh, and they also found a handling clinic that I'll be attending this weekend. They'll be helping me with show entries & the classes to enter at the National as well, until I feel comfortable doing it on my own.

So maybe also check with your pup's breeder.

@RedVelvetLynx:

Being that you're from NW OH, can you recommend a good trainer or place with a good training program? I'd like to do obedience with and/or show my male & I know my female will be awesome at agility, provided I can get over the obedience hurdle with her! She is definitely her own boss!

Where in Ohio are you? We are near Toledo. The Toledo Kennel Club has conformation classes each week, they are very helpful. There is at least one other private training school that has conformation classes too, but I haven't tried it yet.

I really appreciate everyone's input. I'm a little overwhelmed with everything there is to do & know - where to begin?! I had no initial interest in doing anything with my b's - just enjoying them as pets - my first pets ever :eek:. I had always read basenjis are not for the first time dog owner - I now know why. So, the more I learn & see what my basenjis are capable of, the more involved I want to get. I think this will make Denver's breeder - Meg Sorhus - very happy - I believe she wanted Denver to go to a show home, but was happy to send him to a good home just the same.
I want to find good trainers - our experience with Trinity & puppy kindergarten was none too exciting - although I've heard nothing but good things about the place we decided on, the trainers there work primarily with German Shepherds & at times couldn't even recall Trinity's breed - um….ya.
Meg has been very helpful, even before I had Denver - she helped me get through the week after Trinity's spay - ugghh - a solid week of diarrhea, vomiting & me worrying - remember, my 1st dogs ever....I would like to hang with Denver's breeder, but she lives a few states away....
So ya - we look forward to meeting you too, Kelli, & everyone else. I've been to just one dog show in Cleveland & although there were only a handful of basenjis there, I'd never seen so many in one place before & I can't imagine seeing hundreds upon hundreds in KY - I'm so excited!!!

@Quercus:

Where in Ohio are you? We are near Toledo. The Toledo Kennel Club has conformation classes each week, they are very helpful. There is at least one other private training school that has conformation classes too, but I haven't tried it yet.

Andrea, I live about an hour east of Toledo. Private training school…what do you mean by private - exclusively b's?

No, I just meant not a kennel club. I am not really familiar with any conformation training classes east of Toledo, but I am sure there are some kennel clubs that offer it. As far as regular obedience training, there is a really neat school in Cleveland that has several locations. I will try to locate their website for you.

I am not familiar with Meg Sorhus…but I am familiar with the kennel name Echelon...I thought that breeder's name was Heather Ervin, though....

I will try to get some more info about training places for you 🙂 I used to work at a GREAT training school in Toledo, but we closed a few years ago, sadly...there hasn't really been anything to replace it in our area.

Hey Holly,

I'm trying conformation for the first time and I would say a few really important things from my very limited experience are

a) getting your pup used to being around lots of other dogs and people, and used to being handled by other people. For instance, my 4 mo puppy is a tad stressed when she is in really large groups of dogs such as in conformation class and puppy socialization class and isn't really comfortable yet on the table when a stranger comes up to handle her. So if you can get your pup started in being exposed to those situations it will make show training much easier when you have a chance to do it.
b) Get her trained in some basic obedience at home until you find a good class. If you can get her started in stand, stand/stay, watch me, loose-lead walking, etc. you will have a good head start in conformation class because you'll need for your puppy to have some basic foundation so it can be applied in a more distracting situation.

lvoss recommended this book "Positive Training for Show Dogs" on some other threads and it has been helpful for me for applying the training I was doing for conformation.

http://www.dogwise.com/itemdetails.cfm?ID=DSH166

Good luck. Don't get too overwhelmed! It should be fun for you and the dogs!

Andrea, Meghan's kennel is SouthHouse. You're right about Heather being Echelon. She's pretty new to the breed. I don't know if you were there, but she came up to the Hoosier specialty a couple years ago to finish her girl India from Brian and Laurie Gregory. Very nice young lady, we spoke for a few minutes.

Holly, there are race meets in Oberlin, not sure if that's pretty close to where you are at? You should check it out if you get a chance, I bet Denver and Trinity will love it. Also there are several different events in Ravenna each year. In fact I might be going to Ravenna next month for a weight pull. I'd be happy to help you with anything if you wanted to get together when I'm down that way. I think the first race meet is in June. Although I never know what I'm doing ahead of time. lol

@kiroja:

Andrea, Meghan's kennel is SouthHouse. You're right about Heather being Echelon. She's pretty new to the breed. I don't know if you were there, but she came up to the Hoosier specialty a couple years ago to finish her girl India from Brian and Laurie Gregory. Very nice young lady, we spoke for a few minutes.

Holly, there are race meets in Oberlin, not sure if that's pretty close to where you are at? You should check it out if you get a chance, I bet Denver and Trinity will love it. Also there are several different events in Ravenna each year. In fact I might be going to Ravenna next month for a weight pull. I'd be happy to help you with anything if you wanted to get together when I'm down that way. I think the first race meet is in June. Although I never know what I'm doing ahead of time. lol

Okay, Kelli..thanks for the clarification. I just found her in the BCOA roster! Thanks 🙂

Yep - Meg's India is Denver's Mom. She is very nice. The link to her homepage was posted on the BCOA breeder's list, but I don't see it there anymore. I never did get to meet Heather.
Thanks for helping me find a good trainer Andrea. I agree with Kelli - liking the trainer is important. Trinity's trainer used to take her to the front of the class & make her heel - would just pull on the stupid choker chain to get her to budge :mad: - Trinity would cry so loudly in protest & the trainer would tell me she was simply being a brat. I don't necessarily appreciate her point of view.
Nemo - I feel your pain! Denver screams at the vet while on the table & won't even let me pick the boogers from his eyes without a struggle. :rolleyes:
Kelli, is LARK the place in Oberlin you're talking about? I looked at their website - I live 30-ish minutes away from there. Definitely let me know if you're out this way - I'd like to meet you & your B's - they're absolutely beautiful!
Yes, obedience will perhaps be more of a challenge for me than my B's - patience is not my strongest quality. Trinity gets it, but doesn't want to comply; Denver wants to comply, but doesn't get it.
Thanks again for everone's help & insight; it is much appreciated!

Yep, LARK is the club that meets in Oberlin, I was just going to give you the link. 🙂 I think they do some lure coursing now as well. The last time I was there, they had their first fun run. I haven't been there in the last few years because usually there's no other Basenjis there. But now I have to watch the budget even more carefully, so we're going hopefully because everything else is further. lol

Looking forward to seeing you soon!

Here is a link to their website http://www.basenjidog.net/

If the link is no longer on the BCOA site, then I would have to think they forgot to renew the listing?

She makes a statement on her website that India is a carrier but if bred to a clear will not pass it on? That is a bit misleading, as the offspring may not get Fanconi, but certainly offspring can be clear or carrier? If you talk to your breeder, you should have them correct that statement

Ok - sure. I know she's in the middle of moving right now - not certain where to, but the last I knew, has only until the end of the month & still has to fence the new yard & all. Maybe she had her link removed for that reason?

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