The purpose of a field trial is to determine the relative merits of Retrievers in the field.
The function of a Non-Slip Retriever is to seek and retrieve "fallen" game when ordered to do so. He should sit quietly on line or in the blind, walk at heel, or assume any station designated by his handler until sent to retrieve. When ordered, a dog should retrieve quickly and briskly without unduly disturbing too much ground, and should deliver tenderly to hand. He should then await further orders.
Accurate marking is of primary importance. A dog which marks the fall of a bird, uses the wind, follows a strong cripple, and will take direction from his handler is of great value.
Tests for the GRCA Working Certificate shall be as follows:
1. Land Double. The retrieving of two UPLAND game birds (not a mixed bag) on land in moderate cover with the birds approximately 40-50 yards from the line and the falls at least 90 degrees apart. For uniformity in the land double, both birds may be shot and killed prior to the start of the test. At the discretion of the judges, the diversion bird may be a shot flier. Bird throwers should be in light colored shirts or jackets. The use of "wingers" is prohibited in WC tests.
2. Back to Back Water Singles. The retrieving of two freshly killed ducks in swimming water in light cover with the ducks approximately 25 to 30 yards from the line. Bird throwers should be in light colored shirts or jackets. Each dog should retrieve at least one "new" duck. Previously used birds are to be avoided unless absolutely necessary.
The WC test is not intended to test the degree of training but rather to demonstrate the natural ability of the dog to perform normal hunting tasks. The double on land demonstrates the ability to mark and retrieve two birds and tests the memory of the dog. The back to back water singles demonstrate the ability to swim, to retrieve a waterfowl, and a willingness to re-enter the water. There is no competition between dogs in this test. The handler is expected to come to the line quietly with his dog under control at his side. The dog may be brought on leash or slip cord, but these must be removed during the test. The dog may run with a collar and may be held with the leash or slip cord until he is sent by the handler. After the judge has called the dog's number and the dog has been sent, the handler should stand quietly on line while the dog is working. No voice commands nor hand signals are allowed. These are marking tests; handling is not permitted.
When the dog has returned with his first bird on the land double, the handler may pat his side or speak to his dog by name, telling him to heel, sit, stay, etc., thereby getting the dog ready and lined up to go for the second bird. The handler may not take his dog by the scruff of the neck and pull him into position before sending him for the second bird. He may gently guide the dog by the collar to get his attention and steady him before sending him.
After the dog has retrieved the second bird, the handler may take the dog by the collar and lead him off the line. In each of the water singles, the handler may hold the dog until his number is called by the judge.
Des Moines Golden Retriever Club. All Rights Reserved. 2021