MSDA conducted its second set of Instinct Clinics with sessions on Friday March 2nd (which unfortunately were cancelled due to high winds), and Saturday March 3rd during the MSDA Sporting Group Dog Show at the Howard County Fairgrounds (2210 Fairgrounds Rd, West Friendship, MD 21794). For a sporting breed dog with little or no field experience, this is a great way to get started. Dogs were able to scent a bird and find a bird, triggering their basic hunting instincts. (There will again be Instinct Clinics at the 2019 Spring Weekend.)
This is a fun, relaxed, and encouraging activity. The clinic includes a brief introductory discussion followed by individual work with each dog and handler. Clinics are run by AKC hunt test judges and experienced handlers for flushing, pointing, and retrieving breeds. There is lots of fun, and great information too!
The clinic was held outdoors on the show site in a designated field near the main show hall. Live birds were used. There was no gunfire. (Flushed birds fly away.)
Instinct Clinics are a wonderful stepping stone for you and your dog to get involved with training for your parent club’s WD/WC program or the AKC Hunt Test program, or to simply see how much fun you can have when your dog gets turned on to birds!! Here are some of the breeds that signed up: Brittany, Chesapeake Bay Retriever, Clumber Spaniel, English Cocker Spaniel, English Springer Spaniel, Flat-Coated Retriever, German Shorthaired Pointer, Golden Retriever, Irish Red & White Setter, Irish Water Spaniel, Labrador Retriever, Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever, Spinone Italiano, Sussex Spaniel, Vizsla, Weimaraner, Welsh Springer Spaniel, and Wirehaired Pointing Griffon.