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Discussion Starter #1
If we're the only mpoo and thus Beginner Best of Breed/Variety in the 4-6 months group, do we get a point? Is "one dog" competing my puppy, or my puppy competing against one other dog? If I understand correctly, for regular shows, you don't get points if you're the only dog, right?

For the Puppy of Achievement (POA), the rules say the following:

The Puppy of Achievement requires 10 points awarded in accordance with the following points structure.
Dogs Competing Points
* 1-2 1
* 3-4 2
* 5 or more 3

See https://www.akc.org/sports/conformation/puppy-of-achievement/getting-started/
 

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Discussion Starter #2
I realized I can look up my points - we have one point towards POA from winning Best of Breed against ourself :humble:
 

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Only one more point and my puppy will get his AKC Puppy of Achievement certificate.
I know it’s hard to compete in conformation so any points you have earned is an accomplishment in just participating. Hopefully you will get that additional point soon. When you do, please post so we can all celebrate with you.
 

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Discussion Starter #5
Thank you!

I have a question for you: Is it hard to compete in so many different disciplines? I see obedience, trick dog, scent work, rally, and agility in your awards. I'm trying to figure out what to do with my puppy. Conformation is great because I'm learning so much about grooming and poodle care from other owner handlers. The puppy just got his CGC and TKN. First rally run through is next week, first obedience match in December. We've been doing lots of scent work. Should I focus on one thing? Keep doing more? How did you decide?
 

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Thank you!

I have a question for you: Is it hard to compete in so many different disciplines? I see obedience, trick dog, scent work, rally, and agility in your awards. I'm trying to figure out what to do with my puppy. Conformation is great because I'm learning so much about grooming and poodle care from other owner handlers. The puppy just got his CGC and TKN. First rally run through is next week, first obedience match in December. We've been doing lots of scent work. Should I focus on one thing? Keep doing more? How did you decide?
I find my dog knows the different sports - she has different leashes and cues.

Trick dog is different - when AKC first offered it, my club announced there were going to have a test day in a month. I decided to see if I could train my dog for a title - I hoped we would get a novice title. Instead I found I was able to train enough tricks to earn Novice, Intermediate and Advanced in that month. When I visited my daughter, she took videos of us performing tricks, I wrote up a story, my daughter edited for me and I sent it in and we earned our Trick Dog Performer title. There were no classes, no information how to train (I believe there are tons of videos now). This was something we did once, it was fun and rewarding to earn the titles early on before we were ready to compete in other sports. I have no interest in it now. Tricks are nice to have if you do therapy dog work with your dog.

Everything else is on going training and competition.

I did start obedience first. My club has a pre-competition class after you earn the CGC for training front, heeling etc. This class then splits with most people going on to Rally and a few into Obedience. My trainer suggested doing Obedience only- we train to the higher standards of Obedience. It's easy to dip into Rally once you get the basics in Obedience. I spent a year in Beginner Novice/Novice Obedience before starting Rally. In general I do see a difference in dogs trained in Obedience and Rally versus only trained in Rally. Those with solid Obedience training tend to use smaller signals, you won't see their hands swinging all over the place getting the dog to come in front, or making turns etc. Obedience people need less cheer leading on the course. Most people stick to Rally and give up Obedience because they find it easier and more fun - nothing wrong with that since dog sports should be fun and rewarding for both you and the dog.

Scent work extremely helpful because my dog is a little nervous - scent work has made her confident. I can throw my dumbbell into a pile of agility equipment and she will go in and search for it....... before scent work, she would never do that. Some people fear scent work because they worry their dogs will sniff the floor when competing in Obedience and Rally. It may be a concern for some dogs but I haven't found my dog sniffs the floor generally. Dogs when nervous will do all kinds of things such as scratching, zooming and sniffing can be one behavior.

All the sports develop a close working relationship with your dog - you're a team. They build upon each other - strengthening each other.

I mix and match our training so we might start with nose work, then obedience and end on agility - all in the same short training session.
 
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Discussion Starter #7
Thank you so much for the detailed response. We have a conformation show and our first Rally Novice trial next week. I'm excited.
 

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We got all our points for the POA and received the certificate in the mail. Very proud of my puppy. We also got a few "real" points on the way.
 

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Wow. Time to celebrate. Congratulations.
 
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So your dog don’t have a problem sitting in the ring? I’ve been told don’t focus on sit or it will be a problem . If you want to get the total dog award though you have too.. This past week I’ve been trying to get Nova to work on Stand and sit to get her to know the difference. We are currently taking beginner + crate games ( end in 3 weeks) and then I have to take trick class before we can start obedience. So that probably won’t start until after summer. Our next show in UKC is Feb 1st . This time is going to count for points so I’m a bit nervous.
 

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Discussion Starter #11
Mel, we have no problems with sitting in the conformation ring. Good luck with your show!
 
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