The Club's first official Non-Slip Retrieving Trial was held in 1973 with an entry of 57. The trials are open to all Registered Gundogs.
South Australian Golden Retrievers have successfully participated in Retrieving Trials throughout the years. Retrieving training days for gundogs and handlers at beginners and novice level. These are held from time to time. For details of future Training Days please visit this site for updates.
These 11 Golden Retrievers seen in this photo are waiting for their calls at the R.F.T.C. Trial in 2000 on Dodds' Property at Meningie, South Australia.
Retrieving Trial Results
Basic Steps To Train Your Dog For Retrieving Trials
First you should watch a Retrieving Trial to see what it entails and why dogs love it so much. Training Days* are held only occasionally, but there is a lot you can do to teach your dog.
The basis of working with your dog is that you are in control. Remember when competing in trials your dog will often be working over a hundred metres away from you, so you need to be able to combine using the dog's natural ability with having the dog obey your commands.
Many experienced retrieving handlers train their young puppies to sit, and come, on the whistle. This is in preparation for when it grows up and is competing in the higher level stakes - Restricted, All Age and Championship.
However to be able to participate at Novice Level you need only to follow these 5 steps. DO NOT MOVE FORWARD FROM ONE STEP TO THE NEXT UNTIL EACH STEP IS MASTERED CORRECTLY- and keep training sessions short. Do not bore the dog.
1. Teach your dog to walk to heel (both on and off-lead) and sit on command. When that basic obedience exercise is achieved, proceed to the next step.
2. Sit your dog on your left, give it the 'stay' command and throw a dummy a short distance in front. Do not send the dog to fetch. Praise the dog for staying in the sit position. Do this several times - each time picking up the dummy yourself and praising the dog for staying. Once the dog is steady, move to the next step - the retrieve.
3. In a longish, narrow area, such as a passage in the house or between the house and fence, walk your dog to heel, sit it on command (at one end of the area). Throw the dummy down the passage, but pick it up yourself. If the dog is steady, then throw the dummy again. This time, a few seconds after the dummy has landed, tell your dog to 'fetch' - indicating with your left hand the dummy on the ground. This command is usually obeyed with alacrity!
4. As soon as the dog has picked up the dummy, congratulate him and immediately call him to you. (The narrow area should prevent him from running off with it).
5. The dog must return to you and sit in front of you. Then put your hand forward to take the dummy, saying the command in a gentle tone, "give". If he does this give him lots of praise, hugs and kisses.
Now you are ready to conduct the exercise in an open paddock, park or oval. DO NOT try to train with other people and dogs around to distract your dog's attention.
Once mastered, increase the distance of the throws - up to 75 metres. You may need someone to help you with this. Also include some water exercises. If your dog enjoys the water - and what retriever doesn't - throw the dummy into swimming water (where there is an easy entry). Only this time you will need to send the dog to retrieve it the first time! As always he must return the dummy to you, sit and deliver it on your 'give' command.
Once you have achieved the above, you - and your dog - are now ready to participate in Retrieving Trails.
Contact the Golden Retriever Club of SA for more information and training dates