Showsight Presents The Poodle

!"#$%&'()*+$,#-.$,/.$+,#0.1 !"#$%&#'(()*&#+*,-#(.#/0&123#4,52(1#6),7382(5#+(00288&& 9253#:2&;&1<#=%31(5#=>(-()3<#6*325&#?(&*<#+"58%23#$"*&5)3#@#$&112#A&"&1; ! he Poodle Club of Amer- ica has long held Junior Showmanship Com- petition, but this year launched an exciting PCA Junior Education A wonderful Poodle quilt was crafted and generously donated by one of our Junior’s moms. Th e start of an annual Quilt ra ffl e far exceeded our expectations in raising funds for the program. Th e funds will be used to establish vouchers and scholarships to assist our Junior’s in their future endeavors.

Program. Th e Parent Club program was created to inspire, educate and encourage young Poodle enthusiasts. Th rough this program we hope to lay a foundation for generations of good ethical sportsmen, breeders, handlers, owners, club members, photographers, groomers and anything else dogs, not just Poodles. Many think that our world is simply grooming, show- ing and of course a ribbon. For programs such as 4-H, it is most important to first understand why a breed is put on the earth. Th e process of learning any breed from the bottom up is of great value when develop- ing a young person’s ability to understand function as related to form, balance and proportion. Feeding a young mind is like building a skyscraper; it all starts with a sound foundation. Who better to teach the youth the future of the Poodle, than those that live it? Conformation is not for everyone, so our goal is to broaden the spectrum encompassing all types of events (field, obedience, agility, tracking, therapy, service) and open doors for many young people with Poodles. Last year we were fortunate enough to have 10 Junior entrants, which is excellent attendance at a National, of any breed. Th is year we had 7 entries in JS con- formation and 1 in agility—again a very good entry. Th e 2014 PCA Junior’s Education kicked o ff with several Junior’s assisting with set up and stewarding for Agility and Obedience on Monday and Tuesday.

A Just-for-Junior’s pizza luncheon in the afternoon stirred great discussion and exchange of the youth’s common interest in Poodles. A newly established Juniors Ref- erence Library was introduced. Each child borrowed two books for the year to expand their interest and knowledge of dogs. Several interactive presentations by members encouraged the Juniors to get involved in hunting trials and performance events by explaining the history of the breed and their versatility. A presentation on the importance of being involved with the community and how our world would change without purebred dogs captivated the group. Journals were provided to encourage the Juniors to record their dog experienc- es throughout the year and share at PCA 2015. A PCA Junior pin and a Purina® bag for each Junior contained various dona- tions of hair-parters, dog hygiene/main- tenance/health laminated posters, combs, dog treats, etc. Following regular class judging on Wednesday was a well-attended hands on mentoring clinic. Volunteering their time was the breed’s finest professional Poodle handlers and the 2013 PCA Best Junior, Lindsay Gorder. Th e Juniors brought their own dogs and had the opportunity to work one on one with each of the handlers. Each Junior received various perspectives on all aspects of Poodle conformation handling,

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as well as an exercise in Obedience and Rally. Th is experience is sure to leave an impression that will last for their lifetime. In the end, it was clear—there is a wonderful new generation of Poodle enthusiasts eager to continue exhibiting their Poodles. Mission Statement for the PCA Junior’s Education Program: Foster and reward youth participation, teach ethics in animal care, handling and training practic- es, encourage young people to become actively involved in the sport, instill good sportsman- ship, generate pride in accomplishments earned competing with Poodles.

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S HOW S IGHT M AGAZINE , J UNE 2014 • 295

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