“THE SPORT OF BARN HUNT IS MODELED AFTER THAT JOB THE NORFOLK TERRIER IS ADEPTLY SUITED.”
keep up. To keep the Norfolk excited and willing to work hard, rewards are a must. Squeaky toys are often seen as the ulti- mate rewards for these little rat catchers. But high value treats work wonderfully as well. To see these little dogs work through the various obstacles in a set path is truly remarkable. EARTHDOG Earthdog trials tests the working abil- ity and instinct of the Norfolk Terriers. Since these dogs were bred to hunt vermin and other quarry which lived in under- ground dens, these tests can be a natural extension of the Norfolk Terrier’s instinc- tive hunting skills. While Earthdog trials involve man-made underground tunnels that the dogs must navigate, while scent- ing “the quarry”, the dog must follow the scent to the quarry and then “work” the quarry. “Working” means barking, scratching, staring, pawing, digging— any active behavior. Th e quarry is protect- ed at all times by wooden bars across the end of the tunnel, therefore, the hunting encounter is controlled and neither the dog nor the quarry (usually two rats) are endangered by the activity. BARN HUNT Th is event places the Norfolk Ter- rier back to their roots of searching in a farm environment for their prey.
Historically, many breeds were used by itinerant “rat catchers” to rid farms of crop-robbing, disease-spreading rats. Th e sport of Barn Hunt is modeled after that job the Norfolk Terrier is adeptly suited. Th e sport takes place in a barn-like atmo- sphere that can be re-created almost any- where. An enclosed ring, 50-60 bales of straw or hay, some tubes and some rats are all it takes for these terriers to get their rat on Barn Hunt style. Th e Norfolk Terrier is a versatile dog with many opportunities for both the dog and the people to participate in. Regard- less of one’s preference, these little dogs will aim to please and all for a reward treat and the loving embrace of their peo- ple. Some Norfolk Terriers will just love to fetch the ball for as long as your arm will move and still want more. Th is is a gregarious dog that is a like no other. ABOUT THE AUTHOR We have been involved with Norfolk Terriers since 2004 when we got our fi rst Norfolk (Samson) and met breeders who mentored, coached and advised us on the breed. Samson is such a joy that we have added others to our family and each is a gem. As far as what I do, I am the webmas- ter for the NTC among a variety of other things needed to help the club run. To us, it is all about these little dogs and bettering the breed we have come to love deeply.
Meet The Breeds in NYC 2015, “Cutter”.
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