Showsight Presents the Norfolk Terrier

LIVING WITH A NORFOLK TERRIER

W hen people ask me why I chose a Norfolk Ter- rier I tell them I wanted a small dog with a large personality. Th at is what you get when you own a Norfolk. Th is is a breed that has a huge heart, they love life andthey love their owners. Because of these traits, when you own a Norfolk the possibilities of what you can do are endless. If you are buying one for a pet, the Norfolk is a good choice, they like to walk, play with toys and of course relax with their owners. If you are thinking of trying some per- formance events with this breed you will not be disappointed. Norfolks have a lot of courage and although they enjoy being with their owners, they like to be indepen- dent as well. For these reasons, they make great performance dogs. Of course the breed originated in Eng- land and were one of the breeds kept as a farm dog. Th ey liked to hunt and chase mice as well as larger quarry. So two per- formance events they do well in are Earth- dog and the new sport of Barn Hunt. To start a dog in either sport it is important to find a place for some basic training. To start a young dog in Earthdog it is best to find a trainer who has both tunnels in the ground and above the ground. I like to try and start my dogs around 6 months of age and work with them over the period of few months. It is never too late to start you dogs training. Older dogs will like this as much as the young puppies. It is best to begin with tunnels above the ground, get- ting the puppy used to crawling through the tunnel and then adding a corner and eventually the end piece which has the dog behind the bars barking at the rat. Th is way when you move on to training in the ground they have some idea of what

By Linda Federici Rugby Terriers

they are suppose to do and they have been inside a tunnel. Barn Hunt is a sport that is for all breeds, but like Earthdog is a favorite for our Nor- folks. Once again finding a trainer or a class is the best way to start your dog. Th is sport involves hay bales. I think of it as a find and seek for the dog. In the first level, there are 3 tubes hidden among hay bales, one is emp- ty, one has dirty bedding (from the rat) and one has a live rat in the tube. Th e dogs job is to roam around the fenced in area and find the tube with the rat. Tracking is a fun sport to try with your Norfolk. Mine for one love to walk. In this sport their independence works to help them follow the track and find the glove. Th is is the only sport that the dog is in control. A track layer has walked a track of about 450 yards in the first level of this test. Th e idea behind this sport is the dog is able to follow the scent of the track layer, who has walked the track and at the end of the track they have left a glove. Th e dog who is harnessed and walking at least 20 feet ahead of his owner has his nose to the ground and is following the scent for 450 yards or so till he finds the glove. Only the track layer and the judges know where the map of the track, the handler has no idea where the track goes, he is following his dog. Although a small breed, the Norfolk has endurance and walks right along hap- pily wagging his tail the whole way. Agility is a popular sport to do with a Norfolk. Th ey are agile and can be quite fast which are two things needed for a good agility dog. Th is time owner and handler must work together to run the course cor- rectly in the amount of time given. Obedience can be challenging with a Norfolk but one thing that helps with training in obedience is a Norfolk will work for food! Th ere are several types of obedience, regular obedience and then Rally. Which ever one you are going

to try, like with all the other sports you need to find a place to train and train weekly for several months or longer to get you and your dog ready to compete if that is what you would like to do. A sport for all breeds that opened a few years ago is lure coursing. For my dogs, this is their favorite sport by far. A Nor- folk has a great prey drive, they love to chase and they are fast. Th is is the perfect performance event to try if you are new to the world of trialing your dog. Not much practice is needed, my dogs will chase any- thing and a plastic bag is what they are chasing. Lots of fun to watch them run. When you are not training you Norfolk you are living with him or her and that can be a challenge as well. I live with three Norfolks, all are related and get along well. I have a 6-year-old female, her 3-year-old son and 1-year-old daughter from her second lit- ter. I live in the suburbs in a small house with a small yard. I take lots of walks— mine will walk in any weather, at any time of the day! If someone comes to the house

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