Written by Bob Self
Welcome to 2014. The years keep rolling along and obedience popularity keeps struggling along. Perhaps it’s a sign of the times where many individuals opt for faster rewards than obedience can provide? Maybe it’s a desire for activities that eliminate the repetition required for obedience training? Possibly it’s a greater demand for events which offer more exhilarating competition? Maybe changes are needed that don’t force average trainers to compete against master exhibitors? Perchance subjectivity in judging is an issue? Conceivably the need for knowledgeable instructors who are dedicated to the obedience game, and motivated to prepare beginners for the ring is a concern? For all one knows it could be a need for more cultured leadership who are sensitive to the needs of those supporting the fancy?
Like most problems, answers usually require attention to countless factors and resolution is often slow. Obedience in it’s current state has existed for some time now. Occasionally we hear news about exciting growth in entires at a trial, increased membership at a club, or triumphs at a tournament. But the overall picture has shown little significant growth in participants.
I’m now comfortable with the idea that obedience will continue to exist in it’s niche. Those who sincerely support the sport are robust in their determination to maintain it’s existence. Sadly though, exhibitors have become accustomed to the fact that obedience is small and many measure success according to the notion it’s supposed to be that way. No doubt I often overlook this view but I can’t help believing in the importance of obedience training and the concept that it should be the foundation for all canine activities. Not everything is logical but I find it ironic that other canine events don’t seem to feel the same way.
I have posted this editorial on our our Facebook group located at https:www.facebook.com/groups/frontandfinish/. Please feel free to chime in and leave your opinion.
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