If you have a show-quality dog from an accomplished breeder, consider training her to compete in dog shows. It's hard work, but a lot of fun.
Consider first doing behavior training and obedience training. Training for a show is considered activity training. If your dog has already had success with another form of training, you may have good luck training for dog shows.2
Learn show grooming from a dog groomer, a video or a book. If possible, find a special video for your breed with specific grooming techniques.3
Attend handling classes, or find a good video to learn show handling. Try to find instruction specific to your breed.4
Leash-train your dog. Begin by putting on the lead and letting her go where she wants.5
Call the dog as you walk along with her. Change directions by giving a slight tug on the leash, enough to turn her head in the correct direction. At the same time, start coaxing her to come. If she does, give lots of praise, or even a pat if she comes next to you, but keep on going. Repeat this procedure until she has learned that a tug on the leash means she must change direction.6
Teach her to walk beside you on a loose lead. This is similar to teaching a dog to heel in obedience training, only you command the dog to stand when you stop, and you work your dog on the right as well as the left side. Corrections are always made with a sharp jerk and release, with lots of praise for correct responses. Talk to your dog in an encouraging, happy voice.7
Increase your speed gradually until she is trotting. Practice turns as before and practice with the dog on both the left and right sides. If your dog drops her head, correct her with a sharp jerk upward. At the same time, enthusiastically say, "Heads up" or "Let's go."8
Have fun with grooming, which is an excellent way to accustom your dog to being handled. If you don't have a grooming table, put a rubber mat or other nonslip surface on any table. Teach the dog to climb or jump up onto the table.9
Practice posing (also known as stacking) the dog once she enjoys the grooming table. At first, be satisfied with getting her accustomed to having her legs moved and getting her to leave them in that position for a few seconds. Gradually increase the time you require her to stay on the table. Always give lots of praise for standing as posed.10
While the dog is posed, go over her as a judge would, checking teeth, picking up the feet, checking testicles on male dogs, etc.11
Take a grooming table, tack box, dog food, water, camping chairs, a first aid kit and show clothes to the show.
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