My Life With Dogs #16

Friends: I have decided to share with you My Life With Dogs. These Blogs taken from my book, 14000 Dogs Later, may be one page at a time, or more. I don’t want to dump too much on you at a time. I hope you enjoy. Feel free to make comments here, or on Face Book or Twitter.
ALERT…ALERT…ALERT
Note: There has come upon us a new day in the sport or activity of training dogs. Where baiting dogs used to be reserved for the conformation ring…today it has taken over the obedience ring as well. In a future blog I will proffer to you my opinions of using treats as opposed to the forced method of training…and I will extend my discussion far beyond the enclosue of an obedience ring or a walk in the park…I will talk with you about the training methods of guard, attack, protection, seeing eye, scent, rescue and much more. In the meantime, no matter your choice of training, please attempt to appreciate the following.

“Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.” Roger Caras

     Following my military stint I returned to West Virginia where my old dog, Chad, became my sidekick as if I had never left home. My concentration on training dogs slid into the background while I finished my undergraduate degree at Marshall University and found Emma Sue Kincaid who reluctantly agreed to marry me. (The previous two girls had both said absolutely not!) We got married and laid plans for working in Northeastern Ohio.

I received a call from Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company in Akron, Ohio, interviewed, and became Associate Sales Manager of Sales Publications. Emma Sue and I rented an apartment in Canton while she found a position in the Canton South School system teaching in Special Education. Chad was our constant companion, a steadying force in our new life, and we took him to the city park every night for ball throwing and long walks.dog training and obedience_r (2)

It was there we met Stephanie and Jeff Martin, who owned a beautiful Doberman Pincher puppy…we were hooked. They introduced us to Mollie and Joe Israel who owed a Dobbie champion named Omar. Within a month we had our own Doberman pup that we named Tagore…and all of a sudden I found myself back in the groove of training dogs. While I was training Tagore I also helped Steph and Jeff with their pup. We’d meet at the city park each night after work and before long strangers started appearing with their pups and all of a sudden I was teaching classes again.

In mid-1969 I received a call from Kent State University from Jim Turner. He wanted to interview me for a position as Associate Director of Radio-TV Information. I liked the opportunity, left Goodyear, and Emma Sue and I moved to Hartville, a small Amish farming community on Route 43 halfway between the university where I would work and Canton South, where Emma Sue worked.

Our eleven acres was surrounded by big-time farmers. On one side was Jo Bixler, who later became my first daughter’s godfather. He farmed 400 acres with the most modern equipment. Across the road was the Amish bishop, Mr. Byler, who had ten daughters. Those girls could sling a 60-pound bale of hay further than any man. My Byler tilled and planted with beautiful Belgian workhorses. Two diverse farmers, with equally diverse farming equipment…yet when the corn was high both fields looked lush and plentiful.

I remember telling Emma Sue my dog training days would probably be over, after all who would drive 15 miles from Kent or Canton, or 20 miles from Akron to attend classes on a small farm in Hartville. But I gave it a shot anyway. I ran an advertisement in papers in Hartville, Canton, and Kent.

We had an acre of flat land as a front yard and every inch of it was filled with cars, people and dogs on our first night of class. I had learned from previous travesties to keep all dogs at least ten feet apart and I personally announced this as each individual exited their car while Emma Sue handled signups.

Friends: I have decided to share with you My Life With Dogs. These Blogs taken from my book, 14000 Dogs Later, may be one page at a time, or more. I don’t want to dump too much on you at a time. I hope you enjoy. Feel free to make comments here, or on Face Book or Twitter.
ALERT…ALERT…ALERT
Note: There has come upon us a new day in the sport or activity of training dogs. Where baiting dogs used to be reserved for the conformation ring…today it has taken over the obedience ring as well. In a future blog I will proffer to you my opinions of using treats as opposed to the forced method of training…and I will extend my discussion far beyond the enclosue of an obedience ring or a walk in the park…I will talk with you about the training methods of guard, attack, protection, seeing eye, scent, rescue and much more. In the meantime, not matter your choice of training, please attempt to appreciate the following.
“Dogs are not our whole life, but they make our lives whole.” Roger Caras

F
ollowing my military stint I returned to West Virginia where my old dog, Chad, became my sidekick as if I had never left home. My concentration on training dogs slid into the background while I finished my undergraduate degree at Marshall University and found Emma Sue Kincaid who reluctantly agreed to marry me. (The previous two girls had both said absolutely not!) We got married and laid plans for working in Northeastern Ohio.
I received a call from Goodyear Tire and Rubber Company in Akron, Ohio, interviewed, and became Associate Sales Manager of Sales Publications. Emma Sue and I rented an apartment in Canton while she found a position in the Canton South School system teaching in Special Education. Chad was our constant companion, a steadying force in our new life, and we took him to the city park every night for ball throwing and long walks.
It was there we met Stephanie and Jeff Martin, who owned a beautiful Doberman Pincher puppy…we were hooked. They introduced us to Mollie and Joe Israel who owed a Dobbie champion named Omar. Within a month we had our own Doberman pup that we named Tagore…and all of a sudden I found myself back in the groove of training dogs. While I was training Tagore I also helped Steph and Jeff with their pup. We’d meet at the city park each night after work and before long strangers started appearing with their pups and all of a sudden I was teaching classes again.
In mid-1969 I received a call from Kent State University from Jim Turner. He wanted to interview me for a position as Associate Director of Radio-TV Information. I liked the opportunity, left Goodyear, and Emma Sue and I moved to Hartville, a small Amish farming community on Route 43 halfway between the university where I would work and Canton South, where Emma Sue worked.
Our eleven acres was surrounded by big-time farmers. On one side was Jo Bixler, who later became my first daughter’s godfather. He farmed 400 acres with the most modern equipment. Across the road was the Amish bishop, Mr. Byler, who had ten daughters. Those girls could sling a 60-pound bale of hay further than any man. My Byler tilled and planted with beautiful Belgian workhorses. Two diverse farmers, with equally diverse farming equipment…yet when the corn was high both fields looked lush and plentiful.
I remember telling Emma Sue my dog training days would probably be over, after all who would drive 15 miles from Kent or Canton, or 20 miles from Akron to attend classes on a small farm in Hartville. But I gave it a shot anyway. I ran an advertisement in papers in Hartville, Canton, and Kent.
We had an acre of flat land as a front yard and every inch of it was filled with cars, people and dogs on our first night of class. I had learned from previous travesties to keep all dogs at least ten feet apart and I personally announced this as each individual exited their car while Emma Sue handled signups. I had also learned that having people’s attention is absolutely critical on the first night of training. So while everyone stood around feigning control of their dog, I looked for the most rowdy mutt in the bunch. There’s always plenty to choose from; pulling at the leash, lunging at other people and dogs, incessant barking. I’d pick the most hardened case…that dog would d be my unsuspecting attention-getter.

I had also learned that having people’s attention is absolutely critical on the first night of training. So while everyone stood around feigning control of their dog, I looked for the most rowdy mutt in the bunch. There’s always plenty to choose from; pulling at the leash, lunging at other people and dogs, incessant barking. I’d pick the most hardened case…that dog would be my unsuspecting attention-getter.

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