Have you ever been interested in the care of dogs, especially show dogs? Well maybe you have never thought of it before, but become a dog handler for dog shows is actually pretty easy! There’s definitely a process to it, but if you have the passion to handle some of the smartest breeds of dog then maybe it’s something you should look at getting into.
Believe it or not, showing a dog is actually very difficult work. Dog handlers present the dog to the judges so the dog’s physique can be judged. There are set standards and expectations that the dog’s physical traits must meet if you want to get a high score. Very little of the dog’s performance is up to it, most of the show is going to be up to the skill of the handler and how strong of bond he/she has with the dog – this is where things can get tricky. In order to be a successful dog handler you must spent days and days training your dog, taking care of it, and keeping it in the best physical shape possible.
In order to be a dog handler you must first love working with dogs. Being able to have the time for it is the biggest issue people face. Because being a dog handler won’t necessarily pay the bills (at first), people struggle to find time to spend with their dogs. If you’re someone who wants more insight as to what it takes to be a dog handler, the best thing you can do is ask someone who already is a professional handler. He/she will tell you all about it and maybe you can determine whether or not you have the drive to do it.
Obviously if you want to be a dog handler you’ll need a dog. Lots and lots of research will have to be put into finding the right dog for you. Use online resources to help you narrow down the right breed. Once you do, you’ll have to find out where you can purchase that breed. Make sure you buy from a reputable breeder! There are breeders out there that only breed for show purposes; while they may be expensive, they will have some of the best dogs money can buy.
Once you have your dog you should seek all guidance you can get. Joining local kennel clubs is a great way to meet other dog owners and pick up some tips and tricks on how you can fine-tune your show skills. There are also lots of classes you can take that will show off all the different dog show poses and techniques that you can use during your show. Remember to NEVER stop improving.
After you’re comfortable with where you’re at as a dog handler it’s time to hit the big shows. While you’re training, it’s recommended that you attend local dog events just to see how you’re evolving and how you do compared to others; don’t expect anything too big. But once you’ve spent a few years with your dog it’s time to take him/her to the big stage!