We are located in Altona, Ontario, Canada, about 50 minutes from downtown Toronto, and just east of the town of Stouffville.
Standard Protocols for IPO/Schutzhund
If you've been in the sport for a while – you know all this stuff. If you are new – here's a few tips on how to behave when visiting a sport-dog club.
People with dogs in their vehicle have first rights to the shady parking spots. During an event - competitors have their own parking area. Respect that right.
You will need a crate in your vehicle, and your dog will need to stay in it when you are not working with your dog. There are lots of crate options – one will fit in your car. (We don't suggest the soft-sided crates, however.) You may not leave your dog loose in your car when the dog is not working, neither can you stand on the sidelines with your dog and watch. A crate keeps the inside of your car safe, keeps your dog safe, and allows you to leave the windows open for ventilation.
Leave the Dog in the Vehicle
Please leave the dog in the vehicle until you have come over and introduced yourself. We love dogs and want to meet yours – but please come and introduce yourself first.
One dog at a Time
If you have more than one dog, only bring one out from the car at a time.
Dogs and Dogs
This is not a play date. Our dogs do NOT mingle – they are working. Keep your distance from other dogs with your dog. (Distance means the length of your leash plus the length of their leash, plus extra for your arms at full length, and the long necks and teeth of the dogs. About 20 feet.) While most of the dogs you meet will be sociable and well-trained, some are not, and all of them are here to learn, not socialize.
Approaching Strange Dogs
Always ask if you may approach or touch a strange dog. Do not be offended if the answer is “no” or “later.” Some dogs have a history, and this must be respected.
Socializing Dogs to People
We go out of our way to socialize our dogs to be confident around people. You might be handed some treats and asked to help socialize a dog. You are free to decline this. If you receive special instruction, such as, “feed, but don't pat the dog,” or “do not make eye contact,” then follow these instructions to the letter.
Jumping Up, Barking, etc.
Our dogs are taught to be confident and happy. In the process – sometime they are a bit unruly. For instance – most working dogs will jump on you to greet you. If you don't want to be jumped on, step back and tell the handler you'd prefer not to be jumped on.
Dogs are excellent readers of body language – and we think that the working dogs are even better than most. We use body language to communicate with our dogs a lot. If you are not familiar with this, you can inadvertently send the wrong message. This is a large and complex subject – but suffice it to say – do not “square up” and stare at our dogs until you understand what might happen as a result.
Barking Dogs in Vehicles
Dogs barking in your vehicle continuously or whenever someone walks by outside of 15 feet is not acceptable. Please control this behaviour.