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Getting Started in Hunt Tests

1. Determine Your Dog's Eligibility
 

To enter in an AKC hunt test, your Brittany must be:
• AKC registered (individually, not just the dog's litter).
• Six months of age or older.
Females in season are not eligible to enter, or to be on hunt test grounds. If you enter your female in a hunt test and she comes in season before the day of the test, your entry fee can be reimbursed if you supply the club with a veterinarian's note.

2. Familiarize Yourself with the Regulations for AKC Hunting Tests for Pointing Breeds
  The regulations are long and sometimes difficult for a beginner to understand, but you must know them before you start on the road to a hunting test title. If you have questions, contact an experienced hunt test competitor and ask away! (Contact the Brittany club nearest you for references.)
3. Train Your Dog
  The best way to learn how to earn hunting test titles is to work with an experienced trainer/competitor near you. If there is no one close enough to you, there are books and videos available which will give you a good start (see our Reading list). In either case, this is a matter of learning by doing; you will learn more every time you run your dog, so get our and work your dog as often as you can, and visit as many hunt tests as possible!
4. Find & Enter a Hunt Test
  Visit the AKC Website to search for upcoming hunt tests in your area. Contact the hunt test chairman listed to request a premium list, which will give you all the information on the hunt test, including an entry form.
5. What's Required at the Test
 

On the day of the Hunt Test, the test club will provide a "running order" which will have all the dogs entered in the test, and which brace they are to run in. This will give you an idea of approximately when your dog should run. The running order can be changed if scheduling demands, though, so be prepared and pay attention to what's going on in the field.

When you arrive at the test location, you may check in with the hunt test secretary or chairman to let them know you're present. Your dog is allowed to wear a flat buckle or snap type collar during the test, and you may approach the breakaway (area where you will release your dog to begin the test) with your dog on a lead. Once you are at the line, remove the lead, and lightly hold your dog's collar until instructed to begin.

You're off! If your dog is running in a Junior Hunter test, the test will normally be 15 minutes long (30 for Senior and Master). Since you've reviewed the Regulations for AKC Hunting Tests for Pointing Breeds, you know what to expect from the test, but you will inevitably encounter the unexpected, so stay calm and have fun!

Scores will normally be available an hour or so after your dog's brace is finished. Visit the hunt test secretary to receive your dog's scoresheets, and rosette if he qualified!

6. Get Your Dog's Title!
 

Each ability has categories that receive a score, which the average must not be under 5.0 (you could receive a "0" in a category and still qualify if the average of the ability was a 5.0 or above).  Those ability scores are averaged and this will be your score for the test.  That average must be 7.0 or above for a qualifying score.

To become a Junior Hunter your dog needs four qualifying scores.
To become a Senior Hunter your dog needs five qualifying scores, or four if the dog has already earned a Junior Hunter title.
To become a Master Hunter your dog needs six qualifying scores, or five if the dog has already earned a Senior Hunter title.

 


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Brittany breed, club, and breeder information from members (breeders, owners, & trainers) of the American Brittany Club. Detailed breed information and links.