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10TH JULY 2016

Judges: To be confirmed
Organisers: The United Retriever Club (North Midland Area)

The United Retriever Club is one of the largest gundog clubs in the UK. It runs retriever training, working tests, field trials and shows. It operates through nine regions or areas. The North Midland Area was founded in the Hope Valley of Derbyshire 50 years ago, so this year is our Golden Jubilee. It now operates mainly in Derbyshire, Nottinghamshire and Yorkshire.

The demonstration takes the form of a working test, in which different breeds of retriever compete. The judges will be respected and experienced people who have had success with their own dogs. A commentary will explain the work of the dogs and the scores given by the judges.

The competition is special in the gundog world because of the number of different breeds taking part, plus some teams of different colour variations. Each team is made up of dogs of one breed, or colour variation of a breed. This will give everyone an opportunity to watch various styles of work from the different breeds. There are four dogs and four handlers in each team, two Novice dogs and two Open dogs. All these retriever breeds work on shoots, retrieving pheasants, partridges, ducks and rabbits. In a working test like today the dogs will retrieve canvas dummies. The dummies may be thrown for marked retrieves, or hidden for blind retrieves. The best dogs will work quickly using their natural instincts, but also take instructions from their handlers when necessary. The Open dogs will be set longer or harder retrieves than the Novice dogs, which will be tested on more basic work.

The judges will award marks for each retrieve, and a commentary will explain what is happening.

The winning team is awarded the Esmoro Trophy, plus mementoes for the team members. The top Open dog wins a Trophy and the best Novice dog is awarded the Hope Tankard.

The Retriever Breeds.

Labradors: The most popular and numerous of the retriever breeds. They have short coats and there are three teams representing the three possible colours, Black, Yellow or Chocolate. Labradors are noted for their strong hunting, good noses and swimming ability. They are the most numerous and successful in trials and the shooting field.

Golden Retrievers: These are second in numbers to the Labradors. They have longer coats of various shades of gold, light or dark. Working Goldens tend to be darker in colour and fitter in conformation than show type Goldens.

Flatcoated Retrievers: This is a traditional old breed of retriever, but nowadays is less numerous than the Labrador. Like Golden Retrievers, the Flatcoats have long coats and hunt with a higher head carriage to catch the scent. Flatcoats can be black or liver in colour.

Chesapeake Bay Retrievers originated in Eastern USA, where they were used to retrieve ducks and geese from the big estuaries. They are strong and powerful and are brown or sage in colour.

Irish Water Spaniels. These brown dogs have curly coats. In the show ring they are classed as spaniels, but they work as retrievers rather than spaniels.

Curly coated Retrievers. This is an old breed dating from Victorian times, but is less common in the modern shooting field. The breed sports a black or liver coat of tight, crisp curls, which repels water, burrs, or thorns. They are strong muscular dogs.

Phil Wagland, (Hon.Secretary)

PRIZES KINDLY DONATED BY Alpha The food of champions

Win Ten bags of Alpha Ferret Feast

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Alpha Feeds is delighted to offer one lucky Countryman’s Weekly reader this fantastic ferreting prize bundle which includes ten bags of premium Alpha Ferret Feast, a pair of Grubs Tayline 5.0™ Field Boots and a Wooden Ferret Box. Ten runners up will also receive a bag of Alpha Ferret Feast.

Alpha Ferret Feast is nutritionally formulated as a premium, complete food to meet all the nutritional needs of working, pet and show ferrets of all ages and breeds.

With 36% protein from high quality chicken and fish, Alpha Ferret Feast provides high oil content for a healthy skin and coat and contains no artificial colours or flavours. Easy to digest and highly palatable, the food also contains Taurine, Calcium and Phosphorus for good health.

Ideal for field sports, the Tayline Boots are both waterproof and insulating with lightweight easy clean rubber shell over the foot, additional rubber calve protection and full stretch shafts, giving maximum comfort and fit for most calve sizes.

Lined with a Super-Dri™ moisture wicking terry knit lining, the boots keep the wearer dry and comfortable in a range of temperatures from -10ºC to 30ºC for a prolonged period without sweat and heat build-up.

Also part of this fantastic prize is a traditional wooden ferret box with a wide carry strap, worth £70.

The Tayline 5.0™ boots are available in Moss Green in UK sizes 4-13. They are priced at £89.95.

Alpha Ferret Feast retails at £16.99 and £6.99 for a 10kg and 2.5kg bag respectively.

For further information please visit www.alphafeeds.com and www.grubsboot.com.

First Prize (one winner)

10 x Alpha Ferret Feast 10kg bag

1 x Wooden Ferret Box

1 x pair Grubs Tayline 5.0™ Field Boots

Runners Up (x10)

1 x Alpha Ferret Feast 2.5kg bag

Please contact Claire at TSM on 01724 784600 for further information.