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Confused about Trial Categories....


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I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask this....feel free to re-direct me if it is not.

 

I am having trouble understanding where the category "Nursery" fits into things...

 

Things I think I get:

 

There is Novice/Novice (I get that - that's me and Binx), there is Pro/Novice (ok, get that too/ could be new dog or new handler, but not both).

 

There is Open (get that) and Ranch (not sure about Ranch, but ok)

 

Where and how does Nursery fit in? Is it a class like Novice, or is it a category like Open or Ranch?

 

From what I understand, it is not the same as Novice...but is a dog that is under 3 years old who is trained to the same level as an OPEN dog, only he/she is less than 3 years old?

 

IF that is correct, then what class/category is it considered when you attend a small local trial and you are entered as Novice/Novice. Is the field the same? Are the tasks different? Is it a young dog running in Open or is it considered Nursery even if the dog is not at the level of an "OPEN" dog?

 

I'm sooooo confused about this...I hope I didn't confuse anyone else while trying to ask this question!

 

is there a website that lays this out or can someone help me here?

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I'm not sure if this is the right place to ask this....feel free to re-direct me if it is not.

 

I am having trouble understanding where the category "Nursery" fits into things...

 

Things I think I get:

 

There is Novice/Novice (I get that - that's me and Binx), there is Pro/Novice (ok, get that too/ could be new dog or new handler, but not both).

 

There is Open (get that) and Ranch (not sure about Ranch, but ok)

 

Where and how does Nursery fit in? Is it a class like Novice, or is it a category like Open or Ranch?

 

From what I understand, it is not the same as Novice...but is a dog that is under 3 years old who is trained to the same level as an OPEN dog, only he/she is less than 3 years old?

 

IF that is correct, then what class/category is it considered when you attend a small local trial and you are entered as Novice/Novice. Is the field the same? Are the tasks different? Is it a young dog running in Open or is it considered Nursery even if the dog is not at the level of an "OPEN" dog?

 

I'm sooooo confused about this...I hope I didn't confuse anyone else while trying to ask this question!

 

is there a website that lays this out or can someone help me here?

 

Little Hats might lay all of this out--not sure. I don't quite understand the distinction you are drawing between "classes" and "categories"--though it seems to be something like "new" and "more trained" for "class". In any event, Nursery is the class (I call N/N, P/N, Ranch, Nursery and Open all "classes") where you run a dog under 3 on an open course without the shed.

 

If your dog is under 3 and entered in N/N (like binx and you), it's a novice course and a novice dog--the novice course is considerably different than the the nursery/open course. It's shorter, there's no drive (but usually a ware). Often the nursery course is the same as the ranch course, though not always. When it's different, I think the main difference is the length of the outrun, but honestly, I'm not certain. Ranch is also basically an open course without the shed.

 

Does that help?

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Nursery is the class where you run a dog under 3 on an open course without the shed

THANK YOU!!

 

 

If your dog is under 3 and entered in N/N (like binx and you), it's a novice course and a novice dog--the novice course is considerably different than the the nursery/open course. It's shorter, there's no drive (but usually a ware). Often the nursery course is the same as the ranch course, though not always. When it's different, I think the main difference is the length of the outrun, but honestly, I'm not certain. Ranch is also basically an open course without the shed.

Does that help?

YES!!

 

You answered exactly what I was looking for.

 

The category/class thing was just my screwed up way of trying to get my questions out ~

 

I guess what I was missing is that there IS a Novice course. The only courses I hear people talk about are Nursery, Open, and Ranch....so I was missing what course I am supposed to run and what is involved. I'm sure I would have learned that by the time I was ready, but it was really bugging me that I didn't understand the options.

 

I did read through the Little Hats site...I didn't see what I was looking for....but maybe I missed it :rolleyes:

 

Sigh...so much to learn.

 

Thanks Robin - it's much clearer now :D

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Glad it's making more sense--I forgot to add that the different classes have different allotted times. A typical novice course will get 4-5 minutes depending on the size of the course and the particulars involved (the usual novice outrun is about 75-100 yards; the usual open outrun is more like 300-400 yards). A typical open course will get 8-10 minutes, again depending on the particulars--longer outruns will get more time.

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You've definitely got to get to some (more?) trials, and hitch yourself to someone who doesn't mind tons of questions. In my experience, that's almost anyone on Novice days (just not someone who's getting ready to run or just coming off the course). Even better, get thee to a trial and offer to help out scribing, or up at setout if you have any sheep experience.

 

As a newcomer, you'll be running in N/N. N/N can be summed up with "no driving." Otherwise what's expected varies from trial to trial. I've run on N/N courses where all I had to do was gather the sheep and pen them, and other courses where there was not only a full three-legged "wear", but also a Maltese cross (an exercise where you thread the sheep through a cross-shaped chute).

 

P/N has a longer outrun, and some driving is usually involved. Again, it varies by course. I've had a drive out and back, and I've had a full three legged drive, just shorter than the next class up.

 

Now there's a little monkey wrench thrown in here: in some parts of the country, P/N is actually the class down from Open. So, full course no shed. We call that Ranch or Open Ranch here - we have three or more Novice classes while these other parts have only two. Sometimes the setout for Ranch is not as far as for Open.

 

Nursery is sometimes the same course as Ranch, and sometimes it's the full Open course with no shed. Open and Nursery are "sanctioned" classes, meaning they are part of the qualifying system for the USBCHA finals, and the USBCHA has rules and whatnot governing them, while USBCHA has nothing to do with the "novice" classes.

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Open and Nursery are "sanctioned" classes, meaning they are part of the qualifying system for the USBCHA finals, and the USBCHA has rules and whatnot governing them, while USBCHA has nothing to do with the "novice" classes.

OMG - THANK YOU AGAIN!!

Maybe that is why I didn't know there was a Novice Course.... it is not a "sanctioned" class...?

 

Yes, I do need to get to some trials...Right now I am dealing with the delicate balance of fostering and rescue commitments, along with a newly adopted dog that I desperately want to spend every spare moment working with!

 

I still have 2 fosters and 2 10 wk pups (in addition to my 3 dogs) to care for right now...Once I get down to ONE FOSTER DOG, I will have more flexibility for things like trials and auditing clinics. There is a Jack Clinic not far from me this weekend, but I have a potential adopter that wants to meet my Cammie foster (this is the first possible fit for her since October!) So, I must keep my priorities in line.

 

There will be several trials in my circle (friends with sheep farms) this fall, so I'm sure that will be most educational and I will also take your advice and offer to help work the trial with whatever I am capable of helping with.

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Just a clarification on the nursery thing, since the age rule can be confusing to newcomers. The "under three" rule is very specific in that the dog must not be older than 2.5 years on Dec. 31 of the trial year in which it will run nursery. (The other way to look at it is that the dog can't turn 3 before July 1 of the year of the finals in which it will run.) So for example, my Lark, who turned 2 at the end of January is no longer eligible to run nursery for the 2008-2009 season despite the fact that she's only 2 because she will be nearly 3 come Dec. 31, 2008. Pip and Phoebe, who are also 2 but were born in mid-July are eligible to run nursery in the 2008-2009 season because they will be just 2.5 years old on Dec. 31, 2008. That's why folks consider summer birthdates ideal for young dogs because they can run nursery and enter the finals in their third year as opposed to their second (Lark would have to run in the nursery finals this year at two years old, whereas Pip and Phoebe, should they be qualified for the 2009 finals, would actually be 3 by the time they ran in the finals--and that little bit of gained age/maturity can be an advantage).

 

Cattle trials are run on a Jan-Dec year and so the age requirements are a little different (still under 3, but not the whole convoluted thing about when the dog turns 3).

 

If you run in NEBCA sanctioned trials, you will have the option of either wearing (sheep between you and the dog as you walk the "drive" part of the course) or doing an assisted drive, which means you can walk along with your dog while it drives the sheep in front of you. You're probably not going to be worried about assisted drives quite yet, but it's a nice option to have when you're preparing to move up to P/N. Another note: while P/N technically means one part of the team is the "pro," that's not entirely true as novice folks with their novice dogs also move up into P/N even though neither is a "pro." What the N/N vs. P/N division does do is give novice handlers with novice dogs a place to start out where they don't have to compete against open handlers or trained dogs.

 

Also, because the lower classes aren't sanctioned by the USBCHA, they can be run pretty much any way the trial host wants. If the trial is sanctioned by a regional HA like NEBCA or VBCA, those bodies might have rules in place for specific classes, but that's why you aren't finding anything explicit about courses in the lower classes.

 

J.

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