Mentor Monday: Norma Smith: Handling Help One on One
In the Footsteps of George Alston
Norma Smith, Professional Handler with over 250 Best in Shows, and protege of the renowned George Alston Handling Seminars
- Breathe – Bottom line is to remember to breathe.
- Observe the judge’s directions – Judges are on a tight time frame, so be sure to listen. Go before the ring to observe and check out the pattern.
- Dress – Still a gentleman’s sport so be professional. Preferably no pants. Men, shine your shoes. Take pride and remember it’s the first impression that counts.
Have respect for the sport and judges.
Congratulate the winners, don’t trash talk, and practice good sportsmanship.
The judge might be a very good breeder, but new exhibitors don’t research the history of their breed or the breeders that came before them.
It’s all about the dogs.
Take your time at the show
Dogs shows are not a drive thru. Watch the groups and best in show.
It is a time investment… so be there.
Look forward to your goals and set them.
Do it from your heart for you and your dog.
Find the older handlers for support, and be an assistant handler.
Handlers and good dog people – talk to the younger, newer ones – reach out and help.
Don’t copy a handler that is doing something to fix a problem. Ask what problem they are fixing so you can remember the technique for the future.
Ringside Mentoring – Get a buddy outside of your breed and watch each other.
KNOWLEDGE IS POWER — FRANCIS BACON
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