AKC Earthdog Tests
The purpose of non-competitive Earthdog Tests is to offer breeds and owners of small terriers and Dachshunds a standardized gauge to measure their dogs natural and trained hunting and working abilities when exposed to a hunting situation. The non-competitive program begins with a basic introduction to den work and quarry and progresses through gradual steps to require the dog to demonstrate that it is capable of being trained to follow game to ground and work its quarry.
Earthdog tests are a sport and all participants should be guided by the principles of good sportsmanship both in and outside the test field.”
Sec. 1, AKC Regulations for Earthdog Tests
In all tests the earth is a trench into which is 3-sided wooden liner (9” h X 9” w) is put with the open side down. The liners are well covered and the top of the liner (ot visible) is flush with the groud. At the end of the earth is the den area, where the caged quarry (2 rats) is placed. The quarry is securely caged and can not be hurt by the dog not can it hurt the dog. An opening, at the quarry end of the earth, allows the judge to observe the dog work and provides a way for to remove the dog on completion of his test. Earths are scented their entire length with SE and ME earth be scented only on the primary quarry trail.
This page contains brief descriptions of the requirements for each test. Complete details are provided in the regulations for Earthdog Tests for Small Terriers and Dachshunds available from the AKC at www.akc.org
Introduction to Quarry
Pass/Fail, not required for entry to Junior Earthdog
10’ earth with one 90 degree turn; Handler releases dog at marker with one (1) command. Handler may go to earth entrance and stand. He may encourage the dog at judge’s prompting.
Time Maximum 2 minutes from time of release to begin working; 30 seconds working quarry
Note: This is a simple instinct test requiring no training or previous exposure to earthwork. No titles are earned, nor is it a prerequisite for advanced tests. Since this may be the first such experience for some dogs, the handler and judge are encouraged to make this a positive experience for the dog
Junior Earthdog Test
Pass/Fail, Dogs must qualify 2 times under 2 different judges to earn Junior Earthdog title
30’earth with three (3) 90 degree turns, release point 10’ from entrance; Handler will release dog at Marker with one (1) command. No further action is allowed.
Time: 30 seconds to reach quarry; 30 seconds to start working; 60 seconds working, within 1’(one foot) of the quarry
Note: Once at quarry dog may not leave.
Senior Earthdog Test
Pass/Fail, Dog must qualify 3 times under 2 different judges to earn Senior Earthdog title
Dog must have JE title to enter SE
This is a JE earth with these additions:
A 4’ dead-end branch with heavily scented nesting material located under a 12” x 8” door.
A 7’ exit branch, unscented, with one 90 degree turn
The entrance shall be at no less than 45 degree slant with a 4” mound of dirt all around it. The mound may be camouflaged by natural cover as long as it does not restrict the entrance.
Handler will release dog at marker with one(1) command. No further verbal or phyusical action is allowed until directed by the judge.
Time: Maximum 90 seconds from release to reach quarry; 15 seconds to begin work; Must work quarry for 90 seconds with no break
Handler has 90 seconds to regain dog after judge instructs him to recall his dog, after quarry is removed.
Note: For recall, whistling & calling is allowed. Noisemakers,toys bait or hides are not allowed.
Master Earthdog Test Pass/Fail, dog must have SE title to enter this test
Dog must qualify 4 times under 2 different judges to earn Master Earthdog title
This is a SE earth with these additions:
Den entrance readily visible and blocked with a removable obstruction(grill type)
Scent line of approximately 20’ will lead to entrance.
An unscented false den visible to dogs is located midway along walk up to entrance, at least 5’ from scent line.
Constriction point- boards 1.5”thick, 5.5” wide and 18” long are placed opposite each other on liner sides to narrow liner to approximately 6’. Ends are beveled.
Obstruction – a 6” diameter PVC pipe placed crossways in liner and loosely mounted on a 1” dowel so as to be able to move approximately 2.5” each way. The portion of the liner above the obstruction is elevated 6” over the main liner and will be approximately 18” long.
Constriction or obstruction are not to be within 5’ of entrance or quarry.
Dogs are worked 2 at a time, braces randomly selected and preferably to owned by the same person Handlers, positioned with the judge, proceed in the direction of earth. Walk up will be not less than 100 yards nor more than 300 yards Judge’s Steward will stand at den area to deal with any overt aggression.
Dog must reach liner entrance and exhibit interest before the judge arrives. A dog will fail if he shows no interest. He may be allowed to continue the test. Dogs barking at the false den will not pass. If necessary the first dog to reach the den and indicate interest may be removed, at the judge’s instruction, to allow the second dog an opportunity The first dog indicating the earth will be allowed to enter it first, with the second dog attached to the sake in the honor position. The honoring dog may show interest in the activity but may not bark continuously.
Time: Maximum 90 seconds from release to reach quarry; 15 seconds to begin work; Dog must work for 90 seconds without breaking; Handler has 15 seconds to remove dog from earth once it has completed required work and judge instructs handler to come remove dog
New Jersey Beanfield Earthdog Club Website
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