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Working Tests are run out of the shooting season using dummies, and occasionally dead or caged birds for the dogs.
No live game is shot (but blanks may be used). These tests are arranged by age and standard of the dogs - Puppy (6 -18 months), Novice and Open. Sometimes there is a Graduate or Intermediate test to bridge the gap between Novice and Open.
The Kennel Club description of Working Tests is
' Gundog Working Tests (GWTs) are competitions which, by artificially simulating shooting day conditions, seek to assess, without game being shot, the working abilities of the various breeds of Gundogs. Cold game and Dummies may be used at the discretion of the organisers.'
'Credit is given to - Natural quartering and pointing ability, Drive Style, Good marking, Control,Speed in gathering retrieve Delivery Quiet handling.'
Serious Faults - Refusing to retrieve, Whining or barking, Out of control, Chasing, Refusing to enter water, Changing Retrieve.
There are usually 4 tests to complete -
The degree of difficulty iss linked to the standard being judged thus in a Novice water test it will usually be a seen retrieve from water whereas in an Open test it could be a blind retrieve across water.