two women and a white bull terrier on a bench

A Day at the Barn Hunt

Barn Hunt Fun at Woof Woods

Amy and Marley and I headed up for a day of barn hunt hosted by the Barn Hunt Buddies club at Woof Woods in Flushing Michigan. I am a founding member of this group, but not very active in it due to some personal factors. I still like to support their events when I can, and I could attend one day of their spring “Garden Party” themed trial.

My youngest dog, Amy, and my oldest, Marley came with me to the trial. Marley was the first dog I hunted with and she was really a natural at this sport. Except she didn’t really like dark tunnels and the sport launched when she was 8, so her health started to decline just as she was eligible to compete at the highest level.

Barn Hunt B Classes Let Old Dogs Enjoy the Sport

Amy was entered in in Novice A, the lowest level class, and Marley in Open B, which is the second level. Amy needed to find one rat, Marley needed to find two, and they both had to tunnel and climb. Amy qualified in her first run and finished her RATN (Rat Novice) title. I moved her up to Open A for the second trial, where she had more fun tearing up the course than finding rats.

Marley was pretty slow getting around the course and didn’t find any rats within the time limit, but she clearly enjoyed seeing the ones we showed her at the end of each run. I was happy to see her indication was still the same even though her hearing has declined since her last hunt at the A level. I may take her to some more outdoor trials this summer if we have time so she can enjoy sniffing out more rats.

Cleo Parker

Cleo has been showing Bull Terriers in AKC events and working with dogs and dog clubs since she was a teenager. She has been showing Bull Terriers since her teens, started breeding in 1985 and was approved as an AKC licensed and Bull Terrier Club of America ROM-approved conformation dog show judge in 2018. Her foundation bitch, Rachel was the first dog to receive the BTCA Versatility Award, and her Silverwood winner, Marley was one of the first Bull Terriers to title in Barn Hunt. Her professional career has been spent working in marketing insights and analytics in a variety of industries, including automotive, advertising, and pet specialty retail.

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