With 53 dogs entered in today’s ATTS temperament test held by the Northeastern Illinois Bouvier des Flandres Club, it was quite a long day. Eleven of the 12 dogs in our group (seven of the eight Rottweilers) passed. Unfortunately, it was my Axe who failed.
There are 10 subtests in the TT, and Axe passed nine of them easily. His downfall was the friendly stranger. Axe is not a particularly friendly dog. He’s very affectionate to his favorite people, but he just tolerates other people. He is also overly possessive of me, which is why I wasn’t handling him myself. He still wanted nothing to do with the friendly stranger and made it abundantly clear by growling at her, which failed him. Had he remained silent, he may have passed with a low score on that subtest.
I don’t like to anthropomorphize animal behavior, but since I don’t like strangers coming up to me in an overly friendly way either, and I have difficulty remaining silent under most circumstances, I think I understand what Axe was thinking.
Axe’s half-brother, half-sister and mother all passed, and Axe can try again at another test after five months have passed. Following the test, our group talked about the results and agreed that Axe would have probably fared better with the friendly stranger who did the subtest for the females. The friendly stranger who did the subtest for the males was more tentative with the Rottweilers, as compared to the other one. Hesitation or fear is something that Axe is obnoxiously quick to pick up and exploit, unfortunately even when it’s not in his best advantage. Like today.
Freya passed with good scores on all of the subtests. Freya is innately much friendlier than Axel, but there are a few people and dogs that she has taken a dislike to, for no apparent reason that I could see at the time. Fortunately, the neutral stranger and friendly stranger did not fall in this category. I knew she would be fine for the rest of the subtests, as there was nothing there that she had not been exposed to and dealt with. As soon as the certificate arrives in the mail, she will officially be Sciroco’s Freya vom Viersen CGC, TT. And yes, we’re still going to be working on that RN and beyond in rally obedience. Freya’s breeder Donna was there to see Aslan (who she co-owns) and Freya, and happily, both of them passed.
Very proud of all of the dogs in our little group! Eleven new TTs was a good day’s result. Thanks to Axel’s “grandpa” Gary for being a great handler as always.
(NaBloPoMo | May ‘09: 9 of 31 | 75% Challenge: 105 of 274)