Curly Coated Retrievers of SoftMaple
Home of the First Curly
AKC NA, OA and AX.
Home of the First curly USDAA AD.
Breeder of the first AKC Master Hunter with an AKC Championship
Breeder of the first Curly with a NADD title in dock diving and air
retrieve. First DJ, DJA and AJ.
If your dog loves the
water and loves to retrieve, then the fun sport of dock diving should be a natural. The AKC began recognizing titles of the
new North America Diving Dogs (NADD) organization in June 2014 so now you can also add a dock jumping title to your dog’s
AKC records. The sport is open to all dogs, including mixed-breeds, and one of the first NADD record-setters was an All-American
Dog named Augie who achieved a 24-foot Air Retrieve to tie the world record. In addition to Air Retrieve, NADD also offers
competition in Distance Jumping
Two different techniques can be used to encourage the dog to jump into the water.
Walk the dog to the end of the dock and or, hold the dog back while throwing
the toy into the water. Walk the dog back to the starting point, place the dog, then release or send the dog to go get the
toy. This is effective for dogs that are not trained to wait or stay on the dock, especially if they have a lot of speed and
can compensate for the lack of lift at the end of the dock.
The dog is placed in a stay or wait at its starting position
on the dock. The handler walks to the end of the dock holding the toy, then calls the dog and throws the toy, trying to keep
the toy just in front of the dog's nose so they chase it into the water. The goal is to use this method to get the dog at
the optimum launch angle to increase distance by getting him to jump up, instead of just out or flat, as with place and send.
The chase method is difficult to master. However, if the dog is toy-driven, he can be trained to follow the toy.
Find out more about Curlies and Dock Diving
As of April 1, 2013, the AKC recognizes titles earned in Barn Hunt Association events. Owners may apply to have the titles
recorded on their dogs' AKC records. Barn Hunt titles then will be displayed on pedigrees and other AKC documents.
Barn Hunt is the new and quickly growing dog sport catching fire across the country! Barn Hunt is based on the traditional
roles of many breeds in ridding farms, barns, crop storage areas, and homes of destructive vermin. Some breeds were specifically
created to fill this role, and for many of those breeds, Barn Hunt provides their first true opportunity for responsible breeders
to test proper working traits in their dogs. Barn Hunt is also open to any dog of any breed or mix who wishes to play the
game and can fit through an 18" wide by bale-height tall tunnel. Barn Hunt has titles, levels of increasing difficulty,
and championships. Barn Hunt is an independent sport, but titles are recognized by both the American Kennel Club (AKC) and
United Kennel Club (UKC).
Barn Hunt is committed to creating a
safe and fun sport for dogs, that also holds rat care at the highest level of consideration. The rats used in Barn Hunt are
often beloved family pets. They jump eagerly into their safe, comfortable aerated tubes and truly enjoy interacting with the
We're a great sport for older dogs, and older people too!
Tripod dogs can compete, and so can deaf dogs. To get started first read the rules, then find a club near you, or even think
about forming your own club. You can also find events on the event calendar. We hope you try it, we think you'll like it
Find out more about Curlies and Barn Hunt
Rally is a sport in which the dog and handler complete a course that has been designed
by the rally judge. The judge tells the handler to begin, and the dog and handler proceed at their own pace through a course
of designated stations (10 - 20, depending on the level). Each of these stations has a sign providing instructions regarding
the next skill that is to be performed. Scoring is not as rigorous as traditional obedience.
The team of dog and handler moves continuously at a brisk, but normal, pace with the dog under
control at the handler's left side. There should be a sense of teamwork between the dog and handler both during the numbered
exercises and between the exercise signs; however, perfect "heel position" is not required. Any faults in traditional
obedience that would be evaluated and scored as a one-point deduction or more should be scored the same in Rally, unless otherwise
mentioned in the Rally Regulations. After the judge's "Forward" order, the team is on its own to complete the entire
sequence of numbered signs correctly.
Unlimited communication from the handler to the dog is to be
encouraged and not penalized. Unless otherwise specified in these Regulations, handlers are permitted to talk, praise, encourage,
clap their hands, pat their legs, or use any verbal means of encouragement. Multiple commands and/or signals using one or
both arms and hands are allowed; the handler's arms need not be maintained in any particular position at any time. The handler
may not touch the dog or make physical corrections. At any time during the performance, loud or harsh commands or intimidating
signals will be penalized.
Rally provides a link from the Canine
Good Citizen® (CGC) program to obedience or agility competition, both for dogs and handlers. In addition, rally promotes
fun and enjoyment for dogs at all levels of competition.
Dogs have a very keen sense of smell—100,000 times stronger than humans! That’s why dogs are often used to find
lost people and animals, drugs, avalanche and disaster victims, and even to detect cancer and oncoming seizures. AKC Tracking
is a canine sport that demonstrates a dog’s natural ability to recognize and follow a scent, and is the foundation of
canine search and rescue work. In tracking the dog is completely in charge, because only he knows how to use his nose to find
and follow the track. For many, the greatest pleasure of tracking are the hours spent outside, training and interacting with
We have bred dogs that compete in agility, obedience, tracking, dock jumping, rally, Lure coursing, Barn hunt,
conformation and field. We have been active with our curlies at Therapy dogs. We participate in 4-H, school and scouting
I personally have shown several dogs to the CD level, a
couple to the CDX level, and one to the UD level. I have won an all breed High in Trial. Multiple Match HIT's. Match Group
wins. I have shown many dogs to their CGC title before I became a CGC evaluator for the AKC. I have participated in
Lure coursing, Barn Hunt, Dock Diving, working tests, Hunt tests, Upland hunt test, therapy work with my dogs.
I have shown several Curlies to their Championships. (and helped put points and majors on many others) I have
earned CKC and UKC Championships on my dogs, as well as 2 CKC CDs and 2 CKC CDX titles. I have done tracking, been
a Track layer for the NECC. I put the first AKC agility title on a CCR. The First NA, the first OA, and the first AX. As
well as the first curly to earn a USDAA agility title. I have put TDI's on a couple of my dogs, as well as ST (Stability
Test title) Mark does personal hunting with our dogs, but does not do any field trials. (although he did put a CD on
his Curly gal before she was a year old!)
I started in the dog world with Irish Setters in 1979. I had an All Breed High
In Trial winning Utility Dog when I was a teenager. I hated the constant grooming that the Irish Setter needed.
I was always looking for a breed that was more versatile than my Irish. A dog who would be a constant companion, a
partner in obedience and agility. A dog I could take from the field to the show ring. I found a true gem in the dog world.
The Curly Coated Retriever.
I waited a long time for my first Curly. In 1993 I got Sally from Sheila
Anderson of Karakul Curlies. Am And Can CH Karakul Blazing Autumn CD, CDX, NA, OA, AX, CGC, USDAA AD, Can CD, CDX.
From the moment she entered our lives I was hooked on the breed!
bred to retrieve ducks on English seaboard marshes, the Curly-Coated Retriever is a black or liver-colored dog easily recognized
by his coat, which is one mass of crisp curls that covers his entire body. The coat is easy to care for, as the curls stay
in place with little or no attention. The Curly-Coated Retriever is a strong, smart, active dog who exhibits intelligence
and endurance. He will practically live in the water. Temperamentally easy to train, he is a charming and faithful companion,
and an excellent guard dog. His curious nature may lead him into many amusing escapades that call for an owner with a sense
The Curly is a hunting
dog for the person who likes variety: ducks, pheasant, grouse and a dog who can also be a companion to children and a family
friend. Though he is designated as a retriever, the Curly is also an outstanding upland game dog on pheasant, grouse, quail,
etc. Curlies are currently being hunted throughout North America, and are used extensively for hunting in New Zealand (where
they are the hunting dog of choice) and Australia. Many, if not most, of the people hunting Curlies are family oriented who
just want a dog that hunts and can be a companion so hunting Curlies is rather a silent revolution.
enjoy having fun with my dogs. I also enjoy letting them just lay around doing nothing. Laying around doing nothing, often
leads to a dog occupying himself. Sometimes they become destructive!
Curlies are an active, intelligent breed.
Giving them a "job" to do makes them better members of the family. Having a dog sport you and your curly can do
together strengthens the bond between you. The Curly Coated Retriever is a dog that can excel at many jobs.
A Curly that lives in the house, has regular exercise and work,
including any type of work that takes advantage of the breed's innate intelligence, and is a part of the family, is a happy
Curly. The most important care and training of a Curly is involving him in the family's day to day activities. Include your
Curly in your every day life and he will repay you with years of friendship. The AKC Standard states that "outline, carriage
and attitude all combine for a grace and elegance somewhat uncommon among the other retriever breeds." The grace and
elegance is combined with a sturdy structure and hardworking, persevering temperament to create an excellent working retriever.
Curlies and agility go hand in hand. I have trained the first AKC agility titled CCR, with many others close on my
heels! These dogs love the sport. Basic obstacles comprising an agility course might include: high jumps, bar jumps, broad
jumps, tire and hoop jumps, water, platform, sway bridge, A-frame, teeter-totter and dogwalk. Other obstacles are weave poles,
weave hoops, open and pipe tunnels, collapsed tunnel, crawl tunnel, tables and boxes. Dogs must, of course, clear the jumps
on the course, and they must touch the "contact zones" on obstacles that include that requirement. In competition,
the dog must touch at least one foot in the contact zone or faults are accumulated. The reason for this is to ensure that
dogs negotiate certain obstacles safely. The natural agility of the curly makes them super at this sport. They can be clowns
in the obedience ring, but their speed, intelligence and natural athleticism gives them and edge in Agility competition. Its
great fun for both you and your curly. There have been several very successful curly and owner teams in the US and Canada.
Training can improve your relationship with your Curly. While obedience is a competitive sport there is also practical
obedience which is not much different than teaching basic manners and communication. If you are uncomfortable with the formality
and, yes, rigidity, of formal obedience you can still become a happy team in practical obedience. I recommend obedience to
any Curly owner. It will make your dog a better member of your family.
Coated Retrievers are easily trainable when positive reinforcement and treats are employed. They do not respond well to discipline
or a heavy-handed attitude. Curlies are not dominant by nature, but will take the opportunity to rule the roost, if boundaries
are not set early on. When basic obedience is mastered, Curlies should be graduated to advanced obedience or the agility ring,
in order to keep their intelligent minds busy.
Socialization is also
important with this breed, as they can be sand offish to strangers and if left unchecked, Curlies can become quite timid or
overly suspicious of new people and things.
intelligent and smart. They are easily trained, but do not generally tolerate repetitious training well. Their streak of independence
can make some types of training a little more difficult, as the dog will start making his own decisions. Because they mature
slowly, training frequently takes longer than in some of the more popular retrievers.
Curly is an erect, alert,
self-confident dog. In motion, all parts blend into a smooth, powerful, harmonious symmetry. A correctly built and tempered
Curly will work as long as there is work to be done, retrieving both fur and feather in the heaviest of cover and the iciest
of waters. To work all day a Curly must be balanced and sound, strong and robust, and quick and agile.
Retrievers grow to become large dogs so it is essential that you start training when they are puppies. It is also important
that you keep in mind that because they are such great Retrievers, they tend to mouthy and chew things up as pups. This unwanted
behavior must be nipped in the bud at an early age. The Curly is highly trainable and responds well to repetitive training
sessions along with positive reinforcement. His willingness to please makes the Curly-Coated Retriever the perfect candidate
for AKC Sanctioned Obedience Trials.
Owners who plan to use their
Curly-Coated Retrievers for hunting purposes should acclimate the pup to water as soon as possible. This doesn’t mean
that a ten week old puppy should go into icy water in the freezing cold. It’s best to buy a plastic wading pool and
fill it with water on a mild day. More than likely, the pup will find his way in and have a grand, old time. A retrieving
dummy will make his first experience in the water a good one.
Lure coursing is a system of mechanized
lures and pulleys that simulate the unpredictability of chasing live prey. Dogs of eligible breeds are evaluated for follow,
speed, agility, endurance, and overall ability as they pursue an artificial lure zigzagging across an open field.
"The Coursing Ability Test can provide a wonderful
community outreach opportunity, an enjoyable experience for dogs and owners and a way to expose a wider audience to the sport,
" said AKC's AVP of Performance Events Doug Ljungren. "Most dogs will chase a lure and have fun in the process."
The Coursing Ability Test (CAT) is for any dog of any breed, including mixed-breeds,
as long as it is at least 1 year old and individually registered or listed with AKC.To pass the test, a dog running alone
must pursue a lure, completing the course with enthusiasm and without interruption within a given time.
Dogs that pass the CAT three times will earn a Coursing Ability (CA) title. Ten passes
and a dog earns a Coursing Ability Advanced (CAA) title, and 25 passes results in a Coursing Ability Excellent (CAX) title.Licensed
lure coursing clubs may hold CATs in conjunction with a licensed lure coursing trial or as a standalone event.