Afghan Hound Times
(Afghan Hound Database and Breed Information Exchange)

Humour - Shendi the famous dumbell flicking disobedient/obedient Afghan

A true story from Janis Nixon, Stormbringer Afghans Canada. At eight years old, Shendi was not only the oldest dog in the obedience class, he was the only Afghan. We were working on retrieving and he was doing rather well, better in fact than many of the more "intelligent" breeds present. This episode happened at our graduation and speaks eloquently about why many Afghan owners do not compete in official trials!

Here in Canada, we have an exercise known as the retrieve over the high jump. The dog sits at your side while you throw the dumbbell beyond the jump, then you must send the dog to get it, he brings it back and gives it to you and then returns to heel position. Simple eh? Sure... .

At our test, the instructor called Shendi and I onto the floor to begin this exercise. The rest of the class and in fact the entire next class sat on the stage watching. Shendi sat at my side perfectly. I was told to throw the dumbbell. I did. "Send your dog," the instructor commanded. "Take it," I said to Shendi, and he left my side, vaulted the jump flawlessly and turned to pick up the dumbbell.

Then it happened. In turning, Shendi the ham spotted the crowd on the stage. His tail began to wag. I gulped. He then treated the audience to about four minutes of him whacking the end of the dumbbell with his paw to make it flip into the air, all the while eyeing the crowd for the appreciative laughter. When he had completed his performance, he picked up the dumbbell, flew over the jump and sat in front of me. Perfectly. I took the dumbbell and told him to heel. He circled me to the precise heel position and sat.

Strangely enough, we were docked only a few points. The chuckling instructor told me that the entertainment value helped us pass the test! Needless to say, we were warned that this sort of thing wouldn't be appreciated in a trial.


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