FDSA Training Camp 2019

Julie Symons

Julie’s Bio and Sessions

about  Julie Symons

Julie Symons has been involved in dog sports for 25 years. Starting with her mix Dreyfus in flyball, she went on to train and compete in conformation, agility, obedience, herding, and tracking with her first Belgian Tervuren, Rival. Rival was the first CH OTCH MACH Belgian Tervuren and they competed and placed in many regional and national events, winning Ultimate Dog (High Combined in Utility and Agility) at the All Star tournament in 2002.

Julie’s current Belgian Tervuren, Savvy, has earned a CH, MACH2, UD, TDX, VCD3 and the following Nose/Scent Work titles: NW3 Elite, ELT1, SWN, SCA, SIE, SEA, SHDN, SHDA, L1C, L1V, L2I. Earning their TDX and competing in Nosework has intensified their love for scent sports! Julie is an approved AKC Scent Work judge, owning the first Belgian Tervuren to earn the AKC Scent Work Novice level title (SWN) and Advanced Interior, Exterior and Container element titles. Her young Belgian Malinois is well on his way as another versatile teammate, earning his NW2, SWN and SHDN titles and actively training in tracking, obedience, and agility.

One of Julie’s favorite things is a versatile team! She truly believes that participating in multiple sports is enriching to both person and dog and builds on that mutual partnership and trust. Nosework is an ideal sport to compliment your other activities. It’s intrinsically motivating for the dog and it’s also pretty cool to have a pet detection dog!

Julie is a consummate learner and energetic instructor, immersing herself in everything dog training! While teaching agility in the early 2000s, she found how rewarding it was to teach and help others. The simple truth? People just really love their dogs and enjoy doing activities with them. Knowing this helps set the tone for how she runs her classes; giving students ample working time, staying positive when things get challenging, and giving more than 100% of her efforts toward their development. In her other life, she is married with a 14 year old son. As a family they enjoy skiing, participating in kid sports and staying home with the dogs! It goes to show that you can “do it all” with just a little bit of planning and smart training.

Julie is also owner of Savvy Dog Sports – a local dog school covering many sports including Nosework, Obedience, Agility and more! More information can be found at : www.SavvyDogSports.com.

2019  camp sessions

Day 1: Friday

9:15AM – 10:45AM ET

Hall B

Ring Confidence Lab

Experience Level: All 

Did you know that your dog needs to be taught to enjoy the competition ring? It’s true! This lab is designed to help your dog look forward to the ring despite the normal stressors that exist at a dog show! By emphasizing a positive association between the traditional ring entrance found in trials and your ability to produce a fabulous party, we can condition our dogs to love the competition ring.

Day 1: Friday

1:40PM – 3:40PM ET

Hall B

Scent Discrimination Lab

Experience Level: All

Teaching scent discrimination does not have to be intimidating! It’s quite easy to teach our dogs to find our scent using operant conditioning. This lab will have a short intro lecture, and then a working lab for introducing scent and problem solving. For teams just starting out, Julie will introduce how to reinforce and build value for your scent, and how to never ever create stress with this exercise. If your interest is in Handler Discrimination Scent Work, Julie can cover that too! With more advanced teams, she will problem solve specific issues they may have with this exercise. Working teams should bring 5-6 identical metal, leather, wood, or cotton objects; they do not need to be official articles.

Day 2: Saturday

11:00AM – 12:40PM ET

Hall C

Recalls Lab

Experience Level: All

A reliable recall is one of the most coveted behaviors to have! We all want one, heck, NEED one! Recall training starts long before you think! It all starts with building a strong relationship where we are ALL.THE.THINGS. to our dog. In this lab we will cover how to start forming this fantastic bond. We will play some relationship building and recall games, cover what cues to use and how not to use them, discuss common mistakes we might make when training, and troubleshoot recalls gone wrong. Get ready to build that bond and see your recall fall into place!

Day 2: Saturday

4:00PM – 6:00PM ET

Hall C

Obedience Games Lab

Experience Level: All

This lab will showcase the popular “daily” games covered in Obedience Games for retrieves, recalls, fronts, setups, resets, and more! A key concept will be how to maintain your dog’s willingness to learn and play even when there are errors. Lose the formality and build enthusiasm by mixing things up and keeping everybody on their toes and paws! By adding “game training” and less predictability, you can build relationship and transfer reinforcement to the act of playing!

Day 3: Sunday

11:00AM – 12:40PM ET

Hall C

Nosework or Obedience Handler Choice Lab

Experience Level: Novice and Above

Each team will have 10 minutes of one-on-one time to work on whichever Nosework or Obedience skills they choose.

Day 3: Sunday

3:50PM – 5:30PM ET

Hall C

Stand Your Dog Lab

Experience Level: All

Julie loves a good standing dog! Having a strong response for the stand cue will make all the difference for a successful performance. This lab will cover various methods for teaching a stand cue, developing an instant “wait” with moving stands, along with fun ways to address anticipation, subtle footwork for the signal stand, and time permitting, breaking down the exam portion. Our goal is to make standing one of your favorite exercises!!