THE WORKING DOG PROGRAM
Eric Schweichler firstname.lastname@example.org
Working Dog Program Coordinator
The year 1998 saw the inauguration of the Siberian Husky Club of Canada's Working Dog program.
There was already in existence a Sled Dog program, Obedience Program, Show Program,
and a host of other CKC programs that Siberian owners could strive for.
Why one more program, that was not even recognized by the CKC? At least, not yet.
Some SHCC members saw a need to go back to the basic reasons for owning, and training, a Siberian Husky.
For owners who still believe in the qualities that made the Siberian Husky famous, there is the Working Dog program.
It's for owners who enjoy being with their dogs throughout a long winter day, exploring new trails, stopping to enjoy lunch together,
perhaps camping overnight under diamond bright stars, building priceless memories of isolated trails,
and treasuring silent communion with their team mates.
The Working Dog Program has already attracted many owners and breeders.
Probably because it is at least a hundred years behind the times.
Sometimes a step back can be massive leap forward.
The Working Dog Criteria
There simply is not room to include all the details for certification as laid down by the Siberian Husky Club of Canada,
but below is a quick summary. You should ask for a copy of the rules and regulations
and application forms before you start, to avoid disappointment.
In the basic Sled Dog category there is Working Lead Dog (WLD) and Working Team Dog (WTD).
To earn this the team runs 80 K (50 miles) on a maximum of 5 legs of 16 K (10 miles). There is a minimum of two legs.
With common sense, and following a canine fitness program, two dogs are quite capable of doing that comfortably.
You can take all day to finish a leg.
The basic criteria above apply also for Working Skijoring Dog (WSJD).
For the really dedicated there are Working Lead Dog Excellence (WLDXl) and Working Teams Dog Excellence certifications.
The criteria are high, but a well-trained, superbly conditioned team of 4 or 6 or more can accomplish it.
You don't have to own all the dogs, nor use the same dogs all the time. The award goes to the individual dog.
For Lead Dog certification, the dog must run single lead on a team consisting of 3 dogs minimum -- on teams of 6 or more,
lead dogs can certify running double lead. Legs on wheeled rigs qualify.
Also, it is not required for all dogs on a team to be registered Siberians, but SHCC certification will only be granted to registered Siberians.
For hikers, there is the Working Pack Dog (WPD). The dog must start off with a load, including pack, which is 30% of its weight.
Basically, the hike must be on natural terrain for a minimum of 48K (30 miles.) -- two trips of 16K (10 miles),
plus on with an overnight camp out with (8K) 5 miles out and 8K (5 miles) back.
If the overnight campout is not used, the dog must do four legs of 16K (10 miles) for a total 64K (40 miles).
For the truly fit hikers, there is a Working Pack Dog Excellence (WPDXl) certification.
Working Weight Pull Dogs (WWPD) must qualify in 4 events.
It must pull 8 times its weight on natural surfaces -- eg: snow or dirt -- and 12 times its weight on artificial surfaces -- eg: concrete.
Working Weight Pull Dog Excellence (WWPDXl) is also available
Special Working Dog certification for search and rescue, guide dog, or the like, shall be considered by special application
to the Working Dog Award Committee on an individual basis.