MINEOLA, Texas (KLTV) – David Gannon and his six-year-old Golden Retriever Trap found they won the 2020 American Kennel Club All Breed Top Obedience Dog of the Country Award earlier this year.
“I was really happy about it because I’m older again, I’ll be 80 this year. My dog is six so pretty young and inexperienced,” said Gannon. “I won it with a really good dog 15 years ago. I was really honored to get it as an older person and I really enjoy doing what I do. There is nothing like a trained dog. “
Gannon and Trap exercise 15 minutes a day before having breakfast and starting to play.
“So they look forward to the meal and then we play, so they look forward to it. It’s all a pleasant experience, ”he said.
There are many rewards for doing perfect exercises.
“This is a good boy, this is a good boy. Go, ”he says to Trap.
Gannon began training dogs 50 years ago and has won many awards since then. The two practice in a training center surrounded by the past accomplishments of Gannon and his dogs and those he trains. You do 12 exercises per show and each exercise has value. Gannon said that whoever comes closest to 200 points wins that class.
Last year they competed when they could during COVID, although some shows were canceled. For others, they wore masks and distanced themselves socially.
“Many of the shows we went to have been canceled. Almost the week before you’re ready to go and they cancel. Sometimes you get your money back, sometimes you don’t, ”said Gannon. “Usually there is a big celebration in New York for the best obedient dog in the country. Evening wear, nice dinner, but of course COVID canceled that and they recently sent us the trophy for it. “
Gannon said he was an aircraft carrier pilot in Vietnam and was paying attention to details.
“But with a dog you have to get him to pay attention to details, and that’s another story. You have to do it and he has to do his part. But it’s a real pleasure to have someone who takes care of them and tries every time to do what you ask them to. “
With COVID-19, Gannon said a lot has changed about the competition, but they are still able to work together and bring the award back to East Texas.
“Be consistent with them. Formulate the rules, then be consistent. Enforce it every time you want certain behavior, ”he said.
Her next big competition is in Ohio in a couple of weeks.
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