Beebe’s Cross-training Schedule

I got to thinking after a discussion on another forum, about what activities constitute work for a dog. Is the designation limited to LGDs that actively guard livestock, to bird dogs that still hunt or only to traditional Schutzhund breeds that police/military use in tracking, protection and drug detection? While certainly noble jobs for a dog, what about the dogs that pursue other venues of sport and well, are gainfully employed outside those fields, like mine? Is this still work?

Our training schedule, not including walks and at home training:

Tuesday: Conformation handling class-I’ve been taking Beebe for the practice
Wednesday: Agility followed by Obedience
Thursday: Rally starts
Saturday: to work with me or to a show or match
Sunday: Flyball lessons or to a show or match

So, is this work or recreation? It seems like a lot of hard, exhausting work for simple recreation even though it is really fun and the dogs love to do this stuff. Of course every breed has it’s history, but I think the key difference is that this is not a working breed selected to fill a traditional role. It is however, a versatile dog and capable of working. Shiba were once quite wild and capable hunters independent of people, and still retain many of those feral traits. It has only been very recently, that human beings have been shaping them into more of a companionable house dog. I appreciate that my girl Beebe is still somewhat in touch with her roots at least.

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