Sweetbay’s Obedience Titled Newfoundlands

To be a good family companion, a dog the size of a Newfoundland needs manners. His family must teach him what acceptable behavior is, and what he must not do. Walking without pulling, sitting or lying down when told, staying put where told, coming when called, politely greeting others - all are crucial to a well behaved dog. When taught with love, fairness and consistency, a Newfoundland can be the most wonderful of family companions.

Some Newfoundland owners take that basic good manners training a step further. Dog clubs such as the AKC and CKC sponsor obedience trials, structured competitions for obedience work. Standardized exercises are judged and scored, with major infractions receiving a zero, and minor infractions scored as points off. A dog must score 170 or more out of 200 total possible points, without any zeroes along the way, to earn a "leg." To earn an obedience title, a dog must earn a leg at three different shows.

For an explanation of the title abbreviations that follow, click here.


Competitive obedience is divided into levels. Trainers begin their dogs at the Novice level, and if successful, they earn a CD title (for companion dog). Tasks are elemental: heeling politely both on and off lead, responding to the owner’s starts, stops, and changes of pace, remaining motionless while being examined by a stranger, coming when called, and performing sit-stays and down-stays in a group of unknown dogs.

BN Newfoundlands:

WA Sweetbays Caspian CDX BN RE TD NAP NJP WD-1 WRD-5 DD-1 DDX-2 (NF-11317, EL-4881)-Terri Desnica

Sweetbay’s Pi BN RN WRD (NF-11627) – Eleanor Cantrell

CD Newfoundlands:

Sweetbay’s Albert CD TD WD DD (NF-4815) - Patti Pigeon

Sweetbay’s Alexis AmCanCD U-CD RA WRD CanWRD DD (NF-8169, EL-2157) -Kenny Norman

Sweetbay’s Asia AmCanCD TD WD DD (NF-3850) - Patricia Aires

Sweetbay’s Aurora CD MX MXJ NA-P NAJ-P FN WD (NF-7502, EL1660) – Anna Lewandowski

Sweetbay’s Austin CD (NF-4478) - Joan Steik

Sweetbay’s Baron CD WRD DD (NF-2586) - Brian Smith

Sweetbay’s Barrie CD RE (NF-12083, EL5602) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Barry CD TD WRD (NF-4726, EL205) - Maureen McCord

Sweetbay’s Benedict CD (NF-5332) - Anne Beck

Sweetbay’s Black Pearl AmCanCD WRD (NF-781) - Marilyn & John Ellis

Sweetbay’s Bluebonnet CD ( EL798) - Geri & Jim Repass

Sweetbay’s Bounder CanCD (NF-5924, EL685) - Anne Seeley

Sweetbay’s Brannaugh CD RE WRD (NF-12061, EL5580) - Kelly Ryan

Sweetbay’s Brienna AmCanCD WD DD (NF-2951) - Karen Brockway

VN AmCanCh Sweetbay’s Brigadier AmCanCD WRD TDD (NF-1737T) - Patricia Aires

Sweetbay’s Brio CanCD - Jennifer Edwards

Sweetbay’s Burlington CD (NF-1602) - Anne McPherson

Sweetbay’s Charlotte AmCanCD TDX CanTD WRD CanWRDX TDD CanDD (NF-3021) - Michael & Sharon Marcus

Sweetbay’s Charlotte O’Hara CD TD CanTDX WD - Claudia Aufhauser

Sweetbay’s Chesapeake CD OA OAJ  WD TDD (NF-5127, EL321) - George Brown

Sweetbay’s Chinaberry CD WRD (NF-700T) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Cimarron CD TD WD (NF-5789, EL608) - Lois Apfel

Sweetbay’s Coburn CanCD CanTD WRD CanWRDX AmCanDD (NF-4290) - Margaret Chandler

Sweetbay’s Colby CD WRD (NF-2165) - Karen Brockway

Sweetbay’s Coriander Alum CD WRD - Frank & Rosemary Roderique

Sweetbay’s Corinanne CD RN TDD (NF-8246, EL2221) – Nancy Aliff

Sweetbay’s Cosmopolitan CD WRD TDD (NF-4311, EL87) - Debby Rothwell

Sweetbay’s Courtship CD (NF-640T) - Barbara Jenness

Sweetbay’s Cutter AmCanCD AmCanTD NA WD AmCanDD (NF-5354) - Frosti Lange

Sweetbay’s Darby AmCanCD RE TD WD AmCanDD (NF-6811, EL1205)-Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Darwin CD TD WD (NF-5772) – Julie Daniel

Sweetbay’s Darnelle CD WD - Carol Murray

Sweetbay’s Desmond CD TDD (EL613) - Pat & Rick Pourchot

VN Ch Sweetbay’s Destry AmCanCD WRD DD (NF-1561T) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Doogie AmCanCD DD (NF-3848) - Julie Saunders

Sweetbay’s Effie White CD WD (NF-1804T) - Joann Apter

Sweetbay’s Eliot AmCanCD TD WRD AmCanDD (NF-2969) - Mike & Debby Walthers

Sweetbay’s Emily AmCanCD U-CD RN (NF-8091, EL2098) - Annie Miksch

Sweetbay’s Esme AmCanCD TD WRD AmCanDD (NF-7215, EL1456) – Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Faeroe CD RA WD CanWRD (NF-8603) - Anne & Morgan Seeley

Sweetbay’s Fairchild CD TD DD (NF-3017) - Kathy Sylvia & Doug Stewart

Sweetbay’s Falco CD WD DD (NF-2214) - Anne McPherson

Sweetbay’s Far Shores Troy CD WRD (NF-1182T) - Rita Jean Browne

Sweetbay’s Fiona AmCanCD RE TD WRD AmCanDD (EL1924) -Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Fletcher AmCanCD WRD - Butch & Debi Martin

Sweetbay’s Frasier CanCD CanDD - Marci Johannson

Ch Sweetbay’s Gabriel AmCanCD WRD - Anne Snow

Sweetbay’s Grumman on the Yukon CD (NF-630T) - Ken Ryder

Sweetbay’s Hara CD U-CD RAE TD (NF-8306, EL2270) - Dan Klotz

Sweetbay’s Hatteras CD WD DD - Sonja Carter

Ch Sweetbay’s Holly CD WRD - Marilyn & John Ellis

VN Ch Sweetbay’s James CD RN WRD TDD (NF-8867, EL-2706) - Maria Rizzuto

VN AmCanCh Sweetbay’s Jason AmCanCD AmCanTD WRD DD (NF-1379T) - Pam Mohr

Ch Sweetbay’s Jordan CD WRD (NF-902T) - Marilyn & John Ellis

VN Ch Sweetbay’s Josie CD TD WRD DD - Gaby Cohen

VN Ch Sweetbay’s Karisma AmCanCD WRD AmCanDD (NF-1616T) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Kate CD WRD (NF-7226, EL1461)-Nancy Nevin

Sweetbay’s Kersey CD (NF-2654) - Mel Wunderlich

Sweetbay’s Kestrel CD TD WRD (NF-633T) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Kuu Wahine CD (NF-797) - Neal & Merle Klug

Sweetbay’s Lea CD TD (NF-6506, EL1005)- Barbara Adams

Ch Sweetbay’s Leonine Knight AmCanCD AmCanTD WRD (NF-632T) - Patricia Aires

VN Ch Sweetbay’s Liam CD RN WRD TDD (NF-7984, EL2023) - Patti Pigeon

Sweetbay’s Little Buttercup CD WD - Maureen McCord

SpCH Sweetbay’s Lyric CD TDX RE WRD OAP OJP OFP (VCD1) OAC EGC OJC TNE TGO WVO UAG1 CSL3-F CSL3-R CSL3-S CSL3-H(NF-7437, EL1624) - Lois Apfel

Sweetbay’s Magic CD RE DD (NF-9448) - Ida & Robert Freimer

Sweetbay’s Matigan AmCanCD DD (NF-3007) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Megalesia CD WD - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Mississippi CD RE WRD (OFA NF-7892, EL-1951) – Kathy Robbins

Sweetbay’s Mollie Moore CD - Glen & Mary Malchow

Sweetbay’s Molly Brown AmCanCD WD (NF-2805) - Annie Miksch

Sweetbay’s Neela CD RN TD CSL1-F, CSL1-R (OFA NF-10760, EL-4385) – Lois Apfel

Sweetbay’s Noah CD TD WRD DD - Art Hafdelin & Marilyn Wilson

Sweetbay’s Nova CD U-CD RAE TD WRD CanWRDX TDD CanDD (NF-8113, EL-2111) - Jean & Mark Ochsner

Sweetbay’s Orion CD WD, OFA NF-1302T - Carol Murray

Sweetbay’s Padgett AmCan CD (NF-6539, EL1025) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Paisley AmCanCD AmCanTD AmCanWRD AmCanDD (NF-4263) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Parmalee AmCanCD AmCanTD AmCanWRD TDD CanDD (NF-5341) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Peyton CD RN (NF-7248, EL-1477) - Janelle & Mike Wilson

Sweetbay’s Pippin CD (NF-2934) - Julie Black & Tim Harder

Sweetbay’s Puffin CD WD (NF-1794) - Annie Miksch

Sweetbay’s Quin CD RE WRD TDD (NF-8101, EL-2105) - Sue & Mark Raney

Sweetbay’s Rabble Rouser CD WD (NF-1254) - Sharon LaStair

CanCh Sweetbay’s Ramsey CanCD CanTDX WD (NF-7253, EL1479) - Ronna Webb

Sweetbay’s Reuben AmCanCD WRD CanWRDX AmCanDD (NF-4095) - Sharon & Michael Marcus

Sweetbay’s Ricochet CD RN WRD (NF-7439, EL1625) – Kathy Robbins

Sweetbay’s Rigel CD TD WRD DD (NF-6511, EL1011) - Barbara Adams and Jim Pushnik

VN Ch Sweetbay’s Romney AmCanCD WRD TDD (NF-1502T) - Patricia Aires

Sweetbay’s SaltyDog AmCanCD TD AmCanWRD TDD (NF-3450, EL7) - Gaby Cohen

Sweetbay’s Scannon CD WD (NF-1643) - Linda Barnard

Sweetbay’s Scout CD TD WRD DD (NF-5140, EL323) - Marilyn Wilson & Art Hafdelin

Sweetbay’s Seabury AmCanCD WRD DD (NF-2686) - Cathy & Bill Meade

Ch Sweetbay’s Seaquest Gayla CD WRD - Mary Lou Browne

Sweetbay’s Shadyn AmCanCD TD WRD Can WRDX DD (NF-3336) - Byron Caine

VN Ch Sweetbay’s Shane CD WRD DD (NF-2211) - Charlene Rhyne

Sweetbay’s Shelby AmCanCD WD - John Haas & Cindy Sowers

AmCanCh Sweetbay’s Shogun of O’gun AmCanCD (NF-631T) - Mel Wunderlich

Sweetbay’s Sienna Brandy CD WRD (NF-1072) - Lee Prescott

Ch Sweetbay’s Skyler CD WD (NF-5180, EL125) - Kathy Sylvia

Sweetbay’s Stoker CD WRD - Nancy Nevin

VN Ch Sweetbay’s Sullivan CD RE WRD DD (EL-4795) - Patti Pigeon

Sweetbay’s Talisman CD (NF-6525, EL1016) - Frosti Lange

Sweetbay’s Tanner AmCanCD RN AmCanDD (NF-7777, EL1867) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Theodore CD - Casey DePriest

Sweetbay’s Thor AmCanCD TDX - Dan Klotz

Sweetbay’s Thunderfoot CD - Spence Hoffman

Sweetbay’s Trinity CD (NF-4750, EL208) - Geri & Jim Repass

Sweetbay’s Triton CD WD DD – Marilyn & Allan Rhodes

Sweetbay’s Vivian CD RE TD TDD WRD (NF-10505, EL-4130) - Maria Rizzuto

Sweetbay’s Whitney AmCanCD WD DD (NF-4489, EL124) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Wyatt CD RN WD (NF-9155, EL-2930) - Kathy Robbins

Sweetbay’s Wyndhaven Reina CD - Danette Rhodes


When a dog earns a CD, he is eligible to continue on to the next level, Open. A dog who passes three Open trials is granted a CDX title, for companion dog excellent. CDX dogs do all their work off lead. They heel politely and respond to commands, perform a recall that is interrupted midway with a "drop" command, retrieve a dumbbell both on a regular toss and when tossed over a jump (and the dog must jump the jump both on his way to fetch and on his return), and a broad jump. The group sit-stay and down-stay times are extended, and the owners are out of sight. Open work is far, far more complex than Novice, and few owners continue on to meet the challenge. It is still quite rare to see a Newfoundland in the Open ring.

CDX Newfoundlands:

Sweetbay’s Annapolis CDX OA OAJ WRD DD (OFA EL761) - Kathy Brown

Sweetbay’s Ashlea CDX TD (NF-3884, EL29) - Becky Cieniewicz

VN WA Ch Sweetbay’s Benson CDX RE WRDX TDD (NF-7511, EL1666) - Patti Pigeon

VN Ch Sweetbay’s Bonne Amie CDX CanCD TD WRD DD (NF-826) - Pam Mohr

Sweetbay’s Bosco CDX TDX OA (NF-3881, EL521) - Ann Dunnigan

Sweetbay’s Briare AmCanCDX TD WRD DD (NF-3845) - Lee Udelsman

Sweetbay’s Bristol’s Brigate CDX CanCD WRD DD (NF-2405) - Dawn Hockman

Sweetbay’s Cabot CDX RAE (EL3710 ) – Leesa Hobbs

Sweetbay’s Calypso CDX CanCD WRD DD (NF-1300T) - Pam Mohr

Sweetbay’s Carly CDX CanCD WRD DD (NF-2345) - Pam Mohr

WA Sweetbays Caspian CDX BN RE TD NAP NJP WD-1 WRD-5 DD-1 DDX-2 (NF-11317, EL-4881)-Terri Desnica

Sweetbay’s Cheechako AmCanCDX TD WD TDD (NF-4603, EL173) - Judi & Ellis Adler

VN CH Sweetbay’s Coast CDX RE WRD TDD (NF-7899, EL1956) - Susan Kerby

Ch Sweetbay’s Dylan CDX CanCD WRD (NF-1183T) - Judi & Ellis Adler

VN Ch Sweetbay’s Erin AmCanCDX TD WRD DD (NF-1936T) - Mel Wunderlich

CanCh Sweetbay’s Gideon CD CanCDX WRD CanWRDX AmCanDD - Bonnie Fergusson

Sweetbay’s Harrier AmCanCDX TD WRD CanWRDX DD (NF-4274) - Mary Ellen Thien

Sweetbay’s Jellicoe CDX WRD (NF-1301T) - Karen Brockway

Sweetbay’s Jesca CDX RE TD (OFA NF-10489, EL-4115) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Jillian CDX CanCD WRD CanWRDX DD (NF-3844) - Cheryl Dondino

Sweetbay’s Kayla AmCanCDX WD TDD CanDD (NF-3060, EL94)) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Kona AmCanCDX WRD CanWRDX TDD CanDDX (NF-2351) - Sharon & Michael Marcus

CanCh Sweetbay’s Kyak CD CanCDX WRD CanWRDX DD CanDDX W-FD FDN (NF-7189) - Bonnie Fergusson

Sweetbay’s Lindsey CanCDX CanWRD CanDD (NF-3554) - Dean & Grace Edwards

Sweetbay’s Maisie CDX RE DD (NF-8251, EL2225) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s McKenna AmCanCDX TD WRD CanWRDX TDD CanDD (EL602) - Judi & Ellis Adler

CanCh Sweetbay’s Meara CD CanCDX AmCanTD WD AmCanDD (NF-2899) - Bonnie Fergusson

VN Ch Sweetbay’s Misty AmCanCDX WRD DD (NF-736T) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Olivia CDX THD WRDX (NF-8222, EL2199) - Rick & Pat Pourchot

Sweetbay’s Petra CDX U-CDX RN UR01 WD DD - Michael & Sharon Marcus

Sweetbay’s Rio AmCanCDX AmCanTD AmCan WRD AmCanDD (NF-3065, EL93) - Judi & Ellis Adler

WA Sweetbay’s Ruca CDX RE NAP NJP WRD TDD (OFA EL-4152) – Sue Raney

Sweetbay’s Seaworthy Gale CDX AmCanTD WRD (NF-635T) - Claire Carr

Sweetbay’s Sloane CDX RA WRDX DD (NF-6830, EL1214) - Debby Rothwell

Sweetbay’s Sonnet CDX U-CDX RE UR01 TD WRD CanWRDX (NF-8250, EL-2224) – Michael & Sharon Marcus

Sweetbay’s Where Away CDX TDX WRD - Mimi Long

Sweetbay’s Zara CDX WRD DD THD (NF-10497, EL4123)] – Pat & Rick Pourchot


When a dog earns his CDX, he can go on to the most advanced level, utility. When he earns three utility legs, he is awarded a UD, for utility dog. Five complex exercises must be performed at a very high level to qualify. The dog must heel with his owner without any verbal commands; signals only are allowed. The owner then signals the dog to stay, walks to the end of the ring and faces him, and then gives him sequential minor hand signals (no vocal commands) to drop, to sit, and to come, and then to go to heel. Scent articles are a part of utility work: four metal and four leather objects are spread out. The handler scents a matching fifth article (leather or metal) by rubbing it briefly with his hands. The judge sets this scented one in the pile, and the dog is sent to locate the scented one and return it. He does this twice, once with the scented leather article, and then with the scented metal one. A discriminating retrieve is next. While the dog’s back is turned, three white cotton gloves are spaced equally on one end of the ring: left, right, and center. The judge instructs the handler which to fetch, and the handler pivots and sends the dog by arm signal to fetch and deliver the correct one. The "moving stand" has the dog heel along, and at a single command from his owner, stop in a stand while the owner continues on for a distance, then turns to face the dog. Meanwhile, the judge approaches the dog and examines him thoroughly, touching him all over. When the exam is finished, the owner calls the dog directly to heel position. The final exercise is done twice. Two jumps are set up along the edges of the ring. One is a bar jump, and one a solid high jump. There is an open "alley" between the two. The handler sends his dog on a "go out" down this unmarked alley, and the dog runs to the opposite end of the ring, then turns, facing his handler, and sits. The judge indicates which jump, and the handler instructs his dog to jump that one by means of an arm signal. The dog leaps the correct jump, sits in front of the handler, then goes to heel position. Then it is repeated: another go out, another directional signal and jump with return.

If Open is harder than novice, utility is light years harder than Open. Many trainers call it Futility, and for good reason. It takes a sound dog to negotiate so many jumps. It takes a smart dog to figure out all the little wrinkles. And it takes a willing dog to perform in accordance with the rules. A Newfoundland who earns a UD title deserves heaps of admiration, as does his dedicated owner.

UD Newfoundlands:

Sweetbay’s Bailey UDT CanUD WRD DD - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Boudicca UD - Anne Beck

Sweetbay’s Chelsea UDT CanUD WRD DD (NF-1104T) - Cheryl Dondino

Sweetbay’s Coventry AmCanUDT AmCanWRD TDD (NF-2182, EL92)) - Judi & Ellis Adler

Sweetbay’s Faye UD (NF-3440) - Nanette Wiesner

WA Sweetbay’s Gusto UDT WRDX TDD OA OAJ (VCD2) (NF-7523) – Ann Dunnigan

VNAmCanCh Sweetbay’s Harmony UDT CanCDX CanTD WRD DD (NF-1824T) - Cheryl Dondino

Sweetbay’s Illuminata UD WRD DD, OFA NF-6397 - Susan Kerby

Sweetbay’s Kira UD CanCD TD WD CanWRD (NF-3451) - Linda Rand

Sweetbay’s MacArthur AmCanUDT WRD DD (NF-2893) - Lee Udelsman

Sweetbay’s Mandalay AmCanUD WRD DD (NF-1812T) - Butch & Debi Martin

Sweetbay’s Remy UD RN DD WRDX (OFA NF-9157) – Ann Dunnigan

Sweetbay’s Truman UD WRD DD (NF-6292, EL900) - Sonja Carter


As difficult as utility is, there were a few incredible dogs out there whose owners wanted something harder yet. And the UDX was born. Once you have your UD, you can aim for a UDX. To earn it, you must qualify at ten utility trials. Sweetbay has produced two UDX newfoundlands.

UDX Newfoundlands:

Sweetbay’s Alison UDX WRD DD (NF-4756) - Nancy Nevin

Sweetbay’s Sailor UDX WRD DD (NF-3470) - Nancy Nevin


The OTCh is the highest obedience honor awarded by the American Kennel Club. It is almost as difficult to explain as it is to earn. Once a dog has his UD, he can continue to show in obedience. The OTCh is based on points, and a dog must earn 100 points to become an Obedience Trial Champion (or OTCh). He earns points by qualifying in both Open and Utility at the same show - and by taking either a first or second in one or both classes. Only the top two placements count. How many points he earns is based on how many dogs he "defeated" in his class. It is often a matter of years before enough points are earned. Only three Newfoundlands have ever earned an OTCh. Nanette Wiesner’s Gretl earned hers in California, where the competition is exceptionally fierce. In her area, it is not unusual to score an incredible 199.5 (out of a possible 200) and not even place in the top four in your class. (Gretl is also famous throughout the obedience world for being the only Newfoundland in history to score a perfect 200 in AKC competition.)

OTCh Newfoundlands:

OTCh Sweetbay’s Gretl TD - Nanette Wiesner

For more information about the Adlers’ dogs:

Sweetbay Newfoundlands
Judi & Ellis Adler
12320 SW Malloy
Sherwood OR 97140
(503) 682-0604



CD: VN Ch Sweetbay’s Karisma AmCanCD WRD AmCanDD, OFA NF-1616

Kari earned many honors over the years.  Here, she and her owner Lisa Ferguson compete in the Veteran’s obedience class at the 1991 National Specialty.   Lisa and Kari were both eight, and as you might imagine, they were the darlings of the trial.


CD: Sweetbay’s Paisley AmCanCD AmCanTD AmCanWRD AmCanDD, OFA NF-4263

Paisley shows the heads-up, tailwagging precision that is typical of Sweetbay dogs in obedience.  Here, she earns her Canadian CD with owner Judi Adler, passing all four shows on one weekend, and earning the High Scoring Newf in Trial award at all four.


Sweetbay’s Shadyn AmCanCD TD WRD Can WRDX DD, OFA NF-3336

Shadyn and his owner Byron Caine, pictured here, made history by completing a CD in Shadyn’s first three shows - when Shadyn was exactly six months old!



CanCh Sweetbay’s Gideon CD CanCDX WRD CanWRDX AmCanDD

Whenever people say giant dogs aren’t suited for obedience, Gideon loves to prove them wrong.  He earned high scores for his owner Bonnie Fergusson with his quick heeling, his eager retrieves and his dynamite jumping style.

ob9.jpg (22549 bytes)

Sweetbay’s Rio AmCan CDX AmCanTD AmCanWRD AmCanDD, OFA NF-3065, EL93

Rio is a versatile working dog who loved every dog activity he met.   He’s a crackerjack obedience dog, and gave his all for his owner, Ellis Adler (pictured here).  Rio always garnered cheers from the audience with his high-flying Open routines.



UD: Sweetbay’s Bailey UDT CanUD WRD DD

Bailey was a traveler.  She lived in Oregon, but traveled to Canada for dog shows, to California for water tests, and to Connecticut for a tracking test.   She charmed everyone she met.  Unlike many obedience dogs who need to be sequestered to do their best, Bailey loved to wait for her turn sitting outside the obedience ring.  She happily soaked up the petting provided by crowds of strangers.   Then she would trot into the ring with owner Judi Adler and turn in a beautiful, qualifying performance.


UD: Sweetbay’s Coventry AmCanUDT AmCanWRD TDD, OFA NF-2182, EL92

Covy never met a dog show she didn’t adore.  She loved the crowds, the noise, the activity - and she loved performing.  She drew spectators in droves to the obedience ring whenever she competed, and she always gave her best for owner Judi Adler.

Sweetbay’s Olivia CDX WRDX, OFA NF-8222, EL2199

Nine year old Olivia gleefully snatches up the correct scent article at a recent utility trial


                  Nevin and Sailor

UDX: Sweetbay’s Sailor UDX WRD DD, OFA NF-3470

Sailor and his owner, Nancy Nevin (pictured here) are a well-known pair in midwest obedience trials and specialties.  He’s a solid worker and he has a streak of inventiveness that keeps spectators glued to the ring when he’s performing.  At age ten, Sailor still competed successfully in the utility ring, an amazing feat for a dog his size and advanced age.

Sweetbay’s Alison UDX WRD DD, OFA NF-4756

It’s an enormous accomplishment to earn a UDX on a Newfoundland. There have been only seven Newfoundlands to earn this difficult title – and Nancy Nevin has earned two.Her Alison finished the requirements for her UDX on June 15, 2001.



OTCH: OTCh Sweetbay’s Gretl TD

Here’s what fame is.  It doesn’t matter which of the fifty states you’re in, start up a conversation outside the utility ring with the border collie and golden and dobe and sheltie owners.  Bring up Newfoundlands in obedience and they will say "Oh, do you know Gretl?"  To obedience fanciers, she is as much a one-name star as Cher or Elvis.  For Gretl defined perfection in obedience, and she and her owner Nanette Wiesner are held in awe to this day.

Training a dog in obedience brings many rewards. It can also be great fun. In addition to formal exercises that lead to official titles, many obedience shows offer non-regular classes. Such as team obedience: four dogs simultaneously doing the novice exercises, aiming for precision and synchronized performance. Four Sweetbay owners in the Seattle area stumbled over the team concept, though it sounded like a hoot, and decided to give it a try. A maritime theme was the logical choice for water-loving Newfoundlands, and the Maritime Marauders were born. They made their debut at the WSOTC obedience trials in March, 2001, and were an immediate hit. Four black Newfoundlands wearing skull-and-crossbones bibs pranced through the exercises while their owners, in full pirate regalia, kept them in step. Here, they perform a figure 8, weaving loops around stewards. A regular figure 8 has one dog going right, then left, around two stewards. A team figure 8 is more like a figure 32, with four dogs and five posts. It’s a nightmare to perform, but the precise Marauders are in step every inch of the way.

The Maritime Marauders take a break between performances. Anne Seeley, Frosti Lange, Robin Nelson, and Debby Giard look very piratical in their glitzy headscarves, and the parrots on their shoulders give just the right touch of whimsy. Bounder, Cutter, Maddie and Sherpa think the entire idea is a lark. Pirates are fearsome, but these pirates kept the mood light, and the crowd entertained. It started even before it started. As the Marauders lined up along one edge of the ring, ready to begin, the judge asked, “This is the heel on lead. Are you ready?” Captain Frosti’s hearty “Aye, Aye!” brought the house down.

Advanced obedience work includes several formal retrieving exercises. When you have a natural, joyous, speedy retriever like Kate, training is great fun.