JACK-OF-ALL-TRADES AND PRETTY GOOD AT ALL OF THEM By M.J. Nelson
here is an old figure of speech that if someone or something is a jackof-all-trades, they are master of none. The phrase is used to describe anyone or anything whose knowledge or skills, while covering a wide area, are superficial in all of them. Indeed, I have often said that my many years as an investigative reporter have left me with just about enough knowledge to be dangerous in a vast number of widely disparate areas. But, the validity of this jack-ofall-trades-master-of-none axiom falls apart when the subject is Airedale Terriers. Thanks to the efforts of a number of Airedale folks, there are quite a few Airedales that have earned the desig-
nation “master” or “champion” in a number of different dog sports. “They are probably the most versatile dog around and with proper training and practice, they have the ability to do almost anything reasonably well. While many other breeds are specifically designed to fulfill a single function, Airedales are able hunters, bird dogs, tracking dogs and search and rescue dogs. They are capable of accomplishing titles in obedience, agility, rally and flyball. In the field, they have an incredible nose. Other than Bloodhounds, I don’t know another breed that has a nose better than an Airedale’s. That keen nose combined with the breed’s
intelligence has made them very successful in the hunt test programs,” said Sandi Cooley, whose Airedale Tulla (Ch Strongbow Tullamore Dew SH) does obedience and agility weekly for fun in between field training sessions as they prepare to go for Tulla’s master hunter title. “A well-bred Airedale is a happy, confident dog with no fears or anxieties. They are up for any challenge if it’s properly presented. They are excellent retrievers, they have a good nose and they want to please. While some may not agree, I think terriers can act independently while still maintaining a desire to please. The
Tulla (Ch. Strongbow’s Tullamore Dew SH CGC), Winston’s granddaughter and Cooley’s current hunt test Airedale, is training to run in AKC master level hunt tests.
Mercedes (Ch. Kyna’s Grand Style OA NAP OAJ NJP AD), one of Dianna Fielder’s Airedales, is a successful agility dog.
Ch Moraine Prime Minister MHV (“Winston”), Sandi Cooley’s foundation sire, was the first Airedale to be trained the same way as her late husband Randy’s Labrador Retriever. Winston’s resulting work in the ATCA’s tests inspired many other Airedale folks to adopt similar training methods. (Chris Halvorson photo)
98 Dog News
Dreamer (Ch Bristol Aires Dreams Come True BN CD RN CGC), Liz Mattison’s Airedale, does the long down at an obedience trial.