On March 8th and 9th a group of 13 decoys came to Sanford NC to try out for PSA Trial Decoy Certification. Instructors for the camp were: Jerry Bradshaw, East Coast Director, Rick Furrow, East Coast Asst. Director and an accomplished PSA Decoy, Scott Battle, PSA Decoy and 2007 National Select Decoy.
Supporting the camp were Greg Williams, PSA Judge, Katrina Kardiasmenos, Rick Galloway, Janet Dooley, PSA 2007 Level 1 National Champion, among others. We really appreciate those people who came to allow the decoys to work their dogs to test for certification. Without strong dogs, you can;t test strong decoys.
The camp began with in intro to PSA as we had some very new people. and what is expected of PSA decoys in terms of skills and integrity. The PSA style was described, and then Scott Battle demonstrated a PSA handler attack, and a courage test on Janet Dooley’s Zuko PSA 1. The speed and power of the decoy work was emphasized to the aspiring decoys.
Easch decoy was then asked to catch dogs on runaway bites and put a drive on them so we could evaluate their ability to catch a dog safely before we asked them to so anything complicated. This initial evaluation separated some decoys out at too inexperienced, in all likelihood, for certification. These decoys were taken by Mr. Battle to work on fundamentals of catching.
All the decoys were shown proper drive tgechniques in the bite suit, and practiced without dogs for a number of sprints.
We then moved on to catching dogs in the front, and to catching and driving dogs properly, The field was a bit wet from the rain and we had a few slips, but overall the decoys caught on quickly, and with practice by the end of the first day we say some very good prospects for certification out of the original 13.
On the second day, the emphasis was on the courage test catch. In PSA the courage test in the suit is our signature exercise. What sets us apart is our courage test, and doing it safely, as well as the power in the drives – the PSA signature pressure in the suit that you do not see in any other protection sport. The decoys started short, and worked their way to longer catches. here are a couple examples of the decoy work at the camp that were posted by Tim Roberts on Youtube:
In the end we had the following decoys certify:
Full Certification: Robert Kelley, NH; Bill Reynolds, PA; Mark Patillo, GA;Jody Butler, NC;Shawn Edwards, MD;Tim Roberts, NC;
car jack & Handler Attack: Kevin Logan, ME.
A special thank you to Katrina K for the pics to share with the everyone on the blog!
See you in TN at the next PSA Event.