About Georgia Edwards MD CNWI
A physician (cancer specialist) by profession, my involvement in training, breeding, and competition sports with Bouvier des Flanders dogs dates back more than 23 years. During that time, I have trained and titled at least one dog in each of the following venues: herding, carting, obedience, agility, nosework, and Schutzhund. In 1999, I trained the only Versatile Bouvier Champion in the US, one of five Versatile Bouvier Excellent dogs and one of six Versatile Bouvier Basic dogs (a badly abused rescue dog). The French judge Jean-Yves Reguer has also awarded the TAN to four of my dogs and the Test de Courage to two of them, including re-certifying one at age 12. The variety in training experiences I chose was because I wanted to find the right job for each of the dogs, since they were bred for versatility as all-around farm, and then later, military/police dogs. As a limited breeder, my dogs have sired a number of breed & working champions.
All of my dogs have been certified hospital therapy dogs through Therapy Dog International; I served as both physician liason to the Pet Therapy program for the Cottage Health System in Santa Barbara, CA for 10 years as well as helping to develop it’s testing program and screening of dog/handler teams for hospital work, which was based on the Delta Society model. Through one of my dogs who was able to detect metastatic breast cancer by the odor of the patient’s breath, I developed a particular interest in canine scent discrimination abilities and explored it in relation to disease.
For many years in southern California, my dogs and I participated in the “Meet the Breed” programs, introducing the Bouvier des Flandres to the public at dog shows, including the AKC/Eukanuba National Championships. Throughout my 22 year membership in the Southern California Bouvier des Flandres Club, I have been involved with breed rescue and placement, even after moving to the Seattle area several years ago, and have mentored many new Bouv owners. Other club memberships have included the American BdF Club, Pacific Gateway Working Bouvier Club (founding member, treasurer, show chairman 2000), Puget Sound Working Bouvier Club, North American Working Bouvier Association, Cascade BdF Club, North Bay Training Club, and Los Padres Obedience Club. I have taught classes and seminars in agility and carting at both the national and local level and have written training and historical articles for the SCBdF, PGWBC, and NAWBA.
In 2010, I received certification by the National Association of Canine Scent work as a Certified Nosework Instructor (CNWI), training under Ron Gaunt. My nosework Bouvier, Hawkeye, has served as a “demo dog” at several Seattle Kennel Club shows promoting nosework; he is the first Bouvier to hold a competitive nosework title awarded by the National Association of Canine Scent Work. He continues his own training, joined by his daughter, Leda, under mentor Miriam Rose. I currently teach beginning through advanced nosework at the South Whidbey Parks & Recreation District in Langley, WA and do introductory presentations on K9 nosework to local rescue groups, and to regional and (inter)national breed and working dog clubs. Working with Miriam Rose CNWI, CPDT-KA/NW Nosework, we jointly host mock ORTs and mock nosework trials, NACSW ORTs, and bring speakers on related scent-work topics – such as Kelly Slocum and Elizabeth Kalik from NW Truffle Dogs: “Training Your Dog to Hunt Truffles”, summer 2012 – to our students and others.