This information sheet is designed to help with any questions you might have about hiring me, Cheryl Cates, to handle your dogs. I began showing dogs at the age of 10. At that time, I showed in Junior Handling as well as my own dogs, which were Boxers. At 11, 1 went to work as a Handler's Assistant. I worked as an assistant, and many years as a licensed assistant, until I was 21 years old. I was employed by 3 top handlers on the West Coast, and traveled to shows all over the United States. In 1976 I became an American Kennel Club Licensed Handler, and have been in business since that time.
When I agree to show your dog, you can expect that I will make every attempt to show the animal myself. Sometimes however this is not possible due to scheduling conflicts. I am as fair as I can be to see that no one dog is missed repeatedly. Basically, I have a Number One Specials dog who is never missed. After that, the Specials and class dogs who are shown on a regular basis are next in line, with occasional Specials and class animals following that. Dogs being shown on a regular basis have priority. Dogs that are shown on a limited basis are rotated in the Winners Class to ensure that each one has a chance. These decisions are based on many factors including number of times shown, the judge for the day, and who is available as a back up handler, among others. In the event of a conflict, the client's input, if any, is always considered.
Monday is my day off, and I do not take calls then. However, if it is an emergency, please do phone, and I or someone will get back to you. Otherwise, you can figure out from my schedule, which is available on my web site, when I will be most accessible at home. Tuesdays and Wednesdays are usually the best days to reach me, between 8 and 9 in the morning and between 8 and 9 at night. I am extremely busy.; not that I am complaining. But because I am, it is sometimes impossible to return calls on the day they are received; or even in the next couple of days. I try to return all calls personally, but sometimes it takes a while. If possible, it is helpful to leave what your question is on the answering machine then if I cannot call you back personally I can have someone do it for me. With the advent of the computer age I am most accessible by email. You can check on my schedule to see when I am home, and email me any time! If a reasonable length of time has transpired and I have not made contact, please either call or email me again. Occasionally, for various reasons, a message may be missed.
Billing is done monthly for dogs shown on a regular basis. Clients who have dogs shown on a limited basis are requested to pay on a per show basis, with a monthly accounting being sent at the end of each month. A deposit is required on all new dogs, with circuits payable 1/2 in advance. I do not make entries, but will be responsible for phoning them in when an account has been set up in advance by the client.
Hope this answers some, if not all, of your questions! I am always willing to discuss any matter with my clients, so feel free to ask if you do not know or are unsure.