Nationals with a Capital N or how to build you Dog Sport Karma

In dog sports, the term “Nationals” means an annual event for that sport (conformation, agility, rally, obedience), breed (Pugs, Poodles, Pumis) &/or organization (AKC, UKC, CPE, NADAC, ASCA). For example: American Kennel Club (AKC) as an organization hosts Agility Nationals. Dogs that are registered and compete in AKC agility events at the Master level and meet the annual criteria will be invited to attend this event and compete against other dog/handler teams from all over the US (and Canada too!). The next AKC Agility Nationals will be in Perry GA March @4-26 2017.

Breed groups in AKC, for example, also have annual meet ups where only that breed competes in various performance sports depending on the breed of dog (Herding for shelties, Hunting for Gordon Setters, Lure Coursing for Greyhounds) as well as the companion sports (agility, obedience, rally, tracking) that the club thinks people would like to compete in for the week. If they expect that there aren’t enough folks to have an event of just that one breed they may hold small All Breed trials but only give prizes to the host breed. Of course, the historical foundation of these events is confirmation so you can see the depth of the stock that makes up your breed.

An example of this type of event in our own backyard is the Australian Cattle Dog Club of America ( ) Nationals to be held here in the Pacific Northwest. Events will be held in and around Lacey WA from September 18th to 23rd. As you can see by the schedule of events the club will hold agility for just Cattle Dogs on Sunday and herd trials on the last two days at a local facility.

The Australian Shepherd Club of America ( ) will be hosting its 2016 National in Albany OR September 9-17. While this organization allows mixed breeds and other pure breeds to participate in its various programs The National and its pre-event warm up competitions are only for Australian Shepherds who have met the requirements to compete.

Now that being said you should know that these various types of Nationals are held a different locations around the US depending on a number of factors such as regional clubs willing to do the support work and the necessary facilities being fairly close to each other. Because the population is spread out over greater distances, Nationals held west of the Mississippi tend to be smaller and need more help from the dog sport community at large.

With the is in mind, if you would like to lend a hand bar setting or stewarding or course building or anything that you already have a skill at with either of the above events you can contact the trial chairs directly. Let them know what you can help with—sometimes they need folks who are not entered to drive judges around or to help pack equipment up at the end of the whole production—and the times you are available.

Budgets are tight so don’t have any expectations of more than a few refreshments but these are wonderful opportunities to watch a great many dogs compete in a unique environment and perhaps get you interested in upping your own dog sport bucket list.

Here is Althea with the ribbons she won for herding, rally, and agility at the Cardigan Welsh Corgi National in Ca in 2007.
Here is Althea with the ribbons she won for herding, rally, and agility at the Cardigan Welsh Corgi National in CA in 2007. And yes she was the SMALLEST Cardigan Corgi at the Nationals that year.


Seminar–Mental Skills for All Dog Sports

So how well did you do last weekend at the dog show or agility trial or obedience trial or, heck, even a fun match??

If your dog sports competitions aren’t quite as successful or fun as you would like perhaps you might like to join the Mental Skills Training For Competitive Canine Handlers seminar at Family Dog Training Center in Kent Wa on April 16 & 17 with Brenda  Riemer, Ph.D..

Brenda is not only a sports psychologist, she is also a dog sport competitor with championship and High in Trial canine team mates.

Saturday: What is competition; Why we get ring nerve; Skill training; Ways to reduce stress; Use of imagery; Exercises for all participants

Sunday: the working spot teams will do a complete run thrus with Brenda coaching them. the Auditors will play judges, steward, audience and get to see Brenda’s teachings in action.

All the working spots have been taken for the seminars but there are plenty of auditor (attending without a dog) slots left. Brenda has exercises in the seminars for both those with and without dogs. Saturday & Sunday Auditor $150 / One Day Auditor $85

Online Registration: Register

More information and paper registration: docx pdf

UKI-Agility-Red Hot Rovers

December Red Hot Rover UKI trial at Argus Ranch in Auburn WA is now OPEN. The information below was sent by trial secretary Christine Vosburgh Premium is here

Besides offering Speedstakes and International Classes we will also be having a Master Series Heat which consists of an agility and jumping run with prize money being awarded!  You can read all about it on page 3 of the premium. They will be doing a DogToy exchange as well.
Judges are:  Heather Kaluza-Friday and Saturday
Robyn Veenema – Sunday

The schedule and classes are below.
Friday Afternoon-Trial Opens: 11 AM
Briefing/Walk Thru: 11:30 PM
Afternoon Runs Start at 12 PM

Friday Evening- Trial Opens: 6 PM
Briefing/Walk Thru: 6:00 PM
Evening Runs Start at 6:30 PM

Saturday/Sunday-Trial opens: 8:00 AM
Briefing/Walk Thru: 8:30 AM
Judging Starts: 9:00 AM

Ring1 Agility – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners, Nursery
Ring2 Speedstakes – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring1 Agility 2 – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners

EVENING RUNS – Starting at 6:30 PM

Ring1 Agility 3 – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring2 Jumping – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners

SAT & SUN RUNS – Starting at 8:00 AM

Ring1 Agility – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring2 Jumping – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring 1 Masters Heat Agility – All Levels
Ring 2 Masters Heat Jumping – All Levels
Ring1 Agility 2 – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring2 Speedstakes- Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring1 Gamblers – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring 2 Speedstakes – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring 1 Agility – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring 2 Speedstakes2 – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring 1 Agility 2 – Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners
Ring 2 Jumping- Champ/Senior, Novice/Beginners


The popular $5 Redo Runs will be available for every class!

You must be entered in the regular run to be eligible to pay $5 to redo the run again as ‘Not For Competition’ at the end of the class. Sign up for this is on the day of the trial.

If you have not tried UKI you are missing THE most competitor friendly venue.

Bitches in season are allowed to run at the end of each class.  See page 5 of premium for more details. TRY BEFORE YOU BUY – You can enter your first trial without registering. NFC OPTION- Any run can be made ‘Not for Competition’! Use entire course time for training contacts, weaves, start lines or other things, with any non-audible training aid. No food. FRIENDLY JUMP HEIGHT OPTIONS- Any class can be done with Select Jump Height option. No spreads and your dog jumps one height lower. SPEED STAKES PROGRAM- Want to do just jumps and tunnels with your dog? This is the perfect program for any dog that is young, undergoing rehab, unmotivated on standard courses, or needs work at keeping up bars at high speeds. INTERNATIONAL STYLE COURSE DESIGN- Want to try something a little bit different? UKI courses are designed with a touch of the European flair. They are always fun but just a bit more interesting.