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An obedience trial is a dog sport in which a dog must perfectly execute a predefined set of tasks when directed to do so by his handler. The basic objective of obedience trials, however, is to recognize dogs that have been trained to behave in the home, in public places, and in the presence of other dogs, in a manner that will reflect credit on the sport of obedience at all times and under all conditions.
Training a dog to participate in AKC obedience trials increases a dog's understanding and reliability in responding to commands such as "sit", "down", "stay", "come", and "heel.
A handler may choose to train for higher degrees of accuracy and style in order to receive more points. For example, on a recall, to receive a perfect score the dog must come at a trot or run directly to the handler, without sniffing or veering to one side, and sit straight in front of the handler, not at an angle or off to one side or the other.
The dog and handler teams with the four highest scores in a given class will receive placement ribbons, and sometimes additional prizes. All dogs that receive a passing, or "qualifying" score earn a "leg" towards an obedience title.
When a dog has accumulated the requisite number of legs for a given title, the AKC will issue a certificate to the dog's owner recognizing that accomplishment. Obedience competition provides an opportunity for a person and a dog to work as a highly tuned team.
Training for obedience trials can provide much needed mental stimulation and physical activity for a bored housepet, and provide a fun and challenging hobby for the dog's owner. The exact name and requirements of obedience exercises vary depending on who is sanctioning any given competition.
However, the list of exercises below provides a general description of what a dog and handler can expect at most obedience trials. Depending on who has sanctioned the given trial dogs are divided into classes based on their proficiency, age, or their handlers experience.
Most organizations break down the dog and handler teams into novice, intermediate, and advanced classes. Novice "A" or Open "B". The Novice "A" class is reserved for handlers who have never before shown a dog and earned a title in obedience. Other "A" classes have restrictions on the handler's or dog's experience.
Depending on the level of the class a dog and handler may be expected to perform as few as five specific exercises or may be required to perform several of the exercises determined at random by the judge on the day of competition.
Obedience Titles are awarded through several organizations. The AKC also allows dogs registered with its Canine Partners program mixed-breed dogs to compete; this became effective April 1, When a dog earns a title, an abbreviation is permanently affixed as either a prefix or suffix to the dog's registered name.
The following explanation applies to AKC competition, but also generally applies to other organizations as well. The first obedience title is a CD, or "Companion Dog", which is earned through competition in the Novice obedience class. Handlers who have never earned an obedience title or have never owned a dog with a CD title compete in the Novice A division.
Handlers who have earned a CD title in the past, or who do not own the dog with whom they are competing participate in the Novice B division. Novice Class involves 6 exercises: Competitors must qualify out of points 3 times under 2 different judges in order to earn the CD title.
Competitors are eligible for the Open class after the dog has earned the CD title from the Novice class. The "Open A" division is for competitors who have not earned an OTCh title on any dog, who own the dog, and for dogs who have not yet earned the CDX title. Open Class involves 7 exercises: Competitors must qualify out of points 3 times under 2 different judges in order to earn the CDX title.
The third obedience title is a UD, or "Utility Dog", which is earned through competition in the Utility obedience class. Teams may enter the "Utility A" division if the handler owns the dog, has never earned an OTCh title on any dog, and does not already have a UD title on the dog with whom they are competing. The "Utility B" division is for competitors who have earned an OTCh title on any dog, and those dogs who already have earned their UD title. The handler must give a signal non-verbal to the dog "to heel" as the judge gives a heeling pattern.
At the end of the heeling pattern, the handler will be asked to "stand your dog, leave". The handler walks across the ring and at the judge's signal, the handler gives a signal for the dog "to down", "to sit", and "to come"; followed with "finish". A dog must retrieve a scented handler's metal and leather article. These are two separate exercises. The dog must be able to distinguish between the handler's scent and that of a person who has placed 8 other articles in a cluster approximately 20 feet away.
Three gloves are placed approximately 15—20 feet away from the handler and dog. The handler must turn and face the glove that the judge has indicated and send the dog to retrieve it. The dog must heel with the handler and then is stopped in standing position. The judge "examines" the dog and instructs the handler "call your dog to heel position".
It is often referred to as "go outs". The dog and handler are centered at one end of the ring. The dog is sent out and required to turn and sit approximately 20 feet beyond the high jump and bar jump.
The dog is given a signal and verbal command to jump a high jump and in the second half of the exercise the dog is sent out again and must execute the other jump. It is scored as one exercise. Competitors must qualify out of points 3 times under 2 different judges in order to earn the UD title. Dogs with a UD title may compete in the Utility B division indefinitely. To earn the UDX, or "Utility Dog Excellent" title, a dog-and-handler team must qualify earn out of points in both the Open B and the Utility B class at a single trial to earn a leg towards the title.
In most cases this effectively requires the team to qualify in both Open B and Utility B on the same day. In order to earn the title the team must do this a total of 10 times. The team must earn a total of points, based on a rating scale distributed by the AKC.
The points can only be earned by competing in either an Open B or a Utility B class. In addition, points are only awarded to dogs that placed in the top four and the amount of points awarded to each dog varies depending on the size of the class.
For example, a team that placed first out of 15 may only earn 4 OTCh points but a team that places first out of 50 may earn as much as 40 points. In addition to the points a team must win 3 first place awards - one in an Open B class, one in a Utility B class, and an additional first place win in either Open B or Utility B all under different judges. From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia. This article has multiple issues. Please help improve it or discuss these issues on the talk page.
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