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Thursday, April 15, 2010

Girlpower pups First UKA Show wrap-up

Some people asked me a few questions about the pups first show so I will try to answer them.

Here in the UK we cannot compete in kennel club agility competitions until the dogs are 18 months old. I do not mind this restriction but am happy that the UKA allows us to compete with the pups at 16 months old in Nursery and Beginners Steeplechase.

Nursery is an agility class with no weaves or see-saw and a lowered Aframe. Steeplechase is just jumps and tunnels. The UKA shows are generally smaller than KC shows which is another good thing for the baby dogs. But really the most fabulous thing about UKA is the ability to call your run "NFC" or Not for Competition. When you do this you can bring in a toy to reward (gasp!) your dog! You could even just use your allotted time (standard course time) to run whatever course you would like or even just work on your contacts or start line.

About toys and leads at the end of the course: Even in Kennel club shows you will see most dogs grab their leads/toys at the end of the runs. Most handlers and dogs go out of the ring tugging and playing. In the AKC this would be considered "out of control" There are no rules against this from UKA or from our KC. It is refreshing after having dealt with the many restrictive AKC agility rules where they always seemed to restrict the amount of FUN that a dog could have! Having another person throw the toy or encourage the dogs across the finish line is obviously double handling and not allowed although you will occasionally see it happen.

I use most of my UKA shows to reinforce Zen's contacts with a toy.

A few of us started our puppy training together last year and we all had our first show together on Friday! From Lt to right: Bee, Itz, Zaz, Yazz and Fozzie. Yay for the baby dogs! All had their first clear runs except for Itz. While Itz had no clear runs she had Awesome FAST runs and exceeded my expectations for her.

On Sunday Marilyn and Zavvi joined us and Zavvi had her first run which was clear also! Go Zavv-la!

Zaz is just such a great dog to run. She reminds me so much of Zen; she is Zen's mini-me. I am really looking forward to our journey together.

No shows for the pups this weekend. We are off up-north for the European Open Try-outs. The KC really restricts the amount of dogs that can go to the EOs. We have to qualify for the try-outs at special shows during the previous year and try and collect enough points to be in the top 10. Then we have a day of try-outs to get down to the final 3. I don't understand why they restrict it so much when we could theoretically send up to 30 dogs AND we have to pay for ourselves anyway. But hey-ho what do I know? VBG

All I know is that I would like to be taking BOTH pups next year! :-)

PS Thanks to Bee's dad for the photos of the pups!


Diana said...

Good luck at try outs!! Diana

Karen said...

Go Zen Star :-) great pictures x

Hudsondoglets said...

I guess they restrict numbers to keep control? Who knows. Anyways good luck for the weekend.

All of the pups were amazing at UKA. That last picture of Zaz-La could have been Kizz-La. Tidy.

p.s. where to you going up north! You're not even going as far as the Watford Gap and that ain't up north! Truth be told you're going to the Midlands. Lush.

Rosie Ison said...

Have you noticed in that puppy group that apart from Bee, the dogs all have a *Z* sounding name.

Pretty useless bit of observation, but it made me laugh..:-)

Lian said...

Go Girlpower pups! They are just fantastic! Well done to their first show!

Good Luck with Zen at the EO try-out! You know we are always proud of you and Zen to fly the Sheltie Flag!

Mary-Anne said...

It's not just AKC with the rules - NADAC and CPE have similar rules about the dog being "under control" (haven't done USDAA in a while so I'm not sure about that). In NADAC now, if the leash isn't on when your dog leaves the ring you'll be NQ'd. They can NQ you even if you're carrying the dog!

Nursery sounds a bit like CPE Level 1 (no weaves or teeter in that either). In CPE if you THINK your dog may go running out of the ring at the end, you can request that they close the gates.

Congrats to all!

Anonymous said...

Hello !

Thanks a lot for your explanation.
We have a category called Beginners without see-saw and wave.
But there it is also not allowed to use a toy. And the dog has to be on the leash when you leave the ring and no play in the ring also after the run.
We had something like fun competitions but the are now forbidden and a club doing one can be punished by general competition restrict.

So enjoy your nursery class.
I look forward for the next steps of zen and the puppies.

Best regards !


Dave Hutchinson said...

Love it, up North :)
It's only Daventry not the Lakes haha.
You are sounding more English all the time, see you Up North, 9 miles from my house


Eleanor said...

UKA looks great! I loved the fact that even at Crufts dogs could have toys right over the finish line. BTW, in AKC, dogs can leave the ring tugging, but they would be tugging on their leash, which must be on the dog! Ah well...:-)

Question: Does UKA Steeplechase at more advanced levels, have weaves and/or an A-Frame like is USDAA? What are the jump heights?

Brittany said...

In AKC, while you can't have a toy at the end of the run, it's perfectly acceptable to have your dog run to the leash and tug. You just have to slip the leash over the head before you leave the ring. Other venues, like NADAC, don't allow tugging within 10 feet of the ring!

I'm excited to do UKI over here with my pup when she's older--LOVE the idea of having a toy in the ring!

sassie said...

Damned fine start for the pups!!

Charma Tumbleweed said...