How To Survive Your First Agility Trial Part 3 – Get on Course

german_shepherd_dog_sitting_leashWhen it is close to your time to run, get your dog out and take him for a potty walk. Please do this. Your dog is nervous too, and if he pees or poops in the ring, you will be asked to leave the ring. Also, they will have a practice jump set up outside the rings. You may use this one jump to warm up your dog before your run. Take advantage of this jump!

Once your class begins, be sure you are at the gate when it’s your turn to run. They will not wait on you to show up. (The gatekeeper will be yelling for you though, so be sure you are there!) You can have treats or toys near the gate, but not in the ring. Also, make sure you don’t have any tags or dangling things hanging from your dogs collar (AKC rules), or better yet, run your dog without a collar. When you enter the ring you must have your dog ON LEASH! Even if you have a small dog and carry it into the ring, you must have that leash on. Set your dog up at the start line, but do not look to the judge to tell you to go, look at the timer and scribes (they will be sitting by the start line). They will give you the okay to go (or it may be an electronic voice that tells you “Go”.). Just FYI, when you hear the “go” it does not mean you immediately must start, you can go anytime after that, your actual course time will start when your dog jumps or enters the first obstacle.

(Part two here) (part four here)

~Thanks to Linda Freed at for the above entry~

1 Comment on “How To Survive Your First Agility Trial Part 3 – Get on Course

  1. Oh, whine, whine — this is such a good article, it makes me miss trialing even more — I’ve been down with pneumonia for this last month, and while I’m almost well, running is still beyond me.

    But just reading this, reminds me of going into the ring with my corgi, telling him to ‘wait’ and doing a lead out, then looking back and seeing him leaning forward, ready for the signal to go. Such fun.

    Hope to be up to speed for a trial next month.