Kentuckiana Shetland Sheepdog Club
The Definition of Teamwork
With disability, some activities are just more difficult. Bolt and I train/compete in Rally which emphasizes teamwork between the handler/dog team. Despite my awkwardness, team mate, Bolt, earned his Rally Advanced (RA) title with excellent scores, class placements, and an invitation to the AKC Rally National.
Bolt – Raisin Into The Nite RA (Rally Advanced)
– Barbara Knupp and Bolt in the Rally Ring
Rally is a performance event that combines elements of agility and obedience. The handler and dog move through a course of 15-20 numbered stations. Each station has a sign giving instructions about a skill that is to be performed. Skills include turns, position changes, directional changes, jumps (never more than two on a course), pace changes, and more.
Rally is a team sport. There should be a real sense of teamwork and communication between the team while working the course. There are five skill levels: Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, Excellent, and Master. Novice and Intermediate are performed on leash with the others off leash.
Rally is much less formal than competitive obedience and less physically demanding for both dog and handler than agility. It is a good entry level to performance events. Besides, it is great fun for the team!
KSSC members compete in both AKC and UKC Rally events.
I call Novice Rally “Agility on Leash”, because you have to follow the signs and do as they say. As we gradually go into higher classes the leash goes away and our teamwork becomes more important.
Pam is standing proudly in the ring at the ASSA 2018 National Speciality where Hank (Bi Black) had just won Third Place in Novice Rally (and completed his Novice title). Cajun, his pal is providing moral support.
A New Title
Barbara Boylan (left) smiles proudly standing beside Cindy Ship, co-owner and handler of Krown Ella Fitzgerald who had just earned her Rally Advanced title in June 2018. Since then Ella has completed her Rally Excellent Title and is chasing a Master!
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