Obedience & Rally Newsletter
Dear Obedience & Rally Judges:

Regulation Updates
  • The newest version of the Regulations will be published in approximately two weeks online at the following link: http://images.akc.org/pdf/rulebooks/RO2999.pdf and it will include all of the recent regulation changes in one book.
  • To print INSERTS of the latest regulation changes go to the above link now before the new book goes live.
  • New Books will be colored Periwinkle.
  • Judges may receive one complimentary copy of the new regulations by calling AKC Customer Service 919-233-9767. Do not call to order the new book until you see the new book posted online. When calling you must:
    • Identify yourself as a judge for the sport of which you are requesting a regulation book
    • Provide your AKC judges' number
    • Verify your mailing address
New Pre-Classes start July 1, 2013
Are you ready? Judges get ready to judge the new obedience Pre-Classes beginning July 1, 2013! The revised Obedience Regulations will include corrections to Chapter 9 — Pre-Open Class and Chapter 11 — Pre-Utility Class. There are no various orders of exercises in either of these classes.

Pre–Utility Class
The additional verbal command that is allowed in Pre-Utility must be given simultaneously; otherwise it would be an additional command for a principal part of the exercise. The one single verbal command may be used during the signal portion of the exercise for the stand, stay, down, sit or come.

Chapter 8 — Beginner Novice — Hands on Recall
Please note a clarification has been added to the Regulations to ensure judges are properly scoring the Beginner Novice Recall exercise.

Obedience Regulations, Chapter 2, Section 19. Hands. In all exercises where the dog is required to heel free, one of these options should be followed: (1) when the handler is in motion, the arms and hands must move naturally at the sides and must hang naturally at the sides when stopped; or (2) the right hand and arm must move naturally at the side, while the left hand must be held against the front of the body, centered in the area of the waist, with the left forearm carried against the body.

In either of the above situations, the hands and arms may be adjusted during the fast portion of an exercise in order to maintain balance.

There will be a substantial deduction if the hands and arms are not carried in one of the positions stated above. In any exercise that requires a dog to sit in front, the handler's arms and hands must hang naturally at the sides until the dog has sat in front. The handler must receive a substantial deduction for not doing so, except in the Beginner Novice Class Recall Exercise. During this exercise, when the handler removes the leash they may hold it in any manner using one or both hands, or draped around the neck.

Any movement of the handler's hands or arms from the time the dog sits in front and prior to the dog returning to the heel position will be considered an additional signal or command and will be penalized unless such movement is otherwise permitted by these regulations.

Obedience Judges' Guidelines — Chapter 3 — Recall Exercises. To have both dog and handler under constant observation in these exercises, a judge should take a position in line and slightly to the rear of the dog, facing the handler but at an adequate distance to one side.

This is a foundation exercise and governs the faults and behavior of a dog in all exercises where the dog is moving toward the handler. The dog is required to move at a brisk trot or gallop and must be penalized for failure to do so.

In exercises where the dog is required to sit in front, the handler's hands and arms should hang naturally at the sides; except in the Beginner Novice Class Recall Exercise. During this exercise, when the handler removes the leash they may hold it in any manner using one or both hands, or draped around the neck. A substantial deduction is required for failure to do so or for any hand movement not permitted by the regulations. It does not apply to the Moving Stand and Examination as the dog does not sit in front.

Finishes are required to be executed promptly, smartly, and straight. This applies to faults in all exercises where the dog sits in front and finishes. The finish is not a principal part of any exercise. Therefore, failure to finish or extra commands or signals to finish do not require a non-qualifying score for any exercise.

The judge should never ask the handler to touch the dog or otherwise assist the judge in making a decision. A dog must come in sufficiently close so that the handler could touch its head without excessive bending or stretching or the need to move either foot. If, in the judge's opinion, the dog is not close enough to the handler, it must receive a non-qualifying (NQ) score.

Accepting Assignments — Assignment Limitations — Effective July 1, 2013
Obedience Judges' Guidelines — Chapter 1 — Accepting Assignments

Assignment Limitations. A judge will not be approved to judge the same regular or optional titling class at all-breed events within 30 days and 100 straight line miles of each other with the following exceptions:
  • A judge may accept assignments to judge the same classes for two obedience trials that fall on the same day at the same site.
  • A judge may accept assignments to judge the same classes at two obedience trials over the course of a cluster of no more than five (5) consecutive days at the same site or within a local geographical area as determined by the AKC.
2014 AKC Judges Directory — The 2014 Judges Directory will be available in January 2014.

Please review your contact information located on the AKC Website using the Searchable Judges Directory and submit any corrections or changes using this form.

It is very important that you return this form by September 16, 2013. As a service to clubs, AKC will be providing judges the opportunity to list their judging fee, at their discretion, as a part of the AKC Online Directory this will be a valuable tool for the show giving clubs as they plan their judging panels and review cost.

Contact information may include phone numbers, fax, email, one mailing address and judging fee. In addition, please take a moment to review and complete the change of address/contact information form.

Please be advised that fees will not be a searchable field within the Online Judge's Directory as that information will only be accessible by visiting a judge's individual page within the online directory.

Reminder, you may manage your own contact information within your MY AKC On-Line Account at the AKC Website. To create a "MY AKC Account" to manage and view your contact information online, click here and follow the instructions to create an account.

Return the form to: Janice Sondys, Companion Events — Judge Directory Info, 8051 Arco Corporate Drive, Suite 100, Raleigh, NC 27617. You may email it to Janice at jms@akc.org or fax to 919-816-4204.

Please do not return the Change of Contact Form if no additions or changes are required.

Upcoming National Events — Obedience
Be sure to visit the AKC website to stay informed about everything AKC related. The Companion Events Department has several National Events in the works and updates will be posted on a regular basis.

Information regarding the upcoming 2013 AKC Obedience Classic can be found at this link: http://www.akc.org/events/obedience/classic/.

The fancy asked for a format similar to events that took place across the country years ago. Well, here it is. We hope each of YOU will help promote and support our events!

Additionally we have updated and expanded the obedience competition for juniors. Please be sure to check out those changes to the AKC National Juniors Obedience Competition at this link: http://www.akc.org/events/obedience/classic/2013/junior_competition.cfm

Until Next Time…
Remember, YOU Make it Work!
Your continuing efforts to judge in a friendly, courteous, honest, impartial and consistent manner are appreciated by exhibitors, clubs and the Companion Events Department. Keep up the good work.


Pam Manaton, Director of Obedience, Rally & Tracking
Bill Thayne, Diane Schultz, Mary Higdem and Sharon Hodgens-Wood, AKC Obedience/Rally Field Reps.

Comments, Questions, or Suggested Topics
Please feel free to send any comments or suggestions for future topics to obedience@akc.org or rally@akc.org.

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