November 11, 2013
AKC In The Zone
Obedience and Rally Regulation Changes
The AKC Board VOTED to amend five sections of the Obedience Regulations and one section of the AKC Rally® Regulations to make the events more enjoyable.

These changes are effective January 1, 2014; please share this information with your Obedience/Rally Trial Chairmen and Trial Secretaries/Superintendents.

In summary the changes (underlined below) are:
  1. Allow premium lists to measure not less than 5½ x 8½ inches up to 8½ x 11 inches. (Obedience Regulations Chapter 1, Section 3)
  2. Require clubs to refund the entry fee for females in season. A processing fee may be retained by the club. (Obedience Regulations Chapter 1, Section 14)
  3. Allow clubs, at their option, to establish a wait list to fill openings created by entries that are withdrawn prior to the event closing date. (Obedience Regulations Chapter 1, Section 27)
  4. Allow dogs to be picked up by their handlers when they are called back into the ring for the awards ceremony. (Obedience Regulations Chapter 2, Sections 11 & 22)
  5. Allow rally ring sizes to be determined by square footage (2,000 to 3,000 square feet, with a minimum width of 30 feet). This will provide clubs flexibility in determining the location of their rally trial, perhaps allowing them to lower their cost. While the square footage area listed above is the minimum size allowed, a 40’ x 50’ or 50’ x 60’ ring size is ideal for rally. (Rally Regulations Chapter 2, Section 1)
Obedience Regulations — Chapter 1, Section 3
Section 3. Premium Lists/Entries. A premium list must be provided for sanctioned “A”, licensed or member trials. The premium shall be printed and shall measure not less than 5½ x 8½ inches or more than 8½ x 11 inches.

The remainder of this section is unchanged.

Obedience Regulations — Chapter 1, Section 14
Section 14. Dogs That May Not Compete. No dog under six months of age may compete. No dog belonging wholly or in part to a judge, or superintendent, or any member of such a person’s household may be entered in any obedience trial at which such person officiates or is scheduled to officiate. Nor may they handle or act as agent for any dog entered at that obedience trial.

Females in season are not permitted to compete. If a female is withdrawn from competition because it came into season and the event secretary is notified no later than one half hour prior to the start of the first class in the trial, the club is required to refund the entry fee. The club may retain a processing fee and must publish this information in the premium. Clubs may determine the documentation, if any that is required to confirm the female is in season. This shall be stated in the premium. Note: No fee is paid to the AKC for females in season who are withdrawn.

If allowed by the host club, the obedience trial secretary may enter dogs owned or co-owned by the secretary and may handle dogs in the obedience trial. The secretary’s priority must be the handling of official secretary duties in a timely manner. If participation in the trial interferes with these duties, other arrangements for handling dogs must be made.

The remainder of this section is unchanged.

Obedience Regulations — Chapter 1, Section 27
Section 27. Limitation of Entries. If a club anticipates an entry to exceed the capacity of its facilities for a licensed or member trial, it may limit entries, not to exceed up to eight hours of judging time per day, per judge. Non-regular classes, however, may be included, if so desired.

Prominent announcement of such limits will appear in the title or cover page of the premium list for an obedience trial or immediately under the obedience heading in the premium list for a dog show. This announcement must state that the entries in one or more specified classes will automatically close when certain limits have been reached, even if this occurs before the official closing date.

However, a club, at its discretion, may choose to establish a wait list in order to fill openings created by entries that are withdrawn prior to the event closing day. If a club is maintaining a wait list, this shall be stated in the premium. The full entry fee shall be refunded to an entrant whose entry is replaced by a wait-listed entry.

When entries are limited in the Open B and/or Utility B classes, a club must designate a UDX class in the premium list. Dogs entered in this UDX class would be entered in both Open B and Utility B, and the combined entry fee for these two classes must be paid. Once the limit has been reached in either the Open B or the Utility B class, the UDX class will be considered closed, and any subsequent entries for this class will be unacceptable in their entirety.

Obedience Regulations — Chapter 2, Sections 11 & 22
Section 11. Announcement of Scores. The judge will not disclose any scoring to anyone until the entire class has been judged. Nor should anyone else be allowed to do so. Immediately after the group exercises for Novice, Graduate Novice and Open, the judge will inform the handlers of a qualifying performance. In Beginner Novice, Pre-Novice, Pre-Open, Graduate Open, Pre-Utility, Versatility and Utility, the judge will inform the handler immediately following the last exercise.

After all the scores are recorded for the class or division of the class, the judge will call the qualifying dogs back into the ring. For the award ceremony, dogs may be picked up and carried into the ring if the handler desires. Before awarding the placements, the judge will inform the spectators of the maximum number of points required for a perfect score. After scores of each placement have been announced, the judge will tell the handlers their dogs’ scores.

Section 22. Praise. Praise and petting are allowed between and after exercises, but points will be deducted from the total score for a dog that is not under reasonable control while being praised. There will be a substantial penalty for any dog that is picked up or carried at any time in the obedience ring while under judgment. Note: A dog is under judgment until it leaves the ring.

AKC Rally® Regulations — Chapter 2, Section 1
Section 1. Space Requirements. The ring sizes for rally shall be between 2,000 and 3,000 square feet, with a minimum width of 30 feet. The floor covering or ground surface must be the same as would be suitable for traditional AKC Obedience trials. The size of the ring shall be stated in the premium. In consideration of the judge’s course design requirements, they should be informed of the ring size with as much lead time as possible.


©2013 American Kennel Club