Training going well and fancy having a go at an agility competition?
Here's a guide to what you'll need to do to enter your first agility show.
1. Kennel Club
First off your dog must be registered with the Kennel Club, either on the breed register or on the activity register. If your dog is a pedigree puppy then you may have a certificate of ownership with their breed registrations details such as mine for Jade below:
Otherwise you'll need to download a form from the Kennel Club's website here to register your dog on the activity register. You'll end up with a certificate that looks something like mine for Lucy:
There is a Agility Regulation booklet that you can get from the Kennel Club website before entering your first show if you would like to read more about the specific rules and regulations at their shows. But please don't hesitate to ask your instructor if you're unsure of anything - that's what we're here for!
Dogs can only enter KC agility shows when they are 18 months of age or over and have been officially measured and placed in the correct height category - The Kennel Club website
Dogs of all shapes and sizes compete at KC shows and measuring takes place at special measuring events by clubs around the country as well as at agility shows. There is usually a small charge to be paid for measuring. For full details check out this page on the KC website.
One of the requirements of measuring is that you have a Record Book - this can be purchased from the KC website here.
2. UK Agility
To register your dog with UK Agility you'll need to visit their website www.ukagility.com and follow the online instructions.
We would suggest you don't bother with the 'Try Before You Buy Option' as it's extra paperwork that can be done in advance and therefore one less thing for you to worry about at a competition.
If you've never competed in agility with a dog before you will enter at KC Grade 1, and this is the equivalent of Beginners at UK Agility shows.
UK Agility have a comprehensive set of rules and regulations that can be found online here and you may find it helpful to have a read of these before your first agility show.
Dogs who compete at UK Agility shows also need to be measured and measuring sessions are held at more or less every show - ask at the secretary's tent on your arrival at the show for the time of that days measuring session. There is no charge for measuring.
As with KC shows, dogs cannot compete without being measured first unless they are competing at the Maxi height (see below for details).
3. FAB Agility
Martin and I very much enjoyed the FAB shows that we have attended. They are an excellent place for new dogs and handlers to start their competition journey.
Those dogs who are more food orientated can be rewarded during an NFC (Not For Competition) round with their favourite treats.
If you've never competed in agility with a dog before you will enter at KC Grade 1, and this is the equivalent of Newbie at FAB shows.
There are 5 jump heights available at FAB shows
FAB has it's own set of rules and regulations and these can be viewed here. Again you might find it helpful to have a read of these before competing at your first show.
4. Unregistered/ Unaffiliated Shows
There are other shows run around the country by other smaller organisations and private clubs/ individuals, but the KC show diary keeps us pretty busy all by itself!
Entering these shows is usually done by sending in a paper entry and details about eligibility is usually available alongside the show schedule.