For those of you looking at UK Dog Sport for the first time and wondering what it’s all about here is a bit of an overview.
UKDS is a sport designed to cater for all breeds and all people. It is hoped that before too long events will take place all over the country so people will not need to travel miles to compete and, in addition to this, the levels are set so that whatever stage you and your dog are at there should be a level to suit you.
Based loosely around working trials there are tests of nosework, control and agility with the obstacles within the capability of nearly all dogs. At its most basic levels exercises allow for dogs to be worked on the lead and encouraged with food or toys, and yet the top level is set at a standard equal to the highest level of competition. This sport is not KC affiliated and those running events are free to put on as many or as few levels as they can accommodate and also set the entry number to their own limits.
As competitors progress through the levels, they will become more challenging and give those who want to continue to improve something to aim for, but there is no requirement to move on and participants may remain working one level for as long as they wish.
UKDS is still very much in its early days and things may change as the sport moves on but, for now at least, it’s “try it and see” while we continue to learn and tweak it where necessary. So why not give it a go and hopefully enjoy a new sport that you and your dog should find both challenging and rewarding.
For more information and further copies of the Regulations and Guidance Booklet
What a lovely couple of days we have had watching some super dogs make history by bringing this sport to Norfolk. Although it was born here, there had not been an event here before, and I couldn’t have imagined it any better than it was. This was in no small part down to Steve and Jo Felton for providing the fantastic venue. A large field with two thirds fenced with totally dog proof fencing, and the last third plenty big enough for parking, an exercise area, a toilet and a base. I heard at least one competitor describe it as a “a field to die for” and, as it was only at the bottom of my road, it could not have been any more convenient for us.
When I decided to put this on I was aware that getting sponsors could make the competition so much better. I was amazed by the response that resulted in great prizes and something for every competitor. This was down to the generosity of CSJ Dog Food, Crossways Country Store Ellingham. This was further enhanced by the beautiful rosettes supplied by In the Ribbons.
People were also very generous with their offers of help and I am especially grateful to Anita Bagge who judged Beginners and then went on to work her own dog in Novice. Ann Handley also did Trojan service as Judge for Novice and steward for the other three levels, and then went on to stay behind at the end to help clear up. Another vote of thanks must go to Joan Snowden and Hilary Mercer who, between them, took some great photos. Finally I must thank Paul Beasley who as well as being by my side in the organising, setting up and clearing up, went on to judge both Intermediate and Advanced.
Although our entries were good, we did lose three of our Beginners before the event for various reasons, so only had two competitors at that level. The other levels were between four and five and we managed to fill both days without rushing, so everyone had plenty of time to get ready and to work without any panic. In hindsight, despite wondering if we should have done it all in one day, everyone seemed to agree it worked better having the extra time and everyone enjoyed the relaxed atmosphere.
I see the judges have kindly done their own reports so I won’t go into the work other than to say I thoroughly enjoyed watching you all work your super dogs and you made UKDS everything I hoped it would be, so thank you.