Your First Obedience Trial

After months and months of training you now decide that you are ready to enter your first obedience trial - but are you?

Are you so overjoyed that your dog has finally 'got it right' that you decide that you are both ready for the 'test'?

Hopefully it is more than that and you are convinced that your dog will get it right every time, regardless of what is happening around them.

Before entering a trial it is important that you are certain that your dog will continue to happily work with you and basically, that they are 'bomb proof'. Many activities happen at a trial that could possibly engender a different response from your dog from what you have seen during practice.


For example, dogs competing in adjacent rings could be sent for retrieval of their dumbbell and your dog could see this as an opportunity for a game.

Also, sausage sizzles are often on offer at trials and the smell of freshly cooked sausages and onions - yum - could be enticing to your dog, so it is important that you and your dog are prepared for as many different situations as possible. As a final check, you will need to be confident that he will work without your continual assistance such as feeding, guiding, talking etc as none of these 'practices' are permitted in the trial ring.

If you are in Community Companion Dog (CCD) level or higher, your dog may be trained well enough to participate.

Ask your Instructor for an informal assessment.

The CCD competition format and exercises are similar to the Club’s CCD class – trained and assessed.

What you need to do to enter the Club trial:

If you want to have a look at dogs doing formal obedience trialling where they can gain obedience titles, come along on the day, or volunteer to help out.

Anyone who is available on the day and would like to help out stewarding, in our “shop” or putting up / pulling down rings – we’re always grateful for volunteers!

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