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Waggin' Tails Rally Program

Rally is a fun sport where the dog and handler heel continuously through a course and at each numbered station perform the obedience exercise indicated on the sign. The requirements of Rally are more relaxed and natural than precision competitive obedience. The variety of exercises and courses allows you to show off your versatility and teamwork. Rally is enjoyable all on it's own but it is also great for increasing teamwork and attention for dogs involved in other sports like agility.

images at a Rally event

Rally courses, depending on the titling organization (APDT and AKC) and competition level, consist of 10 to 22 stations, laid out in a numbered pattern, performed on-leash or off. Handlers get to see the course and familiarize themselves with the pattern without their dog before running the course. During their turn, the dog and handler move through the course in heel position, performing each exercise in turn. The highest scores will be earned by teams who move smoothly through the course, completing each exercise accurately, and with enthusiasm and a good attitude. Praise and verbal encouragement during your run is allowed, and you even get "do overs" for a point penalty. Rally is fun and interesting to watch as the individual style of each team can really show through.

There are dozens of different stations which might be seen in a Rally course, primarily variations on basic heel exercises and other traditional Obedience skills. Many of the stations involve activities you are probably familiar with, such as heeling Slow/Normal/Fast Pace, Halt, Left/Right/About Turn, and Finish Right/Left. Others are simple extensions, such as  270° and 360° right/left turns, heeling past food or toys on course, weaving and spiral patterns, and send over jumps.

WHAT DOGS CAN DO RALLY?

Any dog that is healthy, fit, and friendly is a good candidate for Rally. If your dog already knows how to sit, down, stand, stay, and heel (does not have to be perfect) then you can learn Rally. If not, consider taking our obedience classes first. You may decide to do rally just for fun but you may also decide to compete. Waggin' Tails students are successfully competing in all levels of Rally.

THE PROGRAM

A 4-level rally program with each level teaching different and progressively more advanced concepts. These classes are 6-8 weeks and you must be able to attend all 6 or 8 classes. If you miss a class, you will be responsible for scheduling and paying for a make-up lesson so you will be ready for the next week's lessons with everyone else. As with all our training, we use positive motivational methods to achieve great results and a happy dog.

Once you are enrolled in classes you may practice on the field anytime there is not a scheduled activity. Field hours are from dawn to 10pm. Please remember to potty dogs before allowing them to run and play on the training field. Please also pick up after your dog.

METHODS

Our training methods are based on positive motivation, utilizing toys, treats, petting, and praise to make training fun and successful. This type of training focuses on teaching and rewarding correct behavior. This builds a relationship based on trust and cooperation. These methods are effective for puppies as well as adult dogs, bold dogs and shy dogs, large dogs and small dogs. We welcome mixed breeds as well as purebred dogs. You will need to bring treats and toys to class to reward your dog for trying new things!

GROUP CLASSES OR PRIVATE LESSONS?

Group classes are great for most dogs. Classes have built in distractions and you can learn by watching others working with their dogs. However, if you prefer one on one training with an instructor, cannot attend at the normal class time, or just have 1 or 2 issues you'd like to work on, we offer private lessons tailored to your specific needs.