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UKC Agility Rules Revisions for 2018 and Beyond

Ensuring future generations can enjoy UKC Agility for years to come!

November 17, 2017

Source: UKC Show Operations Department
Phone: 269.343.9020

UKC Agility Rules Revisions for 2018

United Kennel Club is pleased to announce that an Agility Advisory Council was convened in conjunction with Gateway Nationals at the Purina Event Center, October 27-29, 2017.

The purpose of this assembly was to discuss the future of the UKC agility program, to review the current rules and procedures, judges education, course design and the philosophy of UKC agility as a whole. The council was made up of five individuals from all different agility backgrounds, including long-term UKC agility judges, active agility exhibitors in several venues, and agility trial secretaries for UKC as well as other venues. They met over three days and discussed topics from the 2012 agility survey, reviewed independent suggestions from individual exhibitors, and discussed the general decline in the number of trials and increasing lack of interest in the UKC agility program.

Over the three-day period, many discussions were held, and some difficult decisions were made. In the end, everyone agreed that some of the suggested changes were for the benefit of the entire UKC agility program. The council moved to implement certain changes at the start of 2018. Those changes are: the removal of the Closed Tunnel (Chute) and a clarification on the performance of the pause obstacles. These changes can be found as supplements to the current UKC Agility Rules. View rulebook (PDF).

The Future of UKC Agility

In moving forward, the council has been tasked with revising the current UKC agility rules and introducing new titles and classes for the UKC agility program. They are also working directly with UKC to develop more resources for judges education and material to help clubs maximize their resources to host a UKC agility trial. This content will be in development throughout 2018 with a hopeful implementation for 2019.

UKC truly values involvement from its exhibitors, so a draft of the suggested rule changes and additions for new classes and titles will be available for public comment when ready. Comments regarding the suggested changes will be reviewed by UKC and the Agility Council so that further refinement and revision may be added before the final publication is released. It is our sincere hope that in providing UKC Agility with some much-needed attention, we will be able to revive the program and ensure that future generations will be able to enjoy UKC agility for years to come.

The 2018 Agility Council Members

Wynell Brush
Wynell Brush competed and taught agility before becoming a UKC agility judge in 1994. She remains active in our program today. She has judged at numerous local agility trials, Premier and Gateway events, and United Belgian Shepherd Dog Association (UBSDA) national specialties. She currently has two Belgian Tervueren with which she has competed in UKC rally obedience (listed in All Stars), traditional obedience, and conformation (2016 Top Ten). She is a member of UBSDA, a UKC national breed club, and Tri County Canine Sports, a UKC club in Lansing, Michigan. She currently lives in Grand Ledge, Michigan.

"I'm pleased to be asked to serve on the 2017 Agility Council," Wynell said.

"And," she continued, "I'm looking forward to contributing to the review of UKCs rules."

Michelle Hoppes
Michelle Hoppes, from Lafayette, Colorado, got started in agility and obedience 17 years ago with her Golden Retrievers and a husky mix, and since then has added rally obedience and nosework to her weekends. Currently a member of five different dog clubs, she keeps quite busy being on the trial committees of about a dozen events per year, serving as the trial secretary at more than half of them. She started judging for UKC agility in 2011, and she has had the privilege to be invited to judge at numerous local trials, Gateway and Premier. Michelle noted that she felt quite honored to be asked to participate on the 2017 Agility Council and is excited to see how we can help UKC agility grow.

Pam Hawkins
Pam Hawkins has been involved with UKC agility for the past ten years. She is currently competing and taking agility classes with her second mixed-breed dog. Pam is a board member of Capital City Canine Club in Lansing, Michigan, and is often the trial secretary for their UKC trials.

"It was my honor to participate on the advisory council and help UKC agility move forward," Pam said.

Robin Nutthall
Robin Nuttall started her journey in dogs just out of college and put her first obedience title on her first Doberman in 1984. Since that time, she has owned Dobermans, and now Min Pins. She has competed in obedience, rally, agility, lure coursing, dock diving, earthdog, barn hunt, and nosework. She has titled dogs in UKC, AKC, ASCA, NADAC, APDT (now WCRL) and more. Her Min Pin, Zipper, also known as UAGII URO1 Ch Regatta It's About Time BN RE MX MXB MXJ MJG ME RATS, is the first and only dog of that breed to achieve a Master Earthdog title. Zipper was also the inspiration for the new sport of Barn Hunt, which Robin started in 2013. Robin is hoping to contribute to the committee through her experience and knowledge of dog sports as a whole, as well as her experience writing and implementing rules.

Richard Benjes
Mr. Benjes was present and provided valuable input during the meeting at Gateway but has since withdrawn his involvement with future Agility Advisory Council projects. His participation will be missed. We wish to thank him for his time.

Please be sure to check the UKC website regularly to keep up with announcements regarding the UKC agility program.

A Kalamazoo, Michigan-based company founded in 1898, United Kennel Club is the largest all-breed performance-dog registry in the world, registering dogs from all 50 states and 25 foreign countries. Celebrating the unique Total Dog philosophy, UKC events highlight the instincts and heritage of dogs that look and perform equally well, as more than 60 percent of its annually licensed events are tests of hunting ability, training, and instinct. United Kennel Club prides itself on its family-oriented, friendly, educational events, welcoming both purebred dogs and dogs of unknown ancestry.

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