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Proposed Updates to UKC Obedience Rulebook

Additions and clarifications to rules to take effect in 2022

October 14, 2021

Department: All-Breed Sports

The 2021 UKC Obedience Rulebook has been recently updated with some additions and clarifications.

Please take a moment to read over this edition and feel free to send any comments and feedback to us. Comments and feedback should be received by November 17, 2021.

The rulebook may be updated again after the comment period is over, and before it becomes effective in 2022.

Included in the back of the new rulebook on page 78 is an insert detailing all the updates and changes so they can be easily accessed. All current updates or recent changes will be in bold and/or italics. The new version will have an effective date of January 1, 2022.

The following is an overview of the updates and changes:

  • Several of the additions added to the rulebook are clarifications on the eligibility of dogs, entering regular versus titling classes, where handlers position themselves during an exercise, scoring certain exercises, High in Trial and breaking ties, and what happens if a qualified handler is not present for the Master or Elite discrimination exercises.
  • Class limits were changed to reflect the time differences that occur within some of the new classes and a table was added to give clubs a better way to estimate the amount of time it takes to judge each class. Judging is limited to eight hours each day regardless of if there is one trial or two trials.
  • For any of the greeting exercises, prior to the start of the exercise, handlers now must let the Judge know when they are ready to begin. Handlers in the Beginner Novice class will also need to inform the Judge if they are doing a sit or a down for the Sit or Stand for Exam exercise prior to beginning that exercise.
  • There is also a clarification on how the dog is scored for any additional commands to sit for the Utility Directed Signal Retrieve.
  • Qualifying ribbons will no longer be a mandatory requirement but will optional. All other required ribbons will remain the same.

Click the button below to view the updated rulebook.

Please do not hesitate to contact us if you have any questions or comments. We can be contacted through or you can contact our Program Manager directly at

Guided by the belief that dogs make a difference by being the best partner a human can have in the field, on the job, or in a competition event, UKC is a community for people and dogs to pursue excellence together. Founded in 1898, UKC has been dedicated to enhancing the lives of Dogs That Do More, and their owners, by providing essential resources to help owners and breeders make informed decisions. The dog-human bond is celebrated through family-friendly programs highlighting the instincts and heritage of purebred and mixed-breed dogs alike at over 15,000 licensed events annually.

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