A well-trained dog is a happy dog. Obedience training results in a canine companion who is fun to live with and with whom you will develop a special bond.
Obedience training is the foundation for all other dog activities. After your dog completes training in the Manners and More class, you can choose to participate in the exciting world of competition training.
Novice. The first level of regular competition obedience is the Novice class. Dogs heel on and off leash and perform a figure 8. The dog stands while examined by the judge, who lightly touches the head, shoulders and back. The dog performs a recall, coming when called and sitting in front of the handler. Then, when instructed, returns to heel position. Finally, in a group exercise with other dogs, the dog will sit and lay down for one minute while the handler stands at the end of a six-foot lead. Dogs who qualify in Novice three times earn the Companion Dog (CD) title.
Open. Open follows Novice. In Open, the heeling and figure 8 are off leash. The dog performs command discrimination, standing, laying down and sitting while the handler commands them from a distance. The dog retrieves a dumbbell on the ground and over a jump. The dog must lay down on command while performing a recall, and performs a broad jump. Dogs who successfully compete in Open obedience three times earn the Companion Dog Excellent (CDX) title.
Utility. In Utility, dogs perform off leash and respond to the handlers hand signals. Exercises include retrieving a glove, scent discrimination, directed jumping. This level of obedience requires many hours of training and dedication. Dogs who compete successfully in Utility three times earn the Utility Dog (UD) title.
Rally. Rally is a fun sport in which the dog and handler negotiate a course of exercises according to sequentially numbered signs. The handler may encourage and praise the dog throughout the course. For many, Rally provides a link from the Canine Good Citizen (CGC) program to obedience or agility competition, both for dogs and handlers. Titles are earned in Novice, Intermediate, Advanced, Excellent, Master and Championship.
As a licensed club of the AKC, TDOC holds AKC obedience and rally trails in Tallahassee. For more information on those events, see the Events/Trials page.