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The Overview from USDAA
USDAA Message
By Kenneth Tatsch

USDAA PresidentIn January, we completed the transfer of operations of the Rally obedience program from the Association of Pet Dog Trainers (APDT). Information on the Rally Program can be found at www.RallyDogs.com. The program is operated through a separate entity called World Cynosport Rally Limited, USDAA's sister company, and will largely continue to operate as it has in the past while we study the program further and consult with the Rally Advisory Board on improvements and possible expansion.

The program offers a new dimension to USDAA offerings. Obedience is at the core of all dog sports, and Rally offers an innovative way of testing the basics and beyond. It is a grass roots level event that virtually any trainer or training club can implement as part of an ongoing training program. It can be hosted in virtually any training facility, as it only requires 2,000 square feet of performance space. It is a great way for trainers to test certain aspects of their students' progress in training, even before the dog is one year of age. The Rally Program offers a path to lifetime accomplishment, and will soon include an annual championship tournament.

We know there are a number of USDAA competitors already enjoying the Rally program. If you have an interest, your USDAA registration entitles you to now enter a World Cynosport Rally event. No further registration is necessary. Download a copy of the regulations from www.RallyDogs.com and begin training for the exercises.

On the agility front, we are pleased to have 11 dog/handler teams traveling to Spain to represent the United States and USDAA at the IFCS Continental Championships of Europe and World Cup event. The event will take place the first weekend of April in Gerona, Spain, just three weeks before the Continental Championship of the Americas will be held in Texas. Check out the www.usdaa.com news page for more on the team and their successes. We are pleased to be able to offer this opportunity to USDAA competitors to test their mettle on the international scene, and we are working on other future opportunities.

Event Report: BARK-NH Rings in the New Year
By Lo Baker

I can't think of a better way to ring in the New Year than at an agility trial with Lynn Sigman as the judge. BARK-NH held its all Masters trial on January 4-6 in Manchester, New Hampshire. It was one of our smaller trials, but many titles were still achieved.

One very special moment was when Kathy Clement and her Border Collie Psyche had their retirement run. There was lots of cheering and clapping and a few tears watching Psyche run his last run. Kathy says, "Psyche was my first dog chosen with agility in mind and the first puppy I ever raised. He had a good career, but he ran agility for me. As I moved him into [veterans classes], I started entering him less, and he was fine with that. I started thinking about how you never know when your last run together will be, and having recently lost my seven-year-old agility dog to epilepsy, I realized that I wanted to have a last run with Psyche. I had a cake made, sent out the 'event' invitation on Facebook, and walked to the line with my best for the last time. It was the best run ever! Thanks Psyche! ADCH, P-MAD, SCH, PJCH-Gold, PKCH-Silver, PTM, PSM, PRM, Vet Jumpers, Vet Snooker."

Psyche cake
The folks at BARK-NH love a celebratory cake. This one for Psyche's retirement is amazing! Photo courtesy of Kathy Clement.

Congrats to all the wonderful teams that achieved titles this weekend! To read more about this trial, click here.
Training Corner: Opening Sequence
By Marla Friedler-Cooper

This exercise is taken from an international course, but the first few obstacles are not unlike a course we might also find in the US.

Course drill

How many different ways can you handle #1-#4?

1. Keep your dog on right the whole time. Lead out to where the #24 is and pull the dog all the way on your right into the tunnel.

2. If you don't have a start line stay, start where the #23 is and then blind cross between obstacles #1 and #2. Continue #3 and #4 as in option 1. When doing a blind cross, change sides in front of your dog and keep your back to your dog while doing it.

3. Lead out to where the #3 is and do a lead-out pivot. A lead-out pivot is a front cross (where you cross in front of your dog while turning in to face him) on the flat (as opposed to at an obstacle) that is performed while the handler is stationary, usually on an opening sequence.

4. Start where the #34 is and push your dog from #3 to #4.

Read more here.

Volunteers Needed for the IFCS Continental Championships of the Americas

International Federation of Cynological Sports (IFCS), a non-profit international cooperative of independent dog sports organizations, is bringing its first ever Continental Championships of the Americas to the United States April 24-28, 2013. The event will be hosted at the Will Rogers Equestrian facility in the heart of Fort Worth, Texas, by IFCS charter affiliate United States Dog Agility Association.

The event will feature top competitors in the sport of dog agility in a one team/one country format, offering both individual and team competitions over the days of the event. An event of this magnitude needs lots of workers, so we are looking for volunteers to help. If you think you might be interested, contact volunteer coordinator Pamela Bryant-Meeks at bonfire5@hotmail.com. Please let her know whether you have ever volunteered at an IFCS event in the past, what days you will be available, and what positions you prefer to fill.

USDAA thanks you for helping us put on this amazing event!

Environmental Factors Can Affect the Incidence of Hip Dysplasia
By Claudia Bensimoun

Hip dysplasia is a hereditary developmental disease in which the hip joint fails to develop properly, potentially causing pain and reduced mobility. Determining both the genetic and environmental factors that influence the appearance and degree of the disease would help eliminate hip dysplasia through informed breeding and training practices.

Recent studies show that puppies walking on stairs from birth to three months of age had an increased risk of developing hip dysplasia. The factors associated with a decreased risk of developing HD included off-leash exercise from birth to three months of age, birth during the spring and summer, and birth on a farm. The results indicated that significant clustering of dogs with HD was detected within litters. The housing and exercise risk related factors associated with the development of hip dysplasia were determined by radiographic evaluation of Newfoundlands, Labrador Retrievers, Leonbergers, and Irish Wolfhounds in Norway. The study concluded that puppies less than three months of age should not be allowed access to stairs, but should be allowed outdoor exercise on soft ground in moderately rough terrain to decrease the risk for developing radiographically detectable hip dysplasia.

For more information on this study, click here.

jumping dog

Labrador Retrievers, like this one, were used on Krontveit's study. Photo courtesy of Marit Stormoen.

Introducing 2013 IFCS Continental Championships of Europe Team

USDAA is proud to announce the members of Team USA who will be competing at the 2013 IFCS Continental Championships of Europe to be held near Gerona, Spain, April 4-7, 2013. Congratulations to the Team USA members:

Toy (12")
Maxine Holmes & Sundancer (Papillon)
Ivette White & Zip (Jack Russell Terrier)

Mini (16")
Terry Herman & Idgie (Miniature Poodle)
Jen Pinder & Britain (Shetland Sheepdog)

Midi (22")
Dudley Fontaine & Sweet (Border Collie)
Greg Fontaine & Spice (Border Collie)
Kate Moureaux & Smart (Border Collie)
Tracy Hirsch & Silver (Border Collie)

Maxi (26")
Teri Thompson & Motion (Border Collie)
Tracy Golden & Bam (Border Collie)
Dudley Fontaine & Jack (Border Collie)

Team manager: Dave Grubel.

We look forward to having them represent the United States and USDAA in Spain!

Upcoming Events Calendar

Watch out for these events with entries closing in the coming month:
Event Dates Host Group Location Event Type
03/15-03/17 Magic City Canine Club Birmingham, AL Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/09-03/09 Good Dog Agility Club Chandler, AZ Titling Event w/Junior Handler Program Classes
03/16-03/17 Club-Doggie Mesa, AZ Titling Event w/Junior Handler Program Classes
03/22-03/24 Happy Dog Agility Moorpark, CA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/30-03/31 Dog Agility Racing Team (DART) Irwindale, CA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/04-04/07 Haute Dawgs Dixon, CA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/06-04/07 Dog Agility Sport Handlers Fountain Valley, CA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/13-04/14 Happy Dog Agility Moorpark, CA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/08-03/10 Front Range Agility Team Castle Rock, CO Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/08-03/10 Pals & Paws, Inc. Jacksonville, FL Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/15-03/17 Dog-On-It Agility Club of Cent. Florida Winter Park, FL Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/30-03/31 Paws & Ques Williston, FL Titling Classes Only
04/12-04/14 Tailwaggers Learning Center Vero Beach, FL Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/22-03/24 Canine Capers Canton, GA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/12-04/14 Sirius Dog Agility Training Center Alpharetta, GA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/09-03/10 Contact Sports Agility Campton Hills, IL Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/06-04/07 Pawsitive Partners Dog Training Center Indianapolis, IN Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/08-03/10 SureFire Dogs Training Center Westborough, MA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/13-04/14 SureFire Dogs Training Center Westborough, MA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/22-03/22 Branchwater Training Center Reisterstown, MD Intro Program Only
03/29-03/31 Mid-Atlantic MADness Millersville, MD Titling Classes Only
03/16-03/18 Club Agility Chiluca Toluca, MEX Titling Event w/Tournaments & JHP Classes
03/23-03/24 Agility Workout Society of Mid-Michigan Lapeer, MI Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/22-03/22 Tails in Motion Ham Lake, MN Tournament Classes Only
03/23-03/24 On The Run Canine Center Ham Lake, MN Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/22-03/24 All 4 Fun Agility Club Gray Summit, MO Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/08-03/10 Teamworks Dog Training, LLC Youngsville, NC Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/23-03/23 Fast and Furryous Agility, LLC Mebane, NC Match Only
04/12-04/14 Teamworks Dog Training, LLC Youngsville, NC Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/15-03/17 BARK-NH! Manchester, NH Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/23-03/24 All Dogs Gym Agility Manchester, NH Tournament Classes Only
03/23-03/24 On Target Agility, LLC Barto, PA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/30-03/31 Southwest Agility Team Albuquerque, NM Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/13-04/14 Windsor Agility Group Ilderton, ON Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/16-03/17 Willamette Agility Group Corvallis, OR Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/09-03/10 B&D Creekside Activity Center LLC Latrobe, PA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/13-04/14 Splash & Dash K9 Sports Latrobe, PA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/13-04/14 Low Country Dog Agility Charleston, SC Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/08-03/08 HOT Dog Sports, LLC Belton, TX Intro Program Only
03/08-03/10 Travis Agility Group Belton, TX Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/23-03/24 Center for Canine Sports, Inc. Garland, TX Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/29-03/29 Fort Worth Agility Sports Team Burleson, TX Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/30-03/31 Happy Hounds Agility Team Burleson, TX Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/05-04/07 Hill Country Agility Kerrville, TX Regional Championship
04/11-04/14 United States Dog Agility Association, Inc. Mesa, AZ Seminar w/ Match
04/13-04/14 Dallas Agility Working Group McKinney, TX Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
04/25-04/25 United States Dog Agility Association, Inc. Ft. Worth, TX Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/10-03/10 Virginia Ruff Riders, LLC Herndon, VA Intro Program Only
04/06-04/07 Just Jump It, LLC Reva, VA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/17-03/17 NOMAD Waterbury Center, VT Intro Program Only
03/09-03/10 Redhot Rovers Auburn, WA Tournament Classes Only
04/13-04/14 Rainier Agility Team Elma, WA Titling Event w/Tournament Classes
03/23-03/24 International Dog Events Assoc. Devonshire, XX Titling Event w/Tournament Classes


Questions? Mail - USDAA, PO Box 850955, Richardson, TX 75085; Call - (972) 487 - 2200; Email - info@usdaa.com.

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