Rally is a fun and newer exhibiting class. In Rally, handlers and dogs run through a series of signs on a course, known as "stations". Each judge designs a course for an individual show day thus, exhibitors and dogs are challenged each time they enter the ring. Scoring starts at 100 and any team that ends their run with a score of 70 or more will earn a qualifying score. Although Rally is timed, timing is done to break placement ties should more than one team earn the same score. Dogs must qualify a total of three times within a class, under at least 2 different judges, to earn their title. They must do this for every class level up to the RAE, which then requires double Qs.
At the Novice level, teams navigate 10-15 stations while completely on leash; there are no jumps at this level. Rally Advanced is done completely off leash with one jump. There can be 12-17 stations in this class and some of those signs will come from both the Novice and Advanced levels. The last individual class is Rally Excellent. At this level teams will be off leash, have two jumps, 15-20 stations, with the possibility of several exercises done at a distance from the dog, and an honor exercise. Once a dog has earned the Rally Excellent title, a team can go on to the Rally Advanced Excellent Title (RAE). At the individual class levels, each dog must qualify a minimum of three times to earn that title, but once at the RAE level, teams must earn double qualifying scores in both Rally Advanced and Rally Excellent on the same day, a total of ten times (that is 20 runs for the RAE title!). Earning an RAE is a very impressive and worthy accomplishment. The AKC offers a Rally National Championship trial each year. Teams that are invited to this event are the best Rally teams in the U.S. and this invitation is a wonderful honor for those teams, demonstrating the true bond between handler and dog.
In addition to AKC Rally, there are several other venues that offer Rally, such as UKC, ASCA, and Cyber Rally. Cyber Rally is done all online. Teams video their runs. Dogs of all types and abilities can participate. Cyber Rally is a great option for senior dogs, dogs with physical disabilities (tri-pods, dogs in wheelchairs, deaf, blind, etc.), dogs that cannot jump or run, and for those, both dogs and/or handler, who may not be comfortable in the dog show environment.
Click here to see the current PDCA Rally Rankings.
- RN (Rally Novice)
- RA (Rally Advanced)
- RE (Rally Excellent)
- RAE (Rally Advanced Excellent)
*Some shows offer RAE High Combined and/or High Scoring Rally Dog rosettes.
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