Upcoming Obedience Rules

The Obedience Committee would like to keep members current with rule changes that have been approved. We cover many topics throughout the year and are always looking for members input. If you have suggestions for the ASCA Obedience Program, please contact an Obedience Committee member and they will be happy to take your suggestion to the committee.  The Obedience Chair can be reached at Laurie Rubin.

For information about serving on the Obedience Committee please contact the  Executive Secretary .

The Obedience Committee welcomes everyone interested to join the ASCAObedience Rules Yahoo list Obediencerules-owner@yahoogroups.com

Below are upcoming rule changes that go into effect with the next printing of the rulebook on June 1st, 2017.

Upcoming Changes to 2017 Obedience Rules 1-17

Changes to 2016 Obedience Rules

 1.2.1 Specialty or Sanctioned Obedience Trial
A Specialty or Sanctioned Obedience Trial need not include all of the Regular obedience classes defined in these Regulations, but a club will be approved to hold Open classes only if it also holds Novice classes, and a club will be approved to hold a Utility class only if it also holds Novice and Open classes. Novice classes will be divided into “A” and “B”. Open and Utility classes will be divided into CDX and ODX “A” and “B”. The Novice “A” and “B” classes or the CDX “A” and “B” classes may, at the judge’s discretion, be combined for group exercises.
Any Affiliate club which has been approved to hold a Specialty or Sanctioned Obedience Trial, if qualified in the opinion of the ASCA Business Office may offer additional Non-regular classes for dogs not less than six (6) months of age, provided a clear and complete description of the eligibility requirements and performance requirements for each such class appears in the premium list. However, the Non-regular classes defined in these regulations need not be described in the premium list. Dogs entered in any Non-regular class (whether or not as described in these Regulations) other than Brace, Wild Card, and the Team Non-regular classes shall not enter or exhibit in any Regular Obedience Class held at the same show and on the same day.
Articles
5.8 Scent Discrimination

In each of these two exercises the dog must select by scent alone and retrieve an article that has been handled by its handler. The articles shall be provided by the handler and shall consist of two (2) sets, each comprised of five (5) identical objects not more than six (6) inches in length, which may be items of everyday use. The articles may be made of metal, leather, or wood. The handler will choose two (2) of these three (3) materials. One (1) The metal set shall be made entirely of rigid metal, and one (1) of the leather set shall be of such design that nothing but leather is visible except for the minimum amount of thread or metal necessary to hold the object together, and the wood set shall be made entirely of one or more solid wood pieces. The articles in each set must be legibly numbered, each with a different number and must be approved by the judge.

Section 1.1.3 Premium
The Premium shall at a minimum indicate: q. If allowing bitches in season, the prominent statement: Bitches in season permitted. They must be crated at least 50’ from obedience ring, wear pants and run last after all obedience judging is finished. r. If allowing bitches in season, details on which trial/s allow them when there are two trials in one day.
Section 1.13 Disturbances Bitches in season are not permitted to compete except under the specific circumstances detailed below. The judge of an Obedience Trial must remove from competition any bitch in season, any dog which its handler cannot control, any handler who interferes willfully with another competitor or his dog, and any handler who abuses his dog in the ring, and may excuse from competition any dog which he considers unfit to compete, or any bitch which appears so attractive to males as to be a disturbing element.
If a dog or handler is disqualified or excused by a judge, the reason shall be stated in the judge’s book or in a separate report.
Bitches in season may compete only at the Nationals Obedience Trial and Obedience Finals. Regular trials may also allow bitches in season to compete, if a club chooses to and if it is specified beforehand in the premium. They are to compete last after all other obedience judging is finished with the exception of run-offs each day. This includes sits and downs, which shall be held separately. Multiple bitches in season may take part in group sits and downs together.
If a club chooses to allow them in two trials on the same day and specifies this clearly in the premium, bitches in season entered in the first trial will be allowed to run at the end of the first trial and again at the end of the second trial.
Bitches in season must be crated (not placed in an exercise pen) at least 50′ away from the obedience rings prior to and during the competition, except while competing. Bitches in season must wear pants. Handlers must notify the Show/Trial Secretary at least 30 minutes before the start of the trial if they plan to compete with a bitch in season.
In all exercises in which a dog is required to heel on-lead, one of the options listed shall be followed: (1) The handler’s arms and hands shall move naturally at his/her sides while in motion, with the leash held in the left hand, or (2) The hand(s) holding the leash will be held against, and centered in the front of the body, in the area of the waist. The forearm(s) shall be carried, as much as possible, against the body.

In exercises in which the dog is required to heel off leash (free), one of the options listed shall be followed: (1) The handler’s arms and hands shall move naturally at his/her sides while in motion and hang naturally at his/her sides when stopped, or (2) the handler’s right hand and arm shall move naturally at his/her side while his/her left hand shall be held against and centered in front of the body in the area of the waist. The left forearm shall be carried, as much as possible, against the body. In any of the above situations, the hands and arms may be adjusted during the fast portion of the exercise, in order to maintain balance.
3.6 Heel on Leash & Figure Eight The leash may be held in either hand or both hands, providing the hands are held in a natural position the positions specified in Chapter 2, section 19. However, any tightening or jerking of the leash or any act, signal or command which in the judge’s opinion gives the dog assistance shall be penalized.

Chapter 10 Versatility Optional Titling Class 10.1 Versatility Class The Versatility Class is an optional titling class that clubs may choose to offer at obedience trials. The Versatility Class shall be for dogs not less than six (6) months of age, capable of performing the Utility exercises. Dogs in this class may also be entered at the same trial in any Regular and/or Non-regular classes for which they are eligible as defined in these regulations. A dog entered in the Versatility class may be handled by the owner or any other person. A person may handle more than one (1) dog in this class. Each handler will provide a dumbbell, scent discrimination articles and directed retrieve gloves. This class may be judged by anyone approved to judge Utility. A qualifying score in an Optional Titling class shall be the same as that in a Regular class as defined in these regulations by Chapter 1 Section 10: Qualifying Score. Ribbons and prizes for Optional Titling classes shall be the same as those in Regular classes as defined in these regulations by Chapter 1 Section 14: Obedience Ribbons and Chapter 1 Section 15: Ribbons and Prizes. Scores and titles from Optional Titling classes shall not be applicable to High in Trial awards, Merit standings, Finals standings or Hall of Fame determinations.
10.2 Versatility Title ASCA will issue a Versatility Obedience Dog Title (VER) certificate to a dog with an ASCA registration, LEP number or an ASCA tracking number, and will permit the use of VER after its name, when it has received three (3) qualifying scores awarded by at least two (2) judges. Each additional time a dog is certified as receiving three (3) qualifying scores awarded by at least two (2) judges, the applicable number following the title may be added (such as VER2, VER3, and so forth).
10.3 Selecting Versatility Orders Prior to the start of judging, the judge will decide the order of exercises to be performed in this class and which glove will be retrieved if the combination includes the Directed Retrieve exercise. The order and glove number will be posted at the ring, at least thirty (30) minutes before the class is scheduled to begin. Judges should rotate the Versatility order and the assigned glove number for each judging assignment.
10.4 Versatility Exercises, Orders and Scores

All exercises will be performed and judged as in the Regular classes. For the purpose of this class, scent discrimination articles 1 and 2 will be considered as a single Scent Discrimination exercise. There will be no group exercises.
Versatility Order I 1. Heel Free/Figure 8 40 points 2. Directed Retrieve 30 points 3. Retrieve Over High Jump 30 points 4. Directed Jumping 40 points 5. Drop on Recall 30 points 6. Moving Stand 30 points Maximum Total Score 200 points
Versatility Order II 1. Signal Exercise 40 points 2. Broad Jump 30 points 3. Moving Stand 30 points 4. Retrieve on the Flat 30 points 5. Scent Discrimination 40 points 6. Retrieve Over the High Jump 30 points Maximum Total Score 200 points
Versatility Order III 1. Retrieve on the Flat 30 points 2. Directed Retrieve 30 points 3. Signal Exercise 40 points 4. Retrieve Over the High Jump 30 points 5. Drop on Recall 30 points 6. Directed Jumping 40 points Maximum Total Score 200 points
Versatility Order IV 1. Broad Jump 30 points 2. Scent Discrimination 40 points 3. Figure 8/Heel Free 40 points 4. Directed Retrieve 30 points 5. Moving Stand 30 points 6. Retrieve on the Flat 30 points Maximum Total Score 200 points
Versatility Order V 1. Directed Jumping 40 points 2. Retrieve Over the High Jump 30 points 3. Recall 20 points 4. Scent Discrimination 40 points 5. Retrieve on the Flat 30 points 6. Signal Exercise 40 points Maximum Total Score 200 points

1.9 Dogs that May Not Compete
No dogs shall be entered or shown under a judge at an Obedience Trial if the dog has been owned, sold, held under lease, handled in the ring, boarded or has been regularly trained or instructed, within one (1) year prior to the date of the Obedience Trial by the judge or by any member of his immediate family or household, and no such dog shall be eligible to compete.
“Trained or instructed” applies equally to judges who train professionally or as amateurs, and to judges who train individual dogs or who train or instruct dogs in classes with or through their handlers.
BD.16.64 Insert a Communicable Disease Statement in Program Rulebooks
Communicable Disease
No dog shall be eligible to compete at any show, no dog shall be brought into the grounds or premises of any dog show, and any dog which may have been brought into the grounds or premises of a dog show shall immediately be removed, if it;
a. shows clinical symptoms of distemper, infectious hepatitis, parvovirus, leptospirosis, kennel cough or other communicable disease, or
b. is known to have been in contact with distemper, infectious hepatitis, leptospirosis, kennel cough or other communicable disease within thirty days prior to the opening of the show, or
c. has been kenneled within thirty days prior to the opening of the show on premises on which there existed distemper, infectious hepatitis, leptospirosis, kennel cough or other communicable disease.
The location in each rulebook is:
Agility – 1.3.7
Conformation – 9.9
Obedience – 1.33
Rally – 1.10.4
Stockdog – 4.8.c
4.8.4 DOE 1 – Part B, Scoring
A non-qualifying (NQ) score is required for the dog’s failure to respond to the first command and/or signal to go to the cone, failure to clearly move towards the cone, failure to respond to the first command and/or signal to sit at the cone or to sit automatically at the cone, failure to sit within approximately 3 feet of the cone, or failure to remain stationary in a sit until directed to move by the handler.
Minor to substantial deductions depending upon the extent shall be made for whining, sniffing, barking, touching the cone with any part of the body except the tail or coat, or for sitting partially outside the three (3) foot radius of the cone.
4.8.6 DOE 2 – Part A, Scoring
A dog that is non-qualifying on either Part A or Part B shall be scored non-qualifying for DOE 2. (Effective June 2016) A non-qualifying (NQ) score is required for the dog’s failure to stand, for the dog standing outside a four-foot radius of the cone, or for a dog moving major distance from the place where it stood at any time during the stand. Minor to substantial deductions depending upon the extent shall be made for sniffing, barking, whining, touching the cone with any part of the body except the tail or coat and/or moving a minor distance away from the place where it first stood.
4.8.8 DOE 2 – Part B, Scoring:
A non-qualifying (NQ) score is required if the dog fails to remain in the stand within the four-foot radius of the cone until it is directed by the handler to heel, if the dog never makes an attempt to go to heel position, or if the dog is unmanageable. Substantial deductions, depending on the extent, shall be made for additional commands or signals to heel and failure of the handler to maintain a normal pace while walking behind, approaching, passing the dog or when the dog is falling into heel position and before the judge says “Exercise finished.” Substantial or minor deductions depending upon the extent shall be made if the dog touches the cone with any part of the body except the tail or coat or if the dog has attempted but not assumed heel position by the time the handler reaches the ring barrier.