Answers to some common questions about ADAA dog agility

NOTE: The 10th Edition of the ADAA Regulations (PDF) is available for download. This Edition of the Regulations is effective from 1st May 2017.

Why do dogs have to be eighteen months old to compete?

What is a title and when do I apply for it?

What do I need to do to enter my first competition?

How high does my dog have to jump?

Why do dogs have to be eighteen months old to compete?

Agility is a strenuous dog sport. When puppies are growing their bones and ligaments are weaker. Generally, most breeds have finished growing at this age. Some of the larger breeds have not and owners should be aware of this and maybe wait for their dog to finish maturing physically.

ADAA enforces the eighteen months age limit, so as not to have any ambiguity or unfairness to any member. It also lessens the potential for people to rush their puppy’s training. Many clubs will not let dogs less than 12 months into their agility classes and there they start to develop muscles on low equipment and are hopefully much stronger before increasing the height of the equipment.

What is a title and when do I apply for it?

Dog titles symbolise the level of proficiency that you and your dog have achieved in the sport. At competitions, clear round certificates are earned when the dog completes the course without error and under the Standard Course time. Qualifying certificates are earned in Games events. They may be issued similar to the clear round certificate or the Judge may set a benchmark (sometimes points).

Collectively, the certificates earned may be enough to apply for a title. The first ones that people generally apply for are either the Beginner Australian Agility Dog (BAAD) title or the Australian Agility Dog (AAD).

The BAAD title requires 4 Clear Round certificates in Combined-Elementary Agility/Jumping Tests with at least two being gained in Agility Tests.

The AAD title requires 4 Clear Round certificates in Combined-Starters within the Combined Programme, Intermediate and/or Open within the International Programme (for IP registered dogs, i.e. dog’s rego number starts with an A), or Regular-Intermediate and/or Regular-Open within the Regular Programme (for RP registered dogs, i.e. dog’s rego number starts with an R) for Agility/Jumping Tests with at least two being gained in Agility Tests.

The AAD must be applied for as soon as the dog is eligible. This may result in the dog not being awarded the BAAD title as they will no longer be allowed in Elementary events. Once your dog is eligible for a title you must then stop entering any lower levels.

View a summary of ADAA Titles available (PDF)

So once you have your certificates, you will need to fill in a title application form. It is best to do this as soon as possible after you have earned it. Any certificates that you earn toward the SAAD title will not be counted unless they are dated after the date that your title application was submitted and issued.

Once the form is filled in, send it to the secretary of ADAA, attach the original certificates and enclose payment for the title application (view the scheduled fees). All certificates may only be used once toward a dog’s title (they may be used again toward a handler award). Note: Any title application that utilises a certificate that was awarded for a height category that is NOT Maxi will not be approved unless ADAA has officially measured and recorded the height of the dog. This must be done by 2 Judges at a sanctioned competition, (but not necessarily on the same day if 2 are not available).

Go here to see what you receive as a memento of the award. You can also visit our Hall of Fame to view ADAA dogs with titles. You may also like to read out notes about How to Apply for Titles over Multiple Day Competitions.

What do I need to do to enter my first competition?

When you are ready to start competing, you will need to join ADAA and register your dog with ADAA (Membership forms are here). Once these forms are sent to the the Secretary, they will be processed and you will receive advice of your membership number and your dog’s registration number. Please allow at least 14 days for your application to be processed.

You will need to find a competition that you can attend. Have a look at the Schedule of Events and decide which ones you wish to enter. For newcomers to the sport, the best events to enter are any that are of the Starters or Elementary standard and if you are feeling game, some of the Intermediate standard (try jumping as there are no contact obstacles). Once decided, fill in the competition entry form (Competition Entry Form is here) and send to the Competition Secretary of the respective club.

Generally you will not receive anything back to confirm your entry, it is just a matter of turning up on the day. Some Competition Secretaries will, however, put information about the competitions (including lists of competitors) on our ADAA Chat email list (join ADAAChat here). Be sure to check the start time and if it is your first competition you will need to have your dog measured and that normally happens an hour before judging commences.

How high does my dog have to jump?

The height your dog jumps will depend on your dog’s size and the event that you have entered. This page should explain.

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