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Utility

The Utility  class is for those dogs that have won the CDX title but have not won the UD title. Anyone who has trained or exhibited a dog that has earned an Obedience Trial Championship may not enter or handle dogs in this class. Each dog will be handled by its owner or by a member of the owner’s immediate family or household. Owners may enter more than one dog in this class.

Utility  Exercises and Scores.
The exercises, maximum scores and order of judging in the Utility A class:

  1. Signal Exercise 40 points

  2. Scent Discrimination Article No. 1 30 points

  3. Scent Discrimination Article No. 2 30 points

  4. Directed Retrieve 30 points

  5. Moving Stand and Examination 30 points

  6. Directed Jumping 40 points

Maximum Total Score 200 points

Utility Dog Title.
The letters UD may be added after the name of each dog that has been certified by three different judges to have received qualifying scores in Utility classes at three licensed or member obedience trials. That dog will receive a Utility Dog certificate from the Puppycom

Signal Exercise.
The principal features of this exercise are the ability of dog and handler to work as a team while heeling and the dog’s correct response to the signals to stand, stay, down, sit and come. Orders are the same as in the Novice Heel on Leash, except for the judge’s order to “Stand your dog.” This order will only be given when the dog and handler are walking at a normal pace and will be followed by the order to “Leave your dog.” The judge must use signals for directing the handler to signal the dog to down, sit, come (in that sequence) and to finish. Heeling will be done as in the Heel Free, except that handlers may use signals only and must not speak to their dogs at any time during this exercise. While the dog is heeling at one end of the ring, the judge will order the handler to “Stand your dog.” On further order to “Leave your dog,” the handler will signal the dog to stay, go to the other end of the ring, then turn and face the dog. On the judge’s signal, the handler will give the signals to down, sit, come and finish as in the Novice Recall.

Signal Exercise, Scoring.
A dog that fails to obey the handler’s first signal to stand, stay, down, sit or come or that receives a verbal command from the handler to do any of these parts of the exercise, must receive a non-qualifying (NQ) score. Depending on the specific circumstances, minor or substantial deductions will be made for a dog that walks forward on the stand, down or sit portions of the exercise. The deduction could be up to an NQ. A substantial deduction will be made for any audible command during the heeling or finish portions of the exercise. All applicable penalties listed under the Heel on Leash and the Novice Recall (after the dog has been signaled to come) exercises will apply.

Scent Discrimination.
The principal features of these exercises are the selection of the handler’s article from among the other articles by scent alone and the prompt delivery of the correct article to the handler. The judge will ask, “What method will you be using to send your dog?” The handler must respond with either “After a sit” or “Send directly.” The judge will then ask, “Are you ready?” immediately prior to taking the article from the handler. This taking of the article will be considered to be the first order, and scoring of the exercise will begin at that time. The remaining orders are: “Send your dog,” “Take it,” and “Finish.” In each of these two exercises, the dog must select and retrieve an article that has been handled by its handler. The dog must make this selection based on scent alone. The articles will be provided by the handler and will consist of two sets, each comprised of five identical objects, which may be items of everyday use. The size of the articles will be proportionate to the size of the dog. One set must be made entirely of rigid metal and one of leather, designed so that only a minimum amount of thread or other material is visible. The articles in each set will be legibly numbered with a different number and must be approved by the judge. The handler will present all ten articles to the judge, who will make a written note of the numbers on the two articles they have selected. These articles will be placed on a table or chair within the ring until the handler picks each up separately. The judge or steward will handle each of the remaining eight articles while randomly arranging them on the floor or ground about 6 inches apart. The closest article should be about 20 feet from the handler and dog. Before the dog is sent, the judge must make sure that the articles are visible to both dog and handler and that they are far enough apart so that there will be no confusion of scent among articles. After the articles have been put out, the handler and dog will turn around and will remain facing away until the judge has given the order, “Send your dog.” The handler may use either article first, but must hand it to the judge immediately when ordered. The judge will make certain handlers scent each article with their hands only. On the judge’s order, the handler will place the article on the judge’s book or worksheet. Without touching that article, the judge or steward will place it among the others. On order from the judge to “Send your dog,” the handler may give the command to heel and will turn in place, either right or left, to face the articles. The handler will come to a halt with the dog sitting in the heel position. The handler will then give the command or signal to retrieve. Handlers may, on order from the judge to “Send your dog,” do a right about-turn, simultaneously giving the command or signal to retrieve. In this case, the dog should not assume a sitting position but must go directly to the articles. Handlers have the option as to how the dog is sent. Handlers may give their scent by extending the palm of one hand in front of the dog’s nose or gently touching the dog’s nose, but the arm and hand must be returned to a natural position before they turn and face the articles. The dog should go directly to the articles at a brisk trot or gallop. It may take any reasonable time to select the correct article but must work continuously. After picking up the correct article, the dog will complete the exercise as in the Retrieve on Flat. This procedure should be followed for both articles. If a dog retrieves the wrong first article, that article and the correct one must be removed. They will be placed on the table or chair, and the next exercise will be done with one less article.

Scent Discrimination, Scoring.
A dog that retrieves a wrong article or that does not complete the retrieve of the right article must receive a non-qualifying (NQ) score. If the “After a sit” method is used, anticipating the command to retrieve must receive a non-qualifying (NQ) score. If the “Send directly” method is used, any additional command to retrieve must receive a non-qualifying (NQ) score. Depending on the circumstances, minor or substantial deductions should be made for a dog that is slow, that does not go directly to the articles, that does not work continuously, or for a handler who uses excessive motions when turning toward the articles. Similar deductions will be made for a dog that picks up the wrong article, even if it is immediately put down again, for any roughness by handlers in giving their scent to the dog, or for handlers not turning in place. There should be no penalty for a dog that takes a reasonably long time examining the articles, provided it is working continuously. All applicable penalties listed under the Novice Recall and the Retrieve on Flat will apply.

Directed Retrieve.
The principal features of this exercise are that the dog stay until directed to retrieve and that it go directly to the designated glove and retrieve it promptly. In this exercise the handler will provide three gloves that are predominately white. They must be open and must be approved by the judge. Handlers will stand with their backs to the unobstructed end of the ring midway between and in line with the jumps. The dog will be sitting in heel position. The judge or steward will drop the gloves across the end of the ring while the handler and dog are facing the opposite direction. One glove is dropped about 3 feet in from each corner, and the remaining glove is dropped in the center, about 3 feet from the end of the ring. The gloves will be designated “One,” “Two,” or “Three,” reading from left to right when the handler is facing the gloves. The orders for the exercise are: “One,” “Two,” or “Three,” “Take it,” and “Finish.”

When the judge designates the glove by number, the handler will turn in place to face the glove, halting with the dog sitting in heel position. The handler may not touch the dog or reposition it. The handler will give the dog the direction to the designated glove with a single motion of the left hand and arm along the right side of the dog. Either simultaneously with or immediately following giving the direction, the handler must give a verbal retrieve command. The dog must then go directly to the glove, completing the exercise as in the Retrieve on Flat.

Handlers may bend their bodies and knees as far as necessary to give the direction to the dogs but must then stand up in a natural position with their arms at their sides. The judge will designate the same glove number for each handler. For each judging assignment, the judge must alternate the number of the glove used.

Directed Retrieve, Scoring.
Anon-qualifying (NQ) score is required for any commands or signals to position the dog after the handler turns to face the glove, for a dog that does not go directly to the designated glove, or for a dog that does not retrieve the correct glove. A handler who does not give a verbal command to retrieve simultaneously or immediately after giving the direction to retrieve must receive a non-qualifying (NQ) score. A substantial deduction, depending on the extent of the infraction, will be made for a handler who does not turn in place or does not face the designated glove. The substantial deduction may include a non-qualifying (NQ) score. All applicable penalties listed under the Novice Recall and the Retrieve on Flat will apply.

Moving Stand and Examination.
The principal features of the exercise are that the dog heel, stand and stay as the handler moves away; accept the examination without shyness or resentment; and return to the handler on command. Orders for the exercise are: “Forward,” “Stand your dog,” and “Call your dog to heel.” The handler will stand with the dog sitting in heel position at a point indicated by the judge. The judge will ask, “Are you ready?” and then will order “Forward.” The handler will command or signal the dog to heel. After the handler has proceeded about 10 feet, the judge will order “Stand your dog.” Without pausing, the handler will command and/or signal the dog to stand and continue forward about 10 to 12 feet. The handler will then turn either to the right or left to face the dog, which must stand and stay in position. The judge will approach the dog from the front to examine it as in dog show judging, except the exam will not include the teeth, testicles or tail. When the judge orders “Call your dog to heel,” the handler will command and/or signal the dog to return to the heel position. The dog should return to heel position in a brisk manner.

Moving Stand and Examination, Scoring.
A non-qualifying (NQ) score is required for a dog that does any of the following:

  • displays fear or resentment;

  • moves from the place where it was left;

  • sits or lies down before it is called;

  • growls or snaps;

  • repeatedly whines or barks;

  • fails to heel, stand, stay, or accept the judge’s examination;

  • or fails to return to the handler.

Depending on the circumstances, minor or substantial deductions must be made for a dog that moves its feet repeatedly while remaining in place or for a dog that returns to the handler as defined in the Novice Recall but not to heel position.

Depending on the extent of hesitation, minor or substantial deductions should be made for the handler who hesitates or pauses while giving the stand command and/or signal. All appropriate penalties of the Novice Heel Free, Stand for Examination and Recall exercises will apply.

Directed Jumping.
The principal features of this exercise are that the dog goes away from the handler to the opposite end of the ring, stop, jump as directed, and return as in the Novice Recall. The orders are: “Send your dog,” “Bar,” “High” and “Finish.” The jumps will be placed midway in the ring at right angles to the longest sides of the ring about 18 to 20 feet apart. The judge must see that the jumps are set at the required height for each dog, as described in the Retrieve Over High Jump. The handler will stand in the approximate center of the ring with the dog sitting in heel position, about 20 feet from the jumps and midway between them. Upon order from the judge, the handler will command and/or signal the dog to go forward at a brisk trot or gallop to a point about 20 feet past the jumps in the approximate center of the unobstructed end of the ring. When the dog reaches this point, the handler will give a command to sit. The dog must stop and sit with its attention on the handler, but it need not sit squarely. The judge will order either “Bar” or “High” for the first jump, and the handler will command and/or signal the dog to return to the handler over the designated jump. While the dog is in midair, the handler may turn to face the dog as it returns. The dog will sit in front of the handler and, on order from the judge, finish as in the Novice Recall. After the dog has returned to heel position, the judge will say, “Exercise finished.” When the dog is set up for the second half of this exercise, the judge will ask, “Are you ready?” before giving the order for the second part of the exercise. The same procedure will be followed for the second jump. It is optional which jump the judge first indicates, but both jumps must be included. The judge must not designate the jump until the dog has reached the far end of the ring. The height of the jumps and construction of the high jump will be the same as required in the Open classes. The bar jump will consist of a bar between 2 and 21⁄2 inches square with the edges rounded to remove any sharpness. The bar will be flat black and white in alternate sections each about 3 inches wide. The bar will have the weight of wood. It will be supported by two unconnected 4-foot upright posts about 5 feet apart and built to be set at a height of 4 inches and must be adjustable for each 2 inches of height from 8 inches to 36 inches. The jump must be built so that the bar may be knocked off without affecting the uprights.

Directed Jumping, Scoring.
A dog will receive a non-qualifying (NQ) score if it: anticipates the handler’s command and/or signal to go out; fails to leave the handler; does not go out between the jumps; does not stop and remain at least 10 feet past the jumps without an additional command; anticipates the handler’s command and/or signal to jump; returns over the wrong jump; knocks the bar off the uprights; or uses the top of any jump for aid in going over. Minor or substantial deductions will be made for a dog that does not stop on command, that does not stop in the approximate center of the ring about 20 feet past the jumps, that does not sit, that receives an additional command to sit after the dog has stopped, or that anticipates the handler’s command to sit. Depending on the extent of the violation, minor or substantial deductions will be made for slowness in going out, for touching the jumps, or for any hesitation in jumping. All applicable penalties of the Novice Recall exercises will apply.

  
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