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Apparently, AKC has a “virtual rally” thing where you set up a course yourself, take a video, and send it in to be graded. Dog trainers, what do you think about this? Wouldn’t it be much different than going out to say, a dog show and testing?
 

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Yes it is different! However since you need space to set it up and will need signs to make the course you choose to follow I suspect most people who will do it are likely to end up finding a trainer with a facility where the course can be set. I know for myself based on the layout of our yard that I couldn't do this at home, so I don't think there will be an issue of "home field advantage" for those who participate. This and being able to video your tricks for a tricks title amke sense as ways to help people to remain connected to their dogs and activities that are great team building opportunities. I just wish they would extend this through other levels of rally. I just need master points for Lily with the RACh title and being able to set up specified courses at my club and viseo submit her runs would be awesome for us.
 

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I am not personally a trainer but it is awesome that they are allowing it. I do agree with lily though that it would be even better if they allowed the high levels to title also. My trainer is allowing everyone to use her equipment, and you are allowed to film your runs at class. Evie and I are planning on getting title as soon as she finishes learning the rest of signs.

@FloofyPoodle are you thinking of titling Fluffy in Rally?
 

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Discussion Starter #4
However since you need space to set it up and will need signs to make the course you choose to follow I suspect most people who will do it are likely to end up finding a trainer with a facility where the course can be set.
How much space do you think it would need? My yard isn’t fenced, and the houses around us all share a “common space”, so maybe I could do it at home? But there is a dog training area to rent close by if I needed it, I guess.

@FloofyPoodle are you thinking of titling Fluffy in Rally?
I am! It sounds right up our...
(R)ally!

Maybe if enough people do the beginner one, they’ll add the additional levels! Consumer interest and all that.
 

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I believe the required dimensions for a rally ring are 40' by 50' minimum.
 

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Well you can't start over for your video that you will submit. But yes you can certainly take some dress rehearsal runs. Rally novice is pretty straightforward so I found it to be low stress anyway.
 

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Apparently, AKC has a “virtual rally” thing where you set up a course yourself, take a video, and send it in to be graded. Dog trainers, what do you think about this? Wouldn’t it be much different than going out to say, a dog show and testing?
A friend of mine did this, she earned her first Q in Rally novice and was thrilled with the process. She went to a friend's house and they set it up in her backyard. They invited me but we have our RN title and it was quite a distance from my house.

When you compete in an official trial there are stated standards for the size of the ring as Catherine mentioned above. For virtual rally there are no required standards except for the distance of the cones for figure 8 and obviously enough space to perform each sign properly. It would be hard to show you are moving fast or slow if you only have space to take three steps. You would also like a flat appropriate area so you aren't tripping over hazards or trying to heel up a hill. Since your dog is on leash, a small parking lot or a flat field in a park could work. You don't need the official signs or cones either - you can improvise with what you have.

I think it's easier than at a competition trial. In a competition trial you don't know what the course will look like until shortly before you run your dog. Just before you run you will be able to pick up a course map and all the competitors get to walk the course before competing. You have to deal with the distraction of other dogs and people, people eating food, dog treats, some dogs barking, some dog making noise with a toy, doors opening and shutting, and unpredictable chaos. etc.

When you do the virtual rally, you can repeat the course as many times as you need till you feel comfortable and your dog is performing well. You do need to film a complete run to send in. In a trial, if you mess up - that's it - you NQ - and lose the money you paid to compete. With a virtual trial, if you mess up, you don't send that run in, you don't lose money, you don't NQ. You get to try it again and send in your best run to be judged. No one except the person with the camera is watching you. A much more relaxing atmosphere.You have more control over the environment, especially if it's in your backyard - or a remote location. Some dog clubs are allowing people to come in and perform inside their building with their equipment which would be ideal.
 

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Discussion Starter #9
I believe the required dimensions for a rally ring are 40' by 50' minimum.
When you compete in an official trial there are stated standards for the size of the ring as Catherine mentioned above. For virtual rally there are no required standards except for the distance of the cones for figure 8 and obviously enough space to perform each sign properly. It would be hard to show you are moving fast or slow if you only have space to take three steps. You would also like a flat appropriate area so you aren't tripping over hazards or trying to heel up a hill. Since your dog is on leash, a small parking lot or a flat field in a park could work. You don't need the official signs or cones either - you can improvise with what you have.
Ah, okay. Thank you!
 
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