Working Trials

Working Trials date back to 1924 when the Associated Sheep, Police and Army Dog Society (ASPADS) held the first event. In May 1927, the first Championship Working Trial to be recognised by the Kennel Club was held by the Alsatian League and Club of Great Britain at Castle Bromwich. The format of Working Trials was changed in 1961 and since then very minor amendments have been made to the discipline which bears testimony to the standard that was set all those years ago.

Although Working Trials testswere originally based on training for police work, for today's participant Working Trials are purely a competitive sport. They are physically demanding, and both dog and owner need to be healthy and fit. Trials always take place out of doors, often in very attractive landscapes, and are run right through the year. Working Trials tests, especially the tracking exercises, tend to be dispersed over a relatively large area of land. Consequently, trials rarely attract many spectators apart from the competitors themselves - the exception being the annual Kennel Club Working Trial Championships, the 'top' event of the Working Trials calendar.

Almost any dog of any breed of can take part in Working Trials, provided they are fit and healthy. The lower levels of competition - called 'stakes' - are geared to virtually any size of dog; however smaller dogs are not normally able to attain the top stakes (Tracking Dog and Patrol Dog) due to the height and size of the equipment used for the 'agility' exercises. Any Kennel Club registered dogs (pedigree or non-pedigree) can take part, but they must be 18 months old before they can compete at a Working Trial.

Notice to Clubs/Societies 

Operational plan for the resumption of licensed events

Advice for Activities Shows, Competitions and Trials during Coronavirus (Covid-19) can be found here. 


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