Jumps, tunnels and climbing structures tested of the agility and training of several dogs of different breeds during a three day competition that took place in Marsh Harbour on February 3, 4 and 5. The competitors consisted of eight Abaco teams and two United States teams.
Organized by local trainer, Maureen Koepp, the show was held at the back of the Bahamas National Trust’s office on Power Line Road under the official contribution of AKC judge, Bonnie McDonald, who visited Abaco for the occasion.
Dogs were judged on their ability to do the run without mistakes and for their time doing it. Categories included Beginner, Novice, Open, Excellent / Master which was the highest level with twenty obstacles.
The highest jump was twenty inches high and was successfully taken by Bonnie McDonald’s Joy and Odie, the only agility Bahamian champion, receiving each the top score of one hundred points. Even though she did not complete the course without hesitation, the Australian Cattle dog Kai performed it in the shortest and best time of all the competition events.
Only one dog entered the sixteen inches course; it was Jo-Ann Bradley’s border collie, Riley, who did the round of obstacles perfectly.
The jumps and the number of obstacles were lowered as the training level of the dogs diminished. Bahamian veteran, ten year old Ari, belonging to Tara Lavallee performed the run with twelve inch jumps in a fairly good time and without mistakes, earning him a one hundred points score.
The jumps were lowered to eight inches for the beginners and novice participants. They were allowed one run on a leash, but had to perform without it, only following their owners commands to qualify.
Bree, a Bahamian mix breed owned by Tonya Gay was the only one in the novice category gathering a ninety one points for his effort.
The little Jack Terrier Harry owned by Melanie Rees took a first place in the beginner category, followed by Jet led by young Demetrius Gay.
A late entry who ran only on Sunday but performed with top score was Cowboy a Golden Doodle, led by Tisha Ziskind from Hope Town, on behalf of her son Teddy who attends training with Mrs. Koepp.
The Abaco Training Club offers individual one-hour training or group training staggered over a few weeks.
Mrs. Koepp can be reached by email at firstname.lastname@example.org