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Photo by Nancy Jennings. Buzz at the 2017 Rally National Championships in Perry, GA.

As many of you know, I took a little time off to compete at the Rally National Championships (RNC) in Perry, Ga.

This is a national competition that is divided into four different classes and to qualify, dogs and handlers need to meet specific requirements that include three scores of 90 or better (out of 100) in the class you enter. Buzz and I had three perfect scores going into the competition and we competed in a class called Excellent.

The competition is in two rounds and scores are added together. After the first round, Buzz and I scored a 98, and were still in the hunt to make Top 10 in the country, which was my goal going into the competition.

We’d don’t show all that often so Buzz hasn’t been exposed to a lot of different situations. He’s young and inexperienced compared to a lot of the other dogs competing, but our scores going into the competition gave me a lot of confidence that we’d do well.

And, half of the team did just that.

Buzz did beautifully. I couldn’t be more proud of how he handled his first road trip staying in a hotel and competing in a huge venue with dogs showing in rings right next to us.

As you’ll see below on the video, at each sign I commanded him to do something different, and, he performed every sign as I asked him to do. However, I goofed up a sign near the end — although you can’t tell from my reaction on course.

So, I lost us 10 points and in the process, knocked us out of a top finish, and we ended up 36th. 

It was a fun trip and a great experience for both of us. Next week, we’ll begin our quest to get another title and three scores of 95 or better along the way to qualify for the 2018 competition. 


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One Response to “Publisher’s message: wondering what I did with Buzz while on vacation?”

  1. Crystal Hayduk says:

    Thank you for writing about your trip. The video helped to put it all together for those of us who have never been to such an event in the past. Congratulations to both of you. We’ll just call Buzz the Future Champion for now.