Trialing is the competition level of Dog Obedience, an option available after graduation from Grade 5. The entry-level class (CCD) is conducted and judged mainly on-lead, while exercises in the higher level classes involve more complex skills and challenges for both dog & handler, and can progress to the titles of CD, CDX, UD & UDX which are added to the dog's name, rather like a degree awarded at the successful completion of a University course. Many of the club's long-term members' & instructors' dogs have achieved some of these (and other) titles (see 'dogtitles' page for a full list) and can be seen 'going through their paces' in the practice rings near the clubrooms on Sunday mornings.

A 'Rule book' which details the exercises, equipment, requirements and rules for the  various competition classes and titles, can be down-loaded from the web-site of the A.N.K.C., the governing body of dog competition of all kinds in Australia, represented in South Australia by DogsSA.

'Dover' has had a long and consistent history of competition success in Obedience, and in Flyball. We've proudly fielded the  winning team in the annual 'Balmead Shield' inter-club Novice (CD class) event on several occasionsin recent years, with high hopes to do so agin in the future - could that team perhaps include you? 

Obedience trials are held about every second weekend throughout the year, hosted by the various DogsSA-affiliated clubs offering Obedience in Adelaide and some regional centres. Information about other clubs, their venues and training times can be found on the 'Clubs' page of the state's Obedience Advisory Committee web-site, and a list of Obedience and other dog-related events that you might be interested to observe or enter, appears on the 'Calendar' page of that same site.

We host trials at Dover in May & October each year, with a Mock Trial also scheduled for April, which is a good way to start your trialing career, or to learn more about what's involved. 

You can also learn a great deal about trialing, and Obedience generally by helping out, or offering to steward at one of our own club trials : your interest and assistance on such occasions will always be appreciated.

You might also like to consider Rally Obedience. Competitions are also conducted in Agility & Jumping, Tracking, Herding,  Retrieving, Earthdog, Dancing With Dogs, with some sports restricted to certain breeds or types of dog.

More information about these options is available from  the DogsSA office or web-site.

All club members are invited and encouraged to aim for 'competition standard' in their training, even if you have no intention of competing, as it offers a benchmark to the exercises you're learning in class, and the foundation for whatever you might want to achieve together with your dog in the future. Many of our successful triallers initially joined the club bringing a family pet for its general education or behaviour management, with no aspirations for competition (most people don't know such things exist) but found the experience so rewarding that they've stayed on and become 'hooked' on 'Dogsports', some bringing a succession of dogs through the classes over time; and sometimes several generations of a family become involved.

You don't have to be the star of your class to take this up, but you do have to be prepared to put in the time and effort to establish a good relationship with your dog, and be prepared for some disappointment along the way. We all understand the highs and lows of Dogsports, but competition success is just one of many rewards of participating in the Obedience community.

You are all encouraged to talk to your instructor, or the Head Instructor, if you'd like to aim for competition work. To enter a trial, you must first become a member of DogsSA (The South Australian Canine Association) and your dog must be registered with them too, either as a pedigreed or 'Associate' dog; but all that can wait until you're nearly ready to enter your first event; though it's worthwhile to check out the costs involved before deciding on a 'career' in Dogsports.

Members receive a monthly 'Journal' in which the schedules for forthcoming events are published, detailing dates, venues, judges, cost, and where, whern and how to submit entries.

The Journal is also available on line ( click here ) and many clubs also offer online entry and payment options.

Entry forms can be purchased from the club office, or from DogsSA, or a computer-generated exact copy of the official form is also acceptable; but you should be aware that Trial Secretaries can refuse to accept any form of entry which is incomplete or inappropriately presented (eg: not signed).