See Saw

KC Rule H (1) (B) n. See-Sawthis obstacle will consist of a plank firmly mounted on a central bracket. The length of the plank must be 3.66m. The width should be 254mm minimum and 305mm maximum. The height of the central bracket measured from the ground to the top of the plank should be 610mm minimum and 685mm maximum. The last 914mm from each end should be a different colour to indicate the area with which the dog should make contact. The plank should have a non-slip surface with no slats. (This means paint and sand OR rubber). The See-Saw must start to tip and then touch the ground between 23 seconds after a weight of 1 kilogram has been placed in the middle of the down contact area. (This was brought in from 1/1/14 to try to help the lighter weight dogs who found it difficult to tip the see saw).


Judges guidance: All Contact Equipment:

Positioning Entry onto the contact equipment should be reasonably straight. There should be sufficient room for the dog to get the required speed to reach the top of the obstacle. Consideration should be given to weather conditions at all times.

Judging Fault if the dog fails to make contact with the contact area.

Recommended The rules only state that a fault should be given if the dog fails to make contact. A dog that leaves the obstacle, and then puts a paw back onto the obstacle should be eliminated.

There is no guidance on what part of the dog should touch the contact area, but it is suggested that it should be a paw, or part thereof. Begs the question of what other part is likely to contact!!

A judge should be in such a position that both the up and down contacts can be properly judged.

Refusal Refusal if the dog stops or turns away when in a position to take the obstacle, or if it runs past the line of the furthest point of the first contact area. A dog is considered to have refused the obstacle if it alights before the down ramp or plank (i.e. the down ramp on the A Frame, the pivot point on the See-Saw and the down plank on the Dog Walk).

Specific to the See-Saw: Fault if the exit end of the plank is not touching the ground before the dog alights from the obstacle.

An additional fault should be given if the dog alights before touching the contact area. A dog is considered to have refused the obstacle if it alights before the pivot point.

Eliminations A dog should be eliminated if it touches or alights the obstacle from the wrong direction. (For the see saw this would mean turning round and going back along the see saw it happens!)


Trainers tips:

You can get 10 faults or an elimination on one piece of contact equipment - you can get 5 faults if the see saw doesnt touch the ground before the dog jumps off and a further 5 if the dog jumps off before touching the contact area.  You rarely see that given but dogs frequently jump off before the see saw touches the ground it is potentially dangerous and a bad habit for a dog to get in.


The see saw is the only obstacle that makes a noise and depending on the see saw and the competition surface it can be quite a loud bang as it touches the ground this does surprise some dogs.  Also it is the only obstacle that moves and that too can be disconcerting.  There are various ways to train your dog for this a wobble board will teach the dog that movement of the contact surface is nothing to worry about.  A wobble board comprises a ring of wood (or similar) with a ball in the centre so the dog can learn to balance on the board something easy to make at home.


Dartmoor have a training see saw where the height of the pivot can be varied, from nearly on the ground so there is just a small about of tip, and upwards so it can gradually be increased if you think your dog might benefit from this just ask!  Once a dog has scared itself it takes much longer to train the see saw take it slowly and ensure the dog makes that contact every time that is the safest way to ensure the see saw touches the ground before the dog is released. Hold the see saw to start with, ensuring it tips slowly until the dog is able to gauge for itself where the tipping point is.


Remember your release command is the signal for the dog to go essential to release the dog.  This applies to every contact but is particularly important for the see saw a dog leaping off before it has touched the ground can be struck by the see saw so it is a real safety thing to ensure the see saw touches every time.

Contact Address

Mrs Ann Hampshire


Dartmoor Dog Training Club

West Brushford Farm




EX18 7SJ


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Guide to Surviving your first agility show:


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Minutes of Kennel Club Agility Liaison Council Meeting 17th January 2019 see here.