KC Rule H (1) (B) n. See-Saw—this 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 2–3 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).
Judge’s 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!)
You can get 10 faults or an elimination on one piece of contact equipment - you can get 5 faults if the see saw doesn’t 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.
Mrs Ann Hampshire
Dartmoor Dog Training Club
West Brushford Farm
Want to join us?
If you'd like to become a member, please download our application form.
Like Us on Facebook
Merton 2018 Photo's
We have a few photographs of Members and their dogs at the Merton Show 2018. We have to thank David Wilson for taking the photo's. Click here to view.
Guide to Surviving your first agility show:
Kim Lawer and Cornwall Agility Club have produced a very detailed and comprehensive document for anyone entering their first show. It would be impossible to improve upon this document and with their permission i have made it available to download here.
Guide to surviving your first show 2018.[...]
Adobe Acrobat document [740.6 KB]
Are You Aware of Alabama Rot Disease It can be fatal to your dog. A confirmed case occurred in Cullompton recently. The dog concerned had been walked at Kilerton and Ashclyst woods.
Click here for more details.
Kennel Club Guidlines for owners and handlers with dogs taking part in canine activites. Click below
How to perform CPR on your dog:
Click here to go to the video
Is your dog microchipped?
Are You Aware
of the ammendments to the Dangerous Dogs Act. Click here for the details - it effects us all.
Minutes of Kennel Club Agility Liaison Council Meeting 17th January 2019 see here.