Accommodations for Tracking Exhibitors

The Tracking Judge’s Guidelines state “The tracking fraternity is known for its friendliness, hospitality and encouragement of all participants.” This legacy lives on thanks to the efforts of club volunteers and tracking judges. Together, we endeavor to make tracking tests pleasurable for dogs, handlers and sponsoring clubs while upholding high standards for titling.

Encouraging participation in our sport is so very important. Thank you all for your role, whether it be to lay a track for a friend, teach a class, volunteer for a test, support a potential new tracking judge or put in the many hours of work as a judge for an event. The tracking community embodies the best of camaraderie.

Accommodating the special needs of tracking exhibitors is one way that we can support continued participation in our sport. Although we are not able to give an “easier” track to an exhibitor with physical limitations, we can help by modifying the draw so that they would run a track that has easier access to the start of the track. A track that has a nearby parking lot would be a better choice than a track that has a substantial walk-in to the field.

Exhibitors with wheelchairs, sight impairments, or other physical limitations may be assisted on the track by a helper designated by that exhibitor. The helper would walk behind the judges and provide momentary assistance to the handler without guiding the dog in any way. After assisting the handler, the helper would return to a position on the track behind the judges.

Additionally, an exhibitor may need to take a short rest during a test track. The handler can momentarily catch their breath, resting the dog and themselves. The handler must be made aware that no “restart” or guiding of the dog is allowed but can “rescent” and release the dog to go back to tracking.

Happy Tracking to All!