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Rules For 2021 AKC Virtual Trick Dog Competition

Rules For 2021 AKC Virtual Trick Dog Competition

Attention AKC Trick Dogs! We are pleased to announce the 2021 Virtual AKC Trick Dog National Competition.

AKC Elite Performer Trick Dogs everywhere can participate in this exciting annual event.

How it works: Submit a video of your dog’s AKC Trick Dog routine. 

  • As long as your dog has the Elite Performer Trick Dog title (in your hands by October 1, 2021), you can submit a routine. The routine may, but does not have to adhere to the requirements for earning your AKC Elite Performer Trick Dog title. 

For example, the Elite Performer title requires that you use at least 5 props and 5 Performer level tricks. While you don’t have to do this in your submission for the 2021 competition, keep in mind that performances with props and higher level tricks are likely to score better.

  • The routine must be no longer than 6 minutes. If you move props once you start the routine, this is included in the 6 minutes. A minimum of 10 tricks should be included.
  • The routine may include music. A script may be read by a helper, the handler may tell the story, the video may include written words to narrate the story, or the handler can use music to depict the mood (e.g., the story is the dog goes on a beach vacation and beach music plays as the dog does the tricks).
  • A helper, either person or dog, may play a minor role in the routine. Example: the dog walks by a Wizard—a person other than the handler is the Wizard. If there is another person involved in the routine, that person may not handle the dog.
  • Handlers may wear costumes; dogs may wear a decorative collar or neck ruffle but may not wear costumes.
  • Dogs may not wear prong/pinch collars, e-collars, or head collars in the routine.
  • You may use a new video, a video previously submitted to AKC for review, or a video of a past trick dog performance.

Videos submitted for the 2019 and 2020 AKC Virtual Tricks Competitions may not be submitted. 

  • Videos should be one continuous take as though your routine was being filmed while you did a performance at a school, nursing home, etc. There may be up to two minor edits (e.g., if you needed to cut a trick to meet the 6-minute requirement), but you should not be editing multiple tricks or showing tricks individually. This is a performance. 
  • The dog must be living at the time of the submission.
  • The routines will be judged based on:
    • creativity
    • fluency (accuracy of tricks, difficulty)
    • flow from one trick to the next
    • handling skills
    • entertainment value
    • overall impression (background, etc.)
  • Breed prizes will be awarded at the discretion of the judges. If there was only one dog in a specific breed and the routine was not outstanding, the breed prize might not be awarded.
  • The application including the video link must be received by 5:00 p.m. EST on October 1, 2021. (submit to trickdog@akc.org)