Saturday, May 7, 2011


NQ - Not Qualified. These are the letters that appear on your score sheet when the judge--for whatever reason--takes your qualification (Q) away from you. Perhaps your dog fouled the ring, perhaps you touched your dog to guide him into the weaves, or perhaps you used foul language. These are obvious reasons for an NQ.

I recently saw a scene at a trial, and, after you read it, let me know what you would have done, what you think of the outcome. Here's what happened:

A woman ran her sheltie in standard and Q'd. She then ran him in jumpers and Q'd. This was her 20th QQ so she earned her MACH. The club was prepared for this, and a club member handed a jump bar to her while she and the dog were still in the ring. She took the bar and did a victory lap. The dog was unsure (why is she holding this big thing and running towards me?) and skittered away from her and out of the ring. Rule #1 in AKC: Your dog must be on leash when they leave the ring or it's an NQ. The woman tried to call the dog back to her. He had jumped onto a chair that was ringside and sat there, making no motion to go back to her. Rule #2 in AKC: If your dog leaves the ring, it must return to you to get its leash on or it's an NQ. A fellow competitor tried to "help" by picking up the dog and handing it to the woman. Rule #3 in AKC: If your dog leaves the ring, no one else may touch it or it's double handling and you NQ. The judge, meanwhile, was making faces as if to say, "OK. I'll overlook his leaving the ring. Hmmm....he's not coming back. No! Don't touch it, don't make me call this. Rats." The judge regretfully came over and told the woman she'd have to NQ her run.

Do you think the judge did the correct thing by NQ'ing the run? Here are some arguments that were floating around the crowd ringside:

She was already done with her run, what does it matter if the dog left the ring?

It was a MACH run, the judge should have given her the Q.

The judge was right because the other person touched the dog.

What are your thoughts?

1 comment:

Diana said...

Wow, I wouldnt have wanted to be the judge on that one. What a hard call. I guess the judge had no choice. But I understand the dogs reaction. We never act like that in the ring, poor dog.