Side portrait of Kuiper on the beach. His ears are up and he looks determined.

My dog is one FAST CAT

I am delighted to share with you that according to the @AmericanKennelClub Kuiper is currently ranked as the fastest 100 yard sprinter in the United States of ALL BREEDS in 2018. The times are recorded as an average of 3 runs; Kuiper is sitting at number 1?with 34.7 mph (55.8 km/hr.) Zoooooom!!!!*

Dogs run one at a time at AKC FAST CAT events; they’re technically only competing against themselves. Kuiper’s personal best is 36.2 mph (58.3 km/h)?, which was calculated from an average of two stopwatches ⏱️ (5.66 seconds and 5.63 seconds.) His record slowest runs were recorded by “break the beam” electronic timers ?(6.224 seconds and 6.346 seconds.

If everything is set up right, we can reasonably expect that the electronic timer ? results will be more accurate (i.e. closest to the “real” times.) Since light gate timers ? are automatic, they eliminate human error and reaction times from the equation. (However, AKC has not made them a requirement, presumably due to their expense vs. a couple of volunteers with smartphone stopwatches.⏱) ?

Although stopwatch times ⏱️ are not as accurate, they can sometimes still be very precise. Accuracy is a measure of how “correct”  a measurement is, and precision is the ability to make repeatable measurements with the same tool. ? In the example above, our two volunteer stopwatchers ⏱️ got 5.66 and 5.63 seconds for the same run.

Their times agreed with one another pretty closely, so we can say these stopwatch times were precise. If we use an analogy of shooting arrows at a target, we may not be hitting the bull’s-eye but we’re grouping our arrows together closely.

Do you find it surprising that the handheld stopwatch times were faster? It turns out that that’s normal; there’s a delay between seeing a flag drop or hearing a starter pistol fire and hitting “start” on a stopwatch. Even expert timers have a delay of ~.24 seconds.

* the J in Kuiper J. Doggo stands for “zoom!!” He chose it when he was very small (puppies can’t spell very well.) We decided to roll with it.

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