Closeup of Kuiper in a field of tulips. He is holding a wooden obedience article in his mouth.

AKC Dog Star of the Month

I am thrilled that the American Kennel Club has chosen Kuiper to be their Dog ⭐ of the Month. We love the AKC and are excited to participate in a variety of AKC sports. Kuiper is eligible to compete and earn championships in AKC obedience, rally, agility and tracking, and we’re hard at work training for all 4. However, an obscure rule excludes him from competing in the sport he was bred for: Kuiper is ineligible to lure course in AKC.

Kuiper had the fastest AKC Fast CAT times (100 yard sprint) in the United States last year of all breeds. Kuiper LOVES Fast CAT, and we can’t wait for the next one. However, Fast CAT is not lure coursing. It’s the equivalent of a 5k fun run vs. a competitive marathon.

Lure coursing is the only AKC event besides conformation which still requires intact dogs to have two perfect testicles, which Kuiper does not have. Even field trials and IPO have eliminated this requirement; it only remains for lure coursing. Unlike many monorchid and cryptorchid dogs, Kuiper’s medical situation does not pose a material health risk. And if I choose to keep him intact, he remains eligible to compete in any AKC recognized sport besides coursing.

Historically, dogs were required to be eligible for conformation in order to compete in sports like obedience and coursing. This is only still the case for coursing. And current rules are written inconsistently..

? Monorchid/cryptorchid dogs are explicitly excluded, but deaf dogs are permitted to course. Deafness is a general disqualification in conformation
? Dogs with limited AKC registration or PAL/ILP registration are permitted to course, but cannot compete in conformation
? Neutered dogs may course, but cannot compete in conformation.

If you own an AKC sighthound, please write your breed club to let them know you think dogs like Kuiper shouldn’t be excluded from coursing (especially given inconsistencies above.) Contact info in comments.

If you otherwise own an AKC performance dog and think monorchid dogs should not be excluded from events besides conformation, please write to share your thoughts.

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