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Rally in the Great Outdoors

Nature is biggest test in rally training for distractions.


Rally nature story Gail-Shilo-horseWhen dog and horse owner Gail of Sussex County, N.J., set up her rally course in the driveway just like any other day, she didn’t realize that she and her 4-year-old Australian Shepherd, Shilo, would have extra company. She usually lets her horses out in the morning while she cleans stalls, and her husband’s horse, Steele, decided the grass was greener on the other side of their course. Gail and Shilo waited for Steele to cross before starting their practice while their camera recorded all of it on video: Watch the video Gail posted on Facebook here.

Gail started her journey with Shilo in a trick dog program when he was a puppy. Later they were looking for things to do during COVID-19 lockdowns when Gail saw a virtual rally. After trying it in July 2020, she was immediately hooked. She entered Shilo in a live local World Cynosport® Rally Limited (WCRL) trial in August 2020, but realized only a few days before that the signs differed from what they knew. 

“It all worked out because the trial host and everyone else from WCRL were wonderful,” Gail said. “At that point, I had never done a live trial or any live dog sport before, so I was pleased everyone was so nice.”

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