Flyball is a canine relay race. The dogs love it because they have a role to play, they get to run and bark and be loud and tug. We humans like it because we get to compete and win points and prizes and awards and be a part of the community. So we structure all our practices to help get us to as many tournament events as we can. We ensure dogs and humans are well prepared to focus on their roles in a tournament environment.
A tournament takes place over a Saturday and Sunday, with races starting around 8am and lasting until the schedule finishes, often around 4pm. Two flyball rings run simultaneously, meaning 4 teams racing at once, or 16 excited barking dogs running. Each team has a crating area around those rings, but they’re all excited and barking too. We have around 12 clubs at any tournament, with around 30 teams total, so probably 150 dogs under one big roof for a weekend. Crazy right? Each team will race around 6 times during the day. There’s also Friday night racing at many tournaments for an added fee you can run a few dogs just for fun, and Green Dog racing Saturday after the race day concludes so you can bring out dogs still in training.
Each team pays their entry fee, and tournaments take place often in Abbotsford BC, but also Salem, OR and a few other locations in between. Many of us have RV’s to stay in on site, but hotels are available locally with reasonable dog policies. So tournaments can be expensive with travel costs, hotel costs, entry fee, food, etc. As a club we will look to participate in each tournament, but we have no policy on mandatory participation. More like majority participation.
If you are new to the sport - come chat with us. If you’re unsure of your interest level, come check out a tournament with us. It might get you hooked to giving it a try, or you may find that it’s not the right fit, and that’s okay too. Just grab a good pair of ear plugs, and we’ll put you to work helping out! It’s crazy, it’s loud, it’s fast, and boy do the dogs love it!