Gun Dog Trial Rules

Gun Dog Trial Participant Rules

1. Entries for a field trial will close at 5 p.m. the Thursday before a Saturday trial. Braces will be drawn at random by TBDA officers that evening and posted to the website. No dog shall be added to the trial after the drawing has been held. Every participant will pay his entry fees before his brace begins. Entry forms must contain all requested information or entry cannot be accepted.

2. The bird field must be marked with definite boundaries. No shooting or loaded guns will be allowed outside of the boundaries of bird fields for any reason. A bird field must be 40 to 60 acres in size with water and good bird cover.

3. Number of birds to be released shall be six game birds for the first brace and five game birds for each brace thereafter.

4. Bird handlers must wear gloves when loading and planting birds.

5. Gunners must use 7.5 or smaller shot. No more than 2 shots may be taken at a pointed bird. Gunners with automatic shotguns shall only load two shells at a time.

6. Brace duration shall be 30 minutes.

7. Dog handlers and/or shooters must remain behind a blind while birds are being released for their brace. Handler has the option to check the bird bag before and after the planting of the birds in the field. This is done to assure that the proper number of birds are being used for each brace. No one shall plant birds in the two braces before they compete in the field.

8. All trials will have two judges and an assigned field marshal.

9. Judges will not be permitted to enter their dog in trials they are judging, regardless of who may handle their dog.

10. All participants must sign the official score card validating accuracy prior to posting by field marshal.

11. All participants must be 16 years of age and have a valid hunting license with a hunter’s safety card if born after 1970.

12. Ties for 1st-6th place shall be decided by the dog which has the quickest find from the start of the brace. The judge will be responsible for keeping track of the time for the first find.

13. Maximum number of persons in bird field shall be limited to six people. This includes two judges, two participants and two additional spaces that may be filled by spectators or gunners.

14. Participants deemed by the judge to have consumed alcoholic beverages will be disqualified.

15. A handler must hunt his dog competitively for the full 30 minutes. If a dog is off the course for more than 10 minutes then the judge will stop the brace. A bye dog will be selected by the field marshal and will run the remaining time left of the brace.

16. A gunner may not fire his gun, except at a pointed and flushed bird.

17. If a person enters more than one dog, he will be responsible for making arrangements for his second dog to be ready in case of back-to-back braces. A stake out will be provided at the blind.

18. Bitches in season shall not be permitted to run in a trial.

19. Any participant which is absent at the start of his brace will be allowed ten minutes to show or will be automatically disqualified for that brace and brace mate will run with a bye dog. A bye dog must be selected by the field marshal and will receive no score.

20. A handler must not abuse or use excessive force towards his dog during a field trial or while on the trial grounds. This will result in an automatic disqualification and potential suspension from further Gun Dog Trials and competition.

21. Courtesy Assistance covers individuals who are disabled or recovering from surgery or rehab. This covers individuals who have doctor’s orders because of heart problems, knee or hip problems.

A. Handlers must stay with the trial judge at all times.

B. Handlers must not drive the four-wheeler faster than a fast walking pace.

C. Handlers must get off the four-wheeler at least 100 ft. from the dog (on point) to work      his dog or hold a dog for a back.

D. Handler must catch his dog and hold him when the time is up. The judge will assist      the handler in getting the dog out of the field.

E. Courtesy Assistance must be requested at the time the dog is entered in the field trial.     Two club officers must approve the request before the handler is granted approval.

22.  Any handler will be allowed to use a gunner for flushing and shooting of birds. Underage handlers will be required to have an adult gunner. Otherwise, a handler will act as the gunner. Gunners shall walk a reasonable distance behind the handler and can do nothing except flush and shoot birds. (Handler must designate gunner when entering trial.)

23. Gun safety is expected and enforced! No one with a gun may run in the field at any time. All guns must be on safe unless being shot.

24. The use of training aids such as electric devices, weighted collars are prohibited. However, GPS tracking collars (without e-collar capabilities) will be allowed. GPS receiver units must stay in the possession of the judge. Asking a judge for the location of your dog based on the GPS or asking for the unit will result in the dog being picked up and awarded no points.

25. All handlers, gunners, judges and gallery members must wear blaze orange when in the bird field.

26. There is absolutely no smoking at any time on the TBDA trial grounds. This is in accordance with our lease.

27. There will be no hunting or cleaning the field following a trial. Members may work their dogs in the field, but only without firearms. The only exception is a member who has purchased birds from the club for the purposes of training. Those members may work their dogs, with a live gun, in an area of the field separate from other members.

28. The Gun Dog category is open to any pointing breed of any age. The Puppy category is open to any pointing breed that is 18 months old or younger.

29. Puppies who are able to share the Gun Dog field with another dog may also participate in the Gun Dog trials for practice, but will only receive points in the Puppy field and will not be allowed to use a e-collar or other training device if the Gun Dog brace precedes the Puppy brace.

30. At the end of each calendar year the TBDA will award championships for Gun Dog of the Year, Handler of the Year and Puppy of the Year.  Championship points will also be used to form teams for any annual inter-club championships. The awards will be given based on points awarded throughout the year as follows.

A. In each Gun Dog trial, those dogs that place in the top six positions will receive      championship points. 6 for 1st, 5 for 2nd, 4 for 3rd, 3 for 4th, 2 for 5th and 1 for 6th.

B.  In each Puppy trial, those puppies that place in the top three positions will receive      championship points. 3 for 1st, 2 for 2nd, 1 for 3rd.

C. In each Gun Dog and Puppy Trial, the handler of each dog who places will receive the      same number of points as the dog. A handler may receive points for multiple dogs,      including puppies.

Gun Dog Trial Judging Rules

1. Points are awarded based on four elements of the dog’s performance. Additional points will not be given or deducted for appearance, style or any other subjective category.

A. 20 points will be awarded for each find. A handler must indicate a point to the judge.           A dog may not be whoa’d into a point. For a find to be credible, the dog must hold      steady on point until the bird is flushed by the handler. Dogs that move, or jump in on           a bird before it is flushed by the handler will not be awarded points. Dogs must      remain steady to flush. Dogs may relocate on a moving bird, but must not flush the      bird in the process.

B. 3 points will be awarded for each kill. A kill is earned by firing a gun upon a pointed 

    and flushed bird. The bird does not need to be hit in order to receive kill points.

C. 20 points will be awarded for each bird retrieved to within three feet of the handler. 5      points will be awarded if the dog picks up the shot bird, but does not bring it to hand.

D. 15 points will be given for a dog that backs his brace mate and holds until collared by      his handler. A dog may not be whoa’d into a back and will only receive credit for one      back per brace.

2. Only pointed birds shall be shot.

3. No birds shall be shot on the ground, except at the judge’s request.

4. With a dog on point when time has expired, handler/gunner shall have one minute to produce a bird. Dog shall be allowed to relocate.

5. No credit shall be given for the pointing of dead birds. Point, kill, and retrieve credit shall be given for only one bird per find. If multiple birds are flushed, only one may be scored. If it is evident that the dog is retrieving a different bird than the one initially fired upon, that bird may be shot, but only one of the birds will be scored.

6. When two dogs are found on point or actually pointing the same bird at the same time, each will be awarded ten points for find and ten points for the retrieve.

7. Birds out of bounds must be pointed with the dog standing in bounds to receive credit for the find and/or retrieve. The handler may flush and shoot a bird out of bounds as long as the dog was in bounds when on point.

8. A dog must retrieve a bird to within three feet of its handler who shall remain in the same location, before full credit (20 points) can be given for the retrieve.

9. A dog must back and not interfere with his brace mate while on point. However, if interference occurs, then the dog pointing will receive full credit for the find, kill, and retrieve.

10. The backing dog must be collared by his handler upon the request of the pointing dog’s handler or judge. A backing dog must be relocated to another part of the field and continue working after the back has been acknowledged by the judge.

11. A dog which continually interferes with the other dog of its brace will be warned by the judge one time and then asked to be “picked up” if interference continues. At this time the brace will be stopped, a bye dog will be selected by the field marshal and will run the remaining time left of the brace.

12. Flushed birds deemed by the judge to have not been seen by dog or handler do not have to be marked. A marked bird is a judge’s decision. A marked bird has been flushed by judge, dog, etc., and cannot be pointed for three minutes in order to receive points for a find. All dogs must be lead out of the area until the three minutes expires. Previously scored upon birds that are alive are considered marked birds.

13. When time expires, the handlers shall put leads on their dogs and take shortest route out of bird field.

14. Gunners must attempt to flush pointed birds to receive credit for the find. However, birds that cannot fly may be thrown in the air to get a kill and/or retrieve. The judge must see that the bird is alive before the gunner can receive any points. The gunner must throw bird in air. Shoot the gun at the bird. Then allow dog to retrieve the bird.

15. If a gunner is unable to shoot a bird for danger of hitting other individuals, and/or animals, he must call a “SAFETY”. In the judge’s opinion, if this is a legitimate safety then an automatic 3 points for the kill and 20 points for the retrieve will be awarded.

16. The judge’s decision is final on all judgment calls in the trial field. Participants may protest a call with the field marshal after the brace is over.

Puppy Trial Judging Rules

1. Points are awarded based on three elements of the puppy’s performance. Additional points will not be given or deducted for appearance, style or any other subjective category.

A. 20 points will be awarded for a each find. A handler must indicate a point to the judge.      A puppy may not be whoa’d into a point. For a find to be credible the puppy must     make a hard stop and clearly point. A puppy needs not remain steady to flush to earn     credit for a find.

B. 3 points will be awarded for each kill. A kill is earned by firing a gun upon a pointed 

    and flushed bird. The bird does not need to be hit in order to receive kill points.

C. 20 points will awarded for each bird retrieved to within three feet of the handler. 5      points will be awarded if the dog picks up the shot bird, but does not bring it to hand.

2. Only pointed birds shall be shot.

3. No birds shall be shot on the ground, except at the judge’s request.

4. With a puppy on point when brace time has expired, handler/gunner shall have one minute to produce a bird. The puppy shall be allowed to relocate.

5. No credit shall be given for the pointing of dead birds. Point, kill, and retrieve credit shall be given for only one bird per find. If multiple birds are flushed, only one may be scored. If it is evident that the dog is retrieving a different bird than the one initially fired upon, that bird may be shot, but only one of the birds will be scored.

7. Birds out of bounds must be pointed with the dog standing inbound to receive credit for the find and/or retrieve. The handler may flush and shoot a bird out of bounds as long as the dog was in bounds when on point.

8. Flushed birds deemed by the judge to have not been seen by puppy or handler do not have to be marked. A marked bird is a judge’s decision. A marked bird has been flushed by judge, dog, etc., and cannot be pointed for three minutes in order to receive points for a find. All dogs must be lead out of the area until the three minutes expires. Previously scored upon birds that are alive are considered marked birds.

9. When time expires, the handler shall put a lead on his puppy and take shortest route out of bird field.

10. Gunner must attempt to flush pointed birds to receive credit for the find. However, birds that cannot fly may be thrown in the air to get a kill and/or retrieve. The judge must see that the bird is alive before the gunner can receive any points. The gunner must throw bird in air. Shoot the gun at the bird. Then allow dog to retrieve the bird.

11. If a gunner is unable to shoot a bird for danger of hitting other individuals, and/or animals, he must call a “SAFETY”. In the judge’s opinion, if this is a legitimate safety then an automatic 3 points for the kill and 20 points for the retrieve will be awarded.

12. The judge’s decision is final on all judgment calls in the trial field. Participants may protest a call with the field marshal after the brace is over.