Handler Etiquette

We at Paws 4 Fun are committed to giving you a great trial experience. But this cannot be done without our volunteers. So we ask for your contribution to making this trial a success.


  1. As soon as you arrive, go to the check-in area and check in.
  2. Pick up after your dog. There are garbage cans at the rings and the check-in area.
  3. Pick up your own garbage. If you see garbage in the ring or on the field, it would be nice if you picked it up. Our lawn mower does not like garbage.
  4. Keep your dog on leash when not at warm-up jumps or running an event.
  5. Respect any dog that needs “space”. If your dog needs “space” politely ask other handlers to respect it.
  6. Remember to check in with the gatekeeper before each event. The check-in at the main area does not cover this. Do this either before briefing or immediately after. Check in only for yourself and no one else. If you do not check in, the gatekeeper will assume you are not here.
  7. If you need to change the running order for any reason, do not do it yourself. Have the gatekeeper do it. He/She needs to mark the running order in a way they understand. Again do this only for yourself. Also tell the scribe. Do this before the event starts.
  8. As event progresses, keep track of who is running. Be at the gate well before your turn and let the gatekeeper know you are there.
  9. If you have a question or need to speak to the judge, go to the gatekeeper. He/She will wait until the run is finished and alert the judge.
  10. Respect the volunteer’s job, especially the timer, scribe, and gatekeeper. Refrain from speaking to them as this can distract them from their job. If you need someone to hold your dog or treats, or film a run, ask another handler.
  11. Be pleasant to the volunteers. They are giving up their time for this.
  12. Gatekeeper terminology:
    1. In ring/field -  the dog is running
    2. On deck -  the next dog (second)
    3. In the hole -  the dog after that (third)