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Do you think a trial should be cancelled/postponed because of heat? I new club was holding their first ever trial, and decided to postpone it because the temperature is suppose to be between 108-115 that day. Yes that's hot but..... I have mixed feelings about it. I understand the safety aspect but at the same time it's a trial. The weather shouldn't matter. I understand that's why most clubs hold trials in spring and fall. I just don't think weather should play a factor. The dogs should be capable of working in all weather. What are your thoughts?
 

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I think putting a dog's life and health at risk (and the handlers and judge) for a trial is a bad idea.
Here, if we train or trial in the summer, it starts at 6AM stops by 10AM and one club I know picked back up around 11PM.
 

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Jax wilts in the heat. I wouldn't even bother to show up for a trial in those temperatures. There is no reason for dogs and people to risk heat stroke. Especially if the region is not accustomed to those temps.
 

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A trial is not worth a high risk for heat stroke. 'For the dogs, for the helper or handlers

I was told recently there is even provision in the rule book for allowing certain tests dependent on weather.

Lee
 

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We don't do trials, but I've pulled my dog out of training classes if it gets too hot (actually she pulled herself out), usually by 10:30-11:00am.
 

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Susceptibility to heat stroke isn't a "fault" that shows "weakness" in a dog. It's just the biological reality of the limited ability of dogs to cool themselves off:
Dog Talk 101: How Do Dogs Cool Off?

Heat stroke is a medical emergency that can kill dogs -- it requires emergency vet care immediately. It may not be something people in northern climates see often, so being responsible, careful and proactive as the event organizer is critically important.

This isn't about a mere minor performance blip in a competition: extreme exertion on a very hot day can mean a $1000 ICU vet bill and possibly a dead dog. Here are some links that may help you to understand why it's not a risk worth taking:
Heat Stroke and Hyperthermia in Dogs | petMD
Dog Dehydration and Heat Stroke Symptoms, Causes and Treatment
 

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I agree that it was the right call to postpone a trial due to heat. I'm glad testosterone did not get in the way.

In theory, the teams should be able to work. But to be honest, there's nothing at stake here that is really that important like IEDs that might explode. Also, given it is the new club's first trial, just imagine the consequences of a bad incident.
 

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Do you think a trial should be cancelled/postponed because of heat? I new club was holding their first ever trial, and decided to postpone it because the temperature is suppose to be between 108-115 that day.
That is really, really hot. Even for dogs that are acclimated to that kind of heat it's a risk, and not one I'd personally be willing to take with my dogs. Not to mention that *I* can't handle that kind of heat either! :wild: Even when I'm hiking with one of my dogs I take precautions when it's in the 90's.

There's a dock diving event in Folsom this weekend, and the temp is supposed to be over 100 degrees. Even though it's a sport where dogs are jumping into a pool and will spending most of the day wet, people are already talking about how to minimize the effects of high heat. People line up while waiting to do practice jumps and could be standing around in the sun for awhile until it's their turn, and a big concern is the hot pavement burning paw pads.
 

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In theory, the teams should be able to work. But to be honest, there's nothing at stake here that is really that important like IEDs that might explode. Also, given it is the new club's first trial, just imagine the consequences of a bad incident.
:thumbup: Exactly.
 

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I was at an obed. trial a year ago. the temps where in the low 100's and high humidity.
I went thinking it was early morning and we would be fine.
I'll never ever do that again. Frank and I were ok. But I do know several dogs did suffer from heat exhaustion. and a judge had to be taken to the hospital for it.
I later heard at least 1 of the dogs didnt' make it.
Trialling of any kind is not worth my dog's life.
That same trial has now been moved indoors.
 

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Do you think a trial should be cancelled/postponed because of heat? I new club was holding their first ever trial, and decided to postpone it because the temperature is suppose to be between 108-115 that day. Yes that's hot but..... I have mixed feelings about it. I understand the safety aspect but at the same time it's a trial. The weather shouldn't matter. I understand that's why most clubs hold trials in spring and fall. I just don't think weather should play a factor. The dogs should be capable of working in all weather. What are your thoughts?
Depends where it is. Do you usually have heat like that? If it was in Arizona I'd say they should for sure be practicing out in the heat. SAR dogs and handlers there must work in those conditions so its absolutely necessary they should trained in those conditions.
 

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I saw the SDA trial will be cancelled. Heat is dangerous for sure.

From the service dogs of america online facebook post:
I'm very sorry to announce that we have decided to cancel our June 8th Service Dogs of America Trial due to the temps expected to exceed 105 on Saturday. We are very disappointed, but feel these are not the conditions that we want to expose our dogs and handlers to. The trial we be rescheduled for the beginning of October on a date TBA.
 

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Cancelling due to heat makes perfect sense to me - at least in my area. We don't often get into the 100s so my dogs just aren't used to it. Not to mention my boy melts in just about any type of heat. I know he would still compete if I asked him to though and could potentially push himself too far if I'm not careful. It's just not worth the risk to my dog IMO.
 

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Like I said, I have mixed feelings about it. If this is a sport then the teams are athletes. Athletes should be able to tolerate the heat. Will the performances be as pretty as they could be? No, but they should still be able to make it through. I guess, I'm just disappointed. I train in all weather conditions because I want my dogs to work in all conditions. I do know the risk of heat stroke. I guess it's the Marine I me coming out :)


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This is a trial, a SPORT! these are not working dogs being tested right before being shipped off to afghanistan or iraq. 115 degrees could easily KILL a dog, very quickly. A schutzhund 3 obedience routine in that heat? No thank you. That's arrogant handling and cruelty, IMHO, just to prove a point? Just because you could doesnt mean you should.

A human can feel when they've reached their limit. It is very unlikely most of these dogs would show distress until they were already dangerously compromised by the heat. these dogs are not simply tools and shouldn't be used as such

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Count me in as another vote for "it's not worth risking lives to play a sport."

And I think it's better for the club to make the responsible move than leave it up to the variables of handler egos and force the more prudent/careful teams to eat their entry fees.
 

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Also please remember the poor Decoy. That is hard and hot work in normal weather. A dog may only be on the field for 7 minutes. That Decoy spends an entire day in hot and heavy clothes catching 90 lbs of dog, over and over.

Then the judge who has to be out in the heat, ALL day to watch every dog!!

It's not just about the dogs. There are people too.

I would never jeopardize my dogs life for a vanity title. What good us a SchH 3 if my dog is dead?


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Even if Florida where we are use to training in the heat and humidity I hear of one or two dogs a year DYING from the heat, more often then not, these are dogs with experienced handlers.

I have seen regionals and even I think the DVG Nationals being held as Night trials.

It can be insidious and sneak up on you. A dog (or person) that has shown no ill effects before can suddenly be stricken.

Why be stupid?
 
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