Rally involves you and your dog working as a team to navigate a coursewith numbered signs indicating different exercises to perform. Sally tells us more about what it's like training for such a huge event like Crufts, and why she opts to feed Lace cold pressed when she's out and about competing...
"Lace is super smart, super consistent and a joy to live with! Crufts this year will be the 5th time that there has been a Rally Team competition - she is the only dog to have been part of the event at the top level at every competition, helping Team Scotland to showcase Rally at Crufts! She was also part of the first ever UK Rally Team - who won the international invitational event last summer.
Why do you love Rally?
"I got interested in Rally when we got Lace as a puppy after we'd moved to Shetland... I needed a framework for her puppy training to help work towards her being a well mannered member of society.... it fits in well with my enthusiasm for clicker training and variety in things to do... and even better I can do the training by ourselves in a remote rural place! As time has gone on, we continue to enjoy it, always different courses, a different combination of things to concentrate on and equally we compete against the standard of perfection rather than against other competitors, so everyone is always very supportive of everyone involved!"
How do you prepare for shows like Crufts?
"We compete at live shows when we go on a "Rally Road Trip" from Shetland in our motorhome.. which requires a lot of logistical planning, expense and time. It means that we aim to combine visiting family & friends with more than one dog event. The distances involved mean that every show is a "Big Event" for us, as we only get to shows about 2 or 3 times a year. Crufts is always special, the green carpet, being part of a team, also time to socialise and go shopping! In the weeks leading up to any show, I like to keep Lace in practice with the rally exercises and motivated using clicker training. All my Tollers have a strong association between rally signs meaning "have fun" and lots of rewards... sometimes toys thrown but mostly food (Wilsons is used a lot for this!)."
Why is Wilsons cold pressed is great for your training?
"I like Wilsons cold pressed food, as the size of pieces are just about perfect for me & my Tollers - easy to throw, palatable... enough that they consider them worthwhile, equally very happy to use in training - as it's complete food, not filling them up with junk! nice and easy to dispense /keeps my pockets clean!!"
Why did you choose to feed Wilsons?
"I like that it's made in Scotland (almost local compared to a lot of dog food!), palatable, easy to store (in our motorhome on trips away!) and there are a range of varieties that we can use with one of our three who has allergies.
I also love the minimal processing aspect... cold pressed is as close as we can get to raw food... they do have some raw food at home, but especially as we travel in our motorhome, cold pressed = best!"
Don't forget, if you're visiting Crufts this year, Wilsons will also be there! Visit us in Hall 4 on stand 136 and take advantage of our huge show offers.