The 10th annual Dog Sports Open was held in St. Johns, Michigan, August 16-17, 2008
The theme was "Dog Sport's Greatest Hits." All of the obedience was taken from the best of the past 9 years of trials.
This year was the first year they had an obedience only catagory. The trial was created as a personal protection trial, but there are lots of us who have dogs that don't do protection, but still wanted to try our hand at the unique challenges of the DSO.
You come onto the field where the Mistress of Ceremonies presents you with a hot dog to carry with you for the entire trial. You must return the hot dog undamaged (and uneaten) at the end of your obedience exercises. It was up to you to figure out the best way to carry it. Your dog watches you get the hotdog, so they know you have it! This was inspired by the 2001 DSO "When Canada Invades" where the handlers had to carry a raw chicken with them.
Next you get into your gas powered golf cart and head to the next station. You put your dog in a position of control and hit the gas. Ideally, your dog stays calmly where you put it for the ride, but the noise, smell and jerkiness of the ride was a little much for some dogs. This was inspired by the 2006 DSO "A Nightmare on Lowell Street" where you had to drive your dog around on a golf cart to try and deliver a pizza.
Not all of the dogs were amuzed.
Next you arrive in the park where you sit on a glider with your dog to enjoy the scenery. For extra points you can rock with your dog. A police woman trots up on her horse and yells at you for having a dog in the park. You must leave your dog on the bench and get your ticket from her. Inspired by the 2002 DSO "Big City Park"
After the horse leaves, you heel to the next obstical
Your next obstical is the stairs. You bring your dog to the top, then put them in a position of control and go back down the way you came. You then go to the other side and call them to you. The stairs are "broken" meaning some steps have a large drop between them and some a smaller one, they are also different widths. Your dog has to come down the stairs to you and cross through a pool of water that has a fake Christmas tree in it to create squshy footing. The footing issue was from 2005's DSO, "Down on the Bayou."
Ruby decided to dry off after her trip through the pool
Next you head for the ginormous A-frame, which you have to climb over with your dog. The A-frame came from 2007 - Jailbreak
First you get your dog up on the platform:
Put it in a position of control:
Then you climb up:
get your dog over the top:
and onto the platform on the other side:
then you climb down
and call your dog
Now, off through the Poppy Fields from 2004's Wizard of Oz (the pinwheels and flowers were spinning, the camera froze their motion)
Next we arrive at a starnge situation from 2000's Rest Area. You see a car fire and the owner of the car is trying to get back into their car to retreive their wallet! You put your dog in a position of control and go rescue the owner from himself. He is quite insistant that he must get back into the car, so you have to get physical and shove him away from it.
Some dogs just weren't all that concerned
Now off to the giant alligator teeter from Down on the Bayou, you have to cross this with your dog.
Your last job is to return your hot dog.
Some people had a better place to keep it safe than others