Getting started in flyball?

YKC flyball in the main ring

What is flyball?

Flyball is a fun and energetic activity that your dog will love. Flyball competitions involve two teams of handlers and their dogs racing against each other. The dogs in the teams take it in turns to jump over four hurdles one after the other. The dogs then trigger the flyball box. A tennis ball flies out which the dog must grab and hold before rushing back over the hurdles to the start line, allowing the next dog in the team to race. The first team to have its fourth dog across the finish line (without making any mistakes!) wins the race. 

Why should you take part?

  • A really exciting activity for you and your dog to enjoy 
  • Fast, fun and furious, your dog will love it 
  • Make new friends

Competing in Young Kennel Club competitons

Our competitions run throughout the year, each member will compete and the two highest placed teams from each heat will be invited to compete in the final at Crufts.  

Attending your first flyball show may cause your dog to behave differently compared to when they are in training. In particular, young dogs can become distracted by the crowds, if you find this to be the case you can move away from other competitors and officials. Remember that this is a new experience for you and your dog, if you have any concerns please speak to our Stewards/Officials who will be present at every show.  

Flyball obstacles

Box loaders
You will need a box loader on your team to make sure the box has a tennis ball ready to fire when the dog triggers the box. The Box Loader can shout and scream instructions as loud as they want, but they cant use their hands to point for the dog. They have to stand upright the whole time too (except when replacing the tennis ball!)
Start and finish
The start and finish line can often be the place where you win or lose the match. Let your dog go too late and you will waste precious seconds. Let your dog go too early and you will have to do an extra run at the end! Your dog can only cross the start line once the dog before has part of their body across the line.
Your dog must jump over all 4 hurdles on the way to the box, grab the tennis ball, and then jump back over all 4 hurdles with the ball in its mouth before the next dog can go.

If your dog misses a hurdle, or doesn't return with ball in its mouth, then it has to do an extra run once all the other dogs have run!

How do I take part?