All my trials

The Blue Ridge Agility Club of Western North Carolina hosted a United States Dog Agility Association agility trial the weekend of Dec. 16-18 at the WNC Agricultural Center. More than 150 dogs and their owners were in attendance to show their skills on a variety of obstacles and in a variety of categories.

On one side of the arena were the Jumpers, and on the other side the Gamblers. Dogs of all sizes and breeds competed to see who was the best in class. Some dogs mastered the courses on their first go with great speed, while others paused on certain obstacles for too long or ran the wrong circle while their frustrated owners screamed and pulled their hair. “Weave, weave!”

A border collie makes a jump during the P1 Starters/Jumpers division. The bars are raised after each dog in the division completes a run at the given height.

The near course is a standard agility course and the far one is for jumpers.

Melanie Miller guides her Vizsla dog Austin through the seesaw obstacle during the Gamblers division.

Rose Marie Bommarito and her border collie, Slingshot, keep an eye on the action in the ring. Rose Marie and her husband, Darrell, have been competing in Dog Agility Trials since 1992.

A collie makes it through the tire jump. Collies are probably the most common breed on the course these days.

A collie makes its way through the standard course.

A border collie quickly maneuvers the weave-poles. Weave-poles are one of the hardest obstacles for the dogs to master.

Pete Shigematso and his dog, Jesse, sit alongside Chandra Carver and her dog, Indie, as they prepare to compete in the trials.

A greyhound named Sunny makes an impressive jump during the P1 Starters/Jumpers division.

A large poodle competes in the P1 Starters/Jumpers division.

A view of the schedule board at the Agility Trials.

A half border collie, half Staffie bull named Luke takes a break from watching the ring.

A border collie navigates the pole weave during the Masters Standard division. Other obstacles in the division include the A-frame, seesaw, tunnels, dogwalk, and various jumps.

Dogs compete in the P1 Starters/Jumpers division.

Dogs are never alone when competing. Enthusiastic owners jog or sometimes sprint alongside the dogs to guide them through the course.

Small dogs often compete alongside much larger dogs in the Trials.

Colby Rabon is a freelance photographer based in Asheville, NC. See more of his work at


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