Hey there, dog lovers! If you love the thrill of watching your little buddies showcasing their sharp instincts in a crowd, you might want to add Fast CAT to your bucket list.
Fast CAT dog sport is relatively new but gaining much popularity among dog lovers. After all, it’s a special event where you can enjoy a fun time with your canine by having them participate in a race and possibly take a prize home.
In the rest of the post, we will explore this exhilarating sport, its current rankings, and how you can prepare your dog for upcoming events!
Fast CAT Dog Sport – A Brief Primer
Fast CAT, short for Fast Course Ability Test, is a dog sporting event where dogs compete in a timed sprint on a straight, 100-yard track. The participants chase a mechanical lure, and the dog with the highest point at the end of the event is announced as the winner.
Awards are also given to the dogs with the fastest sprints. It’s a thrilling occasion for dogs and their owners and a great place to meet fellow enthusiasts. The test is open to all dogs but is more common among athletic breeds like Greyhounds and Whippets.
The AKC (American Kennel Club) introduced the sport in 2018, and they organize it in affiliation with local dog clubs. Numerous events are held yearly, and each witnesses many skilled participants.
Fast CAT is sanctioned and regulated by the AKC, and all information, such as winners and events, is listed on their website. There are over 22,000 events yearly, so every dog owner has multiple opportunities to register for one.
The event has three titles that you can earn by completing certain milestones – BCAT (150 points), DCAT (500 points), and FCAT (1000 points). The dog’s size and speed(in mph) are considered while calculating the points.
To give you a head start, here are the eligibility criteria to participate in the event:
- Your dog must be 12 months or older.
- You should have an AKC number, which can be obtained by registering on the site.
Your dog must qualify for the above conditions before registering for a Fast CAT event, as each participant will be inspected before the tests. While fitness is important, females in season are not eligible to participate in the event.
Additionally, spayed dogs and participants with limited registration are eligible.
Fast CAT Training – How Does It Work?
There’s more to participating in the Fast CAT than just running the race; you must start training your dog early, especially if you’re aiming for more than fun runs at the event.
Training a dog for the Fast CAT sport requires a lot of physical and mental stimulus. You will be guiding them to sprint and chase a lure simultaneously. So, here’s a breakdown of how you can have an effective training course:
Have Your Dog Master Basic Cues
Instructing your pup with simple prompts like sit, lay, stay, etc., will prepare them to learn advanced ones like pursuing a lure. Doing so will develop a firm foundation and ensure your pup doesn’t lose focus while sporting.
You can skip this step if your dog is familiar with the basics.
iBuild Physical Endurance
As with human sprinters, strength and endurance are prerequisites for sprinting among dogs. So, you and your pup will need a more dynamic lifestyle. Consider taking them on regular walks and runs, expanding the length of these exercises as you continue with the preparation.
Mimic The Sport By Introducing A Lure
Bringing a lure into your dog’s training sessions will prepare them for the event. You can utilize anything from a lure machine to a DIY rope toy.
While doing this, you also want to prompt your dog to avoid distractions and concentrate on the lure. The trick is to gradually increase the lure’s speed to develop accuracy.
Maintain A Consistent Routine
Dogs that are expected to run the Fast CAT need sufficient mental and physical stimulation in their daily lives. So, consider rehearsing your cues and practicing all the more frequently to foster sound weight circulation and stamina.
Current Fast CAT Rankings
The AKC records the top 20 participants of each breed, based on their speeds, for each year. They also provide a lifetime list that displays the best speeds of each dog. So, Fast CAT rankings are not limited to one breed but are diversified to ensure fairness.
Below is the leaderboard showing the top ten contenders among all breeds as of April 2023:
1. Jammin’ Afternoon Tea at Chartwell CD BN RN JC FCAT5 CGC TKN ATT – Placing first on the list, we have a whippet with a speed of 37.17 mph.
2. He’s A Magic Man – A Greyhound secures second place with a speed of 36.67 mph.
3. Pike’s Princess Babalonia CD BN RI JC CA DCAT SCN SIN SBN CGC – Another Greyhound bagged third among the top sprinters. She has a speed of 36.48 mph.
4. Clapton’s Blackie FCAT – Fourth on the list is another Greyhound. He has a speed of 36.16 mph.
5. Hogs Benidorm JC FCAT & Magnolio BCAT – A Greyhound and a Whippet share the fifth place. They have a speed of 35.96 mph.
6. Cetmark Big Pete DCAT & Princess Athena FCAT3 – A pair of Greyhounds hold the sixth position, and their speed is 35.76 mph.
7. FC Wheatland Razzi Sealli Of Van Oorschot SC FCAT– Seventh on the list is a whippet, and she has a speed of 35.75 mph.
8. Keltic Rum Rum Rudolph DCAT CGC & Skywalker’s Belle BCAT CGC TKN – With a 35.53 mph speed, two Greyhounds share the eighth position.
9. Maireads Brandy – Ninth on the list is another Greyhound with a 35.28 mph recorded speed.
10. And Don’t Call Me Shirley CAA FCAT & Raiders Cherokee BCAT – Two Greyhounds share the tenth position; both have a speed of 34.89 mph each.
Upcoming Fast CAT Events
If you’re looking forward to showcasing your pup’s skills, you might want to keep an eye out for these upcoming Fast CAT events:
April 29th & 30th – Piedmont Kennel Club. The Dalmatian Club of Piedmont will host a two-day Fast CAT event at The Piedmont Kennel Club, 13607 Choate Circle, Charlotte, NC 28273. You can register your entry by following the instructions on their website or registering on the day of the event.
May 12 – 14 – Union County Fairgrounds. A three-day Fast CAT event will be organized at Union County Fairgrounds, 120 Kirby Street, Union, SC 29379, by the Piedmont Collie Club of South Carolina. There will be six tests in total, two on each day.
Fees for early entries are $25 per dog, while day-of entries will cost you $30. The event will also feature fun runs, costing $5 per dog.
May 13 & 14 – Dogs Sports Unlimited. The Timucuan Weimaraner Club of Florida will host a two-day Fast CAT event at Dog Sports Unlimited, 875 Tater Rd, New Smyrna Beach, FL 32168. There will be two tests each day, starting from 8:00 am on May 13 until 4:00 pm on the 14th. The tickets for a single dog cost $25, and you can buy them online or fill out their entry form and mail it to their address.
May 19 – 21 – Paducah Kennel Club Facility. The Crab Orchard Kennel Club of Southern Illinois will be hosting six Fast CATs over the course of three days at the Paducah Kennel Club Facility, 1325 Fisher Road (Highway 305), West Paducah, KY 42086.
You can book the entries for $25 per dog or make day-of entries for $30. However, you should note that each test is limited to only 120 entries.
May 20 & 21 – Dogs Sports Unlimited. If you live in the north-central part of Florida, you’ll be pleased to know The Great Dane Club is hosting four Fast CATs just before the summer heat kicks in.
The event will start at 8:00 am on the 20th and last until 4:00 pm on the 21st, and there will be two events each day.
Dog owners can grab tickets for the event for$25; you can buy them online and offline by following the instructions on their website. The address for the event venue is as follows: Dog Sports Unlimited, 875 Tater Rd, New Smyrna Beach, FL 32168.
While the events listed above are subject to certain regions, you can keep yourself updated with any future openings by entering your state/region in the “Find An Event” section on the AKC website.
Summing Up Fast CAT Dog Sport
Fast CAT dog sport is an exciting sport regulated by the AKC. It helps dog owners bond with their canines and display their natural instincts.
Dogs spend considerable time training for the sport with their owners, and the resulting event is a thrilling exhibition of skills.
There are many Fast CAT dog sport events each year, so if you’re interested in having your pup join the race, contact your nearest AKC club to find a suitable event.
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