The Kennelclubs of both Sweden and UK announced they will introduce additional jump heights.
The UK Kennel club offers a new lower height option for agility jumps, effective from 1st July 2016, which will allow organisers of agility competitions to include a lower height jump for each competition size.
Full Height Jump heights: Small – 35cm, Medium – 45cm, Large – 65cm
Lower Height Jump heights: Small – 25cm, Medium – 35cm, Large – 55cm
When the Lower Height Option is offered a dog may only be entered at either the Full height or at the Lower Height and cannot compete at a different height in any class at that competition day.
Progression from each Grade will be valid at either Full height or the Lower Height Option.
All rounds of a Championship Agility Class and any Kennel Club heat, semifinal or final must be run at Full Height and these new regulations will not apply to Kennel Club ‘prestige events’, at which there is a high value to the awards offered. Kennel Club prestige events are those held at Premier Shows, including heats for Crufts, Olympia or Eukanuba Discover Dogs, such as Crufts Singles, Crufts ABC etc.
The the Swedish Kennel Club announced earlier on to introduce additional jump heights from 1 January 2017
Five size categories ensure greater fairness for all dogs, and that agility genuinly can become a sport for all dogs.
The system will be compatible with the FCI’s current size categories.
Handlers with dogs in XS or L will be allowed to choose whether to compete in S or XL instead.
Splitting the dogs into five jump heights facilitates more appropriate course design.
Extra small: for dogs measuring under 280 mm at the withers
Small: for dogs measuring under 350 mm at the withers
Medium: for dogs measuring 350 mm and over but less than 430 mm at the withers
Large: for dogs measuring 430 mm and over but less than 500 mm at the withers
Extra large: for dogs measuring 430 mm and above at the withers
Up contacts will also no longer be judged in the Sweden KC.
Due to the improvement in performance among agility dogs, the original reason for judging up contacts on A-frames, dogwalks and seesaws is now being questioned, especially with respect to welfare and fairness. The current view is that compulsory up contacts reduce rather than improve safety. Due to the speed at which dogs negotiate the dogwalk, judges have limited opportunity to judge the up and down contacts reliably and fairly for all dogs