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The Australian Terrier Club of America, Inc.

Dedicated to the Advancement of Quality, Purebred Australian Terriers

AKC Parent Club Member 1977
Founded 1958



These are dog sports that are not yet recognized by the AKC to allow titles applied to the dogs name.  However you can still have fun and bond with your dog while participating in these sports. 

Please click on the links to learn more information about the organizations and their guidelines for the sport. 


Treibball—Not Just for Herding Breeds

By Gemma Johnstone;  Updated: Jan 20, 2021

If you’re interested in taking part in a low-cost and accessible activity with your dog, why not try the lesser-known dog sport of Treibball?  Professional dog trainer Dianna Stearns is the President of theAmerican Treibball Association (ATA). She explains that sport was first introduced in Germany by Jan Nibjoer, and then, in 2009, a video called “Hund mit 8 Ballen” went viral.  “American dog trainers and dog owners soon took notice of the videos coming across the web. My friends and I found it very intriguing” she explains. “Why should European dogs have all the fun?”

Having only been around for about a decade, Treibball isn’t as popular as some of the traditional dog sports, but interest is growing.  The sport doesn’t rely on lots of equipment, it’s easy to do from home, and it’s low-impact. This means it’s suitable for dogs and handlers of all ages, sizes, and mobility levels.

Treibball is Suitable For All Breeds—Not Just Collies

For energetic dogs that are ball-focused, have a herding drive, or that enjoy having a job to do, Treibball (sometimes called Urban Herding) will appeal.  Although the sport has taken inspiration from herding trials and moving sheep towards a pen, you don’t need a Collie or Shepherd to take part. Dianna has seen Labrador Retrievers, Papillons, Cairn Terriers, Rottweilers, and even a Pug participating.

She emphasizes that “while the herding breeds have a slight edge, pushing a ball with your nose or shoulder isn’t naturally instinctive for dogs, like Barn Hunt or Nosework is. It has to be trained, and takes work, like training for Agility or Freestyle.”

In competitive Treibball, your dog drives eight oversized, inflatable balls into a goal within a seven-minute time frame. The handler directs the dog to select the balls in a particular order. The more skilled they become, the more distance your dog drives the balls increases and the time they have to complete it gets shorter.

If you have a nervous dog, the Treibball setup caters for them too. Dianna advises that “one dog and one handler compete at a time. No dogs or food are allowed on the sidelines, to limit distractions and to allow reactive dogs to compete equally.”

It’s a Positive, Force-Free Sport

Treibball is an off-leash activity, so, ideally, your dog will already have a reliable recall and respond well to basic cues from a distance. But don’t worry if your dog doesn’t have a 100% solid recall in a distracting environment. It’s possible to train using a long line initially.

If you attend a class, your dog will gradually learn how to move the ball using targeting techniques. Initially, a clicker helps mark the desired behaviors consistently.  You’ll also teach hand signals and verbal directional cues, so your dog will understand where and when to move the balls.  A positive sport, Treibball doesn’t allow any physical or verbal corrections. “It’s an excellent vehicle for encouraging reward-based training and creative play between owners and their dogs,” says Dianna.

Treibball Offers Lots of Benefits For Your Dog

“We’ve been told, since the beginning, that participating in Treibball has enhanced owners’ relationships with their dogs,” says Dianna.  Your dog’s reliability off-leash and focus will improve. It can also tighten up impulse control issues and help with body awareness.

The sport really tests your dog’s problem-solving skills, which is great for general enrichment and well-being. Regular Treibball sessions will keep your dog mentally and physically stimulated, and this can help prevent problem behaviors surfacing as a result of boredom. For senior dogs, studies have shown that problem-solving activities can evenhelp to slow the cognitive aging process.

Dianna believes Treibball is a fantastic way to have fun and strengthen the bond you have with your dog. “What I most love about Treibball is the process of watching the dog and owner work through the process,” she says. “Since dogs can’t talk, it’s like in cartoons, where the lightbulb goes on when the character has an idea. When you see them get it, they really get it! After that, you can’t stop them from pushing the ball.”

How to Get Started with Treibball?

Treibball can be a bit tricky to learn in the beginning, so it’s a good idea to find an ATA-certified trainer in your area. The instructor will break down the sports elements into easy-to-digest, bite-sized chunks for you and your dog.

The American Treibball Association is currently the only 501(c)3 non-profit governing body granting national titles in Treibball in the United States.

If you want to try Treibball at home or touch up on your skills, Dianna’s book “Get the Ball Rolling: A Step by Step Guide to Training for Treibball” is an excellent resource.


Additional Information about Treibball:  


If you would like to see a short video of Aussies doing freestyle, please go here:

This video is copyrighted and may not be reproduced in any manner without written permission of the copyright holder.

World Canine freestyle Organization (WCFO)

WCFO, INC. is a non-profit corporation, founded to globally promote the joys and fun of responsible pet ownership through musical canine freestyle, both as a sport and an entertainment medium.

Includes Musical Canine Freestyle, Heelwork to Music, Proficiency tests, and Skits (with guidelines).

Canine Freestyle Federation

Canine Freestyle  DogWork® is a choreographed performance with music, illustrating the training and joyful relationship of a dog and handler team.

The objective of CanineFreestyle DogWork® is to present the dog to his best advantage in a creative and artistic manner.  A DogWork presentation is always accompanied by music selected to suit the rhythms of the dog.  DogWork should demonstrate, with appropriate music, the grace, beauty and intelligence of the dog working in harmony with the handler. The presentation should show the dog’s athleticism, attentiveness, flexibility and training. Handler movements should complement and enhance the dog’s movements. Teamwork is essential. The dog should always be treated with honor and respect.


Rally-FrEe is a unique sport combining trick behaviors of Canine Musical Freestyle with the format of Rally-Obedience. It emphasizes the precise execution of fundamental freestyle and obedience skills while encouraging creative and novel behaviors on a Rally-Obedience style course.

Paws 2 Dance

Paws 2 Dance is the governing body for Canine Freestyle in British Columbia and Western Canada. We have members from the Lower Mainland, Vancouver Island, Alberta, Washington and Oregon.

What is Canine Freestyle?  Often referred to as “Dog Dancing”, Canine Freestyle is actually a pretty challenging sport! Dogs and Handlers move in time to music to a choreographed set of moves.  It can be dance-like, or tell a story, and/or encompass some pretty interesting tricks!  

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