4-H Dog Project Information, Washington County

 4-H Dog Project Information, Washington County

This time of year 4-H loves hosting the Dog Project Kick Off Meeting because that means more and more members are investing time in their interest areas and projects are starting to take shape.   The Dog Project Kick Off Meeting is an informational meeting to:

  1. Introduce this project area to potential new dog project members and answer questions so they can decide if this project area is for them
  2. Reconnect past dog project members
  3. Distribute materials for the year
  4. Collect contact information for the year

This meeting happens in April traditionally with weekly dog project meetings/workouts that start in May – but we cannot gather in April/May this year, so let this email serve as a the kick off meeting !!
Click Here for slides of information that we have adjusted from our Kick Off Meeting from previous years.  It will:

  1. Introduce you to the leaders
  2. Explain what is unique about dog project
  3. Outline benefits of participating in dog project
  4. Share variety of ways to communicate with dog project leaders and team
  5. Provide next steps:  NEW THIS YEAR:  It is important to sign up for Dog Project Meeting by May 1, so we have our contact lists and can invite you to the FIRST MEETING of the year which will be a virtual Zoom Meeting on May 6 at 6:30 p.m.  

If you plan to be a part of Dog 4-H project this year please sign up by May 1 at this link: https://tinyurl.com/WashCoDog2020

Being a part of this group means, 4-Her and dog attend weekly workouts on Wednesday evenings at the Washington County Fairgrounds starting June 3 until the county fair.  We will provide dog workbooks at the first workout with all the requirements, calendars, health tips and more.  1st and 2nd year dogs will practice from 6pm-7pm and 3rd year dogs and up with practice from 7:10pm-8pm.  Agility practice will be set at a later time.

For those unable meet those obedience/showmanship requirements may participate in the Dog Open Agility class which is open to any 4-Her and their dog to run the agility course only (obstacle course).  They are required to attend only 3 agility workouts from June until county fair to make sure the dog and 4-Her are safe and doing it correctly. 

We are thankful for the warmer weather and encourage you to be spending lots of time with your dog!  Let us know if you have any questions as you decide if you want to participate with 4-H Dog Project.   

REMINDER: We must have a copy of the dogs up to date rabies certificate to allow them at workouts.  Please make take care of this important safety detail in a timely fashion so your dog is ready by June 3 workout start date.  Thank you!

The dog section of the fair book below to see some of the basic rules and class options. 

Dog Superintendents =   Jessica Schoonover 319-461-6647  and   Tracie Sedlacek 319-217-2005 

Superintendent……………… Jessica Schoonover, Tracie Sedlacek


1.  See General Rules and Health Requirements section of the fair book.

2. Any breed of dog may be shown.

3. A member may show a limit of 2 dogs, with each being in a different class level.

4. Current 4-H dog projectsmust be shown in both obedience and showmanship classes.  Exception: If member shows 2 dogs, only 1 is eligible for showmanship competition. 

5. All dogs must be enrolled in 4hOnline by June 1, and participate in dog obedience weekly workouts.  The first two dog workouts and the workout the week before fair are required.  Points are earned at each workout and those with three unexcused absences will not be able to show at fair.  You must notify a superintendent ahead of time if you will not be there for an excused absence. Make up workouts are offered when possible but are not guaranteed.  

6.  All dogs must have a rabies certificate turned in to dog project leader by June 3.  It is recommended that the dog also have a distemper immunization, either temporary or permanent. 

7. All dogs must be on a leash unless being directed by youth and leaders during workouts.  

8. A 4-H dog project member cannot train and show a dog that has already been trained and shown by another person or family member unless approved by dog project leader in advance.

9.  Dogs must be 6 months or older to participate in the obedience training.  Dogs must be 1 year or older to participate in the agility classes for the safety of the dog or with prior approval from the superintendent.  

10.  Dogs showing aggressive behavior will be evaluated at the superintendents’ discretion in an effort to ensure a safe environment for all dogs, members and volunteers.  

11.  All members should complete a dog project book and read it closely for detailed class instructions.  Those can be obtained at the first dog workout or from the Extension Office.  

12.  Dog workouts will be held weekly from June 3– fair on Wednesdays from 6 p.m. – 8:15 p.m.  See the dog project book for required workout dates and attendance expectations.  Those are available from the Extension Office.

13.  Showmanship interviews will not be conducted in the ring with dogs but in an interview setting ring side when the exhibitor/dog are not in the ring for showmanship evaluation. 
CLASS NO.                        CLASS NAME
30101                               Showmanship 1st & 2nd year
30102                               Showmanship 3rd  year & older
30103                               Obedience Pre Novice A - 1st year dog - Dogs will heel on leash, stand for examination on leash, recall on leash and do long sits (1 minute) and downs on leash (3 minutes)
30104                                Obedience Pre Novice B – 2nd year dog- Dogs will heel on leash, stand for examination on leash, recall on leash and do long sits (1 minute) and downs on leash (3 minutes)
30105                                Obedience Sub Novice-3rd year dog – Dogs will do the same as in class 02 but the with loose leash and minimal commands.  Stand for examination, long sits and downs will be with the leash dropped at the trainer’s feet.
30106                                Obedience Novice – 4th year dog - Dogs will heel off leash, stand for examination off leash, do long sits (3 minutes) and downs (5 minutes) off leash, plus drop to a sit on the recall.
30107                                Obedience Graduate Novice – 5th year dog - Dogs will do same as in class 04, plus drop to a down position on the recall and sits and downs will be with owner out of sight for 3 to 5 minutes.
30201                                Novice Agility-Small dog less than 15”
30202                                Novice Agility-Medium dog 15”- 24”
30203                                Novice Agility-Large Dog over 24”
30204                                Open Agility - Open to any 4-Her (4th grade and above).  Does not use official judge but participation ribbons are earned.  Course will be modified to fit a variety of ages and sizes of dogs.  Dogs must be a minimum of 1 year old for the safety of the dog. Must attend a minimum of 3 agility workouts for the dog and member to be evaluated and proved for show.  These workouts will be announced in June.   Rabies certificate is required before attending workouts. Open to 4-H Pet Projects.  Dogs can only participate in one open agility class.

Questions? Please contact:

Amy Green | 4-H/Youth Coordinator
Iowa State University Extension and Outreach
Washington County Extension
2223 250th, Washington, IA 52353
Phone: 319-653-4811

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