Rules & Guidelines for Waggy Racers
This is the most boring page on the Waggy Races website but we advise that you take just a couple of minutes to read this section before a race.
Waggy Races is a cross country fun run for you to enter with your dog(s). It is a simple concept but there are rules that must be followed to ensure the smooth running of the event and the safety of all participants, dogs and spectators.
By entering Waggy Races you confirm that:
* you agree to the rules.
* You are suitable to race alongside people less than 18 years of age.
* you give consent for Waggy Races to request information about you from the appropriate authorities if required.
* (for parents/guardians of those aged less than 18) - you give consent to race organisers/volunteers to treat your child for first aid or to take other actions deemed necessary to protect your child.
* you consent to photographs and video clips of you being taken before, during and after the race.
Race format & distance
A mass start of all participants is not always possible (think 250 people and 250 dogs on leads jostling for position on a narrow path!). Human/dog teams will instead be started in groups (waves), separated by one minute intervals. The winner is therefore not necessarily the first team to cross the finish line, but the team with the fastest time! One wave of walkers will be released first, followed 15 minutes later by the running waves.
Courses will usually measure 5km (3.1 miles) and will be mixed terrain. Marshals will line the route and distance markers, signs and flags will guide you and your dog(s). There will be several water stops.
1 person & 1 dog
1 person & 2 dogs*
PACK (2 people & 1 dog)**
*Those entering in a two dog team - this may be a separate prize category depending on the number of two dog entries.
**One team member must be attached to the dog - the additional runner can either run freely alongside or attach via a second lead.
Participants will be started in waves. By indicating your estimated 5k time on the entry form, we will ensure that you start the race with participants of a similar ability. From a safety perspective, this will also reduce overtaking on the course. The standard that you enter will have no bearing on the results and is not a separate prize category.
The standards are:
RUNNER/JOGGER – you will run/jog the majority of the course. We group participants into waves based on their estimated 5k time.
WALKER - you intend to walk the course. Walkers start en masse 15 minutes before the runners.
Race numbers are supplied by Waggy Races at registration and must be pinned (safety pins supplied) to the front of your top. If not, you will not receive an official time.
As a very rough guide, dogs should be 1+ years old to run in Waggy Races but it will obviously differ for different breeds. Please apply common sense where your dog is involved - If you are unsure, please consult your vet.
We advise that you build your dogs fitness up over a period of time leading up to the race. Be aware that during warmer weather (eg. over 16°c) some breeds [especially those with short muzzles / thick coats] may have difficulty staying cool.
Please apply common sense if you have a bitch in season! We advise that you do not run with her.
When training with your dog:
**Carry water (Note: there will be several water stops for your dog on race day).
**Avoid training in warm weather.
**Take note of your dog’s behaviour while running. If they seem uncomfortable, find a cool place to stop and give them water.
**Observe your dogs behaviour after running to ensure they are not overheating.
Control of your dog
Please ensure that you race with a dog that you can control!
When being pulled by a dog, care should be taken, especially on downhill sections.
Borrowing of dogs is allowed but for your own, your dog(s) and other participants safety, you should only enter with a dog with which you are familiar and confident!
Children aged 13 under
There is no minimum age limit for taking part in Waggy Races but we recommend that an adult (aged 18+) accompanies those aged 13 or under around the course. From a safety point of view, we recommend that both child and adult are attached to the dog - this is especially pertinent on down hill sections, which can be dangerous if being pulled by a powerful four-legged animal!
You can enter with:
1. a collar or harness and;
2. a lead or ‘waist belt & line’.
We recommend using a harness for your dog (this allows them to pull from the chest instead of the neck).
The ‘waist belt and line’ is preferred as it allows the owner to run hands free and will have a built in bungee chord to absorb shocks and lets your dog pull you!
Your lead or waist belt and line must not be greater than 2 metres long (approx 6 feet).
The following equipment is NOT permitted:
- Studded boots or cross country spikes
- Choke chains (or any collar that constricts your dog’s throat)
- Electric shock collars
- Muzzles (other than racing greyhound type muzzle)
- Extendable leads (greater than 2 metres)
Your race entry fee is invested into the cost of staging the race - we therefore do not offer a refund for those who cancel their entry.
In the event that a race is cancelled due to reasons beyond our control, entrants can automatically be entered, free of charge into the next race if they wish.
Entry closing date
Entry will close as soon as capacity is reached, or at the very latest, during the week leading up to the race. No entries are accepted on race day.
Health & Safety
All participants (humans & dogs) must be physically able to complete a 5km course by jogging or walking.
Everyone must attend the pre race briefing/safety talk on the morning of the race (details of which will be emailed prior to race day).
An appointed First Aid person will be available on the day - anyone with a problem on the course should alert a race marshal.
A vet will also be available on race day to look after our team mates.
A thorough risk assessment will be been undertaken before each race. Full details are available HERE.
By entering and taking part in the event, you consent to photographs of you being taken and used by Waggy Races and offered for resale.
To ensure the continuation of Waggy Races and the availability of venues for future events:
- You must be respectful to marshals, volunteers, venue staff, race organisers and of course each other. Animal cruelty, unsportsmanlike, aggressive, threatening or abusive behaviours deemed to be unacceptable will not be tolerated.
- Always clean up after your dog – carry poo bags at all times.
- Leave the course in good condition. As race organisers, we will endeavour to leave the course as we found it.
- Remember that not everyone loves dogs as much as we do! Please respect this and keep your dog on a lead and under control at all times. If you have a dog that is prone to aggressive behaviour, please take precautions to ensure the safety of others.
- Be respectful of and maintain a good rapport with other trail users such as walkers, cyclists, horse riders. Make them feel comfortable and not intimidated or inconvenienced. Give right of way when appropriate. A smile or greeting as you run past will go a long way!
- When overtaking other participants always call before overtaking and pass courteously on the right hand side.
- Dogs should be attached to the human at all times, except in cases of danger to dog or runner.