Does anyone know of any lure coursing instructors, etc. in Kentucky? I'm looking to get my new Basenji, Dakota, involved in an event where he can exercise and "have a job". I understand the national event will be in Lexington this year. Will this be a good place to get instrutions or help to get started? All information welcomed and appreciated!:)
Yes, come to the national and you will be able to see everything that goes on and how it's done. I'm sure there will be several people, including myself, who would be happy to show you the ropes.when we're not busy wrestling our dogs. (They love the bunny!) Dakota won't be able to give it a try at this event, but you will learn so much just watching and talking to the exhibitors. And also getting Dakota out and about in the atmosphere is a good learning experience. You'll be able to stand on the sidelines and let him watch, which should start to spark some of his interest and prepare him for running.
Unfortunately you just missed a big 6 day coursing event in KY a couple weeks ago I think. Most of the time the only way to get involved is to go to the events and learn, and they will usually have practices after the competition on Saturday afternoons of the trials. Sunday people need to take the course down and get home. Once in a while you will get lucky and find someone in the area that owns some equipment and land and will occasionally hold a practice. And a few clubs might hold regular practice days too. But most of the time the only way to get exposure is through the events themselves.
There are 2 main organizations that hold lure coursing trials, AKC and ASFA. Each has their own rules and points system, but are basically run the same way. They have pages on their website with a calendar of upcoming events so you can search for a trial near you or something you would be willing to drive to. Lure coursing often requires a fair bit of driving!
American Sighthound Field Association:
Here's where you can learn about AKC's lure coursing:
And here's where you can search for their events:
Just choose lure coursing from the drop down menu and click on what states you want to search for and what time frame.
There is a coursing club in KY, Bluegrass Coursing Club. I would contact them to see if they know of any places in the area that might hold practices. Usually it's not heavily advertised, but members pass the word around. Here is their website.
There usually aren't many events in the summer due to the heat, but in the fall you'll probably see some again.
I would also look into racing. There are straight races and oval races. They use a similar lure and setup and the dogs love it just the same. Here are the links to those organizations too if you want to check into it.
Large Gazehound Racing Association (LGRA)
National Oval Track Racing Association (NOTRA)
Lure coursing is a ton of fun, hope you and Dakota check it out! And there are lots of members on here who run their dogs who can certainly give you some tips.