Rally, the newest addition to Companion Events, is a sport in which the dog and handler complete a course that has been designed by the Rally judge. The judge tells the handler to begin and the dog and handler proceed at their own pace through a course of designated stations (10 - 20 depending on the level). Each of these stations has a sign providing instructions regarding the next skill that is to be performed. Scoring is not as rigorous as formal obedience.
The team of dog and handler move continuously with the dog at the handler's left side. They perform the exercises indicated by a numbered sign at each station. After the judge's "Forward" order, the team is on its own to complete the entire sequence correctly. Unlimited communication from the handler to the dog is to be encouraged and not penalized.
The purpose of Rally is not only to demonstrate the dog's ability to follow specified routines in the ring, but also to emphasize the usefulness of the purebred dog as a companion to man.