Interview with Kimberly Berkley
How long have you competed in AKC Rally? How did you discover the sport?
Kimberly Berkley: I’ve done Rally since its inception, first with my Miniature Poodle, “Bruno,” and thereafter, a Golden, Lab, Springers, and now my Border Collies. I’ve done Obedience since 2000. Rally has really become a part of our training as the Rally skills are very necessary for competitive Obedience! I love the challenge of getting it perfect, always striving for perfection!
Did you have a strategy for competing with “Zayne” at the AKC Rally National Championship?
Kimberly Berkley: When competing at the Championship level you not only have to be perfect, but fast as well. I showed “Zayne” and his two-year-old son, “Zuko,” in the Championship level. My strategy is always to try not to make a mistake myself or miscue my dog, and to be as smooth as possible. When everything goes right, it’s like an elegant dance with your dog. Zayne and Zuko were tied for first, both with a perfect score of 400. Zayne ended up winning on time.
Do you compete in other dog sports? If so, which sports appeal to you and why?
I really enjoy Obedience the most. I’m so proud of six-year-old Zayne. He was first runner up in the National Obedience Championship the same weekend as the Rally Championship! Zayne also finished his Breed Championship and his Herding Championship in 2022. He became only the 106th Triple Champion since the start of recognizing Triple Champions in 1980. Zayne has eight different Championships in front of his name, which I believe to be the most of any dog ever. He has also produced many Champion offspring that are excelling in many dog sports!
Herding is fairly new to me and I find it fascinating and so fun to see the dogs excelling at what they were bred to do! Agility is an exciting, fast-paced sport that Zayne enjoys. He is also an Agility Grand Champion, which is no small feat in itself. Dock Diving is just super-fun for the dogs as is Scent Work.