I hope this email finds you and your family safe as our country navigates the COVID-19 virus. Most of us have not experienced anything close to this outbreak.
To control this novel coronavirus pandemic, President Trump and the state governors have instituted restrictions on movement and stay at home directives.
Over 5,000 dog events have been cancelled with more every day. The cancellations have been the results of event venues being unavailable due to social distancing or venues being used for medical purposes.
At the BHCA Board meeting on April 5, the Board, after much discussion and unanimously approved, “a motion to rescind AKC approval for Field Trial events through the end of May in order to comply with Federal Government Guidelines for COVID-19 Recovery. This motion may be reevaluated as circumstance change.” Field Trials were not being singled out, but were the only events left on the schedule. The Board will review any future events that involve the BHCA on a monthly basis. The Board will make every effort to quickly approve rescheduled events that have been cancelled due to the coronavirus pandemic.
We all are looking forward to some degree of normality and getting back to the field and the show ring. The medical experts say there are reasons to be cautiously optimistic. Social distancing is working, and I expect that will continue even as restrictions on movement is relaxed. With much of the restrictions dictated by the states, one state may relax the restrictions while another does not. That complicates moving between states when attending or exhibiting at an event, whether it be in Field Trial, Hunt Tests, Scent Work, Agility, Obedience/Rally or Conformation.
The BHCA Board is concerned about the health of our members and will err on being safe when approving events with the AKC. While we understand that individuals and our local clubs may resent our actions, it is our responsibility to intervene. If you have something to say, address those comments directly to the board. The Board does not do business on Facebook. To not recognize that efforts are for the safety of our membership is unacceptable. You might disagree on method, but there should be no disagreement with the intent.
The 2020 Nationals is scheduled for September 18-25, 2020 in Rockford, IL. Planning is on track and we are hoping that the coronavirus will be in check and that traveling will be allowed and safe for all.
Be Smart, Be Careful, Be Safe.
Richard Nance, BHCA President