Rugby Dog Training Club

Training at the Club.


 The club holds Heelwork to Music Activities fortnightly on a Tuesday evening at 7.15 p.m.


This is an opportunity to teach your dogs some moves, behaviours and learn foundation skills in this popular canine activity. 

For those members who are competing or those who may wish to compete in the future these sessions are great for you to practice your moves and strengthen your routine.

About Heelwork to Music


"Heelwork to Music” is the generic name for the whole sport but there are 2 divisions within this which are Heelwork to music and Freestyle, a fairly recent innovation it started in 1990 when one of the worlds best known dog trainers performed a demonstration of obedience heelwork with music playing at a “ Canine Cabaret Night “ in Bedford, many of the 200 audience went away and said they had seen Heelwork to Music and that’s how the name came about !!.

The famous trainer who started it all was Mary Ray, yes one of our own trainers and when she is not flying round the country she still trains and teaches at the club on a weekly basis.

After Cabaret Nights in 1990 & 1992 Mary was invited to demonstrate at Crufts and she has done so every year since then. In 1996 Rugby Dog Training Club held the first ever Kennel Club licensed HTM show at the Sports Connexions at Ryton, this has been the UK’s leading show since then and has now moved to the new Kennel Club building at Stoneleigh Park, Kenilworth, Warwickshire.

There are now many competitive HTM shows throughout the UK and following in the steps of the other British invention Agility the sport has spread throughout the world, competitions and training now happen in USA, Australia, NZ, Japan, Brazil, South Africa, all Europe to name just a few countries.

The main event for us Brits is the finals in the main arena at Crufts.

It’s a great sport and you can train for fun or work towards entering a show and perhaps even qualifying for the big finals at Crufts !!!

Heelwork to Music Trainers:


Carole Turton

Erica Hyde


Classes at Shows

Classes at shows are split into two categories.

Heelwork to Music where the routine must be made up of a minimum of 2/3 heelwork and 1/3 freestyle
Freestyle classes which are made up of a minimum 2/3 freestyle and 1/3 heelwork

Some shows are run over a weekend and include special fun classes. These give young dogs and beginner handlers new to the activity, a chance to go into the ring, using food and toys to encourage the dogs.

There are many training workshops which are very helpful to learn the moves which are required for Heelwork to Music and Freestyle.

Rugby now has several members competing at all levels from Starters through to Advanced some of whom competed and demonstrated at Crufts this year.

Heel Work to Music

Fortnightly on Tuesday Evenings