New Job Starting in December 2022

On to new challenges and possibilities! I can’t thank Carrie Elks DeYoung, AKC and the rest of the Agility Department for trusting in me. It truly is an HONOR! I have a huge respect for our Reps and the job they do, and know I have big shoes to fill. I am SO EXCITED about all the changes our sport has had recently and feel so incredibly lucky to be able to continue to be a part of it in a new role.

I think the first time I met an AKC Rep was back in 2001 when Doug Hurley and Randy Reed came to Puerto Rico to help us hold one of our first Agility Trials. I was running my wild and enthusiastic Black Lab Zohe in Nov A, and had just fallen madly in love with this sport. If you had told me then that I would one day be a judge, let alone a Rep, I would have called you crazy – at the time I couldn’t do 10 obstacles in a row without my Lab trying to bite at my feet 🙂 this sport has been truly AMAZING to me, and has taken me places I never would have dreamed. So thank you to all those that inspired me and supported me (too many to list!): from my Puerto Rico Agility Team family, to my actual family, my husband Dennis who is my biggest fan and supporter, to my students and of course my amazing dogs. I learn from you all and draw strength and inspiration from all of you, and though I do this because I am STILL madly in love with this sport, I also do it because I hope to continue to make it better for everyone.I am so happy that I will continue to serve as Assistant Coach to our European Open Team, and look forward to seeing everyone at Tryouts and then at the Invitational.

Let the work begin!!!!

AKC Official Announcement:

AKC Agility Department Welcomes Agility Field Representative Sheyla Gutiérrez!

Sheyla Gutiérrez joins the AKC Agility Department with wealth of experience in dog sports. She has been an AKC Agility Judge for over 10 years. Highlights in her judging career include judging the 2022 AKC National Agility Championship, the 2021 AKC Premier Cup, the 2020 AKC European Open Team Tryouts and was the Assistant Coach for the AKC European Open Team in Belgium in 2022.

In addition, she is a Professional Dog Trainer teaching a variety of classes in agility, obedience, dog sports, relationship building, behavior issues and other topics. She has traveled all over the world offering seminars, competing in dog agility trials, and as part of dog entertainment shows.

Sheyla prides herself in staying current with the changes in the sport and believes strongly that dogs (like their human partners) are individuals and have different learning styles. She is well respected as a competitor, judge, coach and trainer. She has also competed in Obedience and Rally and is currently a CGC and Trick Dog Evaluator. She really enjoys the many video Trick Dog evaluations she has done.

Originally from San Juan, Puerto Rico, she has trained dogs for more than 20 years and achieved agility champion status in both AKC (MACH) and USDAA (multiple ADCH, PDCH and even LAA). She has competed at the AKC Agility Invitational as part of the Puerto Rico delegation with both her Border Collie Chill and her Pug Minnie, who earned Top International Dog in 2011. Over the years she has had the chance to compete in agility with 2 Pugs, a Doberman, Border Collies, a Labrador Retriever and a “large” All American.

We are very excited to have Sheyla join the AKC Agility department starting on November 28, 2022.