Freestyle (PAWS Scoring)

Competing teams will have ninety seconds and the use of up to five discs, and will receive scores ranging from 1 to 10, in half-point increments, for each of the following four categories:


The team’s presentation of a crowd-pleasing routine with exciting choreography, continuous flow, good disc management and smooth transitions.


Intensity and athleticism in completing catches, tricks or maneuvers together with a dog’s speed, quickness, leaping ability relative to its size and control over his/her body while competing.


Ability to successfully complete challenging tricks or moves, including successful catches of throws with varied spins or releases. Also, the presentation of completely new moves, or a novel or unique presentation of a previously performed move, will result in higher scores in this category.


The team’s ability to successfully execute a routine with specific consideration given for the difficulty of the throws, catches and tricks. A team’s Success score will impact scores in all categories. A difficult routine that is completed cleanly will score higher than a less-difficult routine completed cleanly.

Under the PAWS scoring system, judges will evaluate each team’s ability to cleanly execute a challenging, varied and exciting routine within the time allotted. Although there are specific categories that focus on execution (Success) and difficulty (Wow!Factor), a failure to score well in either of these categories may impact a competitor’s scores in all of the PAWS categories. This is because the judges must account for differences between routines of the competitors that are competing on a given day.

For example, even if two competitors have perfect rounds they will not necessarily each receive a score of 10 in the Success category. Instead, the more difficult routine will typically receive a higher score in Success than the simpler routine. Similarly, if two competitors have equally difficult rounds, it is likely that the competitor with fewer misses will receive the higher score in the Wow!Factor category.

Pairs Freestyle

Routines are judged according to the same PAWS criteria as regular Freestyle (see above) with one exception: an additional Teamwork category (1-10 point scale) has been added. Teamwork takes into consideration the relationship, choreography, field use, and fluidity of movement of the team during the routine.

Costumed Freestyle

Costumed Freestyle uses 4 judges like PAWS, but the categories are different. One judge scores the costume (dog &/or handler). The second judge scores the theme of the performance (costumes + music + choreography). The third judge scores the tricks (Wow Factor). The fourth judge scores success.

Costumes are not required to participate in Freestyle, but they do have a big impact on the total score.

Used with permission of Skyhoundz/Hyperflite.