International Puppy and Trainer Contest Official Rules

Last Modified: March 1, 2024

The following are the official rules of the contest. These rules may be amended by the producers of the contest if the need arises. Any contestant found to not be following the rules will be subject to discipline, which may take the form of point reduction or disqualification.


Any Pup/Trainer Titleholder from 2019 and up is eligible to participate in the 2024 IPTC contest. As long as the title is not in conflict with a regional feeder contest, and as long as the Title contest is aligned with the Mission, Core Values, and Code of Conduct of the IPTC contest.  The producers will make the final decision on a contestant’s eligibility. All contestants must hold or have held a previous Puppy/Pet or Trainer/Handler title to be eligible to compete; some exceptions may be made at the discretion of the Contest Producers. All applications will be reviewed by the Producers before approving contestants to compete. Applications must be submitted by February 29, 2024, at 11:59 PM EST.


  1. At the time of application, social media accounts may be reviewed. Any questions regarding past behavior will be addressed at this time. Examples would be (but are not limited to):  symbols that promote racism or bigotry, speech that squelches diversity and inclusion, rhetoric that is consistently inflammatory, and espousal of willful consent violations.  
  2. All contestants will participate in all categories of the contest, as given under the scoring guidelines.
  3. All contestants will bring to the event 1 at least one basket of donated goods to be sold at auction.  Themed baskets bring in the most money, and it is always wise to consider your audience. 
  4. Contestants shall not attempt to sway the judges through gifts, meals, favors, or any other kind of items or acts that could be seen as bribery.
  5. Illegal substance use is prohibited (Non-Medical)  and is subject to the rules of the contest location.
  6. Excessive use of alcohol will likely result in a reduction of points in the Lifestyle Image portion.
  7. Nudity and actual sex acts are not permitted on the stage. All contestants must have front genitals covered with opaque material at all times, and the buttocks must be covered by a minimum of a 1” strap. Per the City of Chicago city’s municipal code section 8-8-080 Titled “Indecent Exposure or Dress,” the ordinance prohibits women from exposing to public view “any portion of the breast at or below the areola.” Women are required to cover their breasts with an “opaque covering.” The ordinance does not prohibit men from being topless in public.
  1. All rules and regulations imposed by the IPTC event must be followed. Removal from the IPTC event will result in immediate disqualification from the contest.
  2. The producers reserve the right to amend these rules as necessary. If this occurs, all parties involved will be notified.
  3. The producers and the staff of the contest do not have any authority to override any judge’s decision. The head judge is in charge of the judging team. In case of a tie, the Head Judge will make the final decision. 
  4. If there is any question on the integrity of the scoring or other activities, it will then be reviewed by the producers and a final decision will be made.
  5. Contestants must agree that if they win they will represent the International Puppy or Trainer title throughout the title year as explained in the section below entitled “Titleholder Expectations”. 
  6. In the event of a first runner-up, the first runner-up agrees to assume the title, privileges, and responsibilities if the titleholder voluntarily resigns or involuntarily is removed.
  7. The title year is defined as beginning when a Contestant is named the winner of the International Puppy and Trainer contest and concludes at the following year’s contest when a new winner is announced.
  8. After the contest, the winners will meet with the Producers to discuss and begin planning how the titleholder will meet the expectations as listed below in the “Titleholder Expectations”.  section of this document. The titleholders will also be expected to sign an additional photo release that covers all future events in which the winner is representing IPTC as the titleholder.

Titleholder Expectations

  • Our titleholders are expected to represent the Puppy and Trainer community to the best of their abilities. 
  • IPTC titleholders must refrain from competition in any other leather/puppy/rubber/fetish contest until the conclusion of their IPTC Title year unless approved in writing by IPTC Producers.  
  • Titleholders are expected to be ambassadors of inclusion and diversity.  
  • Titleholders are encouraged to travel off of their home continent at least once during their title year. 
  • Titleholders are expected to return the following year to give their step-down speech.
  • Titleholders are expected to return the subsequent year to serve as Judges. 


Scoring Guidelines

The scoring is based on a 1000 point system. Each contestant is judged individually and not as a pair. For all contestants competing as puppies, the best score out of 1000 will be declared the winner of International Puppy. For all contestants competing as Trainer, the best score out of 1000 will be declared the winner of International Puppy Trainer. In the event that no contestant scores 80% of points or more there will not be a winner for that title. An Olympic style scoring system in which the high and low scores for each category are thrown out is used.  In the case of a tie, the removed scores are added back in to determine the winner. 


The categories are as follows:

Interview:  (300 points available) Each contestant will participate in an interview. The head judge will establish the order and room set for questions and will also moderate the session.  Each judge should be allowed to ask whatever type of questions they deem necessary to learn what they need to know about each contestant. Based on the number of contestants to interview and the time allowed, the head judge will set limits on how many questions the judging panel will ask.

The interview is set up as a means for the judges to get to know the contestant. The questions that they ask will be completely up to them. It is important for the contestant to be prepared to answer a wide range of questions. While not limited to, it should be expected to hear questions regarding their application, leather/puppy history questions, social media presence, lifestyle questions, and personal belief questions.

Speech:  (250 points available) The contestants will prepare beforehand and deliver a speech during the opening ceremonies of the event. This speech can be on any topic the contestant wishes but must be recited from memory and not read.  The judges will award points on both speech content as well as speech delivery. The speech should be between ninety (90) seconds and two (2) minutes in length. Each speech will be timed and the judges will be informed of the recorded length after each speech.  Starting at 2:05, one (1) point will be deducted and one (1) point for each additional 5 seconds will be deducted. The points deducted will be standard across the contestants but may be amended for situations out of the contestants’ control. Examples of issues outside of the contestants’ control would be but are not limited to, microphone malfunction or audience disruption.

The speech is designed to see the contestant the way the public will see them as a titleholder.  It is important for the contestant to choose a topic that they are both familiar with and passionate about. Some contestants choose to use the speech portion to allow the audience the opportunity to get to know something about them such as their past or their vision. Others choose to use the time to share their passion for a topic.

-Lifestyle Image:  (125 points available) Judges will observe all contestants during the event weekend. Judging officially begins Friday after the contestant meeting. Any contestant arriving late should expect a reflection of this in their total points. Contestants should make an effort to meet each judge before the speech portion of the contest. From their observations, judges will award Lifestyle Image points based on their opinions of how each contestant behaves and interacts as a puppy or Handler/Trainer. During the mosh, puppies will be observed for mosh interactions, behavior, and handling of consent. Handlers/Trainers will be observed for interacting, creating safe space, and well-being of all mosh pit participants. Lifestyle image observations will include, but will not be limited to, public, and mosh pit interactions. All contestant’s social media accounts will continue to be observed for any behavior that does not align with IPTC values, rules, or ethics.

The lifestyle portion is to see the contestant interact with the public as a whole. A large part of being a titleholder is spending time at events with both friends and strangers. It is important for the contestant to recognize that they are being watched at all times, as they balance their interactions.

-Pop Question:  (75 points available)  The judges will observe the contestants as they answer one or two unknown questions. The questions may be randomized, or they may be specifically chosen for the contestant by the judges.  Typically, one question is related to community service and one question is meant to be more light-hearted.  The purpose of the pop questions is to see if the titleholder is prepared for the unknown questions that always arise in their travels.

-Scenes: 2 Sections, Contestants will be required to do both sections)  The judges will observe the contestants in both a Show Presentation in the show ring and they will observe a Fantasy/Play Presentation performed by the contestant. 

The scenes in both the Show Presentation and the Fantasy/Play Presentation are meant to be fun for the audience and maybe very puppy-fun-centric or they may be overtly sexual in nature.  Due to state law, no nudity is allowed on stage, and any sexual acts must be acted-out, not performed.  Scenes are expected to be respectful to the community at large.  Scenes with extremely inappropriate behavior/topics may be disqualified by the producer/head judge’s decision.  Examples of this would be (but are not limited to) scenes promoting rape culture, racism, misogyny, transphobia, intolerance, or promoting hate symbols.

-Show Presentation (125 Points Available)  This portion will present to the judges how well the contestant works with a pup or trainer in a one-on-one situation. Points will be awarded on how well the contestant gives/receives instruction, comfort level in front of a crowd, and overall attentiveness to the other participant. This category will also allow the contestants to showcase their headspace in their respective roles as pup or trainer. Judges will also look for believability in each contestant’s approach to the lifestyle. During this portion of the contest, the room will be set as a show ring with the audience and judges set around the performance area.  Each contestant will enter the ring with a partner of their choosing.  This can be another contestant or it can be someone with whom they have a personal relationship.   The pairs will enter the show ring and perform a preset routine.  This routine will be established by the head judge and contest producer and will be given to each contestant prior to the Show Presentation segment beginning.  This will include (but is not limited to), the walk onto the ring, a walk around the ring as the puppy is displayed to the audience, and a set of commands chosen by the contest producer and head judge.

The set of commands that will be performed during that section is not released to the contestants until the day of the contest. The participants will be wise to take advantage of the supplied practice time to learn the commands together. Puppies will be expected to return to a “stacked” position between each section-this is a symmetrical show pose. Some common commands given would be things like sit, stay, speak, shake hands, rollover. This does not imply that these are the only commands that may be chosen.

-Fantasy/Play Presentation: (125 points available)  These scenes should be 3 minutes in length and typically contain music/background tracks. Due to time constraints, points are deducted after 3 minutes. There are no microphones furnished, so spoken words are expected to be on the background tracks. The contestants may have up to two additional people on stage to help with the scene. The scene can be with another contestant, where both are scored, but this must be disclosed to the contest producer prior to the beginning of the judged portion of the weekend. Practice time on the stage will be given, and it is critical that this time be used so that the stage manager and production crew are prepared. All music/background tracks must be given to the production crew no less than two (2) weeks prior to the first day of the contest. All music/background tracks must be digital in MP3 format. There is no contingency for tardiness on this, as the production crew must be familiar with the content.

To enter this website you must be at least 18 years old.