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May 2024 All-Star: Nickie Hay

Nickie Hay grew up in Union City, IL. Her passion for working with dogs started as a teenager. She started guiding at the age of 13, and got her first dog, at the age of 16, however, Nickie’s serious competition experience started when she bought a dog named Annie from an Oklahoma breeder and worked with a trainer out of Paducah, KY.


A little over a year later, Annie was ready to start field trialing and hit the ground running with competitions; that is until the world shut down due to COVID-19. This didn’t stop Nickie from working with Annie each day and training her for when things would return to normal, though.

After quarantine lifted and field trials resumed, Nickie took Annie down to TX. At this time, Annie had only ran 3 derbies and was still fairly new to the competition world. The first two field trials were essentially practice runs for Annie, as she didn’t place and was still getting used to competing- especially with so many other dogs. Nickie decided to try a different avenue with Annie and run her in hunt tests.

Annie went from running field trials to running and passing in the Grand with Clay Owens. After a year of competing in hunt tests, Clay entered Annie in a field trial and she placed fourth. This was Clay’s first field trial ever and Annie’s first field trial in over a year. Today, Annie consistently competes in hunt tests and is an AKC Master Hunter, as well as UKC HRCH with a grand pass, and 4th qualifying AKC All Age field trial.

Clay Owens switched all of the dogs he trains with over to Joy about a year ago. Once Nickie seen the Annie’s results after switching over to Joy Dog Food, she switched all of her other dogs over to Joy. “I was so impressed with how shiny her coat was. She had less build up on her teeth, too. You want your dog to look just as good as they perform on the field, so in order to do that- you feed them a premium dog food made for athletes; such as Joy Dog Food” Nickie said in her interview.




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