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A Great Sport – Agility

Posted by on May 29, 2014

Looking for a fun way to bond with your dog and put his excess energy to work?

Check out the great sport of Agility.
Agility has become a popular canine sport in which a handler guides their dog through a course with tunnels, jumps, dog walks, etc. As a dog trainer, I have spent years participating in various dog sports including Obedience, Rally, Agility, conformation, etc. All dog sports are great ways to build rapport and burn energy with your dog. I have been training in obedience, rally and/or agility for over 25 years and have enjoyed them all. Agility possesses many challenges for my dogs and me.

Why I like Agility:

  • Accommodates the dog’s natural instincts – Dogs love to chase and run. Agility courses are designed to fulfill the natural desires of my dog.
  • Exercises my dog – Running agility is a great way to burn my dog’s excess physical and mental energy. It also involves performing a variety of obstacles that builds coordination and strength to keep my dog fit.
  • Helps me get into and stay in shape – As the handler, I run with my dog helping him complete the course. Running the course with my dog is a heart-healthy workout.
  • Strengthens the bond with my dog – Agility takes two. My dog must rely on my direction in order to perform the obstacles correctly. Training my dog reinforces the basic obedience commands, develops communication between my dog and me, and ultimately helps to improve my dog’s behavior in everyday life.

Can your dog do agility? A big YES!

All dogs can do agility. There are however a few important factors to consider BEFORE starting agility training with your dog.

What age should you start training your dog in agility?

The younger the dog the more you need to consider the negative physical effects of starting a puppy before his growth plates have closed. Most people begin training their dogs as soon as they get them. Always check with your VET before starting agility training.

Can crazy out-of-control dogs do agility?

It is great to start your dog off in an obedience class to get basic control and commands before beginning agility training. Your dog should know basic commands such as stay, sit, and come. You will have more success when training if you have rapport and basic control with your dog.

Agility is a great sport that you can enjoy with your dog. So get out of that chair, dust off your sneakers and get to training Agility!

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