What Does It Take to Make it in Agility? – Often, dog owners bitten by the agility bug are eager to jump right into entering their dog into competitions based on the dog’s natural ability alone. But there is so much more to agility than speed.
“My dog is fast! And jumps a lot higher than other dogs! I know he will be a fantastic agility competitor!”
What Does It Take to Make it in Agility?
Agility as a competitive sport began in the late 1970s in England as a time filler between classes at a dog show. This sport, patterned after-show horse jumping, times dogs while they go through an obstacle course of tunnels, platforms, A-frames, weave poles, and more. Despite the sport’s relatively recent creation, it is now extremely popular.
True obedience is key to a successful competitive team. And the handler and the dog are indeed a team. Accuracy in completing the obstacles is more important than the speed with which the dog completes the course. This accuracy comes in perfect trust and communication between the handler and the dog.
To hone your communication skills and your dog’s obedience, there are special tips and tricks you need to know. During the competition, the handler may not touch the dog or offer food, nor even have food in his pocket! Therefore, traditional methods of dog handling cannot be used.
It’s best to learn from an experienced competitor and receive constructive feedback while you practice. In addition, an expert can help a handler navigate which agility organization would be right for you and what rules are particular to each organization.
Introduction to Agility
If you are interested in becoming a competitive team with your pet, sign up for our Introduction to Agility class and get a solid foundation. Give us a call so we can schedule you and your pet for a class. We’d love to share our enthusiasm for training with you and help you, and your pet reach your agility goals.
Agility is a joy and a delight when a team works so beautifully together. It creates a bond like no other between you and your pet.
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