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Dog Agility 101

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Interested in dog agility?  It’s a great way to spend some quality time and bond with your pooch.  It’s also a great fun way for you and your dog get some exercise.  Here’s the basic information you need to get started.

“Yes, Jasper likes to jump off things—that’s actually an understatement,” laughs Vancouver, BC’s Leanna Fillo, as she recounts how she and her Sheltie-Shepherd cross first got involved in dog agility, a sport in which a human handler directs a dog through an obstacle course in a race for both time and accuracy.

“We just finished our basic obedience class at DogSmart Training, and I could really see how focused he was on me and how bonded we had become,” she says. “I wanted to keep the momentum going, so I started looking for our next challenge—something that would stimulate both Jasper and myself mentally and physically and give us more time to be together, to work together and to bond.”

Fillo had heard about agility training before, and decided to look into beginner classes. Once she discovered more about what would be involved, she says she “knew that Jasper would be a shoo-in for the sport.”

A natural he is, thanks in part to his unique mixture of breeds. According to the United States Dog Agility Association, Shetland Sheepdogs, Australian Shepherds, and Border Collies all rank among the top dogs to run agility and win trials. But if you’re thinking of trying agility with your mutt, don’t be dissuaded by his or her bloodline.

“Certain types of dogs—working and herding dogs come to mind—are often considered as ‘naturals’ for agility but, the truth is, any breed can do it,” says Becky Woodruff, a North American Dog Agility Council (NADAC) seminar clinician based in Bend, Oregon.

“I’ve seen Jack Russell Terriers, Standard Poodles, Pomeranians—pretty much every type of dog, purebred and mixed breed, excel at this sport. Of course, a big St. Bernard may not be as agile as a Sheltie, and a Basset Hound, low to the ground, likely can’t catch a Border Collie, but they can still be very successful at agility. It’s an all-inclusive activity for people and their pets.”

In fact, the sport of agility—which was started in England in the late 1970s and was then introduced to North America in the early ’80s—is structured so that nearly all handlers and dogs can participate at some level. This includes dogs of all shapes, sizes and ages—and their humans, as well.

Read the remainder of the article in Modern Dog Magazine.

Source: Modern Dog Magazine

Image Source: Flickr

 

“Yes, Jasper likes to jump off things—that’s actually an understatement,” laughs Vancouver, BC’s Leanna Fillo, as she recounts how she and her Sheltie-Shepherd cross first got involved in dog agility, a sport in which a human handler directs a dog through an obstacle course in a race for both time and accuracy.

“We just finished our basic obedience class at DogSmart Training, and I could really see how focused he was on me and how bonded we had become,” she says. “I wanted to keep the momentum going, so I started looking for our next challenge—something that would stimulate both Jasper and myself mentally and physically and give us more time to be together, to work together and to bond.”

Fillo had heard about agility training before, and decided to look into beginner classes. Once she discovered more about what would be involved, she says she “knew that Jasper would be a shoo-in for the sport.”

A natural he is, thanks in part to his unique mixture of breeds. According to the United States Dog Agility Association, Shetland Sheepdogs, Australian Shepherds, and Border Collies all rank among the top dogs to run agility and win trials. But if you’re thinking of trying agility with your mutt, don’t be dissuaded by his or her bloodline.

“Certain types of dogs—working and herding dogs come to mind—are often considered as ‘naturals’ for agility but, the truth is, any breed can do it,” says Becky Woodruff, a North American Dog Agility Council (NADAC) seminar clinician based in Bend, Oregon.

“I’ve seen Jack Russell Terriers, Standard Poodles, Pomeranians—pretty much every type of dog, purebred and mixed breed, excel at this sport. Of course, a big St. Bernard may not be as agile as a Sheltie, and a Basset Hound, low to the ground, likely can’t catch a Border Collie, but they can still be very successful at agility. It’s an all-inclusive activity for people and their pets.”

In fact, the sport of agility—which was started in England in the late 1970s and was then introduced to North America in the early ’80s—is structured so that nearly all handlers and dogs can participate at some level. This includes dogs of all shapes, sizes and ages—and their humans, as well.

– See more at: http://moderndogmagazine.com/articles/agility-right-your-dog/69191#sthash.p9EyRSSV.dpuf

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