Benefits of Dog Agility to you and your dog.

Dog Agility is the most popular Dog Sport in the UK and it has many advantages for both Dogs and Owners alike.

Agility combines skill, training and requires great human- dog communication. Its fun to do and its fun for people to watch. It is not very often that people don’t stop and watch as they walk past the agility field. Kids especially love it.

In competition, a handler directs thier dog through a sequence of obstacles–such as tunnels, jumps, weave poles, and A-Frame. The handler is not allowed to touch the dog or the equipment. Voice and hand signals are used to direct the dog around the course as quickly as possible with as few mistakes as possible. Competitions are held for dogs (and handlers) of all levels, ages and sizes. You don’t have to compete you can just do it for fun. Lots of people go cycling or running but do not enter competitions.

Agility has great benfits for both the dog and their human!

Benefits

Firstly it is a fun activity for dogs and humans and an excellent source of exercise for both.

Does your dog’s recall ability need improving? Do they lack confidence? Are they easily distracted? Do they have impulse control ? Agility training can help correct these problematic behaviours.

Agility  will help strengthen your dog’s muscles and it will also improve their coordination, flexibility and stamina helping overall fitness.

The handler also benefits in the same way because it involves running alongside your dog, helping them as they jump and negotiate obtacles. So dog agility is the perfect workout for both of you! If you have mobility issues do not count it out. A dog can be taught to work independantly away from you and there are many disabled and older handlers competing today.

It will improve communication, trust, your relationship, increase attention and focus on you and increase thier confidence. It stimulates the mind and the body which is good for everyone. It is also a very social activity.

It’s not just for Collies, all breeds can participate of all sizes and all ages. Puppies and young dogs can start learning the foundations from an early age, you just need to not jump them until they are around a year old and when bones are fully formed and muscles will not be damaged. The can still learn to go around obstacles, through jumps wings, on the contact equipment, through tunnels. Older dogs can also benefit but again you just have to take care that you are not pushing them to do things their bodies are not able to. Jump height for fully developed dogs is determined in competition by their height. Bigger dogs obviously jump bigger jumps.

Likewise, there is no age limit for humans. If you want to do it give it a go! Children will obviously need to be able to control the dog and be able to follow the instructors instructions.

Lessons can be class or individual depending on what you prefer. Classes are usually 1-2 hrs long depending on numbers and individual sessions are usually 1/2 to 1 hr long.

So if you think it is something you and your dog can enjoy together then give me a call to see what options are available to you.

 

 

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