Tips for Getting Started in Dog Agility

When it comes to dog agility, many people want to jump in headfirst and become the best in their agility group. Don’t. You don’t need to have a high level of experience to start competing, but the more time you spend practicing, the more your skills will develop. This guide gives you the basics and tools you need to get started and compete successfully in dog agility.

Learning to become an avid spectator at your dog’s agility trial is fun for all involved. If you’ve never been to a dog show before, you may not know what to expect or what areas of the showing floor to concentrate on. This article should help you get familiar with the ring, starting with the basics and working up to a complete understanding of how dog shows work.

Getting Started

To keep up with agility training activities, read agility magazines and newsletters. You can also subscribe to an online club that focuses on dog obedience training or one that is devoted to your particular breed of dog. Some of these organizations may offer fun agility games for your dog.

You can also find a professional dog obedience trainer by going to a local dog obedience club. These clubs usually provide a list of trainers in the area who have experience working with dogs and understand canine behavior. You should never train your dog without any background knowledge, especially if you have a shy dog. You can sign up for obedience classes at your local school, college, or pet store.

Practice

The most important rule in dog agility is to practice, practice, and practice some more. Practice before each session at all levels of dog agility competition. You can start with agility practice when you first get your dog. If you have never done agility training before, it may help to start with basic commands and basic agility exercises, such as a “heel” or “heel work.”

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At the local level, you can join a practice or trial group to join an agility club. Many agility clubs hold regular practice or trial sessions. You will learn the basics of dog agility training, practice skills for competition, and get to interact with other dog owners who are also training for competitions.

Don’t Forget the Tools

To perform well at agility trials or competitions, you need a well-tuned car. Get yourself to a dog training center to work with a professional trainer and to get a tuneup from your local automotive mechanic. Train your dog with dog obedience or agility training book or CD. Dog agility training will help you learn how to train your dog, but a dog obedience book will have lots of training tips for using your dog’s instincts.

At a dog training center, you can also get tips from dog trainers who are working with dogs of all ages and levels. These trainers will help you develop the skills and techniques you need to train your dog and compete well. In addition, you may learn new ways to train your dog, which could be applied to dog agility training. At dog training centers, you can also find good, inexpensive dog training equipment and dog agility games.

Training Tips

Dog agility training can be a great exercise for you and your dog. You can learn how to teach a dog to work by following these four steps.

Some people do not like teaching their dog to run, but that’s exactly what you must do to have success at agility training. Many dogs are timid and will run for fear. To help your dog overcome his shyness, begin with fun, short agility sessions to build up his confidence. Begin teaching your dog to run on a leash at a safe distance from people and other dogs.

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Practice until your dog has learned to keep up with your pace without stopping. Now, set up a fun obstacle course in your yard or park that has different jumps and tunnels. Start with low-risk obstacles and make them more difficult as your dog gets more experienced. You can also buy dog agility training equipment at your local pet store.

Get Feedback

A valuable tool for improving your skills is to gain feedback. If you are competing in obedience, make it a point to ask your judge and judge’s assistant to critique your dog’s performance. They can help you figure out how to improve your dog’s speed, work, and obedience. If you are entering a dog agility trial, ask to speak with other dogs and judges at the competition. They may have suggestions about what your dog is doing well and where you could work on.

Many judges will discuss your dog’s performance with you. After all, they are dog obedience and agility trainers! If the judge is not willing to offer feedback, ask if someone in the crowd would be willing to talk with you.

At a show, wait until all dogs have competed in each ring before asking people for their opinions about your performance. If you ask too soon, people may think that their opinions do not matter if your dog didn’t win.

Another option is to watch someone else’s performance and offer feedback. Remember, however, not to make suggestions without careful consideration. Offer advice only after you have watched a complete round of competition and know what the athlete was trying to achieve. If you are not sure whether or not to give advice, wait until after the dog has competed in all rings before offering feedback.