If you’ve never heard of dog agility or never considered having your dog participate, it’s definitely something that is worth a second thought and some internet research.
Dog agility is a sport that is enjoyable for both the pup and its owner. It promotes socialization for your pet, encourages them to be more active, and gets the handler in on the action, too! Agility is a fantastic first step toward a healthier lifestyle for your dog, and it’s even better if you can get your pooch started early.
One of the biggest advantages of agility is that it provides an outlet for dogs with a lot of pent up energy. This way of using your dog’s vitality to his advantage is a great way to circumvent some of the more destructive behaviors that result from restlessness and lack of stimulation. The best part? Dogs of any age, size, or breed are able to participate in canine agility, as long as they are well-mannered (especially around other dogs).
Essentially, you can think of canine agility as an obstacle course of sorts. There are different organizations for the sport, and each has its own regulations for the constructions of obstacles. The general idea is the same across the board, however.
The most commonly used agility obstacles are the A-Frame (it looks exactly the way it sounds), tunnels, teeter-totters, hurdles, and the “dog-walk”.
For many pet parents, the cost of building or purchasing the equipment is prohibitive. This is the primary reason that most choose to join an agility class, rather than construct their own home training equipment. As an added bonus, agility classes and clubs give your pooch the chance to make friends and interact with other dogs in a positive social environment.
If you don’t think that agility is right for you or your pet, we want to still encourage you to speak with your pup’s veterinarian about alternative steps that you can take toward a healthier, longer, happier life for your pet. Just as it is with people, a healthy lifestyle is essential to your dog’s longevity and overall well-being.