Here's why YOU should start dog agility!

So, in case you’re unaware, I’ve been training Daisy in agility for a while, and we’re working up to a competition level. I genuinely think taking up a sport with your dog is beneficial for both parties! Here’s why! 

It helps with general training and obedience!

People might think that when you go to agility classes, you start straight off with jumps and a-frames. Well, if your class does, they need to rethink their methods… the best trainers work on foundations first. These can be as simple as training a solid “wait” for a start line, and impulse control so your dog stays focused. This all hugely benefits all areas of your dog’s training, including at home and on walks!

It’s important for your relationship and bonding!
Not everyone realises that doing a sport like agility heavily relies on your relationship with your dog. The closer you are, the easier it is, because your dog becomes so in tune with your body language that they start to guess what your next move is before you ask them. This is great for when courses get faster and trickier!

It’s great physical and mental stimulation for your dog!
When you get a puppy, everyone always talks about how important both physical and mental stimulation is for dogs. You can knock both in one by doing agility. It’s fast paced and fun, but your dog gets a real mental workout as they learn new moves and tricks. You’ll find after agility sessions; your dog is much more settled.

Anyone can do it and you’ll meet fellow dog lovers!
All kinds of people do dog agility, not just the completely dog mad ones! There are a few of us dog-crazies though; there are still people from all walks of life, including teenagers and children. You don’t need any specific set of skills. You also don’t need to be the most amazing runner, or dog owner. I’ve came across some amazing agility trainers including a wonderful lady in a wheelchair who uses distance handling. If your trainer is good, they can help anyone to train agility!

It’s fun and addictive!
Once you start getting into the swing of it, and you notice progress, you get hooked. Your dog loves it. You love it. You won’t be able to stop. It really is so much fun. Even if you do make mistakes, or things don't go to plan, you still go home knowing your dog had the time of their life running off and peeing on that tunnel. The people really are lovely and helpful which makes a huge difference. It’s beneficial for you and your dog, and you end up with a new hobby!

So, if you have a local agility club, I’d certainly recommend considering it! If classes aren’t for you, there’s loads of YouTube tutorials and you can buy cheap agility kits online, which is particularly good if you fancy just doing it for fun. You don’t have to go down the competitive route, it can be just a simply activity you enjoy with your beloved pooch!

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