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Dog Agility: Fun For The Whole Family

Most healthy, energetic pets will enjoy dog agility training. Dogs who love to run and play and pounce on toys will love the challenge of leaping over jumps and scurrying through tunnels and around weave poles. Dog agility can be a sport that involves your entire family, and there are many ways to get everyone involved.

Dog agility training is something that all members of the family can work on, but it is crucial that everyone train in an identical fashion. Your dog will become confused if one person uses their own set of signals or commands while another person uses a completely different method. Training, whether it is for dog agility or obedience, simply needs to be very consistent. When everyone trains the same way, it is much easier for your dog to be successful.

For children and teen-agers, consider looking around for a junior handler's class or program. Many organizations offer classes that help kids become good dog agility trainers and handlers. The United States Dog Agility Association, for instance, works in conjunction with 4-H clubs around the country to provide training for those under 18. The American Kennel Club also has its own program, and several other organizations also have junior programs.

One way to get your feet wet in dog agility is to join an agility club, and there are hundreds of these across the country. Usually you are asked to take an agility class and complete a few other tasks prior to joining, but it's a good place to go and test out whether or not agility is an activity that you and your dog really enjoy.

Once you have seen whether or not this is an activity you will all enjoy, it's time to start buying your own equipment. It's sometimes a good idea to purchase mini agility obstacles at first. This mini equipment is easier for dogs to master and because it is smaller, it's easier to set up coursework in your yard. Some smaller pieces even fit in your garage, basement or family room for those times when your dog needs exercise and it's rainy or stormy outside. Small dogs also need to use mini equipment and even in dog agility courses, smaller equipment is used for these animals.

Carlson Agility is one company that produces and sells a huge variety of agility equipment, including all sizes and types of dog agility jumps. You can find tire jumps, high jumps, broad jumps and even unique options such as car door jumps. They also sell weave poles, tunnels, teeter totters, A-frames, pause tables and much more. You can opt for full-size or mini equipment, depending on your needs.

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