Dog agility training enables a dog to perform any type of sport such as a jump, climb obstacles or weave in and out of poles. It was fashioned after horse show jumping, and made its first appearance in the UK at the Crufts Dog Show in 1979. Since then, it has grown to become a popular dog sport for show and entertainment. All dogs have agility but the most popular breeds for sport competition are medium to large size dogs.
Before starting agility training, a dog should be examined by a veterinarian carefully. A pre-requisite for joining agility training is that the dog should be able to obey the basic commands such as ‘sit,’ ‘lie down’ and ‘come.’ A well-trained dog can easily follow the different commands that are required by the sport. There are a number of ways to carry out agility training, but the trainer should select a method that fits a dog’s needs. Agility training should be fun, so the instructor should not be too critical or competitive.
In agility training, a dog makes its way through an obstacle course with the help of the handler. The various obstacles include poles, tunnels, ramps and jumps. Dogs start with an easy obstacle and more are added as the dog masters the skill. Agility helps to determine whether or not a dog has the agility to compete. In competitions, a judge predetermines the direction of the obstacle and the handler directs the dog using a leash. After a successful completion of an agility course or “a win,” the owner receives the agility title, and the dog will receive much praise, toys or other goodies.
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