training for agility

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osu shorty
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training for agility

Post by osu shorty » Mon Jun 04, 2007 4:46 pm

What's the best way to start training dogs for agility besides classes? I'm wanting to get mine into it but not sure how to start. He has the jumping part down though :D



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mdmdogs3
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Post by mdmdogs3 » Mon Jun 04, 2007 5:30 pm

as a former agility instructor and competitor
take the classes - you will find out if your dog can perform on the equipment and if you want to do the work required to succeed
you can't afford to purchase or build the equipment needed
and if the classes are any good you don't need to have all of it at home

but here is my disclaimer
I've taken classes from people that didn't have a clue and from world class competitor/teachers
there is a huge difference
plus you need to find a class that suits you and your dog, I couldn't succeed with a very athletic type training style - I'm not athletic :roll: but my dog was very fast so I had to learn how to handle the speed and ability my dog had to the best of my ability
what I'd suggest is - attend some trials - find a competitor or two that intrigues you and might be of similiar athletic ability to you. When they are just sitting around talking ask them who they would recommend for a class in your area
Pick your time - you don't want to interrupt them getting ready to compete but I will guarantee that they will either give you the info or tell you who you need to talk to - to find out...
then go and visit the classes - talk to the instructor and class members - ask if they are the only instructor and if not, who is the other instructor(s) - I was training director at our club and sometimes the club member teaching wasn't always someone that I directed a friend to ;-)

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mdmdogs3
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Post by mdmdogs3 » Mon Jun 04, 2007 5:41 pm

something else - do extensive work with obedience
your dog in agility needs to be working at full speed with you at full attention -
they must stay where you put them so you can set up the beginning of your run
- rather than just chasing them around the ring trying to fix what is happening (it happens and it is often a trainwreck)

in most trials you have to have your dog stop at a "table" and the dog must sit or lie down and stay there for a set number of seconds (this is very very hard for the dog that just wants to go)

An immediate response to your command is required as these are timed events (and you don't get any extra time!)
(my dog failed to qualify on a course because she was 1/100th of second over time :mad: :mad: :mad:

in our classes we required the dog to sit - stay, down - stay, come when called before the dog was allowed to move on to the second set of classes

now when I say obedience - I don't mean competitive obedience heeling but the attention work really helps.

twmno101
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Re: training for agility

Post by twmno101 » Mon Jul 09, 2007 2:22 pm

There are several things you can do called "groundwork", fundamentals, or basic flatwork. Teach your dog to go to a "target" by using a mousepad, plastic butter dish lid, or other similar flat, distinguishable item and put a little piece of treat (kibble, cheese, or other soft and tantalizing treat) on it. This teaches them to go forward without you right along with them. As mentioned before, teach them very good obedience because with high-drive dogs, you can't get enough focus and attention! Teach them to line up next to you and then to run out around a cone or other "obstacle", using the word "out" as your command. I started mine with using out to get out of the horses stall and he knows that means to go away from me. I also practice running to and from the barn and telling him to "go on", along with giving him the hand signal (which is really like your sending your dog away from you and forward). This teaches him to run ahead of you in a straight line upon command. I could go on and on, but too much for this forum. We should email privately and discuss further. My website is: http://www.freewebs.com/twendtmahew/

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