Is my dog a good candidate for dog agility?
Your dog needs to be physically sound, and should be well socialized with people and other dogs.
If you have a puppy that you are eager to get started with, you should wait until they are 8-10 months old before starting them in agility. You should not jump your dog at their full competition height until their growth plates have sealed which will be closer to 10-16 months depending on the size of the dog.
For your first agility dog, if you have different dogs at home to pick from to start with, I would recommend starting with an adult dog rather than a puppy. Puppies can be easily distracted and they are usually more of a challenge to keep on task.
As long as your dog is healthy, it's not too late to discover this new sport together. Older dogs become young again when training and enjoying time with their owners.
All dogs, pure and mixed-breeds, large and small, can compete in agility. Statistically speaking, herding breeds (Border Collies, Shelties, Australian Shepherds, Corgis) tend to be more successful in agility. But mixed breeds, Great Danes, Yorkies, Labradors ...almost all types of dogs, have no problem enjoying and succeeding in this dog sport.
Although most of the activities in agility come naturally to dogs, it is physically demanding. Check with your veterinarian before abruptly throwing your dog into the sport.
Agility is great for increasing confidence in a shy or timid dog. If your dog is aggressive (to people or dogs) an agility class is not the best place to get a handle on that. If your dog is extremely shy of people, it will be difficult for a trainer to help you train your dog. By extremely shy I mean that after having you introduce someone new to your dog with a treat, your dog still will not allow that person to touch them.
Your dog will need to know some obedience - Sit, Down, Stay and most importantly - Come!
Do you want to get your dog started in agility?
Get on the Fast Track to Dog Agility
Click here to get more information about signing up for our beginner classes. Dog Quest | 2642 Bernardo Avenue, Escondido, California, 92029 | 760-489-0537 | [email protected]