What Is Dog Agility?
Agility is a sport for you and your dog. Like any sport, also agility can be trained and competed at different levels.
It can be a nice shared hobby for you and your dog in your free time or you can compete more seriously at top-level international competitions – still not forgetting to have fun!
Agility is a dog sport, where the dog is handled through an obstacle course. The roots of the sport go back to 1970 England, when it was created as a demonstration sport. The first time dog agility was shown to an audience was at Crufts dog show in 1978. The new, fast sport immediately took off and within a couple of years it was given official dog sport status in the UK. Nowadays, agility is one of the most popular dog sports around the world.
Agility can be practiced with all kinds of dogs, no matter what the size. It doesn’t matter if your dog is a puppy or adult – contrary to common belief, old dogs can learn new tricks!
It is important to move at the level of your dog’s skills, as there are levels from basic to advanced. You can also prepare your puppy for agility by safely teaching him basic agility skills, making it much easier to continue when the puppy grows up.
Your dog must be healthy and in a good physical condition as dog agility is physically demanding, especially for the dog. You need to focus on muscle care including warm-ups and cool-downs to avoid injuries.
Agility is also a sport for the handler who runs and moves quickly, so you need to take care of your own fitness. Remember to warm-up before doing agility, and stretch afterwards.
Dog agility is suitable for all kind of dogs and handlers
Border Collies, sheepdogs and small terriers were once the popular breeds in agility competitions, but times are changing where you can practice and compete agility with any breed become one of the fastest increasing sports over the past 10 years.
But agility can also be just for fun. It means you can get moving and spend time with your dog, without any competitive goals. K9 Pleasure at its best.