So you want your dog to enter a dog agility competition? Pawrfect!
Dog agility training is a fun sport for you and your fur friend. It is a great way to start your dog down the path to dog sports. Dog agility training is ideal for dogs that are just starting in agility competitions, as well as seasoned dogs that are competing in advanced-level agility competitions.
The competition gives competitors a chance to show off their dog's speed, obedience, and teamwork skills. It requires practice, patience, and a lot of motivation from both sides to succeed at it.
Here are a few things you should know before stepping into the exciting world of canine agility training.
3 Tips for Dog Agility Training
1. Start the Training Early
Indeed, your dog's age doesn't matter when it comes to dog agility training. But it's more beneficial to start at an early age. When you start training at a young age, your dog shows interest in learning new tricks since puppies are more willing to try new behaviours than older dogs.
Moreover, starting at an early age allows your dog to become accustomed to the equipment and training methods before you start asking him to perform complex tasks. Dogs are not born knowing how to run through tunnels, jump through hoops, or climb on dog walks.
So, we would recommend starting the training as early as possible for your pup.
2. Break the Trick Into Steps and Short Sessions
If your dog is having difficulty with a particular trick, break it down into smaller steps so he can learn each part one at a time. For example, if you are trying to teach him to jump through a hoop, have him first touch his nose to the hoop before working on actually jumping through it.
Never try to rush your dog through an agility course. It can result in injuries or cause your pet to lose interest in the activity altogether.
Also, train in short sessions so that your dog doesn't get bored or lose interest, and don't push him too hard. Remember, just like us humans, a tired dog is more likely to make mistakes and less likely to learn new things correctly.
They also need time to get used to such obstacles and build their strength and stamina.
3. Work on Their Balance
Dogs prefer to work on flat surfaces, so walking for the first time on the teeter-totter can be a bit scary for them. Yet, working on their balance is necessary as it makes your dog strong and safe.
You can work on balance with your dog by having them walk on various surfaces and building up their core strength with activities like swimming and exercise ball (or physio-ball) exercises.
If you have no experience and are not confident enough to start with dog agility training, it's best to leave it up to the professionals. Look for trainers who use positive reinforcement techniques like verbal praise and treats.
Whether you choose to do it yourself or get help, ensure you have all the safety and training equipment for your dog. At Bully Billows, we are passionate to keep your dog safe. Explore our online shop for all your dog training needs.