Teach your dog obedience through something fun where your dog gets to let loose can be really productive. Agility done well provides so many benefits:
- an outlet for your dog’s energy
- exercise for both members of the team
- a proactive way to work through critical training goals like coming when called and working around distractions
- teaches your dog to listen and concentrate while excited
- gives you a chance to learn your dog’s natural language
- develops a communication between you and your dog where both are heard and have a voice
- a great way to enrich your life and invest quality time with your best friend
- teaches you so much about training
Agility requires that both you and your dog learn a lot of skills. There are many approaches and a number of starter classes that you can sign up for. In Joy offers a unique program that may or may not be the right fit for you. Foundation skills will be trained first. It is critical that your dog is able to play with you, work off leash, and you truly know how to reward your dog. It’s necessary that we progress through the training in smart steps. So, the first session of agility that you attend won’t include all of the agility equipment. If your dog is noise phobic, it’ll probably take some time before your ready for the seesaw. Please tell your instructor right away that your dog worries about sounds because we want to get you started on simple tricks that teach your dog to grow confident around scary sounds sooner than later! Classes proceed according to the abilities of each group. There are no prerequisites or age restrictions *(see note) for beginning agility.
We’re really invested in your training. In Joy likes to run small classes where you get lots of personal attention. To make that possible, if you’re struggling with something really important (like getting your dog to recall), you might need to schedule a private lesson or 2 to get help working things out. But don’t let that scare you. Everybody in the group will need some training time focusing on building up the dog’s “work ethic”. That’s part of a beginner class.
*Note: young dogs must not perform excessive repetitions or heavy impact. Until your dog’s growth plates completely close, which can take as long as 18-24 months for some dogs, stressing these delicate structures cannot be allowed. Weave training is especially demanding on the joints in the spine. But there is a lot of other training that dogs outside of the specifics on full height agility equipment.
Questions about the way we train the equipment? Please don’t hesitate to inquire. We don’t use targeting to train the contacts, though we use a target to teach the dogs to drive ahead of us.
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