There is a common misconception about dog training. Training is not done for the sake of good behavior only. In fact, dog agility training is great for your dog’s physical and mental health.
The purpose of agility training is to ensure that your dog is fit, calm, and happy. Of course, they will also listen to your directions and behave better. Though it is not because they are trained to do so, but because you learn how to communicate with them on a whole different level.
Overall, there are numerous reasons why you should start dog agility training as soon as possible, especially if you have a new young dog at home. For those who feel lost about how and where to start such training, we have prepared a simple guide to dog agility training for beginners. It should answer all your questions and ease any doubts.
Why dog agility training?
First things first, you may wonder why you and your dog should go through dog agility training and whether both of you have what it takes. Let us assure you, agility training has a number of advantages over any other type of training.
First, it creates a better bond between you and your pet. You spend some quality time together.
In this sport, dogs get to exercise with a sense of purpose, which is good for their mental health. At the same time, you are learning to understand your dog’s character and behavioral patterns better.
You also learn how to overcome those behavior patterns that you’d prefer to avoid in the future. Hence, you solve some behavior problems and learn to trust your dog more, even without a leash.
Next, it is more productive than just regular exercises. Dogs feel the purpose of the training, hence it is more rewarding for them. Moreover, this training is designed to train your dog’s body and mind. As a result, after an hour of such exercises, your dog will be calmer, sleep better, and feel less anxious throughout the day.
Last but not least, agility training will make your dog happy. For them, it is less training and more fun playing time with their favorite humans. Hence, your dog will be just glad to spend so much time with you.
How do you start?
Overall, you have multiple choices here. You may look for local dog clubs to see whether they offer agility training (spoiler: they all do), seek professional dog training, or try training at home. There is no right or wrong option.
Of course, training in a club with a professional trainer will be much easier, and, perhaps, productive.
Though, if you feel confident in your dog and abilities as a coach, you should definitely try it at home. However, if you decide to train at home, do it because you find it the best fit for you, not because you don’t feel good about club training.
Don’t fall under the misconception that you need to be an athlete to go through your dog agility training. Or think that you have to compete with your dog.
You don’t. You can choose a pace that is comfortable for you. Also, don’t think that dog clubs won’t find your Yorkie to be good enough for this sport. It’s not true, any dog can be trained for agility, there are no breed limitations.
What do you need for agility training?
We’re glad you asked. If you have chosen to try at home, you’ll need some special equipment. This is not hard to find after reading some best dog supplies reviews or you can make it yourself.
You need to create proper obstacles to make the training fun for you and your dog. We recommend visiting at least a couple of professional agility training sessions to see the obstacles needed.
This can do two things for you. First, you’ll see how to work as a handler during the training. Second, you’ll see the variety of obstacles and note what your dog likes the most.
To sum up
We all want what is best for our dogs. We do love to spoil them time by time or allow the things we know we shouldn’t.
Sometimes, the idea of sending them to some training seems unnecessary or even semi-cruel. Not all of us love to exercise ourselves, so why should we make our dogs do it, right?
But signing up for dog agility training is the best thing you may do for your pet. In fact, it will be a rewarding experience for both of you. Your dog will feel better by training both mind and body. You will enhance your bond, and, not to forget, you both are going to have so much fun!