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Hello all! I’ve noticed this board is a little dead and was hoping I could encourage some of you who are actively competing or training for agility to share your dogs successes and accomplishments. Or just tell of your journey into the sport. My dog is 17 months and just began intermediate classes and have plans to enter our first AKC trial at the end of January. He does great taking direction but needs some more confidence on the teeter and polishing on weaves, then I’ll feel confident to start! I took him to a trial today just to see how he would handle the atmosphere and to have him measured for his permanent jump card, he was a good boy. Anywho, if any of y’all have any photos or videos to share please do! I only saw one GSD at the trial today and we need to represent!
 

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Agility is awesome and you are gonna have so much fun.

For your amusement....

Here’s my first (Novice A) Standard run, ever. Because what better time to put it all on the line than at the National with everyone staring. A few short months later we were out of Novice and then blasted through Open. So fun....


Here’s an (NQ) Speedstakes run in UKI that I love because you can see how much she loves the game itself... RUNNING FAST. A case study of how rear crosses are the only way to survive with a very fast dog. :)


I’ve lost track of how many people have told me that nothing in agility will ever compare to your Novice A dog. Enjoy the adventure. :)
 

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I did some agility in the backyard and my daughter had taken some classes with her chihuahua- nothing competitive though It has come in handy though I suppose have been in some narrow paths with steep drops. Doing searches - max never had a problem going in on and under any obstacles or footing at any location busy or quiet. I had to work on Slowing him down I had to work on and required him to be on lead as he did really enjoy. Luna certain things needed coaxing - the teeter I needed a wider one would of been beneficial then work to a narrower teeter - they are pricey. She loves jumping and the tunnel. My teeter broke but there are some websites that does have more affordable equipment. Some of that agility equipment is incredibly expensive. They are all different It is good to to train them when they are in that high speed mode and take direction from you. Not realizing it is practiced when I am out with the dogs. Not sure if I remember to many people doing agility on this forum there are some old threads on it, books and YouTube channels. Have fun! Some natural agility obstacles and not so natural. It is good to practice in all kinds of environments on all different types of equipment that can be jumped on, over , stand in on or crawling and out of etc.




It all started out with a hula hoop and then grew real fast - max as a pup-

Slow motion jumping -

https://www.instagram.com/p/Bsg2-a9DL9a/?igshid=6hy010a7cywb



Sent from my iPhone using Tapatalk
 

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@WIBackpacker y’all are awesome! I’ll be thrilled if we do half as well at our first trial! Thank you for sharing. Jenny, I love both your dogs but Max is one of my board favs, he is just so handsome and seems like a sweet boy. I’m pretty sure I have that tunnel too.

@Frisco19 buddy!! I hope you stick around!
 

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My pup started agility and has attended 4 classes so far. We are currently on a short Thanksgiving break + First Heat break and will be back to classes on the 12th. She can only do the little girl 'walk over' sort of jumps, baby teeters, and the like but it's a really fun thing to do to tire my pup out! I look forward to when she is trained and old enough to compete in the next 7 months or so. She has to be at least 15 months to compete in AKC and she won't be old enough to train on most of the equipment for a long time yet.

I'll have to ask one of my class mates or our trainer to take a picture or two of us training sometime!

I'm interested in trying out some other sports here soon too! I think obedience and rally look like a lot of fun!
 

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I started agility classes when my pup was nine months old, he could do everything all the other dogs could do except jump high. He then became gravely ill and I had to postpone classes for another six months, after thankfully he survived and recovered. We’re now starting to jump higher, but not 24” competition height, in classes but enough to get his attention. The low jumps he basically can’t be bothered with and knocks a lot of them down. I’ve done a conformation show with him and while he was a good boy, he definitely enjoys agility much more! It’s fun for me too, I look forward to every weeks class.
 

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  1. @WIBackpacker y’all are awesome! I’ll be thrilled if we do half as well at our first trial! Thank you for sharing. Jenny, I love both your dogs but Max is one of my board favs, he is just so handsome and seems like a sweet boy. I’m pretty sure I have that tunnel too.

    @Frisco19 buddy!! I hope you stick around!
    your very sweet I will tell him he has a fan lol! He is very charming lots of personality. Susan Garett has some videos on agility to that can be helpful.
 

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One of our grooming customers teaches agility classes, and she keeps trying to get me to sign up Scarlet. I’m waffling back and forth on it. I think I’ll put her in a basic manners class first (if you knew Scarlet, you’d see how hilarious that is), before I do anything. I’ve encouraged sassiness and enthusiasm for the show ring, but I kind of need to get a handle on her, lol. Maybe I should start there. Then CGC, then agility.
 

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Just do it @dogfaeries! It’s fun! Rio wouldn’t be able to pass a CGC but he’s top of his class in agility. We also never did an obedience or any other type of prerequisite class either.
 

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Hello all! I’ve noticed this board is a little dead and was hoping I could encourage some of you who are actively competing or training for agility to share your dogs successes and accomplishments. Or just tell of your journey into the sport. My dog is 17 months and just began intermediate classes and have plans to enter our first AKC trial at the end of January. He does great taking direction but needs some more confidence on the teeter and polishing on weaves, then I’ll feel confident to start! I took him to a trial today just to see how he would handle the atmosphere and to have him measured for his permanent jump card, he was a good boy. Anywho, if any of y’all have any photos or videos to share please do! I only saw one GSD at the trial today and we need to represent!
We finished the "Foundation Class" (basically just obedience) last session with a place here in Phoenix, 3 weeks ago, and we did our first "beginner 1" session last Thursday. My daughter talked my wife in to sighing up our 17th month old GSD. Last year I did Rally with him the entire winter. I will say that he sort of liked Rally. Oliver is what I call, highly intelligent and marginally motivated, making him a tough dog to work with. He's 1/2 working line, 1/2 show line, or as I like to say, he has the mind of a show dog and the build of a working dog. He's a dog that really likes to think about what HE wants to think about. He usually thinks about how to get into mischief, but doing Rally and now Agility gives him something to do with his mind, which is great.

This is my wife working with him on the contact board last Thursday. Not very entertaining, but proof that he's in an Agility class :)

Oliver in Agility

I would be interested in any insights into GSDs and agility. I was talking with the trainer here (15 years in agility), and he says that show GSDs often have a hard time due to the sloping back, i.e. they apparently have a hard time running down the boards??? I guess the downward slant causes them to jink with their back legs. Oliver really has the build of a working line dog, so he seems unaffected. My other two GSDs (1 is an 11 year old rescue, so no agility for her), are both working lines too. I have a 7 month old baby from German lines, parents were both from Germany, and then the old dog is DDR. My previous GSDs were American working lines. So I have no experience with show lines.
 

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Hello and welcome @markhenley! My boy is also 17 months old, when is yours birthday? He’s also a show and working mix, his sire was all WGSL and his dam working. I’ve noticed zero discomfort or issues with him performing any of the obstacles, but I can imagine the severely over angulated dogs probably have problems in general that would be exacerbated by certain exercises. I’ve seen plenty of GSDs participate in agility, and mine definitely loves it, I wouldn’t worry about your boy!

I wish I had agility related photos or videos from our class but it’s in the evening and dark out.
 

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Hello and welcome @markhenley! My boy is also 17 months old, when is yours birthday? He’s also a show and working mix, his sire was all WGSL and his dam working. I’ve noticed zero discomfort or issues with him performing any of the obstacles, but I can imagine the severely over angulated dogs probably have problems in general that would be exacerbated by certain exercises. I’ve seen plenty of GSDs participate in agility, and mine definitely loves it, I wouldn’t worry about your boy!

I wish I had agility related photos or videos from our class but it’s in the evening and dark out.
Yup, Oliver's dad was show, mom was working line too. He'll be 2 April 18th 2020.

I'll take some video in the next session on Thursday (assuming it's not raining). I'm curious to see the difference between the two clubs. The name of this club is Jumping Cholla Agility. https://www.jumpingchollas.com/about-us

They are almost exclusively positive reinforcement. They don't even really like you to use the word NO with your dog, unless it is something like the dog being reactive. They are also very focused on shaping behavior rather than luring or god forbid, molding the dog's behavior. At first it threw me. But as I work with them I'm starting to see that it probably makes dogs use their minds more.

Oliver likes it... I can tell it's making him think, which is his MO, he never stops thinking. It's just that this directs his thinking rather than letting his thoughts run wild :cool:
 

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@markhenley do you by any chance have your dogs pedigree available? I’d be curious to see it, of course only if you don’t mind!

I’ve never had to tell my dog “no” or make harsh corrections ever in agility class, we’ve had great success rewarding the right behaviors and simply ignoring and keep trying when they don’t quite get it. I’ll be honest the first class which is six sessions once a week was a little boring, because you are mostly instilling foundation work. A lot was teaching them to hit the contacts and gradually becoming familiar with the obstacles. Now that we are in the intermediate class, things are getting a lot more fun! The jump heights have gone up, we are confident on all the obstacles with just some polishing to do on the more difficult ones (weaves and teeter) and our classes consist of performing differing sequences. Sequences are just like short, mock courses. We are also working more on us, the handler. The club you posted seems like they do very well for themselves and if I was in the area searching for a class, I wouldn’t have any qualms.

This picture is from a 5k obstacle race we did, he had never seen or been on an A frame but he didn’t even pause!
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You can also build their confidence/ability by tackling natural obstacles. Don’t ever ask them to do something they can’t, or might be too overwhelmed to do, nor force them if they’re scared. Gentle encouragement and for mine, he’s a treat hound!

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HIKING is also wonderful for exercise, teaching body awareness, and improving their agility as everything from obstacles to footing is random and they must pay attention. It’s also fun :)

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Wobble boards are fantastic for work at home. You can do so much with them, whether you're starting a new dog, working on core strength with an active dog, or keeping seniors in shape.

Here's the very beginning of teeter/footwork stuff with my puppy, 9 weeks. You can see where I step on it and deliberately make it go BANG/throw him off balance so he adjusts. That's deliberate. :)


And here's what it turns into, after a few weeks - this is at 17 weeks. Now I want him to get all four paws on, adjust to keep them there, and be able to pivot in both directions. You can work any combination of contact behaviors with this, with any size dog. He's going to be a much bigger dog than my female, so I've spent a lot more time on body awareness with him in his current gangle-phase. :) When they are fully aware of each of their four feet, it makes contacts on equipment a heck of a lot easier.

 

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So we had another session last night, and as I promised, here is at least 1 video. Oliver is really liking the obstacles. He's having fun.
My wife was sick so I had to ask for someone to video. Otherwise I would have shot the tunnel and beginning the weave.
Oliver on the "Dog Walk" last night

When I did Rally with him last year, I think he felt pressured and didn't do that well.
With the agility he just seems to relax and have fun.
 
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