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Best Age for Agility


Guest Anonymous
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Guest Anonymous

Hello
I have a mixed-breed 13 month old female who I think would do wonderfully in agility. What is the best age to start a dog in agility? Can they still learn as well when they are 3 or 4 years old or is it best to do it when they are 1 or 2?
Thanks
Laika

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Hi there Laika and welcome to the board. :wink: :fadein: Your dog is the perfect age to start agility. Puppies can start agility from when they are under 6 mths. Little things like getting your dog accustomed to walking over boards on the ground will all assist when they tackle the Dogwalk, A-frame and seesaw. Also they can go through a tunnel (kids tunnels are brill for this!). little things like this are all the foundations of your dog doing a full agility course. At our dog club we only take dogs from 8 mths onwards. These dogs will be trained for accuracy on the contact points and will do low jumps. They will not tackle full height (2'6 jumps and weaves until they are over one year of age, due to their bones being susceptible to injury. Some dog clubs wont even accept a dog until they turn one year old, but we take them younger as flat exercises that don't jeopardise the dogs health are perfectly fine.

Dogs in the UK can not start competing until they are 18 calendar months of age which is also very fair and an acceptable age. One last thing: obedience is the essence of a good agility dog. We insist on members taking an 8 week obedience course before they are allowed near the agility field.

Good luck for it, be warned Agility is very addictive as Meg will demonstrate!!! :D

[img]http://sander.servehttp.com/kat/meg%20jump%20wales.jpg[/img]

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Guest Anonymous

Hey there Kat
Thanks for the info. I had a feeling that now would be the best time to train. My concern is that my dog and I are in a part of the world (for the next 2 yrs) where the agility scene (and even the dog scene) is not that developed. We will be back in North America in 2 yrs. So she will be 3. If I start to do agility with her then, will I lose her "good years" or will she learn and adjust just fine?
Are there cheap and easy basic things I can do with her here in order to build up her skills / obedience?
We have already done a basic obedience course as well back in NA.
Meg looks wonderful!
Thanks
Laika

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I think she'll learn just as fine but it'd be easier on you both if you both start getting use to little things. When I take kai to the school playground, I get him to jump over little things and weave through spaced poles and such. He's getting use to the little things that will help him when we actually begin agility lessons. I made a home-made tunnel out of our very unique couch parts. So now, he's got the basics for tunnel, jumps and the weave poles.

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Oh, I see. :-? To my mind, it's no matter when you start agility. But you HAVE TO be careful at the first time. At our first agility training Asting loved the seesaw and always tried to do it. Once a little sheltie occasionally was walking near the seesaw, when A VERY BIG RED DOG ran just near her. Poor sheltie was so scared that was unable to do agility anymore... :( BE VERY CAREFUL!
By the way, Asting started agility at 3 months and at 8 months he first competed in L class... Suppose, I did all wrong! :lol:

As for obedience: You NEED to do it!

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