Fly Ball and Agility Training for Dogs

The idea of putting a dog to “work” might seem strict or tough. However, the breeding origins of dogs are almost always based on some kind of work or service and they will be happier and more fulfilled when given a job to do. There are also many added benefits of giving your dog a task or employing it in a productive activity. One of the most rewarding reasons to put your dog to work is the bond it will develop with you. You’ll both learn to problem solve and achieve goals together. The mental stimulation that a dog experiences when engaging in a new activity is healthy and will aid in a more active, robust life. Mental stimulation will also result in a calmer dog around the house each day that the pet is worked or trained.

Another benefit of giving your dog an outlet or employment is that it will rectify a lot of bad behavior. Engaging in an activity as a team enhances your connection, so find one that you and your dog enjoy together. I like a Frisbee and plan to participate with my dog in “Disc Dog” when he is old enough. The age at which you would want to put a dog to work depends on the sport. If it requires fast speed and quick turns, wait until the dog is full grown, at 18 months. Nose work, however, can be done immediately.

When deciding which type of task or job to give your dog, an important consideration is what kind of activity your dog is bred to perform. For example, a German Shepherd is bred for herding and will be happiest when using its natural skills. Since most people don’t get a German Shepherd to herd their livestock, you will want to find herding classes where that activity is made possible as a recreational sport in the more urban environment1

Some of the common dog job/hobbies are:

Fly Ball:This is a relay race and social sport for pets and their owners. You compete in a club environment in teams of four (four owners and four dogs), which allows you to get to know other club members and dog lovers. This can be a great meeting place for dog play dates. The sport can be physically demanding and is good for healthy dogs. There are currently over 400 active clubs and more than 6,000 dog teams that compete. Be aware that many dogs, when in a competitive environment, will act unruly and you shouldn’t correct it for the sake of your dog’s peak performance. The sport is made by a handler sending their dog off on a straight-away course where the dog maneuvers over various hurdles. At the end of the course is a box containing a ball. They pounce on the box, pressing a lever which releases a tennis ball. The dog grabs the ball and runs back as fast as possible, passing the starting line which sends out the next dog in this relay race.2

Agility: Arguably the most well known organized dog sport, agility, is a convenient way to work and compete with your dog. It is more accessible as you can set up an obstacle course in your back yard. It is easy to obtain the supplies from your local home improvement store, such as PVC pipe, to make your own obstacles. In the competition environment, handler and dog are critiqued by their time and accuracy in completing the course. The positions of the obstacles are changed every time, so the dog relies on the handler to guide it in the direction of which obstacle to go over, and in what order. The dog isn’t supposed to go on the course alone, without the handler’s direction. The handler is only allowed to provide guidance by means of voice and hand signals. There are no training aids such as food or leash allowed. Some of the familiar obstacles are: weave poles, hurdles and tunnels.3

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *

Dog Accessories Online


Before Ryan our dog was out of control. We could not stop the general lack of obedience. After the first lesson with Ryan our dog learned a lot and has improved leaps and bounds. We now take our dog off leash on trails, camping and the park. Thanks for all your help with Ollie.

By: Jeff and Sara G.

Just wanted to tell you how wonderful it is to have Bridey around since her training. We are amazed at how well she is behaving.

By: Adrienne C.

If you want a very happy well trained dog this program is the way to go. I have tried other trainers but they just did’nt work for us. If you don’t want to spend a lot of time yelling at your pet give Ryan a try. Work with
him and you and your pet will be happier.

By: Nita B.

When we brought Luna to training we didn’t know what to expect. Actually, we were a little doubtful even though we heard great things about the company. But, we have been to other trainers in the past without much success. We saw a total transformation in only two lessons. In did 4 lessons total and we now enjoy our Luna off leash at parks, she is behaved when visitors come over and she is just more enjoyable overall!

By: Denise and Richard Y.

My dog behaved well but only in our house without much distractions. Through training I learned my dog has a difficult time listening when other things has his interest. The trainer taught me how to get my dogs focus around distractions. Now, we pass other dogs on a walks and out in public without any issues. Our walks are now relaxing for the two of us and I find I want to take him with me more because he is so well behaved. I highly recommend you give Ryan and the Canine Connection a try, I promise you won’t regret it. They know there stuff, not only will they get you great results but you will learn know your dog thinks.

By: Carlos E.
Read More Barkimonials
WordPress Image Lightbox Plugin