Agility training

We enjoy training all of our dogs for agility. Of course, training cannot begin until the youngsters are at least 12 months old, to avoid injury to young bones, but once they are over a year old, all of our babies begin their introductions to this fast and furious sport!

We both help train the agility section of Glandore Dog Training Club of Ulster, so it can be difficult sometimes to fit in initial training for our new puppies. Yeshe was an extremely wily character to train for agility, as he knew that, once off the lead, there was little I could do. He would often oblige me by jumping a couple of obstacles, before taking off into the distance to sniff a horsebox or anohter dog, or even just to wee on a post! There were many times I thought he would never make an agility competitor, but now, 5 years on, he completes most courses, often with no faults (other than time!), and has won his way into Medium Seniors. With the changes in Kennel Club rules, the jumps have come down a little for him, but there is now more competition in the (less popular) Medium section, so it's swings and roundabouts! I think that he tends to be slow as a direct result of me having had to work so hard on control rather than speed, since he was so naughty, so I am now working hard on speeding him up and encouraging him to leave me behind! In training, he now does a really happy, bouncy weave, all I have to do is transfer that to the ring!

Khizhi has been clicker trained for agility from the start, and she is certainly a contrast to Yeshe! She streaks around the course, and I have to be in exactly the right place at the right time, otherwise she runs on ahead and past me. This is a welcome change, and I am currently working on the dreaded weave! Khizhi is at the top of the size range for Small dogs, so she may have more chance in competition than our other dogs, who are both at the bottom end of size for their categories!