Agility is a fast, fun sport demonstrating the teamwork between a dog and their person. The teamwork is demonstrated on a variety of courses, inspired by some of the challenges seen in the equestrian world. The courses are made up of different obstacles: jumps, tunnels, contacts, weaves and sometimes a pause table (where the handler can catch their breath). There are different types of courses: Standard (traditional agility, using all the obstacles), Jumpers (sometimes with weaves) and various games. The dog must perform the obstacles as directing by their handler off-leash. The goal is to run the course clean and fast.
The person part of the team is responsible for training the dog to understand how to perform the obstacles cleanly. To run clean, the dog must leave the jump bars up, go through tunnels as indicated, hit the contact zones of the contact obstacles (see-saw, dogwalk and A-frame), weave all the poles entering on the correct side and stay on the table in a sit or a down until the table count is completed. Good training will result in a dog that does the obstacles quickly, attentively and cleanly.
The person is also responsible for telling the dog where to go on a course. They do this with different cues, both verbal and physical. The best trained dog won’t be successful without good direction. Agility helps create a deep bond between the person and dog. People of all levels of physical ability can enjoy agility and what dog doesn’t love to play with it’s person? It is the ultimate dog sport for dog lovers.
Mia teaches Masters and Intermediate Agility Handling on Wednesday afternoons and Friday mornings. Teams must have prior agility training and experience, and be capable of running sequences in class. Mia can bring out the best in a dog and handler team with her keen insight on how to improve handling skills, enhance the dog’s performance and speed on course, and finding solutions to issues that may hold a team back temporarily.
Anne teaches Agility classes at the Introductory, Novice, and Competition-ready levels for all dogs and their owners who want to enjoy this great sport. For dogs that need to improve or develop their jumping ability or are starting out in agility, Anne’s Jump Skills class helps the dogs understand balance, scope, and using their bodies correctly to keep the jump bars up. Anne occasionally offers specialty topic classes including Obstacle Discrimination, Contacts and Weaves Skills, and Agility Competition Games. Classes are offered at various times during the week, email to enroll and join in the fun!