Agility Training Your Dog

Barks of joy filled the arena of the Klamath County Fairgrounds. Agility competition was in full swing. Dogs of all sizes and breeds raced through tunnels, jumped over hurdles, climbed A-frames, slalomed through poles, and teetered on seesaws. And, they enjoyed every minute of it.

Barks of joy filled the arena of the Klamath County Fairgrounds.  Agility competition was in full swing. Dogs of all sizes and breeds raced through tunnels, jumped over hurdles, climbed A-frames, slalomed through poles, and teetered on seesaws.  And, they enjoyed every minute of it.

Klamath Dog Fanciers were approved to hold agility trials in 2008 and hold these competitions every May and October. That makes winter the perfect time to train with your pooch. For more information on dates for these events go to www.klamathdogfanciers.org.

While dogs naturally enjoy jumping, running and climbing, training for agility competitions helps owner and dog work together as a team.  Dogs take easily to agility training especially since it entails lots of treats at the beginning. Competitions do not allow treats. Rick Seltzer, Agility Trainer, advises owners that they need to be their dogs best treat.  Holding treats in a fisted hand while training teaches the dog to follow that hand. Later, when no treat is held in the hand, dogs (ever hopeful that it holds a treat) will follow that fist wherever the owner directs.

Conditioning for agility is also encouraged also led by Rick Seltzer.  Dogs learn to do various exercises that resemble push-ups and squats using “peanuts.”  Not excited about training outside in the snow this winter? There are plenty of indoor training options here in Klamath. Conditioning classes are taught at Cherish K-9 House, 2006 Oregon Avenue.  Agility training classes are offered at Double C which has an outdoor agility training area and space inside where equipment can be set up.  Call Seltzer at 541-891-9033 to set up a training schedule.

Agility training is a fun and exciting exercise regimen for owner and dog alike.  There’s lots of running for everyone. An added bonus is the deeper bond that develops between owner and dog.  The dog’s total focus is on the owner, and the owner keeps the dog safe throughout the run. A happy, healthy dog makes for a happy, healthy owner.

Written by T-Rex our canine reporter
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