How much does your dog exercise?
If he/she has been exercising regularly, but you are still struggling to feel his ribs, spine, or waistline lately, you are right to be concerned.
Today, the most common nutritional disorder in dogs is canine obesity, with 55.8% of dogs in the U.S currently battling obesity.
Just like in humans, obesity will expose your dog to various health risks and diseases, the most common ones being:
- What is the solution?
What is the right amount of exercise for your dog?
Generally, dogs exercise for 30 minutes to 2 hours daily depending on factors such as:
- Health conditions
Since each dog is unique, you need to know what works for your dog. If your pooch is an extra-active kind of dog, a dog sport like agility will do the trick.
What’s Agility Training?
First, agility is the ability to move quickly and efficiently, especially in response to sudden and unexpected changes. It also refers to one’s mental sharpness.
Agility Training, therefore, is a type of sport where your dog will go through a set of obstacles within given time limits. The sport originated in the U.K but is currently one of the fastest-growing dog sports in America.
The obstacles can come packaged inform of:
- Tire jumps
- Weave poles
- Pause tables
To determine if your dog is more agile than the rest, he/she should complete a course of agility training in the shortest time and with the least number of faults.
Agility training is beneficial not only to your dog but also to you.
- It will keep your dog fit and prevent obesity
- It will keep you in shape
- It’s an opportunity to bond with your canine friend
If your dog is agile, it should run, jump and dart gracefully with the least amount of struggle.
The agility training is fun for both you and your furry friend, but you will not get the most out of it if you don’t observe the five basic rules of the training.
What are the five basic rules?
The Basic Rules of Agility Training
You and Your Dog Must be Ready for The Game
If you have been lucky to attend an agility game, you know how much fun it can be. You probably can’t wait to participate too. But if your dog is still a puppy, then you will have to be a little patient.
Although the activities involved in dog agility training are fun, puppies find them frightening and will not enjoy them as expected.
To know if your dog is ready for this training, find out your dog’s temperament and whether it’s fully grown and healthy enough to participate in the activities. If you are unsure, you can consult with your dog’s vet.
Since you are also an integral part of this sport, your readiness to participate is vital. Prepare for the training by ensuring you are fit enough before participating to avoid unnecessary injuries.
Communication between you and your dog should also be flawless.
It’s On You to Make the Process Fun
The agility training should help develop your dog in different ways, and it’s serious business. However, if your dog is not having fun in the process, you will not get optimal performance.
When a dog has fun, he/she will become fully engaged in the training, which is essential for maximum output.
How can you make the game fun for your dog?
You could try:
- Dog treats
- Cheering sounds
You should avoid punishing your dog for his faults, as this could have a counter effect.
Start the game with the basic obedience commands
How obedient is your dog?
To join the agility training, your dog should understand basic commands like obedience. Obedience training will help build your bond and make it easy for your dog to understand more extensive orders that come with agility training.
Give Clear and Firm Instructions
Being ready for agility training means you can easily communicate with your dog.
Any communication breakdown during the training will result in apparent poor performance.
To avoid this, give your dog clear and firm instructions throughout the training.
Monitor the Dog Closely and Make Corrections
You are a critical part of the training. Whatever you do (or don’t do) influences the success of the process.
Follow the training closely, noting any bad habits, and immediately communicate corrections to your furry friend. That will help break the pattern and avoid potentially poor performance in the wrong run.
Are you wondering how you can have a happy and healthier dog?
Try agility training, and you will never look back.
With lots of patience on your part (and lots of snacks and cheering), agility training will leave your dog not only physically fit but mentally too. And don’t even let me get started with the amazing bond it will create between you two.
Unless the training is done right, those benefits will not become a reality.
This article gives you all the tips and tricks you need to get the most out of the process.
In no time, you and your dog will be looking forward to doing more than training. How about participating in the agility competition?