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What age to start group lessons?

Discussion in 'Dog Agility and Flyball' started by Jess Pryce, May 30, 2016.


  1. Jess Pryce

    Jess Pryce PetForums Junior

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    Hi, i am new to the agility world but cant wait to get stuck in.

    I currently have a 10m old collie pup who im very keen to do agility with. She has done all the puppy training and now goes to fun agility to have a bit of a play with tunnels and poles on the floor. We have also started 1to1 training with an agility trainer working on the basics, her ground work and preparing her for group lessons. Nothing to strenuous yet as shes still to young. (no jumps, a frames etc yet)

    Shes very easily distracted but still a baby and im a little worried about starting group lessons as she just wants to play with other dogs and bark out of excitement. Im hoping some privet lessons before hand will help her to concentrate on me.

    But now i have a dilemma. Do i start group lessons in June when shes still not quite 12 months. Or do i wait till september and join the later class when she will be 14 months old and hopefully a bit more mature.

    I dont want to rush her, even though im very excited to start. What would be best for her?
     
  2. Jillity

    Jillity PetForums Newbie

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    I would join a fun class away from agility where you can teach your dog to focus on you and learn to interact with you without the excitement of jumping, or you could look for an agility foundation class in your area so that you can do some flatwork exercises and learn to work around other dogs. Once you've got the foundations in place you'll be in a good place to start agility.
    Our trainer never allows poles on the ground as these can roll and trip the dog up. If you can get hold of some half round guttering you can make some puppy bump jumps with them and get your dog to fetch a toy over them etc. I borrowed the Susan Salo puppy jumping course from Clean Run and this was brilliant for my puppy. It gave her a really good foundation.
     
  3. Burrowzig

    Burrowzig PetForums VIP

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    That's a good point @Jillity makes about poles on the ground rolling. I start with poles on the jump's feet so the dog is jumping about 3-4 inches (I have some home-made jumps in the garden) which for a dog that already measures 'large' will do no harm from about 10-11 months. I wouldn't start a class until the dog is focussed on you to the point he/she won't run off and interfere with other dogs. Dogs that do that in class are a pain in the bum and spoil the class for the dogs that are able to behave as well as wasting time while they get caught. Some classes start on lead though, where it might not be such an issue.
     
  4. Jess Pryce

    Jess Pryce PetForums Junior

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    Does anyone no any good games to play with my dog to get her more focused on me?
     
  5. Jess Pryce

    Jess Pryce PetForums Junior

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    Just an update, Cass Is having one to one lessons at the moment once a week and also a fun agility class once a week aswell. Shes come a long way and really starting to focus on me. We are starting group lessons in September, as shes now more mature and I think we will get more from them now then if I started earlier.
     
  6. Jess Pryce

    Jess Pryce PetForums Junior

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    Just updating you all, we've down done our 6 weeks of beginners agailty in a group and it was a challenge to get her to concentrate and focus but i could see she loves it. We are now weekly regulars in the group class and hopefully in the summer will be doing more 1 to 1 aswell. Shes a year and a half now and a lot better then i am :) Shes coming on leaps and bounds :)
     
    Twiggy and speug like this.
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