Can My Dog Do Agility, Too?

by Melissa R. on September 2, 2009

A Pug running an agility course

A Pug running an agility course

What dogs can do agility?
ANY DOG! I have seen all sorts of dogs doing agility: big dogs, little dogs, slow dogs, fast dogs, old dogs, young dogs…And the same for the people running with their pet. I’ve seen 5 year old kids running dogs, and 70 year old adults running dogs, and absolutely everything in between.

It is especially interesting to watch the different sizes of dogs running agility courses. They all do things a little bit differently because of their size, and their handlers all have different methods as well. It is amazing to see a big dog like a Newfoundland galloping across an agility course, bounding over huge jumps! I don’t know how they can navigate those big bodies around. Little dogs are exciting to watch as well – most of them are so quick and agile, you have to really keep your eye on them as they zip-zip-zip around the course. The fastest dogs tend to be the mid-sized dogs like Border Collies – they are one of the more popular breeds you’ll encounter. Their size & speed makes for a great competitor.

Mixed breed dogs can also do agility, and there are many organizations that allow mixed breed dogs. Currently AKC only allows pure bred dogs, but they are working on a program to include mixed breed dogs as well. Learn more about this here: http://www.akc.org/news/index.cfm?article_id=3810

Here is a listing of many of the national organizations that hold agility competitions:


About the author: Melissa is a devoted pet owner with several cats: Kai, Cirrhi & Ritter; and the newest addition, Emme a Nova Scotia Duck Tolling Retriever. Melissa is an avid dog agility enthusiast, and hopes her new pup will someday be an agility champion! She is a Graphic Designer and Project Coordinator for the DrsFosterSmith.com and LiveAquaria.com websites. She holds a Bachelor of Fine Arts in Graphic Design from Michigan State University and is a lifelong pet lover and owner. See more articles by Melissa R.

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Yvonne DiVita September 3, 2009 at 11:05 am

LOVE agility trials. I especially love the Purina Incredible Dog Challenge, and no it’s not because I write a couple of blogs for Purina. I just love watching the dogs and their pet parents. It’s good, home-grown entertainment that you can share with the kids. We need more of that, today. Thanks for all these other great resources, too! Agility dogs are the best! The Incredible Dog Challenge is open to any dog – which is also good. Big dogs, little dogs…they’re all a joy to watch. IMHO

Melissa September 3, 2009 at 4:44 pm

Incredible Dog Challenge is permanently recorded on my DVR. We watch it for inspiration when we have a competition coming up!

Elaine Wusstig September 15, 2009 at 11:56 pm

Hi Melissa, I also enjoy Agility. I have a 3yr. old female German Sheperd and I was wondering where the Incredible Dog Challenge is held and when. Please let me know. Thank you! Elaine

Melissa September 16, 2009 at 8:51 am

The Incredible Dog Challenge is put on by Purina, and you can often find it on TV. Here’s a link to more info: http://www.purina.com/incredible-dog-challenge/2009-schedule/index.aspx

It’s by invitation only mostly – see the FAQ: http://www.purina.com/incredible-dog-challenge/frequently-asked-questions/index.aspx

I DVR it when it comes on and love to watch it over & over!

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