Rugby Dog Training Club
Agility - Wednesday Evenings
Dog Agility Equipment
Agility equipment includes various obstacles such as; Jumps, Tunnels, Weave Poles, Seesaws, A-Frames, and Dog Walk. All obstacles used in agility have been designed with both safety of the dog and handler and spectator appeal in mind.
There are three principle types of jumps used. All of these jumps can be adjusted in height and length to suit the size of dog.
This is a jump similar in design principle to those used in equine events and has easily displaceable bars so that the dog should not experience injury if it misjudges the jump and takes down a jump bar.
Has a set of four or five slightly raised platforms over a wide area; length is adjusted to the dog's height.
A padded plastic tyre suspended in a frame; the dog must jump through the tyre.
The Rigid Tunnel
The rigid tunnel is made of flexible vinyl and wire is about 10 feet long and 2 feet in diameter. It can be set up in a straight line or in various curves, which the dog runs through.
The Weave Poles
The Weave Poles are set in the ground at specific intervals and the dog must weave through the poles. There are normally 6 to 12 poles in dog agility competitions and this is normally the most difficult obstacle.
These are obstacles which a dog must physically ascend and descend (scale). They have 'contact' zones painted on them at each end, which the dog must touch with one or more feet when ascending/descending. All contact equipment surfaces are roughened for good traction in both dry and wet weather.
Similar to the ones used in children’s playgrounds however it has no handles. The dogs must ascend up the seesaw from the yellow contact zone at the beginning; make it tip, and then descend down the other side and leave the seesaw via the second yellow contact zone at the other end. The dog is not allowed to jump off before the seesaw is grounded.
The A Frame
The A frame is a simple obstacle consisting of two sides, about 3-feet wide and 8-feet long; hinged together and raised so that the hinged connection is about 5-6 ½ feet off the ground forming a rough ‘A' shape, which the dog ascends and descends without jumping off the sides. This obstacle also has yellow contact zones at the bottom ends which the dog must touch.
The Dog Walk
This obstacle is very like a balance beam used in gymnastics and is about 9-12 inches wide and about 4 foot of the ground with two ramps on both ends to allow the dog access to the flat beam; like the seesaw it has yellow contact zones at each end.
Introduction to Dog Agility
Dog agility requires a dog to have the highest degree of obedience, because dogs compete off leash and the handler can only use voice control and body language to control their dogs. Accuracy and speed by the dog plays a very important part in competition agility as well as the ability by the handler to control that speed and accuracy hence the need for top quality training to ensure that man and dog are working as one.
The History of Dog Agility.
Dog agility is a fairly new sport. It first came to the public attention at Crufts in 1978 when Peter Meanwell and John Varley devised an entertainment showing dogs’ speed and agility as an interval event for the audience between the Obedience and Breed competitions in the main ring at Crufts.
This was Agility Jumping which was essentially based on the equestrian sport of show jumping (which was itself very popular at the time). This demonstration went down so well with the public and dog owners that Agility Jumping has since become one of the most rapidly growing dog sports in England, Western Europe and North America.
Training at the Club
Agility requires a well-controlled dog and an energetic handler and we prefer new agility members to have been through the Obedience classes before joining agility.
The club offers training from very experienced competing members including trainers who have qualified for Crufts & Olympia.
The club has agility teams and members that compete nationally and over the past years have regularly qualified to compete at Crufts and Discover Dogs.
Level 1 and 2 - set up at 6.40 p.m.
Level 3 - 8.00 p.m.
Level 4 - 9.00 p.m.
If you are interested in joining the Agility Section, please see the Club's Membership Secretary who will add you to our waiting list.
There are times when a evening training session may have to be cancelled or classes merged at short notice. Please check the club's notice board and Facebook page.
Dog Height Categories
There are three main categories of dog heights. For information regarding the new Lower Height Options, please see the Kennel Club Website.
Large: - For dogs measuring over 43 cm (1ft 5ins) at the withers.
Medium: - For dogs measuring over 35 cm (1ft 1.75ins) and 43cms (1ft 5ins) or under at the withers.
Small: - For dogs measuring 35cm (1ft 1.75ins) or under at the withers.