Dog agility is a dog sport in which a handler directs a dog through an obstacle course in a race for both time and accuracy. Dogs run off-leash with no food or toys as incentives, and the handler can touch neither dog nor obstacles. Consequently the handler’s controls are limited to voice, movement, and various body signals, requiring exceptional training of the animal and coordination of the handler.
In its simplest form, an agility course consists of a set of standard obstacles laid out by a judge in a design of his or her own choosing in an area of a specified size. The surface may be of grass, dirt, rubber, or special matting. Depending on the type of competition, the obstacles may be marked with numbers indicating the order in which they must be completed.
Courses are complicated enough that a dog could not complete them correctly without human direction. In competition, the handler must assess the course, decide on handling strategies, and direct the dog through the course, with precision and speed equally important. Many strategies exist to compensate for the inherent difference in human and dog speeds and the strengths and weaknesses of the various dogs and handlers.
Agility is one of the fastest growing dog sports.
If you are interested in having your dog participate in agility in Orlando, here are some places to start:
Dog-On-It-Agility Club of Central Florida: Dog-on-it Agility Club of Central Florida is committed to the enjoyment and growth of agility for ALL dogs. They are an all-volunteer organization and a member of the United States Dog Agility Association (USDAA). You do not have to have a “purebred” dog to do agility. All dogs are welcome as long as they are physically fit and are not people or dog aggressive. Dog-on-it meets on Tuesday and Thursday nights at the Lake Island Recreation Center in Winter Park, FL, just off 17-92 and Fairbanks Ave. Lessons are available and we welcome newcomers. Please click on Classes & Training for more information.
Dog-On-It Agility Club also hosts agility trials (competitions) three times a year in Winter Park, Florida. The trials are held in January, March and November outside, under our beautiful Florida sun. Both trials are great fun and a great trial experience (whether you’re competing with your own dog or bringing the whole family to watch)! Click here for more information.
Rocky’s Retreat Canine Health and Fitness Center: Rocky’s Retreat Canine Health & Fitness Center is offering an agility for fun class beginning Saturday Sept 15th at 9am. Taught by Heather Szasz, it’s a 6 week class and costs $90. Class size is limited to 6 dogs. If you’re interested, please contact us at 407-295-3888.
Best Paw Forward: Agility Training
The Canine Center in St. Cloud: Agility Training
Top Dog Agility Training Center in Mount Dora: Agility training center. They have a unique training program that focuses on developing the communication skills that are needed between handler and dog.
Happy Paws in Orlando: Agility Training
K9 Kampus in Melbourne: K9 Kampus offers an agility experience like no other. All K9 Kampus training classes are held in the comfort of their indoor facility (with the exception of our tracking class). You will enjoy class in our climate controlled environment without the worry of the heat, humidity, rain, mud or bugs! They also offer agility practice session. Their 2 hour session provides you with 3 minute rotations on the fully matted agility floor. A trainer on-site if needed and a cool enjoyable environment while you and your dog wait your turn.