For the past 6 weeks, Edison has been taking an Agility Class at Mud Puppies.
During this class, we focus on learning the different obstacles, including: tire jump, broad jump, pole jump, teeter, dog walk, and tunnel.
All of the obstacles were made by our trainer, Ronna, to ACK regulations. She told us how to make all the obstacles so that we could make them at home, too (which is great, because the equipment is really expensive).
What we loved so much was that Ronna really focuses on safety and learning the obstacles slowly. She taught us several stretches to do before practicing – they’re good to do before any workout, really.
Edison was a rockstar with any of the things that he had to climb onto (i.e. teeter, board walk). He’ll definitely need some work on those obstacles that he needs “back-end awareness” (dogs are apparently like front-wheel drive cars), although with a little practice I’m sure he’ll pick it up quickly.
We’d love to get Tesla in on these classes sometime in the future, too, although for completely different reasons. For Tess, this class would work (and hopefully boost!) her confidence. Climbing up on and going through objects takes confidence – something that she tends to lack!
Edison really loved these classes. They not only were great for giving him a job and wearing him out a little, but they were perfect for getting Edison used to being near other dogs without melting down. Each class he got more and more relaxed (well...I’m not sure he ever is really relaxed in public...) and did really well hanging out in the ring with the other dogs.
If we work on his focus and impulse control around other dogs, I think that agility is something that Edison could really excel at and have a lot of fun. Luckily, we have Countryside Agility training center within a half hour of us. Who knows, maybe we’ll end up like Wallace?