Dog Tricks Classes
Foundation Agility: Level 1 | Each unit $108 | register online
Tunnels & Contacts | Wednesday 8pm | May 29 – July 3
Focus, Shaping & Turns | Friday 6pm | July 12 - August 16
Adv. Jump & Weave | Thurs. 6:30pm | June 20 - Aug. 1 | no class July 4
» Look for the extended listing of ALL classes on the Schedule page.
Without a solid foundation, dogs cannot excel at the sport of agility and, in fact, can get hurt; without a solid foundation, handlers cannot excel either and, in fact, can feel uncoordinated and do little but confuse their dogs! In the foundation classes, you will work on activities that prepare you and your dog to do agility safely, confidently and with clarity. The symbol identifies classes that are offered at our New Hope location.
Foundation Agility Level 1 is made up of five required units and each unit is six sessions long. Though some exceptions can be made, you and your dog must complete all five units before you are eligible for the Agility Level 2 class.
Not sure if your dog has the aptitude for the sport? No problem. Come to our Doggy Gym activity, where you can do low-key, agility-for-fun exercises with your dog and get a feel for what's ahead if you decide to pursue agility training in earnest!
Focus, Shaping & Turns Unit: Having a dog who can figure out things, who willingly offers behaviors, who can focus on tasks even when distractions are present, and who has a strong bond and solid working relationship with you makes all the difference when pursuing agility training. In this foundation agility unit, you will work on shaping behaviors with your dog, developing teamwork with your dog, and learning how to execute the turns and handling cues needed in agility to create the solid foundation that is essential as you progress in the sport. This class is a prerequisite for the other foundation agility units.
Tunnels & Contacts Unit: Dogs will learn to race through open and closed tunnels, find tunnel entrances, send to tunnels and be called off of tunnels. In addition, you will introduced your dog to plank work, tippy boards, a low dog walk, and the A-frame while continuing to practice and perfect turns and your handling cues. Prerequisite: Completion of the Focus, Shaping & Turns Unit or permission of instructor.
Contacts Continued Unit: In this unit, dogs will learn to run across a full-height dog walk, run up and down a full-height ramp, tip the teeter, and perform/perfect a "contact" behavior (two on/two off, running, four on the floor, etc.) while handlers learn how to cue discriminations involving tunnels and the ramp or dog walk. Prerequisite: Completion of the Focus, Shaping & Turns Unit or permission of instructor; dogs must be physically mature enough to work safely on obstacles.
Jumping & Weaving Unit: In this unit, dogs will be taught how to jump from the ground up (no pun intended) with an organized approach that allows them to have a thorough understanding of the behavior, including that all-important correct form. Handlers will be taught how to put their turn and handling cues into play and will work on timing of cues so their dogs will know which jumps to take and when. Dogs also will be introduced to weaving with an emphasis on the 2 X 2 method and a goal of learning how to go through six off-set poles with a variety of weave entries.
Dogs must be physically mature before they will be allowed to jump their full height (usually 12 months for small breed dogs and 12 to 14 months for medium/large breed dogs). Dogs that are physically immature can work on all exercises with the jump bars on the floor/ground. Prerequisite: Completion of the Focus, Shaping & Turns Unit or permission of instructor.
Advanced Jumping and Weaving Unit: Once your dog grasps the mechanics of jumping and you understand the impact of your cues on how/when/where your dog jumps, you're ready to learn about specific jump sequences, formations (270s, 180s, pinwheels, grids, converging), and lead outs. You will also address speed and distance handling as your dog becomes a faster, more independent jumper. Weave work will continue in this unit to 12 poles in a straight line and more complex weave entries. Prerequisite: Completion of the Jumping & Weaving Unit.