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  • Results 1 to 8 of 8
    1. #1
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      First Agility Sequence!

      I decided to get back into agility for a host of different reasons. It's another sport I want to learn and Linus loves it, so I figure we'll dabble and see where it takes us. I love that he is so game to do anything so I can learn with him and develop as a trainer. We started back last week after about 18 months off. I had taken class for a few months before I decided to drop it to focus on the JH. I decided maybe it wasn't great for him due to his size. I thought it over and talked to our bodywork person and the agility instructor and they felt that because he has great conformation, is in good shape, I keep him very light, he is full grown (just turned four last week!) and he is very light on his feet, he will do fine and they agreed that we should do preferred at 20".

      Last week we did some simple foundations, which he totally remembered, that were more on body awareness. He proved that he has a good handle on that, mostly from obedience. Last night we did our first sequence ever. Two jumps, tunnel and jump, all in a straight line. I ended up having to lead out about two jumps and he still beat me even with going through the tunnel (which he has to duck inside). We then did two jumps, tunnel, jump, front cross (I think!), a cookie, then tunnel and two jumps. He was a beast and holy crap is he fast! Everyone was surprised, even me! He was supposed to do jump, cookie from instructor, then finish, but he totally bypassed her to finish the sequence, even though he knew she had food. His focus was elsewhere. I started training him on a lotus ball a few weeks ago, knowing that I was going to start agility again and it works well for him to keep him going past the last jump instead of curling back into me. I'm hoping that when we add obstacles with contacts that will slow him down a little.

    2. #2
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      Go Linus I love agility (ok so I didn't get too far but I really really loved doing it with Penny). And bypassing a chance for a cookie is impressive! a sure sign he must love doing it not just for the reward at the end (doing it is rewarding).

      And good information about size and build. One of my concerns with getting another lab is just that, the things I want to do may not be suitable for a big dog (though even if I get a lab - i really really want a dog under 70 pounds that I can carry if needed). So good to hear that if well conditioned and well "built" it shouldn't cause issues (no more than other dogs per say).

      honestly even with Penny, I had never planned to jump her at the regular height. I forget what it was for her. I thought it was ridiculous and she was a smaller dog (45 pounds). I think i'd only ever work a dog on the lower options. Unless years down the road I get a super dog and want to go far. But to just compete for fun, i'll stick to lower.

    3. #3
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      Quote Originally Posted by Tanya View Post
      Go Linus I love agility (ok so I didn't get too far but I really really loved doing it with Penny). And bypassing a chance for a cookie is impressive! a sure sign he must love doing it not just for the reward at the end (doing it is rewarding).

      And good information about size and build. One of my concerns with getting another lab is just that, the things I want to do may not be suitable for a big dog (though even if I get a lab - i really really want a dog under 70 pounds that I can carry if needed). So good to hear that if well conditioned and well "built" it shouldn't cause issues (no more than other dogs per say).

      honestly even with Penny, I had never planned to jump her at the regular height. I forget what it was for her. I thought it was ridiculous and she was a smaller dog (45 pounds). I think i'd only ever work a dog on the lower options. Unless years down the road I get a super dog and want to go far. But to just compete for fun, i'll stick to lower.
      When Linus was in "conformation shape" he was 96 lbs and considered in "good shape" by breeders and conformation folks. He is now less than 75 lbs and 24" in height and muscular. He is actually naturally muscular in build and well balanced. He and his siblings are all good, light movers. I would never do agility with Sam, even though he is the same size as Linus in height and weight, as he is front heavy with a naturally less muscular hind end, regardless of how much I work and swim him.

      24" is still high for Linus on an agility course. For obedience it's not a big deal and he clears the broad jump with ease, but 20" is definitely easier. Have you heard of Sarah Baker and her yellow Lab Rice? He is about the same size as Linus and is the preferred AKC agility champion several years in a row. There are lots of videos of them on YouTube. He's a lovely mover.

    4. #4
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      Way to go! I hope to be able to get into Agility at some point. Whenever you get some videos please post.

    5. #5
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      That's awesome! I miss doing agility with Kimber. It's so fun when your dog loves it.
      Miss Kimber, CGC, birthdate 6/15/2005

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    6. #6
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      Quote Originally Posted by kimbersmom View Post
      It's so fun when your dog loves it.
      It is, but I am a little worried about my knees!

    7. #7
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      Quote Originally Posted by Labradorks View Post
      24" is still high for Linus on an agility course. For obedience it's not a big deal and he clears the broad jump with ease, but 20" is definitely easier. Have you heard of Sarah Baker and her yellow Lab Rice? He is about the same size as Linus and is the preferred AKC agility champion several years in a row. There are lots of videos of them on YouTube. He's a lovely mover.
      I have heard of her in my search for labs!

      I guess the question is how will I know if a dog is well put together (or will be) for agility/sport! I guess a running partner is probably more important for me as that's more a day to day thing VS a sport we can just...pick another sport.

    8. #8
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      Quote Originally Posted by Tanya View Post
      I have heard of her in my search for labs!

      I guess the question is how will I know if a dog is well put together (or will be) for agility/sport! I guess a running partner is probably more important for me as that's more a day to day thing VS a sport we can just...pick another sport.
      The only thing you can do it find parents who are well put together (AKC CH or pointed) and have athletic abilities (agility, field, etc.) without being sidelined (too much) for injuries and then cross your fingers! If your dog has some conformation issues, you can work with someone (doggie sports therapist and/or a really good agility instructor) to teach them how to jump properly and to try to balance them out with different physical therapy exercises. This should be covered in your foundation classes and in how you handle the dog and reward placement. I'm seeing a lot of field bred Labs with long front legs, like a standard poodle, and straight shoulders. That is no good for jumping. Girls will be more compact. Linus' sisters are the perfect Lab size and even his brother is not so large. I just got the freak of the litter. If you don't care about competing, there's nothing saying you can't do agility and jump at a super low height. Right now Linus is jumping at 16" because we're asking him to think and do new stuff. Plenty of old dogs come to class and they run them because they love agility and will either completely drop the bars or put them at 8" when they ran much higher in their youth.

    9. The Following User Says Thank You to Labradorks For This Useful Post:

      Tanya (07-25-2017)

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