Canine agility courses usually include obstacles such as standard jumps, dog-walking, tire jump, weave poles, tunnels and a pause table. Some pet parents prepare agility courses in their back yards. This personal one-on-one time you spend with your pug is priceless and it is all done in good fun. When guiding and training your dog to go through an agility course, you are communicating with them through hand signals and verbal noises. This strengthens your emotional bond with your pug.
Agility courses are also a popular canine sport and competition. If you feel that you want to move beyond your back yard and show off your pug’s talents, attending and participating in agility course competitions is recommended.
Competitive handlers guide their pug through an agility course with navigation and precise movements as accurately and as quickly as possible. Judges score each competitor and then award the winner.
There is a variety of benefits from agility training both for you and your pug. Exercise is an obvious benefit. You will be guiding your pug through an obstacle course which includes running next to your dog, crawling on the ground, possibly even jumping up and down. Repeating this exercise will provide a pet parent with an excellent cardiovascular workout. Your pug will also have his mind challenged as well as his body. He will get plenty of exercise that will help keep him at his best shape and health.
Agility training fulfills your pug’s natural instinct for hunting. Dogs hunt for prey in the wild, chasing, running, jumping and weaving in and out of trees and bushes. Their ultimate reward is catching the prey and providing themselves with a nourishing meal. In the world of agility courses, their reward is a tasty treat given to them by their pet parent or handler.
Your ultimate goal when training your pug to maneuver through an agility course, is to have them begin and end the course on their own. Eventually, after practice and training, your pug will naturally know what to do at each step of the course and will enjoy racing through it with determination and speed.
Before beginning agility course training, it is recommended to have your pug receive a check up from the veterinarian. Advise your veterinarian that you are interested in involving your pug in agility training. Your veterinarian will examine your pug, making sure there are no ailments or physical conditions that will limit his abilities to participate in the popular canine sport. Your veterinarian may also check blood work to make sure your pug does not have any health conditions that need special attention. Depending on the outcome, your veterinarian will advise you the next course of action that is best suited for your pug.
Keep your veterinarian or local animal hospital emergency number close by in case of an emergency. At times, your pug may experience a pulled muscle, cut, scrape, or exhibit heat exhaustion symptoms when participating in an agility course. Pet parents should always seek immediate veterinarian assistance if you observe any unusual behavior that can be linked to a health condition or injury.
Agility courses are fun or the entire family to practice with your pug. Setup a small course indoors if you live in an apartment or create an agility course in your back yard, allowing your family to assist in the training and bonding experience.