Achieving Success at an Agility Show: Our Top Tips
We’ll be sharing 5 tips with you this week and 5 next week!
1. Warm up and cool down properly
Warming you and your dog up properly before you run is essential. Without an adequate warm up you run the risk of injury. Plan your warm up and take note so that you don’t miss anything out. Don’t forget that for your dog you need to warm them up physically and mentally.
So you have completed your run, now is the time to cool you and your dog down. We just love loose lead walking for this (as it cools us and the dog down at the same time) and some stretching.
2. Help on the rings
A brilliant one for the newbie competitor as there is no better way to learn all there is to know about agility then to help on a ring. Everyone who helps to run a show are volunteers. To make the day run smoothly, offer your help, even if it’s just for 10 minutes.
3. Fuel for your dog
We most definitely give our dog’s breakfast before a show, however it is essential that you have given them enough time to digest it properly before they compete. During the lunch break, give something nice for your dog to snack on.
4. Fuel for you
Yes, the lure of the burger van is ever so tempting but to keep your body fuelled adequately and ready to go, choose something that is going to give you lasting energy. The post lunch slump is all too common! We don’t want to spoil your fun, we are not the food police but to be at your physical best you need to fuel your body properly. Save that chip butty or piece of cake for the end of the day!
5. Think about your A-B from vehicle to start-line
When you reach the start line are you and your dog connected, are they with you? Your warm routine is all part and parcel in getting your dog physically and mentally prepared but you also need to consider the bit in between walking to the ring, queuing and then reaching the start line. We play lots of games with our dogs to keep them connected and motivated.
Check back next week for more success at an agility show tips…..
About the Author: Lauren Langman is responsible for the design and development of all Devon Dogs classes, events and workshops. She competes in Agility at Grade 7, the highest rank of competition in the British agility arena. She regularly competes and wins at top agility events in the UK including Crufts and Olympia, and has represented the UK at World Agility Championship level on many occasions.