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Have you ever wondered if your furry friends get bored? Yes, they do, and there are tons of activities that you can arrange in your backyard. The best dog agility equipment can be a great way to exercise your dog and further improve your bond.
Dog agility training is a sport for canines that involve a handler guiding their dogs through a course of obstacles that include tunnels, jumps, weave poles, etc.
Whether it is for fun or competition, with the right equipment for dog agility training, your four-legged friend’s fitness level will improve.
Present your canine friend with the agility training equipment and watch their fondness for you to grow over time.
Taking into account all the most important factors, we have selected Top 5 Dog Agility Training Equipment
- 1 Features To Consider Before Buying One
- 2 Agility Training Equipment Reviews
- 3 Why Is Dog Agility Training Important?
- 4 Consider These Before Joining An Agility Training Program
- 5 When To Start Training Your Dog
- 6 How To Train Your Dog With Agility Training Equipment
Features To Consider Before Buying One
Every kind of equipment is not designed for every dog breed. You certainly want the best agility equipment for your dog, and that’s why you need to know what is perfect for your dog. There are a few features you need to consider before you purchase one.
- Size: Compare the size of your pooch and the items you are considering to buy. Most dog agility equipmentcomes in sizes suitable for smaller dog breeds. If your dog belongs to a larger breed, the tunnels, pause tables, and tire jumps are likely to have a size limit.
- Equipment type: There are various types of obstacles in a dog agility kitlike weave poles, tunnels, jumps, A-frame, see-saw, etc. Each type has different purposes for training.
- Adjustability: There is certain equipment that is adjustable to fit the size of your dog. While buying one, you will need to know which equipment can be adjusted for your dog size and not forgetting what your dog can do.
- Material: Most weave poles and jumps are made from PVC which is usually UV resistant. This material is good for outdoors as it will not fade on exposure to sun and rain. When buying a tunnel, choose one that is thick enough so that your dog will not tear it easily while running through it.
- Durability: Low prices usually catch our attention while buying things. If you buy dog agility training equipment, a low price means you will have to replace it sooner than you want them to last. Unfortunately, your dog’s claws can easily rip through cheap materials.
Agility Training Equipment Reviews
There are so many products out there that can juggle with your decision. Taking into consideration the features, price, and type of exercises for your dog can be a hassle. After all, you want the dog agility training equipment to create memorable moments for you and your furry pal.
Here is a list of 5 best agility equipment for dogs, narrowed down from the long list for your convenience.
1. Agility in a Bag
As the name suggests, this bag contains all agility equipment for your dog. Its features contain:
- Six weave poles: They come in a standard six-pole set with a free-standing base. The poles are 30 inches tall and spaced at 24 inches apart. Designed for the comfort of your pup, the base feet are placed opposite to each other that ensures safe running. They can also be used in the 2×2 training method.
- Adjustable jumps: These bars are displaceable for safety reasons and are adjustable to fit your dog’s height. You can adjust the height by sliding the jump cups with rounded edges upward and downward. For the puppies and young ones, it’s suggested that you lower the bar to the ground. The highest you can go is up to 24 to 30 inches.
- Pause box: This is an alternative to the pause table. Practice instructing your dog to pause for five seconds either sitting or standing on the box.
- Adjustable tire jump: This is a hoop of 24 inches diameter that slides vertically on the sidebars. The adjustments on the height can be done the same way as the adjustable jumps. For safety purposes, the tie is separated at the bottom.
- Tunnel and chute: This includes a tunnel that is 3 foot in length and 22 inches in diameter, along with an attachable 8-foot chute. Another tunnel comes in 9-foot length and 22 inches diameter. Carrying bag, colored vinyl tape, and an instruction manual for assembly.
- It is lightweight and adjustable
- Easy assembly for storage and travel
- Suitable for both indoors and outdoors
- The vinyl tape allows you to self-design the equipment
- The materials are UV resistant
- The tunnels are thick enough to resist tear from your dog’s paws.
- Can be a bit pricey
- Not sturdy and spacious enough for big dogs
2. LORD ANSON DOG AGILITY SET
This is a smart dog agility set perfect for hyper-active dogs at an affordable price. The features have been tested by experts which include:
- Six weave poles: Each pole is 39 inches long making it versatile for bigger dogs. The poles have metal spikes at the end to stay firm during training. You can adjust the gap between the poles according to your dog’s skills. Just twist the poles from the ground while removing them after training.
- Collapsible tunnel: The tunnel has a 23.5 inch opening for puppies and big dogs. It is kept secured to the ground with metal grommets on each side. After use, you can easily pack it into a carry case that is convenient for travel.
- Adjustable jump: The Lord Anson jump can be adjusted up to a height of 39 inches depending on the size and how high your dog can jump.
- Metal spikes keep the tunnels to the ground
- Lightweight and easily portable
- Materials are long-lasting
- Value for money
- Can accommodate large dogs
- Easy to assemble and detach
- A bit flimsy
- Metal wiring can pop out after several uses
3. CHEERING PET
The Cheering Pet is a complete dog agility set that has 28 pieces of equipment for a full workout. If you are planning to join the competition, this set is perfect for your dog. Its features contain:
- Premium quality 28-piece set for agility training: It includes two vertical poles, eight slalom poles, a 58.5-inch long tunnel, adjustable hurdle, rope toy, string, pause box, stake, whistle, and three carry bags.
- Easy assembly and storage: Setting up the obstacles is easy and takes less time. With three carry bags, it is convenient for storage as well.
- Well constructed material
- Easy to set up
- Can accommodate dogs of all sizes
- Decent quality
- Lightweight for easy storage and travel
- Not convenient for indoors
4. PawHut 3PC
Improve your pet’s natural instincts by building them an obstacle course with PawHut 3 pc. This is basic dog agility equipment but enough to keep your dog fit and entertained.
- Its features include a jumping ring, high jumper, and six weave poles.
- It can be set up on grass or any flat surface.
- It is made of lightweight plastic which assures durability. This equipment is perfect for heavy training while making it easy to carry around.
- Lightweight for easy setup and portability
- Easily adjustable to accommodate any size
- Comes with a carry bag to transport and store without difficulty
- Does not come with ground stakes
- Not sturdy enough for heavy dogs
5. PawHut 4 Piece
If you are searching for ways to improve your dog’s health and also enhance the connection between you and your pup, the PawHut 4 –piece is perfect for you.
Take this fitness equipment anywhere you go and have a time of enjoyment with your pooch and others as well. This obstacle course allows your dog to take up challenging tasks allowing him to develop his skills.
Its features include:
- It’s not just for your backyard, but you can take it to the park, the beach, and to picnics
- The jumps are 37 inches in width and you can adjust the height depending on the height of your dog.
- The set weighs 5.5lbs making it light to carry around.
- The bottom bar comes fixed to provide stability on any surface ground.
- Top bars are displaceable on hitting, for the safety of your dog.
- Lightweight and stable
- Comes with a sturdy carry bag for storage and travel
- Easy to set up
- Sturdy frames
- A bit pricey
- Works better for smaller breeds
Why Is Dog Agility Training Important?
Agility training is not just beneficial for your dogs, but you get your share of perks as well. This kind of training may not be preferred by all dog owners, but here are some reasons why you should join the dog agility training program.
- Building a better bond with your dog: Since agility training requires your dog to need your constant guidance throughout the course, they will rely on your words and your hands for instructions.
- You are training your canine friend to behave and take commands, a development in your bond is brewing at the same time.
- Will gradually learn to obey you even beyond the agility course.
- Build confidence in timid dogs: Some dogs may have a shy nature subjecting them to avoid playing with other dogs and even go out. Agility training develops confidence by initially carrying out small tasks and eventually taking over bigger obstacles.
- Improving the health of the dog: Regular walks and running in the park may, to some extent, keep your dog active, but with agility training, your dog is achieving lots of physical exercises to stay fit. With all the jumping, crawling and climbing, their coordination skills will vastly improve, hence building a healthy body and increasing endurance.
- Fulfilling their instincts makes them more attentive: Dogs are born hunters, and their instincts involve jumping, crawling, and climbing. The agility course is designed to fulfill all these activities, which will help your dog to develop better skills to respond to your commands and assigned tasks.
- Training will also improve their speed and, at the same time, help them move about in a behaved manner.
- Improves your physical health as well: While it is your dog jumping and climbing, you will be running with them as well, guiding them through the course. As you will be assisting your dog through tunnels and weave poles, you will probably benefit from a healthy cardiovascular exercise.
The agility training course is helpful in so many ways, but at the end of the day, it depends on the preference of you and your dog, and what kind of courses will suit best. All dogs have different behaviors indoors and outdoors. Hence you need to know what course will develop his skills to obey your commands. All in all, having fun with your canine friend is more important than completing the course.
Consider These Before Joining An Agility Training Program
- Consult a vet: Agility course is an exercise that involves both mental and physical training. It would be wise to take consultations from a vet to confirm whether your dog is fit to run through the course or not. You must prioritize the well-being of your dog while considering agility training.
- Attend a class: There are agility training classes that are usually taken one hour per week in six weeks. These types of classes will help your dog to adapt to the course and other dogs. Start with small tasks as your dog will take some time to understand the tasks and get comfortable with the obstacles.
When To Start Training Your Dog
The best time to get your dog started with agility training is between 1 to 2 years. Puppies tend to hurt themselves while going through the obstacles.
If you are planning to take your dog to a competition, start the training before they have reached the age to qualify to compete.
Start early with basic commands like making them sit, lie down, heel, etc. Make your dog comfortable by training with an audience at home.
When your pooch is ready with the basics, the next best step is to join a class for agility training programs.
How To Train Your Dog With Agility Training Equipment
Agility training is done either for fun or competition. Whatever the reason be, it is important that your dog understands you and trusts you enough to obey the tasks you give them.
With the right dog agility equipment kit, you can train your dog in completing the course.
Contact obstacles include a dog walk, teeter or see-saw, table, and A-frame. Guide your dog to touch their paws in these yellow-painted obstacles. Instruct them with words like “touch” or “paw” for them to physically touch the yellow potions of the obstacle. In this area, your dog should not be encouraged to jump or leap to avoid injury.
- A-Frame: This is usually a structure of two large planks, either wooden or aluminum, that are 3 inches wide and 9 inches long. The planks form the shape of the letter ‘A’, which is also called a mountain, scaling wall, or frame wall. Guide your dog to climb the structure and then climb down from the other side, while instructing to keep their paws in contact with the yellow portion. You can use commands like “charge”, “climb”, “wall”, and “mountain”.
- Dog-walk:The dog walks or sometimes known as the plank, balance beam, or catwalk, is a three-planked obstacle measuring 8 to 12 inches long. This requires the dog to climb on one side of the plank and walk across to the other side without wavering and climb down. Make sure your dog does not leap over the yellow line. Instruct him to place his paws on the yellow zone with words like “walk”, “walk on”, “climb”, etc.
- Teeter: Teeter or more commonly known as a seesaw is made with wood or vinyl. The single plank is mounted on a frame usually made of plastic or metal frame. With the weight of the dog, it allows the plank to teeter with backward and forward movement. After ascending, the dog must balance itself to reach the center of the teeter, right above the frame. Once at the center of the teeter, the dog uses its weight to tip the other side of the teeter to make it touch the ground, and then descend from the plank. Handling instructions for this obstacle are “tip-it”, “teeter-totter”, and “teeter”.
- Tunnel: The tunnel is a tube usually made by coiled metal and wrapped over with vinyl. It comes mostly with 10 to 20 feet range and 24 inches opening in diameter. In this exercise, the dog is required to pass through the tunnel as fast as possible using instructional words like “tunnel”, “go”, “zoom” and “through”.
- Weaves: Weaves is another challenging obstacle that usually includes 6 or 12 vinyl poles fastened on a metallic platform. Depending on the requirement of the trial the poles are placed 20 to 24 inches apart. This exercise requires the dog to weave from the left in the first pole and then navigate its way out from the remaining poles. Other terms used for weaves are, slalom poles or slaloms, weave poles. Here you can instruct your dog with words like “weave”, “zig-zag”, “slalom”, “in”, “out”, “snake”, and “wiggle”.
- Table: The table is an obstacle where your dog will be required to sit or stand on the table and pause for a full five seconds. The duration of the pause will also depend on the judge’s instruction. Usually made of wood or plastic, this obstacle is also called a box, pause box or pause table. Instructional words used are “get up”, “table”, “load up”, “get on”, “place” or “box”.
- Chute: The chute is an obstacle identical to the tunnel. It is made of fabric measuring 10 to 12 feet which is connected to a plastic barrel measuring 22 inches in diameter at one end. The chute is not supported by tubes or coils on either side of the middle part. Take your dog and navigate him through the opening, pushing the fabric open as it runs along the chute and finally comes out from the opposite end. It is also known as tunnel, chute or closed tunnel. Common instructional words you can use are “push”, “zoom”, “tunnel”, “through” and “chute”.
- Jumps: This is a bar jump obstacle using PVC piping as a base. At least two bars are required which will be placed on the base and adjustable heights for the competing dogs. Wings are attached on either side to increase the stability even though it can be a bit distracting for the dog, for this the dog needs to heighten its attention skills. The height of the bar is adjustable from 4 to 26 inches. This jump obstacle is also commonly known as bar jump or hurdle. Instruct your pooch words such as “jump”, “over” and “hup”.
- Tire: This obstacle is a fun one for your dog. It does not use actual tire but is made by using corrugated plastic tubing shaped like a ring and held by a PVC frame or metal and fastened with cords and chain. In this exercise, the dog is made to jump through an opening of 19 to 24 inches. The tire is also referred to as ring, hoop or tire jump. Most handlers use instructional words such as “jump through”, “tire”, “hoop”, and “through”.
With these basic instructions, you will be able to train your dog to behave better, listen to you, and above all trust and respect you everywhere you go together. The obstacle course is not a rigorous training for your dog but it’s a time for them to enjoy with their master and build good physical fitness as well. By purchasing the agility equipment for dogs you will be ensured with high-quality material for quality time with your pawed pals.