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Dog agility is a popular canine sport in which a handler directs a dog through a variety of obstacles such as a tunnel, teeter-totter, tire jump, weave poles, pause table, and standard jumps. During competitive agility events, handlers attempt to navigate dogs through a course as quickly and as accurately as they can.
Agility is a sport that requires a long-term training commitment to be successful. To participate in agility your dog must be well under your control, especially in a close contact setting.
The Agility program at TCOTC includes training at all levels. New Foundation Agility classes are typically offered twice a year, subject to staff and facility availability. If you are interested in joining the agility program, please check below for start dates and review the required prerequisites.
We also welcome teams that have already trained in agility elsewhere. To find out about possible openings at advanced levels, please complete the Agility Self Assessment (complete this form only if your dog has already been in agility classes). Continue reading below for information about getting started with our Foundation Agility class. For any other questions about the agility program, contact the Agility department.
Puppy Agility takes advantage of puppies’ prime learning time to use the agility setting to establish good habits and develop love of the sport, teamwork with handler, and comfort with agility equipment. It also teaches a balance between self-direction and focus on the handler.
Puppy Agility provides a fun environment that classically conditions the puppy to enjoy the agility ring and agility training. All equipment used in the class is scaled for puppies. No previous training or experience with agility is required to enroll. You may opt to take a puppy obedience class before enrolling in puppy agility but it is NOT required. You may enroll in agility at the same time as obedience or other puppy classes.
Note that the puppy agility program is a continuous course divided into 9-week terms. Puppies “age out” of the program when they turn one year old.
Puppies 8-16 weeks old are eligible for the puppy agility class. Sometimes, depending upon interest and instructor availability, there may be a group of puppies 7-14 weeks old.
All current puppy agility classes are full. A new class will start in the spring, with the start date and time dependent upon interest. Please complete the Puppy Agility Application Form to indicate your interest. You will be notified of the next class start date if your puppy meets the age requirements listed above.
IF you puppy is currently 6 months or older, they will be eligible for the Agility Foundations class when they turn 1 year old. See information on Foundation Agility at right on this page.
After successfully completing the Puppy Agility program, you can enroll in the Puppy Agility Transition class that prepares puppies for full-height obstacles.
The Puppy Agility Transition class prepares puppies and handlers for the beginner or intermediate agility classes. The transition class last 4-6 months depending upon the progress of the puppy/handler team.
Start dates for the transition classes are the same as the Puppy Agility listed above. The class meets Tuesdays at 6:00 – 6:45 p.m.
For adult dogs with some obedience background, Foundation Agility is the right place to start building a working relationship with your future agility dog. Every top-level competitor will tell you that a strong foundation in self-control, mutual trust, self-confidence and fun is a MUST for success in agility. In Foundation Agility, handler and dog will perfect stays and recalls, learn to move together in synchronization, gain confidence working both sides and at a distance, and experience some of the excitement of agility in a safe, controlled environment. Though a few obstacles will be introduced in these classes, the focus will be on control and teamwork.
Dogs must be at least 12 months old and have met one of the following criteria by the time they start class:
- Have successfully completed Basic Training, Beyond Basic or Intermediate Obedience, Impulse Control and Reliable Recall at TCOTC
- Be a puppy agility graduate (with regular and continual participation in that class)
- If you have taken obedience training elsewhere, you will need to have the skills taught in the classes outlined above. Please contact firstname.lastname@example.org for more information.
Please note: The first four weeks of class are considered a trial period, during which the instructors will assess your dog’s readiness for participation in Foundation Agility. Specifically, the instructors will be assessing your dog’s skills as described in the Foundation Agility Class application, which you can fill out below when we have a new class scheduled. If the instructors determine that your dog needs work in any of these skills before taking Foundation agility, TCOTC will refund your unused class fees and recommend alternative classes that address those skills. You may re-apply for Foundation Agility once you have addressed the needed skills.
Upcoming Classes: We will make an announcement on our website, facebook and via club email when we are getting ready to start another class. This announcement will include application instructions.