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Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

Why Should You Get A Dog Agility Starter Kit?

By Anton Hout, author of The Guide to Aussie Training & Care

A dog agility starter kit is the perfect way to introduce you and your dog to the exciting world of agility training. As its names suggests, a kit is a collection of all of the basic obstacles contained in an agility course.

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They can be made of various materials from plastic to PVC and sturdy nylon and prices can range from as little as $30 to upwards of $400 depending on how much is included in the kit and what materials are used.

In most cases, a dog agility training kit will include weave poles, jumps, tunnels and a pause box so that your dog can get used to the basics of agility. These obstacles can be set up in whatever combination you choose to challenge your dog and yourself. You can start out with just one or two obstacles and work your way up to a more complex course or jump right in with a combination of obstacles right from the get go.

Australian Shepherd running through dog agility weave poles.

Sabine Glässl /

It's easy to get started with an inexpensive dog agility starter kit with many options now available online.

The important things to look for in any dog agility starter kit are variety and stability. You want to cover all the parts of an agility course, particularly if you are considering becoming involved in competitions, so having a variety of different obstacles is crucial.

Dog Agility Starter Kit Quality And Price

Even if you are just taking up agility as a hobby or form of exercise, you want to make sure that your dog is challenged so that he doesn't become bored and uninterested, as this can lead to bad behavior.

Stability has to do with the materials used to construct the different parts of your dog agility training kit. A good quality kit will be made from sturdy materials that mimic those used in competition quality equipment. This way they will stand up better to everyday use by even the biggest and most aggressive breeds.

Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

The convenience of having everything you need for training all in one place is the main attraction with any dog agility starter kit. This can be particularly important in a sport where expenses can quickly escalate. Rather than having to pay for one piece of equipment after another, this gives you a way to get your feet wet by purchasing an entire set of equipment at once. And depending on the manufacturer, this can end up saving you quite a bit of money in the long run.

Get As Much Variety In Your Dog Agility Training Kit As Possible

No matter what your motive for buying a dog agility training kit, you want to make sure that it contains each of the main components of an agility course: a set of weave poles to teach your dog speed and accuracy; at least two kinds of jumps, straight pole and circular or "tire jumps"; a tunnel to mimic the natural movement of tracking prey and a pause box, to enable your dog to learn to follow "stop" and "stay" commands, which are another important part of agility work.

Tunnels in a dog agility starter kit may or may not be accompanied by a longer fabric chute, which draws out the tracking behavior even longer. Again, the pricier kits will have sturdier nylon chutes that will stand up better to repetitive training. The jumps and weave poles can come with extra attachments in order to facilitate training. And some sets even include a carrying case to make them even more convenient to take with you and store.

For dog owners who are looking for a quick and easy introduction to agility training, a starter kit is the perfect option. You'll find everything you need to get you and your dog up and running in no time, and all in one convenient package. icon

Guide To Australian Shepherd Training & Care

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