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Dog Sports

Dog sports are a wonderful way to keep your dog working and to make some other dog friends!  Most dog sports have dogs work one on one with their handler to keep the dog focused and able to do what they are practicing.  If you have a reactive dog, these sports a lot of times are great to help build confidence around other dogs without being in direct contact!

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Agility: great for high energy dogs!  If you have a high energy dog that gets way too aroused (excited) I would suggest staying away from agility as it has a tendency to amp them up.  My dog Tux would be a horrible candidate for agility because of his over excitability.

You also want to be careful introducing puppies to agility.  You need to make sure that you find a good foundation class that won't let the puppy put too much stress on their growing joints and muscles.  Often times I suggest you wait until your pup is done growing before introducing them to the sport of agility.

Calgary Canine Center - agility and nosework classes available
Superdogs - agility and nosework classes available

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Nose work: a great way to help your dog focus on finding individual scents.  Classes for nose work will start off with foundation work before expecting your dog to be able to pick out a certain smell from a row of boxes.  Nose work is low impact, so even puppies can do this one!  If you have an unruly pup, getting them into some kind of dog sport is a great way to channel their energy!

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Weight Pull: great for dogs who have lots of energy but can't be over stimulated!  This is one that Tux loves!  He has been able to build muscle and tone his body to a nice healthy looking physique.  Weight pull is also great for younger dogs who are still developing.  Make sure that your weight pull instructor knows how old your pup is and they should adjust for the growing pups!  We go out to the Western Canada Pull Club as regularly as we can.  We also have created a cart to have Tux pull weight in the back field and have some plate weights that he will drag longer distances for endurance.

WCPC (Western Canada Pull Club) - first three classes are no charge to figure out if your dog is going to like the sport!

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Barn Hunt: a wonderful outlet for all those ratting terriers!  I don't know much about this, but I have heard it is a blast!  Again, any breed can try and succeed at this sport - give it a try and see if your dog loves it!

Barn Hunt Association - more information on the sport and how to get into it

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Frisbee: any dog can learn how to catch a frisbee!  Except my boys apparently.  As long as you start your dog off slow and teach them how to chase and retrieve the frisbee for you, they should be able to do tricks to catch it eventually.  Probably not the best for those dogs that get too over excited.

All Canadian Disc Dog - your reference for everything frisbee in Canada!

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Herding: usually left to those natural herding breeds like Australian shepherds, Rottweilers or cattle dogs, but I'm sure any breed could give it a go!  If your dog is a natural, they will get right in there and move the sheep around.  Once you know your dog will heard, you can train signals in order to direct your dog into where you want them to drive the heard.

Phantom Ridge Boarder Collies - offering stock dog training for all breeds (south of Calgary)

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Dock Diving: Amazing for any breed!  You use what your dog loves to chase, and throw it out over a pool!  Some dogs take a while to get used to jumping into the water, others love it and thrive with chasing a toy into the pool!

Sleep Rover - offering introduction and dock diving training

There are many other dog sports that you could enroll your dog in, these are just a few of the more common ones!


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