Agility people may be better at navigating a course than writing a story but
here's a chance for you to put pen to paper - or fingers to keyboard.
Email your short
stories and other contributions to Agilitynet and see your name in print somewhere other
than/as well as in The Voice or Eye tables.
The Cost of Dog Agility
Reading another post,
it seems Agility is a very expensive hobby in other countries and especially
Europe. Some handlers are paying as much as €50 to enter one dog per day.
It also appears that
if you do not have a pedigree dog, then there are certain things you are
excluded from like national finals. Seems we may have some issues here but. at
least, we cater for all from mongrel to pedigree.
European Courses v. British Courses
From Elizabeth Saggers
I had an interesting
conversation at the Kennel Club International Festival (KCIF) with one of our
European judges. He told me that British courses were different.
I asked if that was a
bad thing and he said 'No, just different.'
So I went on to ask
how they were different and he said in his country 'We run, run, run'.'
Then I asked what
about the disabled, older, less mentally able or very young handlers and was
told quite simplythat they just don't do it'
I am not adverse to
changes for the welfare of our dogs or improvement of our sport. I enjoy the mix
of courses, some suit me some don't, but I do not want to see a situation where
the agility which so many of us enjoy for a weekend away with our dogs is
altered to suit what appears to be a minority.
The only reason to
alter things should be the safety or welfare of our dogs not just to suit some
other form of competition. After all variety is the spice of life.
Big Distances for Small Dogs
From Lu Candy
Dear KC (Agility section) -
I know you've brought
in the new distances so dogs can get enough strides in between obstacles and,
therefore, put less long term strain on their bodies, but I don't see the logic
as we now seem to have many 'obligatory' go round the back of's' where it looks
to me like dogs are having to take off and turn almost 180 degrees from one
We would not ask
Olympic level hurdlers to run round and take every 3rd hurdle from the wrong
side and, as far as I know, in the equestrian world no one would set that
manoeuvre in a show jumping course.
Also why have we got
the same distances for Small dogs as Large dogs? Surely they have a shorter
stride pattern so should have relatively shorter distances.
morning on my way to a competition, I thought to myself why am I doing this.
What is it about agility that I have become so addicted to>
When I look back I
realise how happy I am on my training days and how much I look forward to it. I
realise how much of an escape it is for me after a hard day of working hard to
try and cure people's loved ones and even my loved ones from the terrible
dreaded word cancer. Just running around with my dogs and having fun makes me
realise just how lucky I am.
So next time when you
are at show, make sure you are cheering each other on and don't slate people.
You don't know their stories.
I love being around
like-minded people who just enjoy the sport and being with their dogs.
By Sue Jones
It's 4.30 in the
My oldest dog has
just asked to go outside. I get up, throw some clothes on over my pjs, collect
the puppy from her crate and take them both outside. Both have wees and we come
back in. Oldie goes back up to bed and I put pup back into crate.
I go upstairs and get
into bed and then it starts. the screaming banshee is now fully awake and
doesn't want to go back to sleep.
I give up all
hope of sleep and we all get up. I feed the dogs and then decide to prepare
Ingredients for the breadmaker. I'm in the kitchen and I look to my right to
see a small puppy at the back door. I grab my coat and take her back out into
the garden where she immediately does a poo and a wee. What a little star!
I bring her back in.
SHE is now asleep.
New Rules for Dog
Agility in Scotland FB
By Dawn Gilmour
Suggested Agility Topic
- a day to moan about everything and anything to do with Agility
- a day where we all come clean about all the naughty thing we do that p**s
- a day of what I would like to see that would suit me and only me
- a day to be thankful for the wonderful dogs we have, and be thankful for those
that give up their time to allow us to compete and have fun
- a day of joy as we are all off to Shows and in a good mood for a change.
Silent Saturday -
a day of not many posts as we are all knackered
- a day of happy posts with our win outs, clear rounds, Champ wins or just
having the best time ever with my friends and dogs
The Real Joy of Agility
Steve Seale wrote this
It is not the winning or
going clear. It is not the equipment or shows. It is not hero worship or faint
It is the relationship
and bond between you and your dog, that individual closest of ties you build,
with the simplest of looks between each of you and you both know, the
unconscious communication that is second nature between you, the sense of joy in
being with each other competing, training or resting. That sense of togetherness
as you wait to compete and, after, walking back to the car.
If you know these things
and have them with your dog, then you have won in agility regardless of rosettes
A Message to All Show Organisers
Just to broadcast to
everyone I won't be going to any shows in 2017 that don't specifically cater
only for me and my dogs! This is so that all show organisers know that they need
to contact me directly to discuss what I want. Otherwise that's it. I'm not
By Dawn Gilmour
Dear Weather -
It really is nice of you
to try to average out the temperatures between Summer and Winter, however here
are a few things you should know -
I like sun in the
I love frost in the winter.
My winter duvet has not seen the light of day this year.
Agility Shows across the UK have been cancelled due to your poor judgement of
what you think is best for us.
Thousands of agility
handlers and their dogs have been left distraught as they
have had to do housework etc. when they should have been at an agility show!
My van does not cope well with mud and there has been more than enough of it in
My thermal knickers bought especially for this year are still in the package.
Please return the
weather to normal for 2017 or I may need to remove you as my friend!
Thank you in advance.
Out of the Skies
By Alan Gardner
This is a true story and a surreal moment...
I was up the field training when an airplane lands in the
field. A man gets out panting and runs up to me.
'Are you okay?' I asked.
The pilot replied, 'Yes, just landed as my engine is running cold and I need to
put some tape over the vent. Hope I didn't disturb dogs?
And here is the clincher...
He looks at Jaidi and says, 'I didn't know you could do agility with
Bernese Mountain Dogs!'
So now people drop out of the sky to see what breed he is...
Rambling with Rebus
By Elaine Thomas
The twilight is deepening as we set off across the fields –
the last remnants of the sun striking the clouds gold.
The dogs chase through the long grass – their passing
leaving a smoke trail of pollen.
They barrel after the ball, so intent they don’t see the
fox in the hedgerow – it watches them quietly and then slips into the dense undergrowth without
My old Dalmatian Morse, slops along in the collies wake –
content to watch them circle and spin. Old age has robbed him of his graceful economical trot,
but on a quiet summers evening, he is quite happy to spend an hour nose down, tail ceaselessly
waving, nearly but not quite keeping up.
On the horizon a jet takes off from Gatwick through the
layers of gold and purple, and I wonder what holiday destination they are going to.
Rob turns his head just to check I’m there, and Morse rubs
his head on my leg. I lean down to pull his ears and decide I don’t want to be anywhere
else than here, in the darkening twilight with my dogs.
Five seconds later I walk into a ravenous swarm of midges –
and the mood vanishes. Rebus then hurls himself into the river with no thought as to how he
will get out, and eventually scrambles up the bank, showering me in smelly water, mud and
Still, the squall of stagnant water frightens
off the midges.
Smelling like the bottom of a pond, we squelch