Agility training isn’t just for owners that wish to compete with their pets, it also has fantastic benefits for all dogs. Keeping your dog fit is important to their health, and agility training is a great way to do this whilst simultaneously improving your dog’s behaviour and overall wellbeing.
All dogs have the natural instinct to run, chase and hunt. In the wild, dogs must navigate through natural barriers in order to catch prey. Along the way they deal with inclines, obstacles and narrow paths, running as fast as possible to catch their prey. Agility courses effectively imitate this type of chase, and will thus fulfill their natural desire to hunt.
Agility training can give your dog something to concentrate on, and is a productive way to get rid of excess energy, and this means that your dog will be less likely to be overexcited or restless when you are not giving them attention. It will also teach your dog how to focus on specific tasks, meaning that they are likely to obey commands and better complete general tasks.
The athletic challenge keeps a dog fit, helps prevent obesity, increases endurance, and strengthens bones and joints. Plus, an agility course exercises a dog's mind, giving her opportunities to learn and solve problems.
A confident dog is a happy dog, and there’s no better way to build a dog’s confidence than to work together with you, their human. Agility training can help your dog get over fears of unusual surfaces, small spaces, ‘scary’ situations, and completing tasks without being right by your side. The confidence built while practicing agility will even transfer over into other parts of your dog’s life too, whether that be confidence in new situations or meeting new people and dogs.
A dog would not be able to effectively complete an agility course without the help of its owner, and this means that your dog will be reliant on your verbal instruction and physical guidance. As a result, the trust between you and your dog will increase. Agility helps build your bond with your dog, to develop an almost magical connection and lifelong friendship. Seeing your dog happy, loving their life and learning new things is all a dog owner can ask for - and doing fun things together is the way to get exactly that!
Our experienced agility trainer will guide you and your dog through all steps required for a successful agility career - whatever that means to you and your dog. So regardless of whether you dream of competing on the world stage with your dog, or you just fancy a new hobby and chance to bond with your dog while doing something different, we can help.
The K9ARC Companion Awards aim to produce well rounded, family pets who enjoy getting out and about with their human family members in a well behaved and controlled manner.
We offer 5 levels of training within the K(ARC Companion Awards Scheme:
Puppy classes (suitable for pups from 8 weeks until 18 weeks upon commencement of the course)
Life-skills classes (suitable for dogs from 18 weeks of age)
Starters Obedience (suitable for dogs from 6 months of age)
Medium Obedience (suitable for dogs from 7 months of age, upon completion of our Starters Obedience level)
Advanced Obedience (suitable for dogs from 9 months of age, upon completion of our Medium Obedience level)
The focus of our classes is to produce happy, contented dogs, which are well behaved, and under the control of handlers who fully understand the responsibilities to their dogs, to their neighbours and to the community.
In our puppy class we cover a range of basic puppy behaviour and knowledge, from nutritional requirements for your particular pup's type, to socialisation with other pups of similar development levels. After a 6 week course, you can expect your puppy to walk nicely on a flat collar and lead, show interest in you when you give a command and have started their journey towards some basic obedience skills such as sit, lie down and recall, even with the distractions of other adorable puppies in the vicinity!
Most puppies will take around 6 weeks to graduate from our Puppy class and, while there is no fixed examination for completion of this course, our trainer will discuss with you, the owner, whether your pup is ready to move on to the next stage after the 6 week course is complete. We ask for a 6 week commitment from yourself and your puppy, with the 6 week course costing £100. If you, the owner, or our trainer believe that your pup would benefit from some extra sessions with puppies of a similar age, that is not a problem as our puppy classes run on an on-going schedule so we will always have some companions for your puppy to develop their skills alongside - these extra classes can be paid on a weekly basis if needed.
Perfect for those graduating from our Puppy classes who are about to hit the teenage stage, and the behavioural fear periods that go along with that troublesome age. Our life-skills classes are easier for younger dogs and recent rescues than our more structured obedience classes, and a lovely introduction to the world of dog-ownership for first time owners.
We cover essential owner knowledge such as safe and legal car travel with their pets, and introduce your dog to a wide variety of the scary things that they might encounter when out in the big, bad world. You'll get a teaser of some dog sports yourself and your loyal companion may want to get up to in the future, including agility, flyball and scentwork.
Most dogs will take around 6 weeks to graduate from our Life-Skills class and, while there is no fixed examination for completion of this course, our trainer will discuss with you, the owner, whether your dog is ready to move on to the next stage after the 6 week course is complete. We ask for a 6 week commitment from yourself and your dog, with the 6 week course costing £100. If you, the owner, or our trainer believe that your pup would benefit from some extra sessions to develop their skills or get over particular fears, that is not a problem as our life-skills classes run on an on-going schedule so we will always have some companions for your dog to develop their skills alongside - these extra classes can be paid on a weekly basis if needed.
This 6 week course consists of 5 weeks of training, with the final session encompassing an examination by an impartial judge. While this course follows a syllabus of skills you and your dog must be able to complete to gain your Certificate of Achievement, there will always be plenty of time to ask questions and develop your knowledge about all things dog.
At the end of this course, you and your dog will be able to enjoy loose lead walks (even with distractions such as other dogs, humans, etc), a reliable recall for off-lead fun, sit and down stays, the ability for your dog to sit calmly while you greet others when out and about, and you'll be taught how to suitably groom and examine your dog for any ailments or injuries. The cost of this course is £120 which includes the final assessment.
In order to provide the level of care and attention to every dog and owner in our Companion Award classes, we will never have more than 6 dogs per class. Disruptive or highly reactive dogs will be asked to partake in one-to-one sessions until they are ready to progress to the class environment, so as not to disadvantage the learning of other dogs in the class. We have no upper age limit - it is never too late to teach an old dog some new tricks!