Agility Classes

Foundation for Agility

Familiarize your dog with training techniques that will help in his agility career – or in whatever you do! Present physical and mental challenges to help him gain confidence and physical awareness, as well as greater competence with obedience skills. Some of the activities we work on in this class are targeting, motivated stays (and releases), circle work, and speedy recalls.

This class is really not about the agility equipment, but rather about your relationship with your dog and his willingness and ability to respond to your physical and verbal cues. We work with a ladder, cones, perches, planks, a Buja board, jumps at very low heights, hoops and tunnels – and one class with an intro to the “big” contact equipment. Plenty of time for equipment – let’s learn solid stays, front crosses and lightning fast recalls!

Class duration is 7 weeks, one hour each week. Puppy kindergarten or other basic obedience class is a must to prepare for this class. Clicker training is used.

The Foundation class is held at Hungry Like the Woof in Warrenton. All other classes are held at our site in Amissville.


Agility Skills with Obstacles

In this class, dog and handler are introduced to agility concepts and equipment in a stepwise, positive manner. The focus is on making agility absolute fun for the dog. Safety on the equipment is stressed. Jump and contact obstacle heights are kept low. Most work is done on lead. Prerequisite: Mountain View’s Family Dog class or similar program plus Foundation for Agility.

Agility Contacts & Weaves

This is the third in our progression of agility classes. We’re aiming at fast and accurate contact work using the targeting method. Weaves will be taught using channel weaves and 2 x 2s. This class is quite active, with stations set up for independent practice as well as instructor-guided exercises.

Agility Jump Skills

Jumping is such an important piece of the agility “puzzle” that we devote a class to the skill. In this class we work through the “basic 5” jump maneuvers: forward send, recalls over jumps, serpentine, 270 degree jump, and the wrap. All of these maneuvers will be practiced in short sequences. In addition, jump grids will be used to help teach the dog how to find the optimal take-off point and to teach when to extend and when to collect.

This class naturally follows our Contacts & Weaves  class, but it may be taken at any time after the foundation classes (Foundation, Obstacle Intro, Contacts & Weaves). Jumping skills need to be worked throughout the dog’s agility career, and this class can help to improve those skills at any point. We start with the dog learning to handle jumps at a very low level and rapidly work up to his competition jump height. Therefore, this class is open only to orthopedically mature dogs, i.e., over 15 months of age for medium breeds (and generally older for large breeds).

Novice Agility Prep

For dog/handler teams who have successfully completed our foundation classes or equivalent (subject to instructor approval) and as many of the other introductory classes as possible. Using short sequences, the handler will learn how to guide the dog around the course efficiently. Handling techniques will be presented and practiced, including lead-outs, front, rear, and blind crosses, and how to use them in sequences to optimize the dog’s performance.

Rules of the various agility organizations (primarily USDAA, AKC and UKC) are discussed and representative course segments and an occasional full course from these venues are presented.

Competition Agility

For dogs who are competing in agility trials, or with instructor approval. Advanced level sequences and courses are worked on. Handling maneuvers are sharpened; alternatives are attempted and compared. Course strategies are discussed.

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