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agility requirements

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Our BC is only 12 1/2 weeks old right now but is an extremely quick learner and quick in obedience. I'm wondering at what age is it safe to begin a dog in agility and what are the requirements for the dog regarding papers whether they must be registered. My BC has no papers and I'm wondering if this event would be closed to her.

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Guest Dynamite Tess

Hi Heather K

As I'm in the UK I can only tell you that over here a dog has to be registered with the kennel club for agility trials.

I'm afraid that at 12 1/2 weeks your dog is much too young to start training. You must allow her limbs and muscles to develop fully before asking her to climb equipment otherwise you will be setting her up for misery when she's as young as five years. Please don't rush her. I have heard several horror stories recently from people who asked too much of a young puppy and messed up either their back or legs. I myself made this mistake also with my previous dog. However, please carry on with obedience training as that will always come in handy in agility. Coming when called, sit and stay. Get her used to working on both sides of your body though not just the left. Find out what motivates her. For instance will you need to use a treat, or will verbal praise be enough.

Good luck. Regards, Val

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