In this article, we are going to answer “can whippets do agility?” to help you better understand your pet and other factors that you need to keep in mind about training your pet.
Agility is a type of obstacle course where a dog handler directs the dog through a series of obstacles.
Time and accuracy are both key factors here which help in determining the result of well the dog fared.
Agility courses and competitions have existed throughout the ages and various types of breeds were used in the sport.
Whippets are a small and slender breed of dogs which makes them a perfect candidate for agility sports.
However, they need to be properly trained and exercised at an early age in order to develop their physique well for dog sports and tournaments.
Can whippets do agility? Let’s find out…
What Exactly Is Dog Agility?
Dog agility is a sport for dogs which requires exceptional training and exercise.
The handler guides the dog through a series of obstacles using only hand movements and body signals.
The dogs are expected to understand the signals of the trainer and complete the course as fast and efficiently they can.
There are various types of obstacles present in agility sports such ass crossovers, seesaw, dog walks, A-frame, tunnel, jumps, etc.
All these are expected to be completed by the dog in a specified period of time and penalties and faults are calculated by a panel of judges.
There are several prestigious tournaments held all over the world which include agility sports for dogs.
Are Whippets Good At Agility?
Can whippets do agility? Whippets have a long and slender frame.
They are extremely quick to understand commands and show a keen interest in obeying human signals.
They were bred to be competition dogs and are one of the perfect candidates for agility courses.
However, whippets need to be trained and exercised at an early age for their physique to develop fully.
Their slender and short legs allow for a greater thrust when they jump and they can easily manoeuvre their body through small obstacles.
Whippets learn quickly and are always ready to please their human trainer.
They are speedy and athletic by nature and tend to perform well through obstacles.
Thus, they can, whippets do agility and make for great agility dogs, provided they have received proper training and exercise.
How To Train Your Whippet For Agility
Whether your dog is still a puppy or an adult, it is never too late to start training them for agility exercises.
Of course, that being said, old dogs and even physically handicapped ones should not be considered for any kind of sport.
Agility can be a fun activity for you to carry out with your dog and also allows you to create a stronger bonding with them.
There are plenty of ways in which you can start training your pet Whippet for the agility course.
The best place to start is at home if you plenty of open space or a field, or park would even do.
When you are starting to train your dog for agility, make sure the whole process is carried out in a fun manner.
You should not stress over how fast your dog learns all the skills. Start from the basics and reward your dog for every progress that they make.
Always make sure to pet and praise your dog for any little success they have.
This increases the chances of them being successful in the near future more quickly.
Increase Their Attention
When in an agility obstacle course, your dog needs to be able to concentrate on what the handler is saying to them.
You can start to train your dog to increase its focus so that they do not get distracted on the course field.
Start by teaching your dog to look at you with a cue. Ensure her eyes are fixed on you whenever you cue her.
You can slowly take this exercise to more distracting locations like dog parks where there will be other dogs present trying to get her attention.
Teach Your Whippet Tricks
Teaching tricks to your dogs help to improve their coordination and confidence.
You can start with teaching your dog simple tricks by teaching her to touch your hand with her nose or to raise a paw whenever you cue her.
You can also teach her to sit and stand on your command. Make sure you reward her frequently in order to keep boosting her morale.
You can move to more advanced tricks like teaching her to walk backwards and even in circles whenever you are successful with the simple ones.
Things To Consider
When you are trying to train your dog, there are some things you have to keep in mind. Not all dogs obey and respond in the same way.
Patience will be your best friend here and with time you can expect to progress forward.
Make sure you keep each training session to not more than 15-20 mins.
Longer sessions tire out your dog and they start viewing it as something they do not like.
Training should be a fun and light activity filled with rewards and praises. You should also focus on the diet of your dog and include more vegetables and meat.
You can also try feeding them dairy products like milk which is especially good for building and strengthening their bones.
Never get angry or scold your dog for any failed attempts and always focus on the rewarding part. Dogs tend to learn quicker this way.
Agility training can be a great way for you to exercise your dog and helps builds its confidence around humans.
It can also be a great way for you to bond more emotionally with your dog.
Agility sports are one of the most demanding of all dog sports and you should keep this in mind when you are trying to train your dog for it.
Not all dogs are made for agility sports and some might even simply deny training for it.
Do not work yourself over if this happens and continue to love and care for your dog in the same manner.