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Dog Sports and Activities

Does your dog have boundless energy that can’t be satisfied by long walks and tossing a ball in the backyard? Some dogs are bred to be working dogs, and if they don’t have a job or activity to do - they will find something to do… 


Maybe you need to look into teaming up and doing a dog sport or activity with your pup. AKC dog sports and activities help active dogs focus, and the combination of thinking and moving relaxes them and tires them out. Plus, you get to work with your dog as a partner, have fun, and develop a whole new relationship. 


Dog sports range from Agility, Obedience and Rally, to Tracking and Herding. Every dog is different, and just like people, some dogs are just not cut out for competing in sports. So there are activities that you and your dog can play - and even get a title! Activities include Canine Good Citizen, Dog Tricks, Flyball, Search and Rescue and Barn Hunt (scent work). Your dog can win titles in any of the events that celebrate these activities.


I am an AKC Certified Evaluator in Canine Good Citizen, Dog Tricks, and Star Puppy. The titles are fun. You receive a ribbon or certificate, and your dog gets letters after his/her name - kind of like an advanced degree.


But the best part about the title is the work that you put into it with your dog, learning to work and play together, beginning to understand how your dog thinks and learns, and how your dog watches you and listens to you.


I recently taught an 8-week Dog Tricks class at The Academy of Dog Training in Newark, and there was a person named Sue who had a dog named Pepper. This was the final week of the class, and we gave them the opportunity to get their AKC Dog Tricks Title. Sue wasn’t sure what that was all about, and not sure if she wanted to do it. (She’d been busy, and hadn’t worked much with Pepper that week…) She said she didn’t care about titles, and what do they mean, anyway?


I told her that Pepper would have the title of Novice Trick Dog, and would have letters after his name, like he had an advanced degree. 


She said - "So he’d be a doctor?"


And I replied, “Yes, of course. He’d be Doctor Pepper.”

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