Basement Agility at its Finest

Today is actually the next Agility Action Day for dog agility bloggers. I have felt out of touch with the agility world lately so I’m really struggling to come up with something to contribute. The theme this round is backyard agility, something I don’t have much experience with. Until recently I haven’t had a backyard to use for this purpose. For the last three years we have done most of our practice in our wee living room with one jump, a practice plank, and four sad little weave poles.

Foundations, foundations, foundations. That’s all I have to say. I like to think we have proven a lot can be accomplished with very little.

Now, however, we do have a decent-sized yard. Only it’s dark by five pm. And cold. Getting up the motivation to practice outside after a walk in sub-zero temperatures is a Herculean effort at best.

It’s a good thing the new house also comes with a basement. An unfurnished basement. I feel like we have graduated to a whole new level of agiliting.

Agility-ing? Agiling? Whatever.

Make fun of our home-made clunky jumps if you wish, but hopefully over this winter Shiva and I will continue to prove that agility is not about barn rentals or fancy equipment. It really is a sport for anyone with interest and passion. If this crazy, collection-hating mutt can learn to weave twelve poles and rip across an A-frame with only limited space, anyone can.

Welcome to the Advent Calendar for Dog Lovers hosted by Kol’s Notes, PupLove, Rescued Insanity, Woof Woof Mama & I Still Want More Puppies!

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18 thoughts on “Basement Agility at its Finest

  1. Agility workouts are a lot of fun for doggie + owner. Dogs love to feel important and needed, so this gives them that feeling. I congratulate you for homemade jumps and all homemade items. You put love in your desire to enjoy your time with doggie. My friend has a border collie and boy does he need to do this agility. Some dogs are gifted at this! When my GSD was much younger we did agility together and it was our special bonding time. Great exercise for everyone!

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  2. That’s awesome! I wish we had a basement to play in…and a big backyard:) I’d love to try agility with Kaya. I know she’d be good at it, but I’m not sure she’d be interested if it did not involved a tennis ball:/

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  3. Agility definitely is for those with interest and passion! me and charlie practice as often as possible, hopefully more with the start of winter break! I see it as a great way to make his training more fun! And its all thanks to some PVC pipes and some puppy energy!

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  4. is Shiva in that snap? Can’t really see it clearly…

    Good work on the Homemade Agility equipments though… Wish I had a basement or a backyard or even a toddler free living room…

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  5. As long as it works for Shiva – who cares if it isn’t top of the line? Good job using your imagination and making something useful for Shiva! I use the bleachers and other random equipment at the park for Blueberry. Not that she’s a champ like Shiva – but she just enjoys climbing high, etc. The one thing I will have to buy her is a tunnel. She loves those!!

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  6. I agree with Gizmo above – you are a role model for people who say they can’t (do X) because they don’t have (whatever)!

    We thought for sure we could never do anything like agility with Bella because of her fear and reactivity. You showed us we could – even inspired Jan to make some obstacles for her to practice with. She will never compete in a real trial but she loves to ‘play agility’ and that’s okay with us.

    (That said, our trainer has been contacted about putting together some ‘video trials’ where reactive dogs compete via video submissions so they don’t have to survive the stress of being around the other competitors all weekend long. I’m hoping it might actually happen. 🙂

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  7. I’m too lazy (and cheap) to set up agility in our yard, instead I use the forest, we jump over logs and that’s about all. I suppose I could have her practice weaving between trees or ‘a-framing’ up rocks but we just jump over logs. 🙂

    I love your dedication!

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  8. I wish I could practice inside- don’t have a basement to use and very little indoor space. We have lots of space outside to practice, but as you pointed out it’s hard in the winter. Due to lots of skunks we can’t practice after dark- which comes earlier and earlier- and pretty soon I’m sure the snow will be too deep. I’m sure I could get one jump inside. Any tips on how/what to practice with it? We don’t have many “real” trainers around here, and a friend has just helped us out. She’s always focused on running a course as a whole with backchaining and while Shiloh’s very good, I don’t think we’ve really had a big foundations type approach. Any resources you could point me to?

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