FIRST! BEFORE ANYTHING ELSE...
YOU ready for dogsport?
Before you spend any time or money starting a dogsport, I want you to think about the following:
After over 35 years in dogsport, I have met a LOT of "newbies". I've seen those that "make it" in dogsport and those who don't. And I've seen why. It comes down to exactly FOUR things:
1) THE DOG. If Fido doesn't want to play, you are doomed. Unless you get another dog. Some do, some don't. Don't be upset with your dog - she can't help her genetics. Just love her for who she is.
2) LOCATION. Be prepared to drive A LOT. You must be able to afford gas. Consider yourself lucky if there is an organized and functional club of the sport you want to participate in in your area. More often than not you have to drive a good distance.
3) DETERMINATION. Otherwise known as grit. IF you decide you want to do dogsport - you will do it; despite the odds. If you need to be held by the hand you won't make it. When I was a little ol' 14 year old kid I was riding the bus to a large kennel to clean kennels for free for the opportunity to just WATCH them train obedience and protection training. My parents did not encourage my dog activities and I had no friends involved in them. I had to locate events. figure out how to train for and enter them - all before the days of the internet. This is a big one: if you are not a self starter, you probably will drop out.
4) TIME & STABLE FAMILY LIFE. Many folks start out and then find they are over booked. Easy to have happen, and probably the number one reason people drop out of dog sport. Most sports require at least one training session per weeknight and one day per weekend. If you are in the military, in school, working two jobs, have a ton of kids, or if little Johnny has baseball all summer - forget it. On the flip side, some dog sports make FANTASTIC family activies.
OK! Let's see what's available to you and your dog!
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