Just Because We Can Doesn’t Mean We Should

I’ve spent the last four days down in Berkshire on an instructors agility course with The Agility Club.

While I was there we observed lots of different breeds running agility sequences. There were quite a few small dogs running courses.

With the large breeds, the norm when setting a dog up to start a course was getting the dog to do a middle. This lined the dog up with the jump on the angle the handler wanted.

A middle is simply getting the dog to come from behind to stand in between your legs facing the way you are.

The same didn’t happen with the smaller dogs.

They were often picked up and physically manoeuvred to be on the line the handler wanted.

This was something I queried with one of the instructors. The answer was people just do that to little dogs. There is no reason they can’t teach the dog to do a middle but for whatever reason, the majority were picked up and moved.

So why did this bother me I hear you ask??

Well, some of those dogs may have been happy to be picked up by their owner or even by a stranger but the majority of dogs are not happy to be picked up and moved by a stranger. Some dogs also don’t like being picked up by their owner.

In other words, people do this because they can and it may be considered as easier.
By now, you know my stance on training dogs. I want dogs to have a positive experience, enjoying what they are doing but also to give them a choice and to be listened to.

So just because we can do something doesn’t mean we should!!

I got my results for the course today and I achieved a First Class Accreditation the highest level possible.

Classes are starting at a local venue in January. Places are very limited and I have had a lot of interest so please let me know if you are interested.

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