Monday, July 20, 2009

Sport of Choice

Katrin at "By My Side Blog" posted a good conversation starter, not sure where it orginally came from, but thought I'd pass it on to my readers.

What got you into your sport of choice...why that one, why not another type of dog sport? What else have you tried, but don't care for? What haven't you tried but would like to?

Agility is my sport of choice. The first time I ever tried it was at a seminar put on by my dog club. I was about 14 or so, and my dog LOVED it. I still love it to this day- I think what I love most about it is the teamwork that is involved. It is also a good testament to your own skill- and doesn't rely just on the dog to do the job. The training is so broken down, and so specific. It is a great challenge.

I have tried LOTS of other dog sports-

Scenthurdle Racing was something I loved. Wicca also loved this game and never made a mistake. It was fun to train, and fun to race. Scent is slowly dying though, and there isn't enough interest in my area for a team. :o(

Sheepherding. My dogs love it (or at least Wicca USED to) and I remember the first time Wicca was on sheep. It was breathtaking and I got goosebumps. I will never compete in herding- I don't have the time or the inclination to train as often as I would have to. But we do enjoy playing once in a while.

Obedience. Competitive Obedience was my first love. I love the precision, the training, and the competing. Agility is much more fun I must admit, and I just don't have the time to do both seriously. But we dabble, and one day I will get Wicca's UD title...(first we have to get that darn CDX) I think what turned me off a bit is how competitive the other people get. Some are so hard core, and actually hurt their dogs in order to win. I just don't get that kind of competition, and I don't like to be around people who are like that.

Rally Obedience. When Rally first came to Canada I totally made fun of it. Really. I thought it was a joke, and made fun of how easy it was. And then I tried it, and then my dogs liked the fact that I could talk to them, and it was less rigid than regular obedience. And will you look at that- it's even challenging! I do enjoy rally now, and will continue to play when I have the opportunity.

Conformation. I showed Wicca for a while, but promptly gave up when I realised I was paying for her littermates Championship...I still like it though, and will one day have another dog I can show. I like it because it takes little training, and it's something that a young, young dog can do. I don't like the snobby handlers, and the politics that go along with said handlers.

Flyball. I only played briefly years, and years ago with my old dog Tina. It's just not my thing I guess. I cringe whenever I see the dogs hit the box (even with a swimmers turn) and can't see myself ever playing the game with my current breed.

Drafting. I played around with my parents Rottweiler cross, and even participated in a few parades. It was fun, but I don't intend on ever owning a dog big enough to do it.

Go To Ground/Earthdog. I LOVED watching this at the Jack trials. If I owned a terrier I would for sure let them play. This is a sport that doesn't need much in the way of training, as it relies on instinct rather than a trained behavior.

I have been a helper for Field stuff- and it totally grosses me out. But as long as I can throw with gloves I don't mind helping! I don't think that I would do it seriously/trial even if I owned a kick ass sporting's too icky. Wicca doesn't mind the fake birds though!

Tracking. I haven't ever gotten far with this. I don't have the know how, and I can't have time for everything. I was hopeful that I would start Pixel but that hasn't happened, and at this point isn't likely too. Maybe one day! I think this would be a great game for an older dog, or a dog who had to be retired from impact sports.

So friends and readers answer the question...

What got you into your sport of choice...why that one, why not another type of dog sport? What else have you tried, but don't care for? What haven't you tried but would like to?


Jules said...

This is really a great question. I enjoyed thinking about it - especially since I find herding inching upward!

onecollie said...

ohhhhhh, I'm such a terrible person! will get out tracking,promise!!!!! & Pixel will do fantastic.....just gotta wait for cool weather....

Lani said...

Good question! I've not tried as many sports as you & your pack have - but my favorites are (in order of preference):

1- Agility (fun for dog and handler, and no stress-filled competition in the 8" Preferred category)
2 - Rally (variety like agility and the dogs love it, too)
3 - Obedience (precision is fun - just hard to find time for all the proofing required to put in a strong run in competition)

I would like to try tracking, too. If I could just find more time...