Tyler, Texas (KETK) — A group of talented dogs came together in East Texas on Saturday for prizes and plenty of treats at the Dog Agility Competition held at the Horse Rose Park in Tyler.
The most obedient and agile dogs got to strut their stuff on this obstacle course this weekend, pups of all shapes and sizes were able to compete and Don Etheridge, Officer and trainer at the Tyler Obedience Training Club, says it's all about how fast they move, "This is a competition to determine not only if they do it accurately but if they do it fast. Dog agility is all about doing it rapidly."
Some dogs have the rapid thing down pat, and others…well, they were kind of slow. But it takes a lot of practice to teach your dogs to jump through hoops, but that is what the Tyler Obedience Club does best.
Etheridge says the trick is, you have to speak the same language as your dog, Etheridge says, "The whole thing about working with your dog is that it's a personal relationship, with your dog, we teach you how to speak dog, so to speak."
Lindsey Hinds is the handler of ‘Pogo’ — a winner from the Dog Agility competition. Hinds says, “She got a ‘pairs’, ‘advanced pairs’ qualifying leg in first place today, and she got qualified in advanced gamblers yesterday, she loves agility!”
Pogo earned a couple first place ribbons at the competition this weekend and when Pogo isn't competing she likes to show off some tricks.
These dog athletes are tested how high they can jump, and how fast they can run, but it can be a work out for the handlers too!
Hinds says, "People can blow knees out if you don't stretch out, you can hurt yourself if you're not real careful."
Rene King is another handler in the competition for her dog, Swigs, King says, " The dogs here are the true athletes, but the handlers have to be agile enough to keep up with them which sometimes can be challenging."
Kinds says training helps builds a better bond between man, and man's best friend.
King says, "You're able to communicate with them on their level, and really show them what you want, it just makes a better pet all the way around."