Winter Blues? Try an Agility Course!

Check out this great story about Brian Einarson. Brian built a winter playground in his backyard for his dogs to get supervised exercise!

Brian’s elaborate snow tunnels emulate the great learning conditions that are provided by agility courses.  Agility programs have a positive impact on the relationship between dog and human, and that is why they are one of the training programs available at The Dog Stop!

Agility Courses are Based on Active Communication

Agility training builds trust between a human and their dog through the practical application of verbal and visual communication. This includes eye contact, body signals, and verbal commands. The impact of agility courses was shown in the following study. They had three groups of dogs – search and rescue dogs, agility-trained dogs, and pet dogs. During a test in which there was a solvable challenge that led to a treat, the agility dogs looked at their humans more than pet dogs or search and rescue dogs. As search and rescue dogs are trained to operate more independently from their humans, this makes sense.

In the study’s conclusion, the authors’ stated: “Considering these results together it appears that…communication can affect a dog’s performance in socio-cognitive tasks” and that “it may be that the relevant element in the training experience is in fact the dogs’ more frequent exposure to…communication by humans, since both forms of training (especially agility) require humans to maintain continuous contact with the dog both verbally and visually” (Marshall-Pescini et. al, 2009).

Many of our clients join our agility classes to improve their working relationship with their dog, and to have fun! Many owners have seen an increase in their dog’s confidence because of their attendance in our classes. In addition, agility courses are a great physical workout for both humans and dogs.

Register for an Upcoming Agility Class 

If you are interested in attending an Agility class, we have a Fun Agility course  starting on Feb 23rd! Fill out a training form so that we can get you started.
If you have any general inquiries, please contact us via email at

Marshall-Pescini, Sarah & Passalacqua, Chiara & Barnard, Shanis & Valsecchi, Paola & Prato Previde, Emanuela. (2009). Agility and search and rescue training differently affects pet dogs’ behaviour in socio-cognitive task. Behavioural processes. 81. 416-22.

A link to download the pdf of this article can be found here