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  #11  
Old 08-26-2013, 04:52 PM
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I don't really look for a sport dog per se, especially because I really just do sports for fun and for something to train in and have yet to really compete in a whole lot yet. My first priority is finding a dog I can live with on a daily basis but also has the drive, intelligence and trainability required for all of the training and activities I like to do with my dogs. Even if/when I do get much more involved in sports, I imagine that that will still be my first and foremost goal. And the things I like in just an every day dog should translate into a good sports dog for me anyway. I like a dog who is motivated by multiple things (food, play, praise), a dog who is easygoing and confident, appropriately friendly (or aloof) with people and other dogs (no aggression or shyness), has the stamina and energy and desire to do stuff, is a people oriented dog who enjoys learning and is a good thinker, is athletic in build and built well for activities, etc.

I am sure you'll find the right dog/breed for you! It can be a tough one to decide on, but you'll get there. And you can certainly find a sporting dog that is a good sport dog if that is what you like to live with. I've not owned any sporting breeds other than Tollers, but my Toller is a wonderful little sport dog (except for her people weirdness). She's different than my Aussie, but neither one is really better than the other when it comes to doing stuff, they're just a little different at doing stuff and learning stuff and the Toller doesn't have as much stamina always, but that's just an individual thing. I personally mesh better with herding dogs than any other type, but everyone is different. :-)
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Last edited by Toller_08; 08-26-2013 at 05:10 PM.
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  #12  
Old 08-26-2013, 05:06 PM
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Way too many people fall into the trap of, "If I want to be successful at agility, I need a border collie or sheltie."

Those people often get frustrated when their dog is not fun to live with at home, because they don't have the lifestyle suited for such a dog. You know the types of dogs you like. Go get one and train it to be an awesome agility dog. At the trials I was at the past two weekends, the most accomplished/successful dogs were a rat terrier and a mystery mutt (looked like a bully mix of some kind). There were beagles earning titles alongside border collies, and shelter mutts more than holding their own against intentional sport bred dogs.

Get the dog you love and can live with. You can train any dog to be successful at agility if you have a strong relationship and your dog trusts you
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Old 08-26-2013, 05:18 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by CaliTerp07 View Post
Way too many people fall into the trap of, "If I want to be successful at agility, I need a border collie or sheltie."

Those people often get frustrated when their dog is not fun to live with at home, because they don't have the lifestyle suited for such a dog. You know the types of dogs you like. Go get one and train it to be an awesome agility dog. At the trials I was at the past two weekends, the most accomplished/successful dogs were a rat terrier and a mystery mutt (looked like a bully mix of some kind). There were beagles earning titles alongside border collies, and shelter mutts more than holding their own against intentional sport bred dogs.

Get the dog you love and can live with. You can train any dog to be successful at agility if you have a strong relationship and your dog trusts you
What she said. Exactly.
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  #14  
Old 08-26-2013, 06:45 PM
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I also agree with the above. Emma was a great agility dog. Yeah she has a few hound moments but at the end of the day she was a great dog for me in daily life which is way more time than just sports training.
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  #15  
Old 08-26-2013, 06:48 PM
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Here's my favorite Vizzy rocking the agility world! I LOVEEE Border Collies but wouldn't trade my Vizsla for the world
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  #16  
Old 08-26-2013, 10:33 PM
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I know I say it again and again but dogs like Summer are totally underrated for agility. She's not a super drivey or impressive dog really in everyday life. She likes to sleep a lot. She is very excitable but not demanding at all. You could probably never walk her and she'd be fine. You could hand her off to just about anyone and she'd be great to live with. She's just.... easy. Get her out on the agility field though and she really flies. She's just naturally very suited for it- biddable, loves food, fast, athletic, loves to run, and completely bombproof and carefree. Nothing phases her ever- she seems oblivious to anything scary. But she's not so crazy she's running off course all the time and over the top. And yet, I've never once had to coach her up, she's always in the game. I don't know how I lucked out with her but if I could find it again, I definitely would.

You don't need a super drivey herder to do well. I am absolutely certain that if you had taken a young Summer and handed her to an experienced trainer she could have gone very very far.

Mia is drivier than Summer but she's also much more apt to worry and fear about things.
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  #17  
Old 08-26-2013, 10:41 PM
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I don't think Pappies are underrated in the agility world.. a TON of them run in our trials& always do very well!

Penn is the opposite of Summer. She's got lots of drive but I need to tie a bird to my ass to convince her to put in effort. That said, she's super handler focused& will probably never knock one more on course!
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Old 08-26-2013, 10:44 PM
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Quote:
Originally Posted by yv0nne View Post
I don't think Pappies are underrated in the agility world.. a TON of them run in our trials& always do very well!

Penn is the opposite of Summer. She's got lots of drive but I need to tie a bird to my ass to convince her to put in effort. That said, she's super handler focused& will probably never knock one more on course!
I wouldn't say paps are but I think Summer-dogs in specific are. I see a lot of people really wanting crazy over the top drive and all that and Summer is a dog that actively avoids toys and playing. I wouldn't call her drivey at all really...

I actually think bombproof temperament, athleticism, and handler focus may be more important than drive in agility.

Summer is very food motivated- well.... now. When I first got her she was the kind of dog that barely ate and would spit things out. I'm not sure how my little agility star came out of a dog that wasn't very naturally food or play oriented. But boy she LOVES agility.
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  #19  
Old 08-26-2013, 10:49 PM
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Ohhh okay! I get what you mean now. Yeah, I would think handler focus is THE main thing. Everything else after that is secondary.. you don't have an agility dog if they are too busy taking all the obstacles or paying attention to everything except you!
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  #20  
Old 08-28-2013, 09:38 AM
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I don't think I said that anyone *had* to have a herding dog to do agility. ;-)

Herding dogs are usually what people who compete at the upper levels of agility have, but that doesn't mean you can't be successful in your own right with something else.

Again, you need to go with what you can live with. Not everyone wants to live with a high drive dog and often it's easier to do agility with a dog that's not as fast or drivey.

It's hard to learn with a dog that's impatient and faster then you are.

Also, just from what I've heard from people, people who have sporting dogs don't usually like herding dogs and vise versa. There are a few people who can take both, but usually it's either one or the other.

I can tell you that if labs were the only dogs in the world, I would probably be dogless.

There are probably people who would tell you that if herders were the only dogs in the world, they would be dogless lol

There are a ton of breeds for a reason; there's something for everyone so you *don't* have to settle.

I know alot of people who prefer to head to the shelters when it's time to get a dog. If you're patient and you know what you're looking for temperament wise, you can definitely find the perfect dog there, too.
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