My Homemade Agility Equipment!

Discussion in 'Dog Sports' started by Hayley Thompson, Aug 31, 2011.

  1. Hayley Thompson Well-Known Member

    The other day, I decided I would try to make my own homemade agility hoop! I already had the hoola hoop and had tried awhile back to get Riley to go through, and she would but progress was very slow and she always required a lure. I think the fact that even when I try to hold the hoop as still as possible, I am ultimately still moving it because it is very hard to hold the hoop, lure, click and treat with just one person. I had asked Grant to help one day as well, but she wasn't having the distraction. So I made this contraption:

    Which is basically a hoop tied to 2 reflective poles that we use in the winter at the end of our driveway! Using the twine and the flimsy poles actually works great because if Riley happens to hit the hoop it will sway with her, so no fear of it being too rigid she may hurt herself. So I started with it at ground level, slowing inching it up higher and higher, the hoop is now probably just over a foot high. (How high should I go for a border collie, I read around 22 inches?) I'm only doing it for my own fun, not to compete, so I am not actually concerned with the "proper" heights, but I would like to push her to her maximum, as she LOOOOVEESSSS jumping and it is a great way for her to get exercised! Now that we are at a height at about a foot, she perfers a run off, so if I do make it higher, I think it would be best to go slower than we did before with regards to increasing the height because I don't want to overwork her muscles. Does that even sound logical?

    Anyway, so she is great at it, and I love watching her jump! I showed Grant last night at how good she was as it only took one 10 minute training session to move it up to the height I have it now!! He kept asking me, "Have you been practicing with her!?" "I think she must jump when we're not home, because she is getting so good!" I was proud as a peacock!!

    So below I have some snap shots I took of her last night while jumping (sorry for the poor quality they were taken on my blackberry- note to self: buy new camera!)

    So she's great at doing it with no lure anymore, just a voice ("hoop") and hand command! But my problem is I think I caught the agility bug.....What is the usual progression that they teach agility obstacles in? What can I do next!?!?!?

    Attached Files:

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  2. tigerlily46514 Honored Member

    BRILLIANT!!! so so claver!!

    I was looking for a thread that someone (i *think* it was Jean the admin) made on bust-apart hula-hoops, which slip apart if your dog does not clear the hoop.........but, i can't find it)

    It is great your dog is learning the words/cue/hand signal for each 'toy' there, as THAT *is* the hard part, is having the dog know WHICH thingie to go to NEXT.

    I bet, if you are clever enough to build a hoop, you could also build up a stick held up off the ground for her to jump over??? and then work on that cue?
    Hayley Thompson likes this.
  3. charmedwolf Moderator

    Yep, Jean was the one for the hula hoop. It's in the library, the second one down I think.

    Agility is usually taught jumps first and tunnels, then contacts obstacles then weave poles. I think it would be great if you could do shadow handling first and get her more looking for your body and cues.
    Hayley Thompson likes this.
  4. Hayley Thompson Well-Known Member

    Thanks for the great tips! I was looking at some other posts on agility, but I missed the one that Jean posted with the break away hoop- I must look it up!! I think my next task will be to try and build a basic jump that we can work on!! I am really interested in weave poles, but they scare me!! lol I have been reading up on them and watching videos, so I will get to that point someday where we will try!! I am excited to get a tunnel too! Since we are just doing it for our own enjoyment, I have seen that alot of people get kids tunnels and just use that, so I think I may try to find a cheap one to purchase tonight!!
  5. Hayley Thompson Well-Known Member

    another idea I had thought of for the tunnel too, would be to get another hoola hoop, get nylon fabric, sew it in a tube, attach it to the hoop, and then attach the hoop to poles kind of like i did for the jump! lol I always "think" ambitiously but "acting" on that ambition is another story!! lol I'll post pics if I ever do it
  6. charmedwolf Moderator

    I like your idea for the hula hoop tunnel as most of the kids ones are way to small to practise with for my dogs. The basic jumps are really easy to make it just takes a little planning.
    Hayley Thompson likes this.
  7. Anneke Honored Member

    Looks great!!
    Hayley Thompson likes this.
  8. fly30 Experienced Member

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  9. TeLySu New Member

    :) All great ideas! Thanks for sharing them!
    Dogster, tigerlily46514 and Jean Cote like this.

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