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Hi guys,

I have had my 5 month old dobe girl for 6 weeks now, she's my first dobe.

She's very energetic and very smart. I would really like to tire her out with agility or training but I'm not sure where to start.

I live in Dubai which is a particularly dog unfriendly place - so there's no classes or professional trainers available. I found a basic group obedience class that I've enrolled in, just to get her socialized and interacting with me more.

Other than this, is there anything I can be doing with her at home? Can I setup agility stuff in my garden and train her myself?

Any advice would be much appreciated.
 

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I would be careful, as your girl is still quite young and you don't want to cause any injuries to her still growing body. Basic obedience is a very good start as it will come in handy later in agility. I'm sure there are many agility people here that can give you some helpful tips on low impact agility activities you could start with.

Good for you for working with your puppy! You will reap the rewards as she matures.
 

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Generally in agility training you don't start on any obstacles until your dog is full grown (at my agility club puppies can start on most obstacles at 16 months), we do introduce some things earlier, like tunnels and wobble boards, but really the important part of agility training is foundation. Learning obstacles does not take very long at all, but the foundation training and building a working relationship with your dog is the most important and time consuming part.

I think you should continue on with the obedience training, get her enjoying the work she is doing! You could give rally-obedience a try, they may not offer it in Dubai, but you can probably find a book somewhere explaining the rules and signs for it and you could set up your own rally obedience courses :)
 
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Hey there,

I would definitely agree with what has already been said, you dont want to damage your dog's bones by doing anything too high-stress. Obedience training is an excellent way to drain energy, also swimming is brilliant as it is also low-impact. I would say most agility is fine, but avoid anything to do with jumping and keep it to short 10-15 minute sessions.

Our dogs are the same age, would be great to see some pics! :)
 

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I'm going to say the same thing that everyone else said, simply because it really is important: your girl is still very young! It's hard on them and since your girl is still growing, it won't be very good for her. We do basic agility with my dog and started when she was 1 year, however we really didn't do too much just basic things like touching the top of a butter dish and whatnot so that she will learn that for later and really simple things that were more mental than physical. You could do mental tricks and let her know the direction that you are headed in that way, though I would definitely avoid anything that could cause stress on her growing body (jumps, etc). Good luck! :)

Oh, and when the time comes to get into agility you can build your own equipment I personally think this website http://www.caninecrib.com/dog/training/agility-course.asp is fantastic and gives you simple and descriptive ways to build things. You could even get started now so that it will be ready when she is old enough!
 

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My dobe puppy is just one month younger than yours, and I've taken her to two private training sessions.

The most important thing to teach at this age in their opinion: the "watch me" -- training your pup to focus on your eyes. And this becomes the foundation for teaching everything else. I didn't think Kaleesi would ever get it, and I didn't think I would ever figure out how to get her to stare at my eyes and sit and stay that way till I said "OK".

But she's gotten it, and it was "me" that needed to learn how to teach it and release it.

Yesterday, she was trying to get my attention while I was busy and I ignored her jumping, acting up. Finally, she got in a perfect sit position and just stared at me!

I had to laugh, go get a treat, and then say OK in a happy, excited voice.

Go on YouTube and you can find some great training videos, some using a clicker to make a sound when the pup does what you want.

But it makes sense to get her attention and learn how to hold it with the "watch me" command.

Good luck!! Pictures please, we love dobe pictures!!! Here's Kaleesi, my young pup!

 

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Hi everyone,

Thanks so much for all of your posts.

We started our first obedience class last night and it was awesome! She was so exhausted after it and so happy during it.

One of the things they taught us is how to train her to look in my eyes. So I'm working on doing that for longer and longer periods. She's such a soppy girl anyway so she loves staring longingly at me.

I found a place selling those tunnels, so just for fun and playtime I might get one.

Other than that, I will take everyone's advice and stay focused on the basics so that we really understand eachother. Then once those bones get big and strong, we'll start some agility stuff. Just so keen to give her a full balanced life!

Thanks again :)
 

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I agree with the above about starting with OB. A solid recall is a great place to start. Getting her used to being around other dogs. One thing I did in OB training that helped me alot in agility that I wasnt even aware of was teaching Kyrah to go away from me. You could build value in your hands and teach her to follow them. You could start teaching left & right. Start reading, learning & watching as much as you can. That way you will know about what you may want to teach. Example: 2on 2off...how many paws you want on your contact for the teeter? I taught Kyrah 2o2o and really wish I had taught her 4on. I am sure there are other things but cant remember right now.
 

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There is a book thru Amazon called "Agility Right from the Start" - get that and follow it.
 
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