Saturday, August 20, 2011

I Failed As A Responsible Dog Owner......

....If all I taught our dogs, was how to run an agility course.
 (Blast from the past!)
(Sept 1998 with the "FLYBALL" puppies)
Double click on it to make it larger

Have you ever thought about how much time you really spend running an agility course at a trial?  It’s literally seconds, or combined, minutes.
If you travel to 12 – (two day) trials a year, with 3 runs a day, you’ve spent under 60 minutes in the ring. 
One hour! 
If you and your dog are fortunate enough to run 10 years, that’s only 10 hrs!  Even if you trial more than 12 weekends a year, and run more than 3 times a day, the amount of time you actually spend on an agility course is very small in comparison to home life. 
What are you doing the rest of the time? 
Sure, you might also compete in obedience, tracking, water work, hunt tests, flyball, herding, etc…..but your actual training, and trialing time is not going to take up the majority of your dogs time.  The majority of your dog’s time is spent being a companion, at least I hope so.
My goal is to have a good companion, as well as a great ambassador of the breed. 
I want people to say, “I wish I had a dog just like……”. 
That makes me feel like ‘I’m doing my part in being a responsible dog owner.’ 
Of course, participating in performance events exposes your dog to a lot of different places. 
The dog must ride in a car, stay in a crate, get use to new trial sites, and sometimes stay in a hotel.  Ignoring strange people, and strange dogs. What a wonderful learning experience.
When at home, the dogs hang out wherever we are.  They might be taking a nap while we’re on the computer, or reading a book.  They might be outside ‘helping’ us with chores, or just having a good romp.  They are a large part of our everyday life. 
We’re similar to a lot of ‘dog people’.  Our dogs are our “kids”, and we spend more time with them than most people do with their human children.  Hum, maybe that’s what’s wrong with our society today?
Keep doing what you’re doing!
Showing people what great companions dogs are!


  1. Very well said, and a good point that I think many people overlook. My dogs may be flyball dogs, but all a person needs to do is look in on my blog once to know that they spend the majority of their time hanging out with me, being companions. That is the most important thing they do.

  2. Love your perspective on this. I tell people my dogs are my companions, not my kids. Even with all the classes, travel, training and trialing, the dogs are cheaper than children, easier to raise, and will never scream "I hate you!" at me. After paying for years of sports and music lessons, 3 college educations and two weddings the dogs seem like a bargain! Of course, the dogs won't add to my passel of grandkids, but I'm satisfied with the six I have so far. I loved raising my kids, but I'm having a great time with the dogs now that kids are grown and I've retired from full-time motherhood!