The Agile Rottweiler
When you speak of a Rottweiler, the first image conjured up is a tough, muscular animal that is often used as a guard dog. While it is widely assumed that Rottweilers are quick, agility is not the first thing that comes to mind. However, the breed actually does quite well in agility competition because it is so active, energetic, and intelligent.
Agility as a sport or a hobby is a wonderful way to spend time with your dog and teach him discipline and respect. While traditionally a sport for smaller herding dogs such as Border Collies or Spaniels, Rottweilers have come onto the agility scene in recent years and made quite a splash. An extremely intelligent dog, Rottweilers take well to agility training. Their strength and athleticism doesn’t hurt either!
The obstacles in agility trials are difficult but conquerable for a Rottweiler. Jumping hurdles, running tunnels, crossing the dog walk (a plank raised approximately four feet from the ground), balancing on the seesaw, and scaling and descending the A-frame are all essential parts of any agility course. It is not just strength or speed that goes into this competition, but thought and obedience. Your Rottweiler can really gain a lot from agility training and competition, including a stronger bond with you as the handler.
Rottweilers, as such an active breed, can often become restless if not exercised properly, even becoming destructive to household furniture or resorting to aggression. Agility trials are a fantastic way to combat restlessness and put your dog’s intelligence and stamina to good use.
Agility trials are a psychologically and physically demanding sport, which will help keep your Rottweiler happy. They are a breed that absolutely loves to be challenged and may even get depressed or destructive without intense stimulation. Not all Rotties will take to agility training or competition, but it is a great option at keeping you and your dog fit and creating a fun bonding experience for the both of you. Once you develop a special bond with your Rottie, they will do almost anything to please.
If you are interested in agility competition or training, contact your local kennel club or Rottweiler club to see if they offer any training seminars or have any meets coming up. Even if your Rottie doesn’t take to the sport, it never hurts to give it a shot! All training will benefit both parties and the exercise alone will leave you with a happier dog.