Its over for another 4 years

Well; the Olympics are over, and boy did it end with a bang. A great bang I have to add; being that I am Canadian. It has left me thinking of all the mess that now has to be cleaned up by someone, oh well glad it's not me. Anyway; this has lead me to ponder on the world of competitive games with our dogs. You name it; it's out there to compete for gold. There is agility, obedience, frisbee, dock diving, hunting, go to ground, lure coursing, skijoring, which I have done with two of my standard poodles back in Canada, what a blast. There is surfing, weight pulling, sledding, and if you don't have snow there is urban mushing. I had the opportunity to photograph some Urban Mushing dogs in action; very cool. There is water work and drafting events; there are the extreme obedience events like shutzhund. There is something for everyone and every dog.

But not all dogs that were bred to a specific type activity like the Border Collie, the husky type dogs or the beefy bully breeds will want to or thrive at their designated activity. Most breeds do have tendencies towards certain things like retrieving, herding or water but it isn't always a sure thing. Many new golden retriever or labrador owners have complained that their dogs don't like the water or don't retrieve, oh well. All dogs love to do something specific and if it's not what you think they would normally enjoy you just have to give several things a try.

If you are looking to get into a specific sport like mushing or frisbee then you need to get a dog which has been bred for that. Or who displays those type of traits; high drive for example, or strong retrieving instincts. Many breeders of particular breeds start training very early; pretty much as soon as the pups can walk. The training is not official but they start to instill a sense of work ethic and drive towards that specific activity.

For me personally; I don't care what my dog wants to do. I've done many activites and find it difficult to commit to one; I tend to get bored with too much repetition. (sound familiar?) But I do love to learn, watch and shoot all sorts of activities. And with a little trial and error you too can find out what your dog would love to do in regards to a sport activity. If you are game; most dogs will give just about anything a go. Although there are those few that are happy as a clam on the couch with a good movie. Like the old saying goes; you can lead a horse to water................

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