ShowSight Presents The Miniature American Shepherd

obstacle, or they do not qualify. Th is is a safety issue and we do want our dogs safely running a course. It is easy to start pups at an early age with toys, circling cones and the bang game on a low teeter, obedience and other fun games. It is important to wait until the pup’s growth plates are closed before start- ing weaves and full height obstacles, nor- mally between 12 months to 18 months. Once you start practicing in a class and learning about agility you will get the bug! Th ere are many venues to showcase our Miniature American Shepherds in agility—AKC, USDAA, UKC, Teacup, just to name a few. Each venue has di ff er- ent rules, so be sure to know which venue you prefer and find out what jump height your little dog will jump. Most Minis will jump either 16 inches, or 12 inches in AKC, as the breed standard is between 13 inches to 18 inches. OBEDIENCE AND RALLY Th ese are two challenging events that the Miniature American Shepherd excels in. Obedience trials demonstrate the usefulness of the dog as a companion to man. Developed in the 1930s, it is one of the AKC’s oldest events! Obedience trials showcase dogs that have been trained and conditioned to behave well in the home, in public places and in the presence of

264 • S HOW S IGHT M AGAZINE , S EPTEMBER 2014

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