Posted by: allstaragility | June 4, 2013

Change Starts With You!

Today is another Dog Agility Blog Action Day!  While today’s topic is Improving Agility Organizations,  I want to focus on ways I feel each of us, as competitors, are responsible for the continued growth and evolution of our sport and what we need to do about it!

1) Huh?  What is wrong with the different agility organizations now?

I don’t like focusing on negatives and  I don’t want to give a laundry list on how I feel each organization I compete in can improve.   I do want to emphasize how we constantly need to be looking at ways to improve and make it better as a whole.  Simply comparing the differences in obstacle construction from now to even 10 years ago is amazing.  Rubberized contacts, breakaway tires, and jumps with the dog’s safety in mind are relatively new concepts.  If  we were all satisfied with the status quo, they would still be considered a luxury rather than the standard and many more dogs would have been injured!  It is our responsibility to look at our sport with a critical eye and be the catalyst of those changes to make it better.

2) Vive la difference!

While all of us are lumped in under the heading of “Agility Enthusiasts”, we each have such different visions for what directions we see the sport taking.  This was never so evident as when the DABAD topic was “Internationalization” .  You can read the various entries HERE.  No matter what, we must continue to respect each other’s perspectives.   For example,  none of us has enough time (or money!) to compete in every organization or major event.   I compete mainly in USDAA, AKC and UKI.   I haven’t done NADAC or UKC  for  years and while I might personally feel they are both on  different planes from my on personal direction I want to take in my agility journey (please don’t flame, keep reading!), I completely respect those who are such devout enthusiasts to those organizations and am not in a position to be critical of how they operate.   We need to promote desired changes in the organizations we participate in rather than judge others for being different.   Agility in the US still needs to offer something for everybody!

2)The squeaky wheel…

Yes, I know it gets the grease, but only if the right people hear it.   Instead of griping at trials to your friends about something that concerns you, let the powers-that-be know your thoughts.  Learn the names and means of contacting the various directors and field representatives of the agility organizations you support with your entry money.  I believe most also have advisory committees so know how to contact them and don’t be afraid to give them your ideas.   Use social media (blogs, facebook, online forums, etc) to network with others who feel the same way.   If enough people apply enough pressure,  great things can happen!

It is so exciting to think about what the future of our sport will bring.  It is even  more exciting to imagine how each of us will play some role in shaping that future!

Click HERE to see more Dog Agility Blog Action Day posts!  





  1. […] Read the full article […]

  2. Lovely post. Standing up and saying “I’d like to help”, and then following through will get you a lot further towards improving a situation than just complaining about it. We should all remember this.

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