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Hello all, 

I am just curious if there are any agility/flyball people here who also live in Sothwest VA, specifically, close to Abingdon VA. I would like to get into either one of these sports with my girl, but am having trouble finding any classes/clubs as close to me as I would like. Of course maybe there are none and I should just suck it up and drive 2 hours (or however long) to the nearest one, but I wanted to check and see if any of y'all know something I don't. I hope I don't sound lazy, LOL, it's just that if I'm going to attend classes regularly I'd rather it not be a 4 hour round trip, for the sake of my schedule and the environment. 

Thanks for your time. 

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Welcome to the Boards. The only flyball clubs that I know about in SW VA are in Blacksburg and Roanoke. Like you say, quite a drive. In fact, I haven't heard much about the Roanoke flyball club recently. Not that that means much since I am not a flyball participant, but I do try and keep track of local dog activities.

Another member of these Boards, Cap Jack (sorry if I misspelled that) lives closer to Bburg and may know more.

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gcv-border 

Thank you. Yeah I will probably end up traveling but it sure would be nice not to. There is one place pretty close called "Beyond Sit and Stay" that offers agility lessons, but they require you to do the obedience class first, (which, ya know, costs money and I have done/continue to do obedience training at home already,) and I'm not a fan of their training methods anyway. 

Oooh I'm not allowed to post a smiley face emoji, eh? Haha! 

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II am originally from Russell County and live in Pulaski, now. 


And yeah, the closest options for you are going to be Blacksburg and Roanoke, unfortunately.  Your very closest option for agility is  All American Dog Sports in Blackburg, but there's also Star City and Field of Dreams in Roanoke.   All American Dog Sports is probably your cheapest option, too (75.00/7 weeks of group classes) but those classes are all on week nights.  I am pretty sure Star City does some on weekends.  No idea about Field of Dreams. 

I don't know flyball well enough to say for sure which places, but the classes in Blacksburg only run about once a year.  The ones in Roanoke seem to cycle more frequently. 

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Also dear god, I am not a fan of anyone calling themselves a balanced trainer and talking about corrections teaching agility, but that's just me.  (Re: The place in Chillhowie).  Much less someone teaching everything from Protection to Therapy Pets, and also I HATE the program that certifies "Master Dog Trainer"  (Jump start your career in a profitable business!)  

 

But that's just me, you didn't ask, and I'm not going to say more about it.  Besides a general 'agility is LARGELy about building enthusiasm and motivation, not being 100% correct, so talk about that/ask maybe'. 

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CptJack 

Positive, force free, whatever you want to call it, that's me, all the way, 100%. So yeah, when I saw pictures on their facebook page of dogs wearing shock and prong collars, that was an immediate turn off. I should have looked at that before I inquired about the agility I guess. Thanks for those links, some of those I actually hadn't heard of. 

 

 

 

 

 

 

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Also, last time I looked at their webiste, the description for the agility class said it uses "positive training techniques" "like all our other classes" or something like that. Kind of misleading IMO, especially since I never saw the words "balanced training," "training collar," or anything like that on the website itself. 

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I really wish there was something closer to you.   You aren't the first person even from Abingdon I know that shows up at our trials and struggles to make the trip to get to the classes and training.  Hopefully things will keep pushing SW and get better with time. 


Meanwhile, I know the agility trainers + others at every last one of those clubs.   If you have any questions/want more information feel free to send me an email - or friend me on Facebook (Becky Pack - not my real last name but my dog/dog sports FB and lots of people chatting about things there and a good look at the community and people).

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Thank you. I don't actually have facebook, more of an Instagram person myself. I would start a club myself except I have absolutely zero experience in the sport. If you ever come across an agility instructor that just so happens to be moving to the Abingdon/Tricities area, tell them, "hey, you know there's people there who'd looooove to join a club if you'd like to start one." ;)

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I do not know how far away you are from Blacksburg, but New River Rapids (NRR) is an active flyball club that hosts tournaments there a couple times a year.

https://www.nrrflyball.org/

There are teams and tournaments in Roanoke, Blacksburg, several other sites in North Carolina, Virginia, and Tennessee within a 3 to 6 hour drive from where you live.

NRR might be the closest Flyball club from where you live however.

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I'm a trainer at Field of Dreams, and the owner, Karen, is one of the instructors for agility. Agility classes take place during the week because Karen is usually at trials on the weekend. As far as I know, there is no requirement of obedience, and she does offer private lessons for agility. 

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ssloan

That's awesome. I bet that is a fun job. Nice to hear that Karen competes during the weekend. I wouldn't want to take classes from someone who didn't have competition experience. I don't think we would need private classes; my dog is well behaved and good with other dogs, which is why I don't want to pay for an obedience class I don't need. Unfortunately, at this moment, I am unable to do the drive. I am hoping that in the not too distant future I will be able to free up my schedule more. 

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Okay, local(ish) events I'm putting on the calendar:
September 15-16, Star City NADAC trial. (Roanoke)
September 29-30, Updog at BOSS (King NC)
October 19-21, Leaps and Bound NADAC (Yadkinville NC)
October 27-28 AADS NADAC Trial.(Blacksburg)

 

These are the dates of localish dog events this fall.  They're admittedly local to *me*, but are pretty drivable to you.  If you want to attend any (with or without the dog), let me know and I'll get more information to you about the events.  


Updog is Disc.  The rest are NADAC agility trials.

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Hey, thanks CptJack. I'm interested in disc too, but as with agility, I don't know much about it, aside from that I throw frisbees and my dog catches them and we enjoy that. I saw on a different topic you mentioned the Fenzi Dog Sports Accademy. I had heard of that before, but I forgot about it until now. I will look into that too. 

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45 minutes ago, Baderpadordercollie said:

Hey, thanks CptJack. I'm interested in disc too, but as with agility, I don't know much about it, aside from that I throw frisbees and my dog catches them and we enjoy that. I saw on a different topic you mentioned the Fenzi Dog Sports Accademy. I had heard of that before, but I forgot about it until now. I will look into that too. 

UpDog disc is basically... you throw a disc and the dog catches it and they award you some points and you get credit.  It can get a lot more complicated than that, but most of the games are pretty beginner friendly.   

And Fenzi is AWESOME. 

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8 minutes ago, CptJack said:

UpDog disc is basically... you throw a disc and the dog catches it and they award you some points and you get credit. 

Oh, I didn't know that. I've been watching Pawsitive Vybe and that guy seems to have it perfected to an art. It seems very complicated from watching those videos but I guess it must depend what level you are. 

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21 minutes ago, Baderpadordercollie said:

Oh, I didn't know that. I've been watching Pawsitive Vybe and that guy seems to have it perfected to an art. It seems very complicated from watching those videos but I guess it must depend what level you are. 

https://updogchallenge.com/

 

The games link has good descriptions for a lot.  When most people think disc dog they think really complicated stuff - and freestyle - but it can be as simple as 'throw and make enough catches in a minute'.   Requirements for how many you need to get awards goes up with levels, and the leveling up system baffles me, but as a sport it's as complicated or not as you make it.  If you can throw at least 10 yards and your dog can catch a disc (as a roller or in the air) it's something you can participate in.

Which is good because holy crap I am bad at throwing :P

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