Living in my home are a very cute seven year old girl and a very cute five year old CKC registered border collie. Cite. They are in a beginner agility class together. Our daughter (Sam Stone’s and mine) is hoping to compete as a “junior handler.” This is looking like it might actually be possible, since both the dog and the child are highly motivated to practice and learn, and our daughter is not the kind of kid who gives up on a thing once she has it in her head, and the dog actually shows quite a bit of talent for the sport, being a very calm and solid BC who is both eager to please, and highly responsive to praise.
Sorry for the long preamble. I have long wanted a BC who shows aptitude for this, and Sam will vouch for the fact that our last two, Og rest their souls, were lovable as hell but spun right out. Anyway, the teacher in our class encouraged me to register our daughter as a Junior Handler with this organization. Good enough, but then what can I expect? The website and its links are not telling me what I want to know. So my questions to you people who have actually engaged in this sport are:
- At what point can this team (kid and dog) enter in events? What training should they absolutely have mastered so that we are not just wasting our time?
- I have heard that the Junior Handler category is generally 9 and up. Is this true, and to what extent?
- Should I pay any attention at all to the dog’s being CKC registered? Are there different paths agility-wise for unregistered dogs vs. registered dogs, and as a practical matter, is one better than the other?
Thanks in advance to anyone who takes the time to reply!