When Weaknesses are Strengths

“If you can’t embrace failure, or the possibility of failure, then there is no chance for success.” What makes successful people the success they are—the competitors they are—is because they not only embrace and welcome the fear we all experience, but they use it to their advantage. We all face fear in some manner, but… read more

Greatness Lives Within Us

“Never underestimate the power of dreams and the influence of the human spirit. We are all the same in this notion: The potential for greatness lives within each of us.” — Wilma Rudolph, U.S. gold medalist in track and field At some point we’ve all been made to feel that greatness was not meant for… read more

My Dog Could Do Agility, But….

Eavesdropping at an agility trial, I heard: My dog is too old. I’m too old. He’s too slow. I’m too slow. I don’t want him to jump out of the yard. He’s the wrong breed. Training costs too much. I heard all of those statements over the past weekend, as I sat in the stands… read more


Reinforcement in Dog Training: The Positive and the Negative

I recently reread Temple Grandin’s book “Animals Make Us Human: Creating the Best Life for Animals” in which she brilliantly differentiates between various training techniques, including Positive Reinforcement and Negative Punishment. It got me thinking about how often in dog training these terms are misused and confused, so this post is about explaining these terms… read more

Keeping Your Head On Straight: Setting Achievable, Positive Goals

My last post dealt with great competitors. While doing some reading for it I came across an article that shed some light on the minds of great competitors, including a quote that I haven’t been able to shake since I’ve read it. The writer had spoken to a young Maria Sharapova (only 9 years old… read more

roo weave

Harbor City Resident Will Compete in The 2nd Annual Masters Agility Championship at WKC

A Harbor City resident will be competing in The 2nd Annual Masters Agility Championship at Westminster in New York City on Saturday, Feb. 14, the opening act of the famed Westminster Week and its celebration of dogs. Deborah Davidson Harpur and her Rat Terrier, Rickie Roo will be among the more than 3,000 dogs competing… read more

What Makes a Great Competitor?

What makes a competitor great? I’ve been mulling this question over for quite a while. Because I think, at the heart of it, a great competitor is composed of much more than just what can be gleaned from the surface. Is it based solely on results? On how many nationals/ invitationals/ tryouts/ worlds an individual… read more


In the Dog House

AFTER writing about whether agility might one day become an official ‘sport’ I was delighted to hear from the man himself, agility pioneer Peter Lewis. He says: “I had already noted that the Agility Council was to debate again a possible approach to the Sports Council. Now I am prompted by your appraisal of the… read more

Agility – Prioritizing Whole Dog Health

There was much discussion the last week in the agility world– mostly consisting of how qualifications measured our success in this sport. I don’t plan on discussing that here. There were plenty of intelligent debates and discussions sparked because of the recent qualification changes to the NAC, many of which I wholeheartedly agree with. The… read more


What to Watch When You Watch a Dog Agility Event

Agility: A Summary for the Unitiated You’ve arrived at the dog show, and you’ve seen your favorite breed in the ring. Now you’re waiting for the group competition, so you wander over to the agility ring, with the athletic dogs performing the obstacles as they’re directed around the arena by their handlers. The audience laughs… read more

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