Guild of Shepherds & Collies

Canine Parkour: An Exciting Sport for Herding Dogs!

Canine Parkour is Revolutionizing the Way You Walk Your Dog

canine parkour

Canine Parkour is a relatively new sport that combines human parkour and dog agility to make a fun, easy sport that encourages exercise and creativity in an accessible manner! This sport is very appealing to herding breed dog owners because of its accessibly and fun quotient.

In Canine Parkour, dogs and their humans use the environment and equipment around them to jump, climb, and balance their way to fun and if they want to…a Canine Parkour title!  The human guides the dog for safety and can participate in the physical activity if they are so inclined, but it’s not necessary.

This sport can be just for fun or you can earn titles for your dog as well! Once an exercise has been taught and perfected, you film it. Once all the required exercises are perfected and filmed they can be assembled in a compilation video and submitted for title recognition.  

Currently there are 5 titles available through the International Dog Parkour Association. Each level requires a combination of various activities such as:  four feet on an obstacle, under an obstacle, through an obstacle, and MANY more. The obstacle can be practically anything that is safe for the dog; for instance jumping up on a large rock, walking on a fallen tree, and jumping in and out of a large box. You are only limited by your creativity!

There are many things about Dog Parkour:

It can be done anywhere…in a forest, in a park, in your backyard or home.

Anywhere a leashed dog is allowed, Parkour can be done. It makes this a great sport for a reactive or shy dog that doesn’t do well in dog classes or competition events.  This is a great sport for teaching concepts and preparing a dog for other dog sports like agility or rally.

You can proceed at your own pace.

You can slowly work on various exercise or speed through them. This sport is really flexible and you can go at your own pace to complete the exercises and requirements. You can work on flexibility, muscle strength, or balance to challenge and develop your dog in areas they may need some improvement. You can pursue titles or just have fun teaching your dog new tricks.

Safety is priority number one.

Dogs wear harnesses for safety and must complete the activities of their own volition. Any dangerous or unsafe submissions will void the title submission. Dogs must be spotted, jump onto soft surfaces, and be older than 18 months. There are a whole host of other safety rules to explore before you start Canine Parkour; it is a sport with dog safety in mind!

Herding breed dogs love it!

Busy herding dogs need a job. Parkour gives a dog exercise, develops handler/dog relationships, and gives them team goals to pursue. Herding dogs love perching, walking on objects, and just enjoying their “person’s” full attention. What a fantastic thing to add to your daily walk or exercise routine!

More information can be found at International Dog Parkour Association.

Article By:
Eva Raczka
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