Don't Animals Just Play by Themselves?

Ever wonder about what “dog agility” is all about? Simply put, dog agility is a competitive sport in which dog handlers compete in their ability to handle a dog through an obstacle course in a fixed amount of time. Dog agility is a wonderful way for dogs and their humans to bond. Competition includes timed races, jumping hurdles, scaling ramps, running through tunnels, mastering a see-saw, or weaving through poles. Any dog in good physical condition with energy can be trained as an agility dog.

Even if you have no intention of competing, there are tremendous benefits to consider.  Besides the obvious physical benefits for you and your dog, agility training can build trust between you as your dog relies on verbal and hand cues from you to navigate the course. What a great way to deepen your bond! See if it’s right for you at:

Interactive playing with cats gives you similar benefits physically and emotionally as well. It hones your cat’s hunting skills, eases their stress, and strengthens your relationship. If you live with more than one feline, you may even find that group play with you helps them to better get along.

Of course, some toys are better than others, as are some activities. Making a toy act like a bird or rodent and allowing your cat to ultimately experience the success of the “Big Pounce” will give you a great start.

Want some great ideas for building activities that’ll seem like your cat’s own agility trials? Check out Gary Loewenthal's article, "How to Play with Your Cat." 

For all things interactive, read Pam Johnson-Bennett's article, "Interactive Play Therapy."