For converged communicators who haven’t been out to the Jacksonville Equestrian Center in the Cecil Commerce Center on the Westside, take note: You don’t have to be a horse to find something to do there. One example is the Pals & Paws agility trials for dogs, which were held last week. Training dogs to zip through chutes, up inclines, and over fences might not seem difficult, but think again. Agility training isn’t just challenging – it’s also a serious sports competition, with championships held at the local, regional, national, and even world levels. In fact, several trainers and dogs with international experience were among those competing in the rings.
Here’s a link to my story in the Outside section of the Times-Union (http://members.jacksonville.com/sports/outdoorsoutside/2014-03-16/story/dogged-determination-plays-thing-agility-dogs-owners). If you’re interested, you can find quite a few resources about this activity through the Pals & Paws website or other online resources. In fact, even though the essence of agility training is one-on-one connection between dog and owner, people (but probably not dogs) can also use computer research – videos, tutorials, etc. – to refine their training methods and course technique. Even when playing with dogs, convergence can make an impact.