Flyball is growing in our area!

July 3, 2009 NOTE: Flyball tournament is scheduled in Downingtown.

If your dog is obsessed with these, then this could be for you. It's a sport that packs energy, endurance and agility into a whole lot of fun.

It's called Flyball.

"It's a very glorified version of fetch essentially," said Lisa DosPassos of Revolution Flyball.

The canine relay pits two teams of four against each other. Each dog runs a 51-foot course that includes 4 jumps. At the end, the dog hits a spring loaded box to release a tennis ball. Then races back over the jumps with the ball. The team with the best time wins.

Owners should know there's no monetary treat just "barking" rights.

But you have to keep your eyes peeled; the whole thing can happen in as little as 16 seconds!

"They get to the point where they get it, it's a race."

Paige Kaminski joined the Revolution Flyball team after she adopted Daisy from a shelter.

"She was ball crazy and she was running around the house like a lunatic."

It might seem unbelievable but any dog is a potential candidate for flyball.

"Just about any dog with an outgoing personality, likes to play, run, bark, fetch balls," said Jon DosPassos.

And if you think age is a factor, 11-year-old Toby still plays! Even handicaps aren't a problem. Hush is deaf and Misty is blind in one eye! Certain other medical conditions might exclude your pet.

Dogs are trained in stages to physically ease them into the sport.

One thing to remember is that flyball is loud! So dogs that scare easily might not be a good fit. Other dogs that may not do well are extremely shy, afraid of other dogs or aggressive.

Y2K9's, where Revolution Flyball trains, offers classes. The course runs 7-weeks and ranges between 90 to 115 dollars. All you need to provide is a harness and your pet's favorite toy.

You can start training at any age but to compete they have to be a year old.

That's some time away for 12 week old Defiance. Who's already showing flyball is in his future.

If this looks like something you want to try, check out the upcoming flyball tournament next month in Downingtown.

For more information:
Revolution Flyball
North American Flyball Association

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