Dogs Compete for Agility Title

Four-day agility competition runs through Sunday

Fort Worth went to the dogs Thursday. More than 100 dogs competed to be the most agile pooch.

The dogs showed off their skill, speed and accuracy at the Will Rogers Memorial Center, vying to represent Team USA.

"Your goal is, run quickly as you can and as cleanly as you can," said Heather Smith, an organizer with the United States Dog Agility Association, which oversees the four-day competition.

Each dog aimed to qualify for the IFCS World Agility Championship in the Netherlands in May 2014.

"It has become much more technical," Smith said. "It's a much faster sport now and requires a lot more thought on the part of the handler."

Competitors maneuvered through a 180-yard obstacle course, most of them completing 40 seconds or less.

"What I like about it, it's a puzzle. You have figure out the puzzle for this course and you got to be able to tell him how do it, which is the hard part," handler Stuart Mah said.

In total, more than 100 dogs in three different categories participated in Thursday's tryout.

This is one of only two opportunities that participants have to be selected for Team USA.

"There are so many good dogs and handlers that, if you back off just a little bit, you're going to get beat and really have to kind of try," Mah said.

The trials are free to the public and run through Sunday at the W.R. Watt Arena at the Will Rogers Memorial Center.

More: 2013 IFCS Agility World Cup and Championship of Americas

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