A friend recently asked me, “What are the best agility training tools for my dog?”
Since I’ve been working on agility training quite a bit with my own dog, I thought I’d take a moment to share my favorite tools!
I’ll also share a few that are on my “wish list” because they’re among the most highly recommended by professional dog trainers.
First, though, let’s quickly go over agility training itself so we are all on the same page as to what it is.
What is Agility Training?
Agility training is, in the simplest terms, an advanced training strategy in which you teach your dog to run an obstacle course.
If you’ve ever watched a dog show, you’ve seen the results of agility training in action.
Not a dog show fan? Check out this video to see what coursework looks like!
It’s not just for competitive dogs, though! Agility training is a fun way to strengthen your bond with your pup and give you both a good workout.
For show dogs, the goal is to make it through the course as quickly as possible without making any mistakes.
However, if you’re just doing it for fun, you don’t have to worry about speed so much. You can just relax and have fun with your dog!
My dog will never compete in a show but we still have a blast with agility training.
Whether you’re planning on competing or just want to do it for fun, you’ll need a few good tools to get started.
First, though, before you dive into the best agility training tools, check out our list of basic dog training tools. You’ll need most of them during agility training.
Now, let’s check out my favorite agility tools!
FYI, the rest of this post contains affiliate links. If you make a purchase through these links, we earn a small commission at no extra charge to you.
Best Agility Training Tools for Dogs
Agility training tools include tunnels, jumps, and weave poles.
I’ll give you a quick overview for each tool along with my recommendation for one to buy.
We’ll also look at the best all-in-one kit as well as a good book to grab to help you learn more about agility training.
Use the table below for a quick look at the best tools, then keep reading for more details about each one.
1. Best Agility Training Tunnel
If you’re looking for a good agility training tool to start with, grab a tunnel.
They’re not just the easiest part of the course for your dog to master, they’re also relatively inexpensive.
Check out the video on how to teach your dog to run through a tunnel:
This is probably the only agility tool that you really can’t make yourself.
Well, that’s not entirely true, I did find this good tutorial. However, the supplies to make it cost more than my top choice, so it’s not really worth it.
Top choice: FurryFriends Tunnel
My favorite is the FurryFriends 18-foot tunnel. Sure, you can find cheaper options but this one has fantastic ratings and it’s AKC-approved.
It also has a 24″ wide opening, making it a good fit (literally) for larger dogs.
The only drawback is that it doesn’t come with stakes so it can roll around a bit on a windy day.
- FurryFriends 18 foot long dog agility tunnel!
- Large 24 inch diameter opening
- AKC approved training tool
- Great outdoor toy to give your pet exercise!
- Pet accessory for fun!
2. Best Weave Poles
Once your dog masters the tunnel, it’s time to add weave poles to your routine!
These poles go into the ground and are set at regular intervals. As the name implies, your dog weaves through them!
See them in action (along with tips on teaching your dog to use them) in the video below.
While you can make your own weave poles using PVC pipes, fence slats, or even pool noodles, I recommend buying a set to start with.
Top choice: Lord Anson Weave Poles
The Lord Anson weave poles are a little pricier than some of the other sets on Amazon but they’re worth the extra cost.
First, they’re actually competition-grade poles very similar to those used in dog shows.
I also like them because they go into a sturdy adjustable metal base versus a flimsy plastic base.
The only real con: that metal base makes the set a bit heavier so it’s not as easy to transport as cheaper plastic sets.
- LORD ANSON AGILITY WEAVE POLE SET - Each Lord Anson product is designed and tested by a team of experienced dog owners and designers to bring the best experience to both you and your pet. When you choose Lord Anson, your dog will thank you.
- ADJUSTABLE AND VERSATILE - The Lord Anson Agility Weave Set comes with 6 heavy duty, regulation size weave poles that can be arranged in a variety of layouts. The high quality, powder coated, blue metal base makes it easy to adjust the layout of the weave poles according to the skill level of your dog. Stakes are included to secure the base to the ground when used on grass or dirt. It's easy to assemble and transport in the included carrying case for dog training and agility on the go.
- STURDY AGILITY POLES - Lord Anson competition grade agility poles are 3.25 ft (1 meter) long and made from a thick gauge, high quality plastic. Other thinner, smaller poles in cheaper agility sets will become warped and bent during training. Lord Anson agility poles are built to withstand extensive training and use.
- HEAVY DUTY METAL BASE - The adjustable metal base included in this set features regulation spacing (2 ft on center), and metal threads that connect to each agility weave pole inside of a secure rubber and metal housing. Other low quality adjustable weave sets feature a flimsy fiberglass or plastic base with plastic threads that will break during training and create a potential hazard for your dog. With the Agility Weave Pole set, you can train with peace of mind knowing that your dog is safe.
- GREAT FOR AGILITY, REHABILITATION, AND OBEDIENCE TRAINING. The Lord Anson Agility Weave Set can be used for much more than just agility. Whether you are training your dog for an upcoming show, having recreational fun with your dog at the park, or rehabilitating an injured dog, the Lord Anson Agility Weave Set delivers quality and performance that you can trust.
3. Best Jumps Kit for Agility Training
Now we’re ready for the really fun stuff: hurdle jumps! Don’t you love watching show dogs soar over those obstacles?
Check out the video below to teach your dog basic jumping skills before moving on to more complex routines.
Again, you can make your own jumps out of PVC pipes but it may be easier to just buy a good set.
Top Choice: Affordable Agility Travel Jump Set
The Affordable Agility jump set comes with four hurdles and a handy carrying bag.
The jumps are 3-feet wide and you can adjust them to any height from just 4″ off the ground all the way up to two feet.
As far as cons go, they’re not Prime-eligible and shipping is kind of pricey.
If you look at cheaper jumps though, many are made with really flimsy plastic, so these are worth the extra cost.
- Features 4 Portable, Adjustable Jumps that only weigh 14 lbs total.
- Jumps are 36" wide and feature adjustable heights from 4" up to 24".
- Freestanding bases allow for training indoors or outdoors.
- Includes a sturdy carrying bag and vinyl tape for decorating the jumps.
- This is the Original Travel Jump Set. Created, and made, by us in the USA. Constructed with furniture Grade uv resistant pvc.
4. Best All-in-One Agility Training Kit
If you’re not quite ready to invest in competition-grade tools or you just want everything in one set, an all-in-one kit is a good buy.
Top Choice: PawHut Dog Obstacle Training Kit
The PawHut Dog Obstacle Training Kit is a great inexpensive option that comes with the basics.
It includes a short tunnel, a set of weave poles and an adjustable hurdle.
All of the equipment is lightweight and breaks down for storage in the included carrying bag.
The major drawbacks: it’s not really a competition-grade set nor is it incredibly durable.
However, it’s a good starter kit to introduce your dog to agility training.
- Competitive agility course enhances the bond between dog and owner
- A variety of equipment types (adjustable high jump, weave poles, square pause box, round open tunnel) keeps your pets interest high throughout training
- Includes ground stakes and rope for securing your obstacle course in place outdoors
- Lightweight for quick and easy set up and store away with the three included carrying bags
- 190T polyester material resists tearing and ripping during exercise and training
5. Best Agility Training Book
While there are plenty of agility training videos on YouTube that will help you out, I learn better when I read versus watching a video.
If you’re like me, I highly recommend The Beginner’s Guide to Dog Agility by Laurie Leach.
She’s an expert agility competitor at a national level and her book is incredibly easy to follow even if you have zero dog training experience.
It comes in both paperback and Kindle versions but I prefer the Kindle version because she includes links to other resources.
- Laurie Leach
- TFH Publications, Inc.
- Kindle Edition
- Edition no. 1 (05/01/2006)