Agility training consists of teaching your dog to navigate an obstacle course. A typical course includes jumps, tunnels, tire hoops, weaving poles, a dog walk plank and a teeter totter. You can begin agility training at any age. Build an agility course and begin training your dog to complete the obstacles on the course by offering ample praise and rewards. Start by constructing a simple teeter totter out of PVC pipe.
Things You'll Need
- 1 by 12 inch shelving board, 8 feet in length
- Tape measure
- 5/8 inch paddle bit
- 3/8 inch drill bit
- 2-inch PVC pipe, 12 inches in length
- 4 U-straps, 2 inch
- 32 washers, 3/8 inch
- 8 flathead bolts, 3/8 inch
- 8 locknuts
- Adjustable wrench
- White primer
- Paint brush or roller
- Masking tape
- Yellow paint
- 8 end caps, 1 1/2 inch
- 4 pieces 1 1/2-inch PVC pipe, 12 inches in length
- Gravel, 8 lbs.
- 8 pieces metal strapping, 3/4 inch
- 16 sheet metal screws, 3/4 inch
- 8 PVC elbows, 1 ½ inch
- 8 pieces 1 ½ inch PVC pipe, 19 inches long
- 8 PVC tees, 1 ½ inch
- 8 pieces 1 ½ inch PVC, 3 ¼ inch in length
- 4 pieces 1 ½ inch PVC pipe, 14 ½ inches in length
- Small block of wood
Build the Teeter Totter Board
Measure a 1 by 12-inch shelving board, 8 feet in length, with a tape measure and mark 5 feet from one end with a pencil. This is the tipping point. Mark 2 inches from the line on both sides. Measure and mark at 3 inches and 9 inches from the edge of the board on the two lines beside the tipping point.
Use a drill and 5/8-inch paddle bit to drill one-quarter of the way through the top of the board on the 3 and 9 inch marks on the lines beside the tipping point. Insert a 3/8 inch drill bit into each hole and drill the rest of the way through the board.
Secure a 12-inch-long piece of 2-inch PVC pipe to the board with 2-inch U-straps. Place the U-straps over the PVC pipe and place four washers on a 3/8 inch flathead bolt. Insert the flathead bolt with the washers in a hole on the U-strap and through a drilled hole on the top of the board. The head of the bolt will be seated in the drilled hole. Secure with a locknut. Use an adjustable wrench to hold the locknut and tighten it with a screwdriver. Repeat for the remaining three holes.
Apply white primer to the entire board with a paint brush or roller. Allow to dry.
Place a strip of masking tape across the board 6 inches from the bolts in the center of the board. Place another strip of masking tape 6 inches from the bolts on the opposite side of the center of the board. Paint the ends of the board with yellow paint.
Place a 1 1/2-inch end cap over one end of a 12-inch-long piece of 1 1/2-inch PVC pipe. Fill the pipe with 2 lbs. gravel and cap the other end. These weights will prevent the board from descending too quickly during use. Repeat to make three more weights.
Attach two weights to one end of the board. Place 3/4-inch metal strapping on each end of two weights and secure the strapping near the end of the board with 3/4-inch sheet metal screws. Repeat to attach two more weights to the opposite end of the board.
Build the PVC Frame
Place a 1 1/2-inch PVC elbow on a 19-inch-long section of 1 1/2-inch PVC pipe. Place a 1 1/2-inch tee on the opposite end of the pipe and insert a second 19-inch long section of pipe into the tee. Place an elbow on the other end of the 19-inch long section. This is the bottom of the side. Repeat to build a second side bottom and two tops.
Insert a 3 1/4-inch long section of 1 1/2-inch PVC pipe into the elbow on the bottom of the side. Place a tee on the opposite end and insert a second 3 1/4-inch long section of PVC pipe into the tee. Insert the end of the 3 1/4-inch pipe section into the elbow on the top of the side. Join the two sides by placing the ends of four 14 1/2-inch long sections of 1 1/2-inch PVC pipe into each tee.
Slide the pipe on the underside of the teeter totter board over the PVC pipe across the center of the top of the frame.
Use a hammer and a small block of wood to tap each piece of PVC pipe together firmly.
- Photo Credit islay agility image by ziggyhendry from Fotolia.com
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