Fun Things to Do with Your Chinese Crested!
Although Chinese Crested dogs are small, they are fierce competitors, capable of running even the most difficult of Agility courses without fault. Although equally content to rest in your lap for hours, the Chinese Crested’s athletic abilities are truly astounding. If looking for fun activities for you and your Chinese Crested, look no further than the following suggestions.
Chinese Crested dogs are masters at Agility. Able to jump, run, and obey, this breed often outperforms dogs in the 12’’ jump category. A hero among Chinese Cresteds is Ziggy, a Powder Puff who won the AKC/Eukanuba National Championship for Agility in both 2012 and 2013. Although most people assume Agility is best for dogs such as Border Collies or German Shepherds, other breeds, even small ones, can enjoy the fun.
Lure coursing ability tests (CATS) are contests which test a dog’s ability to chase “prey.” The Chinese Crested dog was initially used to chase and kill rodents onboard ships, which gives them a natural talent at chasing prey across an open field. At a CAT test, a plastic bag called a “bunny” is mechanically pulled at speeds up to 50 mph. The bunny will always be maintained just ahead of the dog, to test how fast he or she can run a 300 yard course. Like Agility, there are National titles available in Lure Coursing.
Chinese Crested dogs excel at both Agility and Obedience, so it should be no surprise they perform well at rally obedience (Rally-O) as well. In a Rally-O competition, a dog and handler will complete 12 – 20 stations on a timed course. At each station, a sign will inform the handler and dog what action to take next, such as perform a sit/stay, turn, speed up, or slow down. The winner of the competition is the dog/handler team which completes the course with the fewest faults.
Canine Good Citizen Training
Given the Chinese Crested dog’s natural ability as a companion for the sick or elderly, Canine Good Citizen certification is a no-brainer. To become CGC certified, a dog must pass a 10-step test, including allowing strangers to handle him or her, walking on a loose leash, coming when called, and reacting well in stressful situations. Being a Canine Good Citizen allows dogs to volunteer in hospitals, nursing homes, and in other situations where the presence of a dog is uplifting and positive.
Activities to Avoid
Although Chinese Crested dogs are fairly resilient for a toy breed, bear in mind that they are still fragile. Never participate in any activity where the dog can easily become injured, such as bicycling with your dog. Other activities to avoid include skateboarding or rollerblading, as the risk of falling onto or running over your dog is high. Running short distances with a Chinese Crested is allowable; however, never force your dog to continue running if he or she stops. A small dog cannot handle the same exercise load as one even twice its size.