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Paw-sitively stunning: Sask. flyball tournament showcases canine fetching skills

The Good2Go Flyball hosted event in Pilot Butte allowed dogs to show off their finest fetch skills. (Hallee Mandryk/CTV News) The Good2Go Flyball hosted event in Pilot Butte allowed dogs to show off their finest fetch skills. (Hallee Mandryk/CTV News)
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Many dogs were "off to the races" this weekend in Pilot Butte for a flyball tournament. Good2Go Flyball hosted event, which allowed dogs to show off their finest fetch skills.

"It’s a great team sport. A lot of dog sports are individual and there is a lot of comradery and everything in the sport," Steve Corona, executive director of the North America Flyball Association (NAFA) told CTV News.

"It’s open to all breeds and it’s a great family sport as well."

The sport involves teams of four dogs racing against other teams to clear jumps, retrieve a tennis ball and then return back over the hurdles to their handler – all while holding the ball.

Dogs typically begin competing at around 18 months old following intensive training.

“There’s things that you can do during that time as far as you’ll notice, dogs playing with their tugs and retrieving the balls and doing those kind of things,” Corona said. “We really don’t do anything too impactful on the joints but the training takes a little while for dogs to learn the pattern of going over the four jumps and doing the swimmers turn off the box and catching that ball.”

Like many other sports, flyball tournaments were halted for a while due to the COVID-19 pandemic.

However, it seems to be making a triumphant return in Saskatchewan.

“We’re seeing a resurgence in the number of teams in tournaments that we’re holding at this time,” Corona added.

He went on to express that the sport is great for beginners and anyone interested in taking part can find their nearest club on flyball.org.

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