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Otis The Akita Breaks Agility Club Record

16 April 2014    10:00
Otis in action

Otis, a 5 year old Akita from Stockport, is making waves in the dog agility world after he broke an agility club record, previously held by a Border Collie.

Otis and his owner, Billy Walsh, started attending High Peak Dog Training Society (High Peak DTS) in 2011 after they developed the agility bug and it wasn't long until Billy and Otis broke the club record by achieving 307 points in competitions.

Billy explains: "After we had achieved all we could in obedience, we needed a new goal and I enquired about agility training. After three previous failed attempts at gaining a place at another club, I decided to enquire at High Peak DTS where we were successful."

The pair began to enter competitions and started to get clear rounds, and it wasn't long before they were winning everything they entered. They are now in grade 3 of agility and although Otis isn't the only Akita competing in the activity, the pair are a well-known sight at shows.

Neil O'Connor from High Peak DTS commented: "About 3 years ago a chap asked to join our agility club. We are a club that prides ourselves on welcoming any dog that enjoys agility, so we said yes. Billy arrived at club on his first training day with Otis, an Akita. I must admit a few of us thought he was being a little ambitious but Otis showed a real interest in agility from the start. Billy and Otis became regular faces at training - hardly ever missing a week. It wasn't long before we saw his potential."

This is just the beginning for Otis and although the pair plan to emigrate to New Zealand later this year, they aim to continue competing in agility.

Neil continued: "Otis really is a credit to his breed, a breed that can often have a negative image. People seem to all stop and watch when they both run - after all there are hardly any Akitas that do agility and none that do it quite like Otis. We have tried to find other Akitas that do agility but can only find a few that compete in Australia and America. They are nowhere near the standard of Otis."

Caroline Kisko, Kennel Club Secretary, said: "Agility is for dogs of all types, sizes and experience and it's fantastic to see Otis doing so well in the sport. Otis and Billy's success highlights how any breed can compete with hard work and dedication. We wish them all the best for the future."

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