There are so many dog sports out there, from Agility and Flyball to Cani X and Heelwork to Music. A new dog sport has been added to the list, Treibball. It's been brought over to the UK as a new sport, but it has actually been around in Germany since about 2008. This doggy sport looks seriously fun for both dogs and owners. Treibball is a herding game that is particularly good for herding breeds such as Border Collies, but it can be played by most dogs. The balls are referred to as 'rolling sheep' as the mimic the movement and manipulation of livestock. This sport involves getting dogs to move exercise balls into a football style goal. The owner and dog must work together to move a total of eight balls into the goal and they have 15 minutes to do it. The balls are laid out in a triangle formation and are approximately 45 to 75 centimetres in size. It's an excellent activity for energetic dogs that require a lot of mental stimulation. This is because it provides the dog with a mental and physical workout. It also helps to improve the relationship between the dog and their handler as this exercise requires a lot of teamwork. Another benefit is that Treibball requires very little equipment compared to other dog sports such as Agility. You need to be able to direct your dog and get them to follow your instructions. It may take a bit of time to get them to understand that they have to 'push' the balls around. However, this is not the first thing you teach them, there are many basic herding skills and signals they need to learn first. So what are the rules? They vary slightly from country to country but here are some of the basics:
- The ball has to stay within the marked area
- Handlers can't move the balls
- The dog should not damage the balls in any way
- The task must be completed within 15 minutes
- The dogs should not be punished in any way by the handlers
- The team with the quickest time and fewest error points wins
Want to know where you can play Treibball with your dog? You can find a list of clubs that run sessions You can find lots of dog toys on our .