This Fit Dog Friday, we are featuring Community member Kowboy Fred  – a high flying Disc Dog with the perfect way to get active, burn off excess energy and have fun.

He is described as  “a wild Aussie stock dog who loves to fly after discs!” He has competed in disc dog classes and adores Toss & Fetch and Free Style.
What an amazing action photo by Erika A. Photography 
Kowboy is an Australian Shepherd from a stock working line. He was born in a barn east of Ottawa Ont. and was returned to his breeder twice before owner Mike found him at around eight months old. Kowboy was rambunctious and wild and each time, his owners couldn’t find a way to harness his energy. All Kowboy needed was an outlet, and Mike saw his potential. “Today Kow still loves to jump and bounce like a crazy on the field, but at home he is a good gentle loving dog. He even likes the cats and all” Mike says. “Kow is a different dog once he starts working the disc. He explodes with hyper drive to get that disc.”


Mike shares his tips for staying in shape and the benefits of Disc for dogs. Before taking up Disc, Mike says “Fitness is important and the dog has to learn proper landing and take off. These tricks take a while to learn and execute. The safety of the dog is first priority.”

Make sure you check with your vet before starting any vigorous exercise plan or activity, especially one with jumping and make sure your dog is ready- some jumping activities can be dangerous for puppies.

Although anyone can take a Disc to the local park to get out with their dog and have some fun, Kowboy Fred takes Disc to a new level. Check him out in action!


Mike has a pack of dogs he trains weekly and shared with Talent Hounds how they get in shape for this high flying sport. “We work all our dogs at least 5 times a week. A typical work out is a combination of mental and physical stimulation. Each work out lasts a short period of not more than five to ten minutes. At this point our dogs have used every bit of energy they have. It is very important not to over work the dogs as they start to loose attention and focus.”

Mike uses positive reinforcement training to motivate his dogs. “I would have to say that one of the most important aspects of my positive training is keeping it fun. If your dog makes a mistake or just does not understand or do what you want, drop it. Move to some other achievable goal. Why? If I get frustrated and angry, the dog knows it, and then the training is no longer fun.” It’s about having fun and getting in shape and keeping Kowboy happy and healthy for Mike.


If you have a game that your dog enjoys like ball or Disc, use this to help train obedience. How? Your pup wants you to throw the ball or Disc (like Kow in the pic). Before you do this, you can ask for a trick or behaviour and use the anticipation of throwing the ball as a reward for doing it,  just like you might before a meal. This works well as many dogs love nothing more than to chase or jump after the Disc or ball and play with you.

For more Kowboy visit his Facebook Page HERE!

What an inspiring Fit Dog Friday!

*Photos by Erika A. Photography 

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