Kihikihi will play host to the largest dog agility event every held in New Zealand over Labour Weekend.

People from across New Zealand and their four legged friends will descend on Kihikihi Domain from October 20-23 to compete at the Black Hawk New Zealand Dog Agility Championships.

Dog agility requires dogs to negotiate a numbered obstacle course with their human companion to guide them. Obstacles include jumpers, tunnels and ramps.

Handlers hope to guide their dogs around courses in the fastest time possible, without making any mistakes.

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The event has attracted record entries, says event organiser Nick Chester.

"We have competitors travelling from across the country, from Whangarei to Invercargill," he says.

"Around 380 people will take part, with well over 600 dogs. People train their dogs for months in anticipation of the event. Agility is a very addictive sport - it is fast paced and the dogs have a blast.

"Anyone who comes down is sure to see the best Kiwi agility dogs in the country doing what they do best.'

A range of classes will be offered, including the annual Interzone teams event, that pits teams from around the country against each other with the hopes of being crowned champion.

There are also specialist classes for young handlers.

Mr Chester says that competitors are excited about the venue and being in the Waipa District.

"The venue is phenomenal, and will help dogs to compete at their very best," he says.
"It's very fitting that we are in Waipa, the home of champions this year as I hope we will see a lot of champion runs over the course of the weekend."

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The event runs daily from 10am-4pm, October 20-23. Entry is free.

There will be a 'have a go' area available from 10am-2pm on the Saturday and Sunday for anyone who would like to have a turn at agility with their dog.