From time to time, you may see videos and pictures of our dogs biting sleeves, barking at the 'bad guy' in the blind, climbing walls to grab a tug or pulling a sled.
What is this all about and why do we do it? First…we are nutty dog people, so dog sports is in our blood. Once a person starts down the rabbit hole of a dog sport, there is a natural deep appreciation for a dog's intelligence, genetics and power. What a dog is bred to do...or capable of doing despite the genetic map is mind blowing.
‘You don’t need e-collars to help with reactivity. All you need is patience.’ The story of a deleted comment.
Last week I posted a pack walk video of my awesome students and their reformed reactive dogs, on the Eastern Prom. Some wearing muzzles...all calmly passing dogs, bikes and people. Triggers that used to make a field trip like this impossible for these teams. Owners were relaxed, laughing, chatting, and connecting with each other…something that people who don’t have reactive dogs take advantage of. No one was hyper aware, blocking their dogs from view or running off the trail with cookies begging for attention. Other path walkers cheered at the ‘parade’ of dogs and it was a beautiful and successful event. I am proud as hell of these people who worked and continue to work their butts off to enrich their dogs’ lives.
But one person who saw that video, didn’t see relaxed dogs and owners. She saw an owner or two carrying a e-collar receiver and that’s all she saw.
There are many terms that describe a trainers’ methodology that can be confusing to dog owners. Here is a little break down:
We train dogs. However, we see our job as much bigger than that. We help people. We want dogs and people to experience the best relationship possible based on fairness, clarity and balance. We use tools that we feel get the dog/handler team to the best place.
With the holidays right around the corner, we thought it helpful to create a list of some of our top favorite training tools that we've encountered over the years- perfect as gifts for the trainer (or dog!) in your life.
As a trainer and a former manager of a daycare, my students ask me all the time about enrolling their dog in daycare. Not all daycares are the same, but a well-managed daycare is the perfect place for a young exuberant dog to get its needed exercise. But how do you find one?