You may have seen those people at dog parks or walking their dogs with a remote in hand or a prong collar at the end of their leash. They may have been yanking on the leash or shocking their dog, and they probably didn't look like they were having fun. You might have noticed yelling, tense expressions and stress signals such as a lowered tail, lip-licking, an averted gaze. Did they seem to be in control?
You may have also seen those people wearing treat bags on their belt, making clicking noises and handing out smelly treats. Maybe they seemed a little bit dorky - treat bags look suspiciously like fanny packs... Look closely and you might have noticed happy voices, smiling faces and signs of a relaxed dog such as an open mouth, loose body language and bright eyes.
We have the intelligence and the resources to put together the best training toolkit for our dogs, one that will strengthen our relationship and increase understanding. While I will admit that sometimes it feels like I need another set of hands to juggle my leash, treats, clicker (and don't forget the poop bags!) the choice is obvious to me, even if I look "dorky." Which will you choose?
The Power of Positive Training by Pat Miller
Plenty in Life is Free by Kathy Sdao
Bark and Lunge by Kari Neumeyer
This post is part of the Positive Pet Training Blog Hop, hosted by Cascadian Nomads, Tenacious Little Terrier and Rubicon Days. The hop happens on the first Monday of every month, and is open for a full week - please join us in spreading the word about the rewards of positive training! Next month, we invite you to take part in the Ten Minute Training Challenge - take ten minutes to teach your pet something new and report your results in the next hop on April 6th!