Engage with your dog!
Why playing tug or feeding your dog his daily kibbles by hand can strengthen your relationship –
Dogs love to have fun and they LOVE to interact with us. Our job is to be fun, consistent and fair when training.
We wanted to share a little bit of knowledge since we recently added Grimm to our pack. Grimm is a working dog and was bred and trained specifically to be a police k9. He’s not your typical pet dog. He is stable, social, great nerves, overall a dog ready to do his job (Zero behavioral issues there).
Anyhow, we started training him on obedience and we are doing things extremely differently than we would train our behavioral dogs. With a working dog, we engage utilizing tons of food and toy as a reward and using zero leash correction. Why? Because with a dog like Grimm, we want to make sure he understands who we are in the pack, we want him to know that we are the fun gang to be around and most of all he needs to understand what he is being ‘corrected’ for. We can’t just ‘hit it’ on the prong or the remote when we have zero relationship with the dog. (Keep in mind that if you are sharing a correction with a dog with whom you have zero relationship with, you may get bit if you’ve got a hard dog at the end of the leash).
Later down the road we will introduce him to mild leash pressure (using the prong only to guide) and eventually will be using mild remote pressure. Anyhow, we started our training journey with Grimm and after just 5 days of engaging Grimm with food reward, we’re seeing great results, good focus, and seeing a dog that is acknowledging us a tad bit more. We have long ways to go for him to be 100% compliant but with said, everything takes time. With dogs with high food and toy drive, we utilize these tools as much as we can to get through the dog and to get what we want out of the dog. So if you’ve got a dog with a ton of drive, USE it to your advantage for engagement and maybe teach your dog a few tricks.
Remember, we are using food and reward for WANTED behaviors ONLY and for engagement sessions. Unwanted behavior still need to be addressed.
Stay tuned as we will continue to update on Grimm’s journey.