Posted Date: August 25, 2016
Taking your dog on a training outing downtown can be a great way to work around distractions.
It doesn't matter where you live, most cities and even small towns have a "downtown." Zuke's latest blog by trainer Amber Pickren, CPDT-KA gives advice on the benefits of taking your dog downtown to strengthen your training.
Dogs who participate in dog sports and other events with a lot of distracting activity, noise, and more can really benefit from working in a new and varied environment. Some possibilities include:
- Sitting outside at a cafe or coffee shop with a dog friendly patio and practicing down and sit stays, as well as "settle" which helps reinforce relaxing in a more active environment.
- Obviously walking along busy city streets can reinforce good heeling, or loose leash walking depending on your preference. You can also use it as a chance to reinforce automatic sits at curbs and when greeting strangers.
- Find dog friendly stores and take your dog inside to practice good leash behavior, sits for greeting and focus/attention on you while walking through the store. Ask around and query friends about dog friendly stores, as there are many stores that you might not think allow dogs that do, and every city is different. There are also apps you can download on your phone to find pet friendly venues, such as Bring Fido.
- Make sure you pair each activity with some high value treats so the dog becomes accustomed to noises, smells and sights that are new to him or her.
You can read more suggestions from Amber on the Zuke's website.
Photo credit: The Happy Dog via photopin (license)