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    42 - Walk in the park

    42 - Walk in the park

    Footballs and children and bikes oh my! Footballs and children and bikes OH MY!! Parks provide plenty of stimulation and lots of distraction. There is usually a whole heap of activities going on and it is a fantastic place to take a young dog to broaden his life experience.

    It can be very helpful to take a young dog out in the company of well-behaved older dogs

    When your dog is nervous

    If your dog is nervous or has not had the opportunity to socialize, keep him on a leash and stay at the edge of the park. He will be able to see everything, but you will have an escape route if he is overwhelmed. Ask a friend who has an older or more con dent dog to accompany you. Dogs learn from watching the responses of other dogs but make sure your friend’s dog knows how to behave appropriately. Use the ear work and Clouded Leopard TTouches  to help keep him calm. If he can work and take a treat, ask him to do a few simple things, such as sit or down, to shift his focus, but bear in mind, if he is really afraid he will not be able to sit or eat. He is not being dominant – he is scared. He may find it easier to be on the move so ask him to follow your hand (see way 24). Keep the visit short and gradually build up his confidence, interspersing visits to the park with activities that are less of a concern.

    This is Cookie’s fi rst visit to the park and Marie continues with her training. Despite lots of distractions Cookie is behaving impeccably

    Parks provide plenty of stimulation. Maisie is watching the swans quietly and calmly


    Unless you are in an on-leash only exercise park you will no doubt have several dogs coming up to greet the new guy. Not every owner will be as responsible as you, so if you see a dog approaching in a not-so-friendly manner, get your dog’s attention and then use this tip from our lovely friend and fellow TTouch practitioner, Billie Machell. Shout as loudly as you can (without freaking out your own pooch) ‘My dog has a highly contagious skin condition!’ It works!

    If he is totally over-aroused, try to walk him in an S-shape to encourage bend through his body, and use ear work to lower his heart rate and respiration. Try to get his attention by using the exercises you have practiced in a quiet environment. If his behavior escalates take him back home and go back a few steps in his training.

    From 100 Ways to Train the Perfect Dog, Copyright by Sarah Fisher, licensed through ContentOro, Inc and used by arrangement with D & C

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