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Puppy Class Lesson 4

Scent Work

With Treats:

Throw a treat on the floor near your puppy and say "find it" while pointing at the treat. Repeat this 5 times. Now that your puppy has learnt what the word "find it" means you are ready to hide your treats. 

Start with puppy being held by another person while your puppy watches you hide 5 treats.

Cue "find it" and let your puppy use their nose to find the treats.

Reduce the treats to 3 but pretend to hide 5.

Settle

Step one:

Don't say the word DOWN

  1. Place a treat on your dog's nose

  2. Slowly move your hand down onto the floor

  3. Keep your hand there until your dog's tummy is flat on the floor,  then mark by staying "good"

  4. Give your puppy lots of food rewards on the mat in-between their paws while they are still in the relaxed down position

Go to Bed

Go to your bed:

  1. Scatter a handful of treats on your dog's bed/mat.

  2. Mark the instant your dog's paw is on the mat

  3. Lure your do into a down.

  4. Place a small handful of treats in between your dogs paws.

  5. Use your release cue to let your dog know they can move off their bed.

Adding a cue:

  1. Say your cue "bed"

  2. Mark your dog for having all 4 paws on their bed.

  3. Lure into a down and reward again in between their paws.

  4. Use your release cue to let your dog know they can move off their bed.

Encourage a relaxed position:

  1. Say your cue "bed"

  2. Only mark and reward once your dog is lying down.

  3. repeat steps 3 and 4 from above.

Grooming

Settle position:

Some puppies love to be groomed others might find it a bit overhelming and will try to bit the brush. We want to start to pair the brush with being in a settle position.

Step one:

  1. Place your puppy's mat down

  2. Lure your puppy onto the mat.

  3. Place a small handful of treats on the mat in-beteen their paws.

  4. Brush once.

  5. Remove the brush.

  6. Place two treats on the mat in-between their paws.

  7. Repeat steps 4-6

If your puppy tries to chew the brush or gets up. Remove the brush. Wait for them to settle back down again. When they do. Place a treat on the mat then follow steps 4-6.

Play

Bonding play:

​Playing tug is a wonderful way to bond with your puppy. You can also use play as an alternative to food rewards.

Keep play low to the ground to make sure all four paws are always on the floor. This way you are not accidentally reinforcing jumping up. 

Keep play slow and gentle. If play is too fast or rough it can over stimulate pup which incorages biting. 

Enrichment

Did you know that mental stimulation is just as important if not more important than walking your dog? Yes I said it! MORE important than the walk!! Don't get me wrong taking your dog out for daily walks is important and your dog needs physical exercise but too much physical exercise can be a bad thing.

 

You would think if your dog was hyper then taking them out on a long walk is the best way to tire them out. However the more exercise your dog gets the fitter they become. To begin with your dog might be absolutely shattered after an hours off lead walk, but after a few weeks you notice that an hour just doesn't cut it any more and your dog is still climbing the walls. So then you end up taking your dog on a long walk, a run and 30 minutes of ball chucking!

Use your dogs daily meals as enrichment. In the video I run through a few different ways to use food dispensing toys. Here are the links to the enrichments toys used in the video:

Kong: https://amzn.to/2RtVjkE

Kong wobbler: https://amzn.to/2RopXvY

Snuffle mat: https://amzn.to/2RoNCwo

Other great enrichments toys:

Licki mat:  https://amzn.to/2Rwz7aG

Buster cube: https://amzn.to/2ALlLwM

Tug-a-jug: https://amzn.to/2RNx01r

Engagement on walks

Keeping your dog focused and engaged with you while out on a off lead walk can be tricky at times. If you find that your dog's recall is slipping, or its taking your dog a lot longer to listen to you, then you need to up your engagement strategy.

Some ideas:

Playing fun scent games is one way to keep your dog's engagement. Either by hiding food or their favourite toy.

Short training sessions. At random times throughout the walk stop and do a short 2 minute training session with your dog. Like some sit stays, down stays, a few fun tricks.

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