Exercises to sharpen the dog’s attention span.
After attending a dog training course I noticed that many of the dogs the dogs present really hadn’t paid that much attention to what was going on and did or didn’t do more or less what they wanted to. While walking your dog you have probably noticed that there are many more things that interest your dog than do you.
Another thing is that while dog training you find that there are just some dogs that become more easily distracted therefore stop paying attention to their masters. So to help both the dogs and their masters I have come up with some exercises to help strengthen the dog’s focus and increase the dog’s attention span. What we are trying to achieve with these next few exercises is teach the dog to pay more attention to their dog trainer. The dog trainer will learn to more clearly express what it is that they want from their dog and move with more precision. Without violence or raising the volume of dog trainers voice their authority will grow in the eyes of the dog.
Some dog trainers are unaware of some of the actions or movements that they make which have a detrimental effect on their dog’s actions. By filming the dog trainer in action it is often easier to point out to them the problem areas and help them deal with them.
Practice with “Heel”.
All of these exercises should be performed with the dog at “Heel” and the leash loose or with the dog at “Heel” off of the leash. The for these exercises to work well the idea is that the dog likes being with its trainer and is a willing participant to all of the challenges facing the team, carefully watching and following the trainer. Unfortunately with these exercises it is sometimes more a matter of the trainer following the dog and not the other way around. It is very important that the dog is able to follow the directions indicated by the trainer but from experience I know how tough that can be. Most trainers without even realizing it tend to walk towards the left following their dogs. When you are moving to the left after your dog it isn’t possible to walk in a straight line. Another common mistake that many dog trainers make is to walk with their heads down, looking at and checking on their dogs. Like this you will soon lose sight of your objective.