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Shaking Paws With Dogs

Our blog entry for January 2012-

Happy New Year!

Shaking paws with Dogs

henry and shelby

Greeting dogs the dog-friendly way

Greeting dogs walking with their owners

  • ASK if you can interact first and approach slowly at a relaxed walk
  • if the answer is ‘no’, respect their space and move along
  • Check this out! There are MANY reasons some dogs shouldn’t interact with other dogs – watch this video to find out more: http://notesfromadogwalker.com/
  • With permission granted, approach sideways without giving direct eye-contact
  • Avoid looming over them (this is intimidating!)
  • Give the dog a little space (avoid reaching into their personal space) allowing them to approach you at their own rate
  • it’s OK to gently pet them if they are relaxed and asking for your attention by rubbing against you and wanting to be near you
  • Check this out! “How to Greet a Dog” poster by Dr Sophia Yin

http://info.drsophiayin.com/how-to-correctly-greet-a-dog-free-poster

  • If they are excitedly jumping up at you, stand like a tree and turn around – wait until they are calm before petting them

Greeting dogs on the loose (stray dogs)

  • NEVER approach a dog you are unsure of – watch their body language (are they relaxed and wanting to come to you? Or are they nervous and avoiding you or showing signs of aggression or fear?)
  • Check this out! “Body Language of Fear and Aggression” Poster by Dr Sophia Yin

http://drsophiayin.com/blog/entry/dog-bite-prevention-week-poster-on-the-body-language-of-fear-and-aggression

  • If they seem receptive, make sure to follow the above steps – moving slowly, avoid direct eye-contact, approach sideways, allow them to come to you
  • If possible, gently get hold of their collar or fasten a leash
  • Call the SPCA if they are unapproachable – give them a detailed description, including time and location
  • Do not chase a dog at large – they can become frightened or cornered and feel they need to defend themselves or they could get hit by a car!

Greeting our dogs when returning home (Does your dog jump all over you with excitement when you get home? Follow these steps!)

  • Enter the home calmly and give NO attention or affection (this includes eye contact, petting, kneeling down etc)
  • If they are jumping at you, stand like a tree and turn the other way – IGNORE the behaviour – do not reprimand them for this as they will perceive this as attention and will likely increase the problem behaviour!
  • WAIT until they have calmed down and are sitting before giving ANY attention – you should expect this to take approx. 10-20 minutes for the first couple of weeks
  • If your canine spends alone time in their crate – wait until they are calmly sitting before letting them out AND once out of the crate – wait again until they have calmed down before giving any affection
  • By waiting until our dogs are calm and sitting before giving ANY affection we are rewarding them for being calm – if we give any affection while they are hyper and jumping on us then we are rewarding unwanted behaviour!
  • If you practice this ritual every day, you’ll witness your jumpy fido turn into a polite pup
  • This will also help reinforce how we want our dogs to greet guests in our home and will help to decrease separation anxiety
  • Be sure that ALL family members are on board with the new greeting ritual to increase your chances for success!
  • Check this out! Training ‘sit for petting’ video by Dr Sophia Yin http://drsophiayin.com/resources/video_full/stellah_sits_for_excited_petting

By

Laura McCredie

Shelby with canine pal “Henry” in photo above