Best Practices: Good Dog Guardianship

There is no blanket solution for success when it comes to caring for dogs.

We have come up with a general outline of how to get the best out of your relationship with them!

BODY LANGUAGE

One area of dog training that people often neglect is body language. Since our primary form of communication with our dogs is through the form of body language, the importance of proper evaluation and diagnosis cannot be overstated.

Formulating an effective training plan requires an understanding of what our dogs are trying to tell us. This also helps us to address any underlying issues and not simply treat symptoms.

TRAINING & ENRICHMENT

Training and enrichment will improve your dogs health, your relationship, and your ability to communicate with one another. As with anything, the more you practice the better your results will be. Seeking guidance from an educated and accredited trainer is critical in optimizing the relationship.

Enrichment comes in many forms- there is mental, physical, and more. Look to your dog to determine what they find most rewarding.

Engaging a dogs mind will help alleviate stress and improve overall wellbeing and receptivity.

By employing reward-based training, you help build confidence, change emotional responses, provide choice, and strengthen the bond between dog and owner. This is one of the many reasons why BBR is a fully force-and-fear-free rescue.

EXERCISE

Exercise is an absolute must for dogs. We know the great effects of exercise on humans mentally and physically. Well dogs are no different. Dealing with a dogs energy properly and positively is of utmost importance.

Activities like decompression walks can help to center your dog if they struggle with stress or reactivity. Other activities like dog sports can give a dog a much-needed sense of duty and also provide an outlet for their natural instincts and energy.

Proprioception includes activities that involve the dogs body awareness and movement. One thing to remember is that any activity should be enjoyable for BOTH you and your dog. If it is stressful, it is not beneficial.

DIET

Diet is a delicate subject as there are many factors that determine an owners selection. But the reality and unquestionable fact remains that what you put in you will get out. So think not only of this moment but the long term health effects that food will have on your beloved furry family member. Not to mention the immediate ones like energy and behaviour too. We strongly suggest doing research prior to choosing diet. 

Some key factors to keep in mind: whole foods, no preservatives, fresh is best!

WELLBEING

Having rules, structure, and routine for your dog is a necessity. Consistency is key; using repetition and teaching in ways that dogs understand help to delineate boundaries regarding what is desirable and what’s not. Making sure we communicate in a way that is understood by the dog is vital!

Last but not least, the importance of affection is no less than any other factor. There are no instances in which we need to withhold or deprive our loved ones of our support, comfort, and love.

A positive and rewarding relationship for both parties is key. Making sure to include the dog(s) in as many aspects of our lives will not only have a profound impact on their wellbeing but on our bond as well. We reap what we sow in life, so we need to make sure to invest ourselves into our relationships with our dogs with time, energy and affection.