What do I mean by this…….
Here at Hounds Gang we are all about building relationships with the dogs, helping them grow in confidence, building trust and giving them the opportunity to succeed.
It is something we are always putting the work into and get better and better at as a pack.
Providing pack walks is a lot fun, watching them play and be in each others company and seeing how they communicate. It is incredibly rewarding.
Not to mention being outdoors in the beautiful Cotswold area!
At the same time it is also a huge repsonbiltiy to take on, it is not just a case of unclipping the lead and ‘see you at the end of the walk’ attitude.
As a professional dog walker I want to build relationships and engage with my pack, help dogs grow in confidence and get the best out of them.
There is nothing more rewarding than watching dogs grow and be happy in each others company, watching how they communicate with each other.
Why would they listen to me, come back to me when called, come to me if they are unsure of something, listen to me when I need their focus on me quickly. If I am not willing to put the effort in throughout the walk on EVERY walk.
Why would the dogs do what I would randomly ask of them every now and then?!
None of this is instantly achieved, each dog is very different.
Some could play constantly all walk, some like a little play and a plod around, some like to be in the company of other dogs but love to do their own thing like sniff and explore the area.
While some dogs like to stay closer to me and dabble in play and interaction.
Then some dogs might be nervous of passing other dogs or people on a walk, some might get nervous if they hear dogs or noises in the distance.
While some might get nervous with the sounds of farm vehicles and traffic.
This is why it is so important to provide structured walks and be engaged on the walk, watching behaviours.
Focused based enrichment games like sit and stays, recall drills, command training and encouragement on areas dogs lack confidence.
Focused based tasks and training, really helsp bring their distraction levels down and more focus on YOU the walker.
I absolutely love watching my pack get better and better on their sit and stays, recall drills, getting in and out of the van nicely. And their loose lead walking.
It is all important building blocks in advocating for my pack to make sure we are not pushing ourselves too soon.
Creating boundaries and expectations. Rewarding for good behaviour and desired behaviour.
This might mean we don’t say HI to everyone we meet, we might keep our distance when working on our proximity to other dogs and people to keep a calm behaviour.
Small steps each walk, each day gives great results overtime.
And I am loving seeing their results and sharing that with my clients in their dogs post walk update.