Week 8 - Mind and Body
Gentling exercises are a
great way to teach your dog to trust you. Once you have earned your
dog's trust, you will be able to touch your dog anywhere, anytime you
want and your dog will respond like a floppy, unconcerned rag doll.
Introduce these exercises when your puppy has been exercised and is
relaxed or tired.
Begin by finding your pup's favorite
spots to be scratched to associate your touch with good feelings.
Over days, increase where and how you touch your puppy - using
treats if needed - to keep this time fun and progressive.
Your end goal is to be able to give the
puppy a complete physical exam – looking in the mouth, ears, under
the tail, between the toes with some minor restraint; to be able to
move the skin all over the body; to be able move every part of the
body in a normal range of motion. Praise cooperation.
Don't force this issue. It is okay if
your pup begins by feeling a little anxious as long as he can work
through it and end up relaxed.
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